Taqwa & Martial Satisfaction
It should be no surprise to see a correlation between taqwa and marital satisfaction.
While righteousness alone isn’t necessarily a determining factor of a happy marriage, lack of righteousness and remembrance of Allah can often be the single greatest determining factor in the failure of a marriage.
Two religious people can get married and find they aren’t right for each other. But their divorce and separation will also be done in a way that is gentle, respectful, and considerate of each other.
But when one person in a marriage is lacking taqwa, which is best translated as having God-consciousness, then it’s no surprise to find that they mistreat their spouse or do things which dishonor their marriage.
They may pray at the masjid, teach Islamic classes, wear a huge hijab, be super involved in the community, or grow a long beard, and on some level love the Deen. But taqwa, the realization that Allah sees and knows all they do, is missing from their heart.
Actions are a reflection of our spiritual state.
And so, their actions hurt their spouse and family.
From there, due to hurt, their spouse may then begin to struggle with their own Iman.
They struggle with the tests they are privately facing, wondering why Allah is not helping their spouse change despite repeated du’a.
The trickle down effect keeps going and generations can become impacted.
Marriage is not just about a halal outlet for desires.
It’s a relationship designed to meet not just the bodily needs of human beings, but their spiritual needs and responsibilities.
Marriage, ultimately, serves a higher purpose. It’s to love ON purpose.
One of the aspects often missing from marital discord dialogue in our modern world is that of taqwa.
While using the medical route people are diagnosed with this category and that category to explain their behavior and its causes, from childhood trauma to lack of role modeling for marriage, etc.
These are legitimate and necessary dialogues.
But without also addressing the spiritual state of a person, we may not be offering a complete picture to those we are helping and not offering a complete cure or support system.
This post is not suggesting that mental health issues are about a “lack of Iman” issue.
It’s addressing the real fact that all human behavior can be categorized and explained but that the category of Iman and taqwa deserves to be explored and focused on as well IN the dialogue of helping a couple.
The greatest human beings in our history suffered from every imaginable trauma and pain. All of them. No exceptions.
They also experienced a full range of human emotion as expected. They were never shamed for their feelings.
But they were also raised up around The Prophet (saw) to see the bigger picture. To fear Allah, to have hearts that longed to not disobey him, and to right their wrongs as quickly as they could.
Marital rights were laid down and were the bare necessities for a marriage to begin or be sustained.
No matter how much you are struggling, as a believer, you can’t justify your wrong actions or violate the rights of your spouse with excuses.
You can understand why they are happening, and what has brought you to the point you are at. All of that is part of a healing journey.
But you can’t justify and make it ok and use categories and labels and the past as an *excuse*.
Taqwa is above everything because the law of Allah is above everything.
I feel the need to write this because after a decade of being in a counseling position I’ve heard too often people trying to justify their poor treatment of their spouses.
From men and women.
I’ve heard of others trying to convince people to stay in horrible marriages because “he/she can’t help themselves.”
Islam protects a persons heart, not rejects it.
You can understand WHY someone does what they do, but it doesn’t become an allowance for them to do it.
It may grant patience to the hurting spouse, but it’s their option to to be patient if they can manage. It’s not a demand anyone can make on them.
And when a person is reminded to fear Allah, and their heart is sincere, it shows.
They will be the person struggling to change themselves.
They will sign up for classes, counseling, coaching, and work hard. They will be committed and consistent. Not once or twice, but until they have changed and their spouse agrees things are so much better.
They will apologize and mend and take full responsibility for their behaviors.
Yes, they will start to heal when they know why they became the person they became.
But they won’t allow that to be their excuse.
But if their Iman is low.... then their taqwa is low. And if their taqwa is low one of the things that changed generations before us will be missing.
What empowers us is our hope in Allah but also our fear of Him.
Or perhaps beyond that, ultimate shyness of ever disobeying our majestic merciful and loving Lord.
When we forget Him, we are all capable of committing terrible actions.
So lack of taqwa and marital satisfaction often do go hand in hand.
Points to consider:
1) Make your Iman a priority in your own life.
2) Do what you can to keep you and your spouse and family around righteous people. Taqwa is a form or protection for your marriage.
3) If your spouse has been hurtful it can be helpful to see them as a struggling soul with low Iman. It allows you to recognize that there is a root issue and it’s NOT you.
4) Do get help when it’s needed. Marriage is tough at times but it shouldn’t be miserable. I offer private online coaching. Or you can find other counselors or therapists. Yes to resources and learning and growing.
5) Don’t tolerate being hurt. See #4. Whether your spouse wants support or not doesn’t matter. Get it for yourself first.
6) Rekindle your own intention that marriage is a part of your worship and remembrance of Allah.
7) Make dua for Allah to protect your hearts and keep you both guided on the straight path or return you to it. One can always turn back and change. Always.
8 ) Filter our junk. Be mindful of what you watch and listen to.