Arranged Marriages

Arranged marriages are a contentious practice to say the least. They’re highly favored by traditional cultures but not a mainstream practice in the United States. Unlike forced marriages, arranged marriages are simply ones in which a third party, usually parents or a religious authority, plays matchmaker, and sets up a meeting between two people that may or may not eventually turn into a marriage. Some cultures – like Hindu families – arrange marriages almost completely by horoscope compatibility. Surprisingly, such marriages also tend to be far more stable, with a far lower divorce rate.

An argument recently broke out in the California Psychics office over arranged marriage, with staff members Jude arguing against, and Yas for, the practice. The results were too good not to share:

Jude: “Arranged marriages are one of the most selfish things that parents can do to their children. It’s ridiculous that someone would even attempt to make a decision like that for someone else. It also contradicts what education teaches in terms of free thinking, problem solving, and becoming your own person. While these practices may have been accepted in the past, it’s a different time, and parents need to be less selfish and let their children do what will make them the most happy.

“While a parent’s intentions may be in the right place, unconsciously they are more concerned with what they want for their child, and someone that they would approve of, over thinking about what their child truly wants out of a mate. I think it’s fair to say, more often than not parents and children don’t see eye to eye on things like mates. Also, people figure out what they want by trial and error and experiencing different people – so how can a parent know what their child would want?

“The bottom line is, who someone marries is their decision, and no one else’s – and it shouldn’t be meddled with.”

Yas: “Clearly, this kind of judgment can only come from an un-married person. Modern day free thinking and problem solving has lead to a generation that obtains their news from MTV, and then sports the highest divorce rate in history. In the past, arranged marriages have yielded higher happiness rates for both members involved, and a lower divorce rate.

“The tradition of arranged marriages dates back for centuries among all types of cultures. It is important to distinguish between an arranged vs. a forced marriage. Some cultures promise their child to another family at a young age, others just get involved at the point of introduction to an available person from a recommended family. Sort of like a modern day dating site. Modern western culture has attempted to disassociate from this tradition and focused on the free choice of individuals, instead of parents. There is a level of wisdom that parents have acquired, that people in their 20s don’t have and often don’t realize exists. If you look at today’s divorce rate, one cannot argue that free choice is necessarily working.

“Note, I’m not recommending traditions that sell their children and where dissent is punishable by death. A modest understanding of the tradition is healthy and works. Communicating with parents about your relationship and seeking insight can be helpful.

“Today’s MTV culture bases marriage on ‘Hollywood love’ taught by cheesy romantic movies. People who’ve been in marriages for decades however, will tell you that marriage is not based on the stuff movies show.

“So no, it is not selfish, but rather thoughtful. Including your child’s opinion and thoughts is imperative to the decision making, as is the feedback of parents.”

What do you think – are you for or against arranged marriage?

20 thoughts on “Arranged Marriages

  1. Gabriel

    About intervention… If I had to guess (though it isn’t rellay a guess) I would suggest that the problem IS government intervention. If the government wants to help it should extricate itself from the arena posthaste. Stripping tax laws, social work interventions, food stamps, and almost all other involvement between married men and women, and their children (and others as well). While it might get rellay ugly, rellay fast, and for a while, a balance would eventually take hold. A natural balance. Anything else, I am guessing (rellay guessing here, though based on reliable history) will only make matters worse.Actually, this will occur one way or another. Either society, and the government, will hit a tipping point and collapse (though in which order I can’t tell as they seem neck and neck in the race over the cliff). Or this society will become so weak it will simply not be able to tend laws on arcane books as foreign interlopers of one stripe or another will take over. Or the government will remove itself from family law and and the many interventions it is currently forcing. If it is failure or outside interference, neither will support the artifices of today’s, let alone yesterday’s, social norms.Then again, like with me, it might already be far too late. Perhaps there is no medicine to fix the problems and only lumps remain.

  2. Corrine Ext. 5194

    The divorce rate is reportedly lower with arranged marriages it’s just a statistic, but due to the fear of breaking off a marriage or coming forward because of what your family will think, that could also be adding to divorce rate not being as high. There is so many factors that can argue this, but either way it’s what I’ve heard. I also wonder how many divorces are actually reported that are arranged, it could just be something that people “say” as a “pro” for arranged marriage. Just looked it up out of curiosity and figured I’d post my findings.

  3. rgrg

    I’m not for or against it. To each their own. If it works for you, thats great.
    But we can’t say that the divorce rate is higher among couples of arranged marriages vs. couples that chose each other. I think in this day and age, no one wants to try to make things work. If it doesn’t work, then they walk out of the door. There are way too many options available to individuals. Before, the word “divorce” would people into a panic, now its so common no one really cares.
    I think its sad though.

    Keep Smiling,

  4. alcyone7alcyone7

    “….the psychic part of me says no, better to carve out your own Karmic path by free will .”

    A person would have to become *completely* un-hypnotized from societal and family/cultural *conditioning* to even get anywhere near the state of self-knowledge necessary for true “free will” to arise and be put into action.

    Most people can’t even *conceive* of what exercising genuine FREE WILL would entail…

  5. busijilli

    Excuse me people, but I feel we’re forgetting a very important point, which is that female lives & perspectives have changed enormously over the past years, which to me, is one of the most important factors, in the divorce rate & attitudes towards arranged marriages. To me, arranged marriages appear to be much more of a practical contract, in the way of old type marriages, where basically a woman might have looked for somebody she liked, but just as important, also to support her & provide stability for any possible children, in the future, because there really was no alternative up until the 50’s, if not later in the West & in many cases still isn’t in other parts of the world. Now, western woman need not be so dependent on a man & if his behaviour is absolutely not acceptable, then she can finish the marriage & this has caused considerable upheaval, but not ALWAYS bad, if men are beginning to change too. I also feel a good part of the reasons behind the divorce rate, is not only the “romantic” image which even today, films & books keep promoting (but we all need a little romance at least, to “oil” the wheels of life!!) of the unrealistic “happy ever after” scenario (we are talking of 2 individuals here!) but also that many woman have maybe grown up & don’t wish to be treated (or thought of!) as a form of dependent children, but people in their own right & unfortunately many men have yet to understand what has happened. It therefore comes as a surprise, that if they continue to behave (physical & emotional violence, unfaithfullness etc) in a way, that a woman would have been forced to endure at one time, because basically there was little alternative for them, but now woman now DO have an alternative & CAN make a new life for themselves. To me it entirely depends on what you want from marriage, if your mentality is of the more traditional or practical type woman’s, & more of a freindly relationship is enough, then perhaps an arranged marriage is fine, but if you have a more independent attitude, this is likely to be very difficult. I speak as one who could never imagine even contemplating, marrying the sort of man that my parents thought were a good idea, nor did I particularly like the young men that I grew up with. But now, after 26 years, married to a man, who, like me, had grown up enough; travelled & opened his mind to other attitudes, obviously it was better for me to go outside my normal enviroment. Despite the fact we came from different countries & backgrounds (altho’ we do have the same religion) married a mere 6 months after meeting, much to the shock of our families & have obviously had the normal amount of problems, it has proved, that you simply cannot make rules which fit everyone, when it comes to marriage!!

  6. Puly

    Im not for arranged marriage but im ok with people who consider it,maybe bacause they think it will work for them.In tradition in olden days it use to work,and even now it still works for some people. have friends who have done it because of tradition and all of them are divorced now….When one learns to love someone they dont know and they are already married to its kind of difficult what if you have nothing in common with each other besides being married now….

  7. chloechloe

    I think this is a cultural issue. I believe freely chosen marriages are based on a romantic notion of love while arranged marriages are based on the more practical notion of the role of marriage within community.

    Arranged marriages work best when both parties genuinely like one another and are at peace with the notion that “falling in love” may or may not be part of the equation of their marriage. Sometimes this notion can difficult to understand from the Western point of view- It looks too much like “settling” to us. Yet the notion of marrying for love and love alone is a fairly new concept.

    This issue has come up in a number of the readings I’ve conducted. Particularly, with people who have been raised in Western culture by parents who want to maintain the traditions from their country of origin. This struggle, or clash of “old world” and “new world” is actually pretty classic in form. European immigrants who came here before the onset of modernity dealt with the same conflicts.

    I’m Western, so I believe in love but I also fully understand that not everyone will marry for the reasons I think are important. After all, at the end of the day, literal marriage is a nothing more than a legal agreement and yet the marriage of one soul to another can exist for an eternity bound by nothing more than a promise or a kiss.

    Happy Readings! ~Chloe (ext. 9421)

  8. rgrg

    Hi, Just wanted to jump in here and throw in my two bits.
    I am an Indian, but more Canadian than Indian. My parents are born and raised in India and are a great example of arranged marriages, they are coming up to their 45th wedding anniversary. My mom was visiting her uncle, when her father came and said you have to come home, your getting married tomorrow. And there was my father the very next day ready to marry her…..and so goes the story.

    Being a modern Indian myself, I think arranged marriages in India and arranged marriages abroad are two separate things. In India, some people are told your marrying so and so, while others may be asked. Some are allowed to talk/meet their prospective spouse, while others are not. Therefore, it all depends on the family and their lifestyle to see how “arranged” the marriage is.
    For myself, my parents have thrown the idea out there, and they have asked some family/friends if they know of anyone that I would like. In that case, if someone of interest happens to be available, I’d have no problem getting to know them….but the pressure of having to marry that person is NOT there, as it would be for someone perhaps in India (or another 3rd world country). I think I may feel a bit secure knowing that someone knows this person, rather than meeting someone off some website, or pick them up at a bar/club. You just don’t know these days. It may even be some type of security to know that person may not be nuts, or a psycho.
    On the other side….some arranged marriages have ended very very poorly. If you guys ever get a chance, try to grab a book called Black and Blue Sari…..its an incredible book about what a women went through in an arranged marriage and the abuse she suffered. Hopefully, that will give some light to this topic. Not to say that only women in arranged marriages suffer. But I agree with Yas, the divorce rate was much lower back then….but could it be because of women being alot more suppressed than they are today? Or people learning to live, because no other options were available?

    Keep Smiling,

  9. Gina Rose ext.9500Gina Rose ext.9500

    Hi Carmen,
    Yes…..I agree with your theory……that’s what I’ve thought too……as I do more and more of those readings and run into more cases like the ones I presented.

    well…. even the old courtships rituals carried over from Europe have somehow fallen by the wayside here over time…..

    Personally…. I’m divided on this issue……the GrandMother in me agrees with you and Yas…..
    ….the psychic part of me says no, better to carve out your own Karmic path by free will .

    But it does make for an interesting debate I’ll agree.

    Blessed Be )O(
    Gina Rose ext.9500

  10. Carmen Hexe

    I have an idea as to why this won’t work outside of India.

    There is something about the Western culture… Traditional values and beliefs won’t really survive in our world.

    Let me tell you how it feels to move to the US, for example, and I come from a Western country! Moving here was a huge culture shock and it took me over two years to get used to how people are here. First of all, there is an overload on stimuli here. Anything and everything is possible in the land of the free. I won’t go into detail, because I don’t want to sound negative, but here you either learn to adjust to how things are done here, or you’ll remain an outsider.

    Moving here from India, a third world country, and realizing that you can have anything and anyone, will definitely make you question why you should follow a long-standing tradition, when Westerns openly choose whom they want, get married and divorced, all at their leisure.

    Ignorance is bliss and if you don’t know better, you won’t usually question. Moving to the Western world is the equivalent to dangling a huge carrot in front of your face. A carrot that tells you that you are entitled to choose and anythinge else must be barbaric, dated or cruel.

  11. Yas

    I think it’s all a very personal choice and the level of freedom of choice varies per culture and more so, per household.

    Among the Iranian community living in the United States, arranged married (involvement at the point of introduction, sometimes more) is very popular and still alive. In fact, a growing number of first generation immigrants decided to rebel against the custom and choose their own mate. Many did so, successfully. However, I am witnessing a growing trend among the 2nd generation of immigrants, returning to it in big numbers.

    I am still baffled by the men I meet, who repeatedly tell me, they prefer to be introduced to a women by family and friends, rather than meeting her randomly. These are young and very successful men, looking to settle down. I believe for men, it eliminates the initial awkwardness, when one doesn’t know what the other person is looking for. I can attribute the relationship of at least 3 dozen people, personally to this custom.

    Increasing popularity of modern day matchmakers, provide a strong case for arranged marriages. What else is a matchmaker but a person that introduces two people with similar interests? She gets involved at the point of introduction. Hugely successful sites and shows are attributed to a growing trend towards this age old custom.

    I also see this tradition as largely popular in Jewish and Muslim communities in the U.S.. But the changing variable is the level of involvement of family and friends, which is why I tried to keep the topic as general as possible.

    I don’t assume this works for everyone. But I believe different traditions and customs can attribute to our understanding and help us make better choices in our lives.

  12. Gina Rose ext.9500Gina Rose ext.9500

    Hi Yas,

    As an example….I ‘m currently reading for 2 single Hindu men… is 27 yrs old….the other is 24 yrs old……both of these men work and reside in Canada and USA……they both tell me they dread going home to visit as they are tired of the family back home in India pressuring them to meet prospective brides, (which they have already pre-chosen ), and settle down and marry.

    So they, eventually, do both go home to visit, meet with the pre-chosen brides to be, and then deliberately find something wrong with each and every chosen bride. One of these guys has been evading arranged marriage for the past 4 years now doing that. Both of these guys have told me that they do NOT intend to follow tradition and enter into an arranged marriage……instead they are both looking for the Hindu wife of their choice in USA and Canada.

    I’m seeing a growing trend in that direction…..why ?…I have no idea.

    And the older married Hindu clients that I’ve read for are either divorcing or planning divorce OR arealready living apart seperately……sometimes even in different countries seperately.

    It’s baffling to me……but arranged marriages are still working IN India……but outside of India….from what I get from my clients from past years to date…it’s not.

    I have no idea why that is….input anybody ?????????? ideas maybe ???????

    Blessed Be )O(
    Gina Rose ext.9500

  13. Carmen Hexe

    *waves at Gina Rose*

    Yes, I was also talking about “arranged” as in introduced, not forced. Hence, my point. The girls in India I have talked to alll had a choice to not select the person their parents introduced them to and I know one in particular who had, at the point when we talked, already rejected about 5 of them, haha.

  14. Gina Rose ext.9500Gina Rose ext.9500

    Hi Yas,

    That is exactly what I’m talking about….arranged marriages, not forced marriages…..

    …99% of my readings , regarding this particular topic, are specifically on Hhindu arranged marriages……

    What I posted below….has been my experience as a psychic out here in the field……

    I have no idea why….

    Blessed Be )O(
    Gina Rose ext.9500

  15. Yas

    I will say, just like any other relationship, it has worked for some and not for others. But the divorce rate is lower and from a few scientific tests that I have seen, the overall happiness rate is higher.

    I have seen many of Eastern background follow this tradition. Individuals who have met through an arrangement: their parents were friends and asked their children if they would be interested in going out with one another. They dated for a while, and by their own volition got married and are very happy for many years now. I have a few examples like that.

    I also know of couples who are miserable.

    @Gina Rose; My point is not forced marriages, rather arrangements were individuals are introduced.

  16. Gina Rose ext.9500Gina Rose ext.9500

    Hi Carmen,

    I’m just reporting from what I’ve experienced out in the field as a professional career psychic ( like a reporter feeding back data gathered)….giving many readings over a long period of time.

    It would be REALLY interesting though,….. to hear from the clients out there, that are from that culture… hear their feedback and viewpoints.

    You rock Carmen…..!!!! Keep writing those great articles I so enjoy reading.

    Blessed Be )O(
    Gina Rose ext.9500

  17. Carmen Hexe

    Aw, that is too bad 🙁

    A very close friend of mine is from India and he and his wife are in an arranged marriage. They have been together for well over 10 years and love each other very much.

    Like I said, I have not met anyone personally, either in India or from India, who was unhappy in their marriage, including the ones who are in arranged marriages.

  18. Gina Rose ext.9500Gina Rose ext.9500

    as a sidenote, and again based upon the readings I’ve given……it still seems to working for the Italien and Jewish families that follow that tradition.

    Blessed Be )O(
    Gina Rose ext.9500

  19. Gina Rose ext.9500Gina Rose ext.9500

    While I’m totally un-biased with this topic…..I have to say that I’ve never read for anybody who was happy in their arranged marriage.

    I’ve seen a growing trend, over the past 15 or more years, in the younger people from the Indian culture to rebel against arranged marriages and marry to whom they so desire regardless of tradition and beliefs.

    ….. and the other end of the spectrum…..I’ve read for many who suffered thru an arranged marriage, and after 20 plus years, and rearing children…..are divorcing . !!!!! In fact, two of these are Doctors, women from India , who are currently writing books against arranged marriages!!!!!!

    ****** Funny thing, it still seems to be working for those who actually live in India…..but for those, of that same culture, who live in other countries around the globe, it isn’t.******** Baffling !!!!!!

    Would like to see comments from people of that culture to see what their take on it is.

    From a professional psychic perspective……I think it is up to the individual to walk their Karmic path , whatever that may be… be true to their heart and soul’s life path.
    From a spiritual Karmic aspect…. Karma is much more important than the matching up of astrological signs in arranged marriages.

    But as I said…..I’m un-biased… comment is based solely just from the readings I’ve given and what the clients have relayed to me over the past 44 years of readings.

    Blessed Be )O(
    Gina Rose ext.9500

  20. Carmen Hexe

    I am with Yas (sorry, hating on Jude :-P)

    I actually visited India and asked friends I’ve made over there how they feel about arranged marriages, and it isn’t as bleak as we’ll make it appear. First of all, the girls DO have a say! The parents might suggest a person, but the girl still has the power to reject the suiter, if she doesn’t like him or doesn’t feel there is a connection.

    Also, because they are usually matched up by astrology (interestingly enough not by sun sign, but by moon sign), they often do get along.

    If you are born into a certain culture, you wouldn’t know the difference and hence, something that is unfathomable for the Western Culture, is definitely not necessarily frowned upon or horrific in the Eastern Cultures. You don’t really question something that just is, so no one sees it as a crime against their being, or taking away one’s freedom.

    The people over there are quite often married via arranged marriages and oddly enough, they tend to be amazingly happy with each other and yes, they do have a very low divorce rate.

    The younger people are more and more choosing their own partners, but arranged marriages are still happily going on. The one thing that a “Westerner” wouldn’t get is, how these people are not like us at all. They do not have a sense of entitlement, most of them have a sense of peace and happiness that I have never witnessed in any other culture and they also have a much higher respect for their parents. Trust me, the people I have talked to lived fairly happy lives and some of them were married to their arranged partners.


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