sub : Live-in-relations, staying together before marriage

Date : May 22, 2007 8:21 AM

Jai Jagannath,

( Composed by Siba Ram Baral )

Yes, friends…. I am talking about something which is happening at your next door. A common scene around that has triggered an early warning to a possible massive cultural disaster. To start discussing on this let's find out if our history and tradition says something similar.
ACOUSTIC NERVE : "Ghotul", a system followed by tribal people of interior Maharastra and MP in which marriageable boys and girls stay together for a few days in specially constructed thatched huts and select their partners after gaining familiarity and confidence is still in vogue among tribal.

Our constitution says : Staying together before marriage : bigamy a non-cognizable offence.

When I meet youngsters belonging to the middle class, related to my friends or from neighborhood, I find these shy children still blush with the name of love itself. They are trapped in the struggle of resolving career-oriented problems on the one hand and are in a blind race of adopting the western lifestyle. They are keen to adopt card culture and fast food trend, while love is still a romantic dream for them. Trapped in traditional disparities these youngsters seem to shy from physical relationship. But when I go through the personal columns and discussion boards in the magazines, I find most of their talks revolving around issues of premarital physical relation, their physical involvements and their confusions arising thereof. The newspapers are full of such love messages, in the chat room of Internet cafés these youngsters appear to be very bold.

I get perplexed with the projection of this double standard of this new young Indian lot. What is the truth? They might have indulged in the physical relations out of natural curiosity but their Indian cultural norms must also lead to conflict within their minds. These premarital relations give rise to the problem of mental distress. Because our Indian traditions emphasize that physical relation and physical relation should be with only the one you get married. All love affairs are not successful : some are sacrificed due to circumstances and societal pressures while fade with the passage of time. In these cases, if there has been physical involvement, then these Indian youngsters cannot embezzle it, and their traditional views do not allow them to accept it. This remains alive in their life and revives like an ulcer in their personality.

In India, the large percentage of boys and girls belonging to middle class families of small towns are still ignorant of physical relations till they get married. This is also a negative approach. One class of these youngsters wants to be known as progressive, they stay in big cities while enjoying their freedom and independence. These self-dependent young who believe marriage as a burden, are economically independent, they think that they have a clear thought of physical relations, just like a natural desire. For such desires, the girls and boys belonging to this class start staying together under the concept of 'Living-in-relations '. These young persons who don't believe in marriage, in no time, entangle with lot of troubles. These relations do not have any commitments, devotion, and when there is an ego clash with each other, then these relations without any sanctity of society become burden leading to separation and a cause for mental distress.

It has taken some thousand of years for man to evolve from an animal to a civilized human, developing his emotional and societal needs to build relationships for his personal growth and family, how can the act of physical relation sans an emotional security be truly satisfying? Physical relation involves emotional bondage. We see around us married couples really struggle to make their marriage successful because they are committed, while the bond which is without the sanctity of marriage, it is assumed, will definitely be full of problems only.

Finally, these premarital relations may give a short-lived sense of joy through physical relation release or a feeling of independence by rebelling against the traditional values, they do not confer permanency that the institution of marriage does. Premarital physical relations also occur when people cross their marriageable age and are unable to overlook their physical needs. One may argue that for an adult, the physical satisfaction is one's personal affair or an ecstasy arising from the union of two bodies yet the Indian society does not sanctify this argument without the institution of marriage. It is true that this institution, in itself is quite old and needs some change and a considerate attitude. For example the orthodox and tradition bound society must accept love marriages.

At last, these traditions do work and provides security and confidence to children, the traditions, which are inculcated at childhood, parent's awareness and friend's behavior, and these children do not look outside for any prohibited happiness. But extremeness always makes opposite impression, difference among physical relation, keeping them apart becomes a cause of dangerous anxiety. At this stage, the physical relation education, at the right time through the right medium, serves the positive role. With the combination of considerate liberal approach and keeping the traditional values in mind we can restrict such pre-marital physical relations to a certain extent. This requires cooperation of the society, parents, educational institutions, media and even the compatibility of youngsters.

The second issue is the birth of a child arising from premarital physical relation. This is not desired or acceptable even in the tribal society of any part of the world. Even among the animals, before giving birth to their children, both parents bring up the children together, till they become self-dependent. Single motherhood is not only unnatural but suicidal too. Even if the mother is well-versed to rear her children, she cannot provide completeness in the absence of the father. The unmarried mother can't do justice with herself and the child.

With various discussions and debates, these topics will always remain filled with controversies and will be alive forever. Prohibited but lustrous the premarital physical relation may be, it cannot remove the values of the institution of marriage. Though the marriage is an old institution but it has a definite scientific value of stability, physical satisfaction, emotional attachments and feeling of security.

My sincere request to all my friends and youngsters to stay away from such things and better be honest and integrated for some one who waits at some corner of the world to be your partner for next seven lives.