Boy meets girl. Boy likes the girl. The girl likes the boy. They meet again and again. They come closer – emotionally, mentally and soon, physically. They are in love. The boy proposes, the girl accepts. Or the other way around. They get married and are supposed to live happily ever after. The End. No way. In fact, it is the beginning of a new chapter of adjustment, compromise, suppression, mental torture, slavery, violence and even killing. They may sort it out themselves. The one who gives in first, has to give way for the rest of his/her life. Or they divorce. This is the story of the marriage today.
As women assert their equal rights under the law; become more and more educated; are able to earn and support themselves; and enjoy sexual freedom with contraceptives; marriage has become weaker – indeed collapsed. So a ‘live in’ relationship without getting married is fast becoming popular. Indeed, the legal systems of the west, and now India too, have accepted this relationship. A new bill before the Indian parliament, when it becomes law, will allow single men, women and even gays and lesbians to have children using surrogate mothers. Women do not need a man to bear a child. A man does not need a woman to bear his child. The pill and the condom have freed a woman from bearing a child. A women does not need a man bear a child, she can use a donor sperm. She does not need a man to support her as better education has enabled her to earn and live the life she wants.
In a lead article, 'I Don't', Newsweek dated 28 June - 5 July says, “As an institution, marriage is described by sociologists as 'broken'. From a legal, financial and practical viewpoint, marriage is no longer necessary.”
The facts tell the same story. The percentage of married persons has dropped every decade since 1950s, while the number of unmarried partners has risen 1,000 per cent over the last 40 years. Births out of wedlock are 52 per cent in Sweden, 50 per cent in France, 42 per cent in the UK, 41 per cent in USA. And 15 other EU countries had an estimated average of 33 per cent, the annual ONS' Social Trends report said. In 1980, births outside marriage in the UK was a meager 12 per cent., according to he Office for National Statistics.
Half of all babies will be born to unmarried mothers by 2012 if present trends continue, says new research that suggests the rapid erosion of moral and religious taboos. Moreover, fewer than half of families will consist of married couples and up to a third could be lone parents, said Dr Peter Brierley, a former Government statistician now specialising in religious trends.
No wonder the western sociologists now say that marriage, as an institution, is broken. Osho said this over 40 years ago. Osho talked about all these aspects of marriage happening now. But with one major difference – he looked into the future and spoke more than four decades ago. He said marriage is irrelevant if one is in love; women have become more empowered with education and contraceptives, why one should not live in misery in an unhappy marriage, and divorce should be an easy and even an enjoyable option. If a marriage does not work, said Osho, untie the knot by going round the fire ceremony in the opposite direction! In the same style, divorce parties have now become popular in the west.
Osho said, “I am not against marriage -- I am for love. If love becomes your marriage, good; but don't hope that marriage can bring love. That is not possible. Love can become a marriage. You have to work very consciously to transform your love into a marriage.
“I am for the REAL marriage. I am against the false, the pseudo, that exists. But it is an arrangement. It gives you a certain security, safety, occupation. It keeps you engaged. Otherwise, it gives you no enrichment, it gives you no nourishment.
“Passion alone is not able to sustain love; compassion is needed. If you are able to be compassionate towards the other; if you are able to accept his limitations, his imperfections; if you are able to accept him the way he is or she is and STILL love -- then one day a marriage happens. That may take years. That may take your whole life.
“Marriage is a trap: you will be trapped by the woman and the woman will be trapped by you. It is a mutual trap. And then legally you are allowed to torture each other forever. The very institution of marriage is ugly, the very institution is anti-love. It is based on denying love a chance to flower within you. Marriage is an invention of those who don't want the earth to be full of flowers of love. Love is dangerous to the establishment, the most dangerous thing, because if people are loving then this society is doomed. This society depends on hatred, not on love,” said Osho.
What do you think?