Sunday, January 05, 2014
aishah, rebeccah and young marriage
From time to time I've been caught up into highly-polemical religious discussions on the internet. At times I've found such discussions personally useful as a way to clarify for myself what I believe. Other times, the discussions are a source of aggravation and a waste of time. One of the more hot-button issues in the context of such discussions is the fact that Muhammad (saaws) married Aishah (ra) when she was relatively young. Alot of the time, my main response would be to point people to The Young Marriage of Aishah by Abû Imân cAbd ar-Rahmân Robert Squires, which provides a fairly well reasoned discussion of the subject.
Recently my mind has been blown after reading the article: Child Marriage in Ancient Israelite times which, among other things, cites the "respected" rabbinic opinion that Rebecca was only three years old when she got married to Isaac, and that in general, child marriage was INCREDIBLY widespread in the ancient Jewish world
Huff Post: Three-Year-Old Bride In Bible Kids' Book
Also see: Our Mother A'isha's Age At The Time Of Her Marriage to The Prophet which presents a fairly detailed argument for Aishah being older than is usually stated, while at the same time making it clear that young marriages were not at all atypical for the time (for example, Aisha herself was almost engaged to someone else).