The Origins of Marriage

How the institution came to be and what is best?

Published 29 Dec 2015 - updated Sept 12 2018

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In Europe before 1100 A.D. people wanting to join together for fun, to raise a family and what might be seen as marriage just got on with it. But with the growth of European civilisation there was a problem surrounding inheritance and being absolutely sure the 'right' child was being left the family fortune, because in those days the oldest child or the oldest boy child inherited the family assets.

To resolve this issue, the Catholic church came up with the idea of a church sanctified marriage which coincidently helped to fill their coffers. They also made up rules about who could marry who in order to restrict the accumulation of assets within extended families. For some time the priests were allowed and even encouraged to marry for a time but then the church worked out that those priests wanted to leave an inheritance for their families which came out of the church coffers.

So a new edict came out that priests were forbidden to marry and the new word of God was that celibacy was the most noble virtue for priests. Suddenly homosexuality flourished within the priesthood and paedophilia became rampant within the church. The Protestant reformer Martin Luther on a visit to Rome described on attending a party for the Pope how a huge cake was wheeled in from which emerged about 20 young boys who proceeded to provide sexual pleasure for the priests. In recent years the homosexuality and paedophilia within the priesthood has come to public notice and it remains a problem within the church.

Martin Luther understood correctly that repressing sexual desire is harmful and the Protestant clergy got married, although by then the church sanctioned marriage had become entrenched within society. The Catholic Church had also recognised that sexual repression was harmful and in the years following the requirement for church marriages and the celibacy of priests, the church also operated the first brothels across Europe. They were conveniently located near church's and Catholicism took control of people's bodies and their sexuality.

Loving, blissful commitment wasn’t exactly synonymous with the true traditional marriage our ancient ancestors experienced. Why? Marriage was an arrangement that many were forced into. Four thousand years ago in Mesopotamia, marriage was equivalent to slavery; in the year 400 A.D. many church officials actually opposed marriage describing it as “bondage.”

Within this patriarchal society, women remained second-class citizens and men recognising their desire for sex with women blamed woman as the source of their desires as well as the cause of their suffering when they couldn't have sex with the women they desired. This is very apparent within Islam today where a woman who commits a supposedly sexual crime may be put to death while the man gets a lesser punishment.

Within the Protestant Reformation, a group of activists took the liberalisation of human relationships even further and they adopted polygamy as a natural way of life. No one really knows if they came up with this idea themselves or if they took it from another culture, but Christian Europe was intolerant of this and most of that community were killed yet there has a revival of this tradition in the USA.

By looking back over history we can see clearly that the institution of marriage went from a natural response to life for the purposes of pleasure and reproduction which, ( only the business of those involved). Then under the guise of Christianity, marriage and human sexuality came under control of the church, not for any genuine spiritual reason but purely for economic reasons.

In Greek we have “polyandros” known today as polyandry meaning “many husbands” the “poly” meaning “many” the “andros” meaning “man”. In other words, a woman has many husbands.
For “husband” we have “polygamy” meaning “many marriages” the “poly” meaning “many” the “gamy” meaning “marriage”. JRC

Marriage in other cultures

The 60-year-old Afghan man and has lovely 12-year-old bride. Note that this is not her wedding dress, this is the costume she is expected to wear every day for the rest of her life.

Arabia is thought of as being home to polygamy were a man may have more than one wife or even as many wives as he wanted. This idea is even described in the Bible with King Solomon and King David having many hundreds of wives.

In Ottoman Turkey and other places within the region, wealthy men kept harems of woman for their own personal pleasure and as gifts for visiting dignitaries from other regions. The downside of this is because the numbers of men and women in any society are usually proportional, this left many men without wives and sex partners which ultimately caused a spiritual depression and an irrational temperament ideal for creating conflict.

Polygamy supports the acquisition of wealth and power within families, a wealthy man can have many children and ensure that his children have wives. Everyone works for the extended family and this has enabled empires to be created as in the Saudi Arabia of today.

In Tibet, polyandry were a woman may have several husbands became a practical solution to limiting population growth. This was necessary because the land could not support many people. The practice of polyandry creates a much more peaceful society with a more equal balance between the rights of men and women.

In south-west China there is a matriarchal society that has existed for perhaps thousands of years where the women own the land, buildings and operate the economy. They may take a husband who must continue to reside in his own family home but may visit his wife when she is receptive. But both husband and wife are free to have extramarital relationships and because the children grow up in the home of the woman's family, they have great stability.

Another system is the arranged marriage. This has been used across the world were girls were gifted to the kings of other countries to secure equitable trade and peaceful coexistence. But the home of the ideal arranged marriage is India.

Marriages were arranged in consultation with astrologers and geneticists to ensure that the couple to be married were intellectually compatible and healthy enough to produce strong children. Westerners think this idea is disgusting because they know everything. But Indian society was extremely successful and before the arrival of the Moslem's and the British who tried to destroy Indian culture, visitors to India were genuinely impressed by the overall health and fitness of the Indian population.

The arranged Indian marriages also lasted because they understood the art of making themselves into pleasant people. They shared the common goal of greater well-being for all of humanity whereas in Western culture, human well-being has mostly been an afterthought to the wants of life.

This brings us back to the primary argument for marriage which is the need for children to grow up amidst stable relationships. This is not the case in Western society or Islamic culture where women are little more than chattels to bear children.

Where marriage between two people is equitable and pleasant, children will generally grow up with a healthier disposition towards life. But children growing up with parents who married purely for economic or political reasons who don't necessarily like each other,  or those who grow up in an abusive situations will be stained and less able to create healthy lives for themselves.

We can see this now in the endless cycle of family violence that the West is trying to deal with through the courts, but in other countries any children seeking justice and equity may simply be killed.

For the time being, the system of marriage that exists is a 'best fit' and yet it is not perfect. Some people if they have generated enough pleasantness within themselves, they can create a pleasant partnership with their spouse and family.

The real secret to a happy marriage is in making yourself into a pleasant and responsible person. So what is best?

Given that the world is overpopulated and we don't need to have as many children, there is no need to get married. We know how to prevent disease and pregnancy, so therefore like-minded people are able to have sex for the pleasure it affords.

The Christian ideal of marriage works for some and fails for many, but for the many it has become an economic necessity and to undo this, we need to transform the world's economy which is currently broken beyond repair.

Polygamy within totalitarian societies deprives women the opportunity to enjoy the level of sexual pleasure they need to feel satisfied by their relationship and it denies men of the freedom to enjoy sex which is undeniably one of the greatest pleasures in life. This helps to create a violent and increasingly intolerant society making polygamy the least ideal marriage system.

Polyandry works very nicely and a society where there exist more men than there are women to go around. This also works very well for the women with a strong sex drive.

The arranged marriage in today's overpopulated world is perhaps the most ideal because it removes the anxieties associated with dating and struggling to find a particular partner. By having one's family coupled with experts deciding one's future spouse leaves the individuals to be married the freedom to cultivate a degree of pleasantness within themselves so that they could in fact be happy married to anyone. Through arranged marriages, the people live more happily, the community stronger and the children healthier.

It is only through the arranged marriage that we begin to take responsibility for the continued existence of our own species because at present we are seeing a rapid degeneration and our health and fertility. At our present rate of devolution it is anticipated that we will go extinct within 100,000 years although at the rate that we are destroying our own environment, we may be extinct within the next 100 years.

The choice is ours and we need to choose wisely. For those deciding not to marry or not to reproduce, they can have as much sex as they want providing they do all they can to avoid making unwanted babies.


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