Articles / Knowledge

The Need for Physical Attraction
from The 3-Dialogue Rule: One Hundred Muslim Marriages in One Thousand Days
by Kamran A Beg

The extent to which physical compatibility is weighted as a priority will vary from one person to another but what is undeniable is the fundamental desire that each of us harbours in that we wish to partake in a lifelong partnership of marriage with someone who is appealing to our eye. That is perfectly in keeping with human nature and not something one should be embarrassed to admit! The Prophet (PBUH) touched explicitly on the need to feel physically attracted to one's future spouse. Beauty. for example, is earmarked as one of the three secondary parameters comprising the personal preference of a man when choosing a wife. The Prophet (PBUH) further exhorted that if a man finds his prospective wife to be physically attractive it will help to nourish that bond of love and compassion, which underpins compatibility. Thus the Prophet (PBUH) remarked: "Look at her, for it is more likely to establish affection between you" (Ahmed, Abu Dawud, Tirmidhi, Nisai and Ibn Majah). The Prophet (PBUH) also acknowledged that physical chemistry greatly helps to sustain a marriage: "Look at her because that will be more conducive to a longer marriage" (Al-Omar, 1999: p.13). Physical compatibility is not inconsequential: it clearly has a vital role to play in safeguarding the longevity of a marriage. As the Prophet's observations show to discount the need for physical compatibility is to ignore it at your peril! That is nit to say the physical attraction a man feels for a woman is the only secondary parameter informing his life partner choice but none-the-less assuming the woman has the right level of faith, which is the primary parameter driving a man's life partner choice, the woman he marries should have the right blend of secondary parameters  in unison with his personal preference with physical attraction for the woman clearly having an important role to play in that personal preference as the Prophet's timeless advice displays.

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