Yogi Bhajan Lecture Archive
Lecture by :
Siri Singh Sahib Bhai Sahib Harbhajan Singh Khalsa Yogi Ji
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Lecture on: 04/02/1977
Category: Class Lectures
Location: Unknown
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Marriage - Honoring the Word

It is an ingrown desire of a woman to become a mother. Bij mantra serab ko gian. The very seed of the mother has the knowledge to be a mother. To fulfill this desire, she has the desire to mate with a male. With these two strong desires there is a very powerful desire in every woman’s heart to have comfortable, cozy and secure environments. Also, you will be surprised that as long as you ovulate you have a desire to look pretty. This desire is called washna. Washna means: a very subtle desire in the subconscious mind. Consider that if this desire of the subconscious mind did not exist in a woman, no woman would ever marry a man. All these houses and cities do not come because men ever desired them. Fundamentally, by nature, man doesn’t believe in a home. I am just giving you the psychological differences so that you can basically and truthfully understand your role in relationship with the role of a male. These roles are not the same at all. If it were left to men, you all would be living with a backpack. To have a home, to have protection, to have security, save some money, save some food, all this paraphernalia is the invention of a woman’s subconscious mind. Therefore, it is very correct when they say woman is the axle of human society. Man comes home when necessity brings him; woman goes out of the house when necessity takes her out. These subtle differences of in the subconscious are supposed to be very well known by us.

In Western society dating has become a nonsense. In the beginning, the idea of dating was very pure. Now you have exploited it sensually and sexually. Previously, when two families liked a relationship, the boy and girl would go, sit down in a very cozy, private environment, and discuss their sincerity and seriousness about life. Now it is just going to a restaurant or a movie and dropping back at somebody’s apartment for some reason.

In ancient societies, there was a procedure called soamber in which, when a woman turned 16, she used to declare the requirements and conditions for a male to qualify as her husband. These were then published. A date was fixed when she was 18 years old when any well known person in the society who fulfilled those conditions from among all the competitors would be considered worthy of her hand. If there was more than one person who could fulfill the conditions, she would select the one she liked. A soamber marriage was the first institution of marriage known to human society.

Later marriages were arranged by individual effort. Today let us discuss the pros and cons of arranged marriages. The system was that each family used to have a prohat. A prohat is a person who knows every accident, incident and fact about the child from birth through the present. Whenever the daughter crossed her sixteenth year, an indication would be given to her prohat to find a suitable match. Two prohats would sit together to exchange notes on the marriageable boys and girls they had. They discussed age, beauty, caste, dowry, efficiency, education, father, genes – every detail of compatibility from A to Z. Now we use computers; these prohats were old-time computers. They would consider these things in detail: health, economic position and circumstances, ability to raise and provide for a family, social status, social structure and family history, then they brought the proposal to both parents who would discuss those details. If the parents approved, then the details would be given to the brothers and sisters of the family for their approval. Meanwhile, the girl and boy didn’t know the arrangement. Finally, when everything was settled completely between both families, the boy and girl were informed. They were allowed to decide whether they liked the relationship or not. The philosophy is in the old saying, “Love starts after marriage and is lived up to death.”

The advantages of arranged marriages are that there is economic and social security. All details, pros and cons, are checked out very properly, and the involvement and concurrence of the relatives provides a further social security. But in many cases the young people today do not like this kind of marriage.

The disadvantage of this kind of marriage is there is no kick and joy out of the emotions and it almost never satisfies the ego. In a non-arranged marriage, it is the ego of the two which keeps them together for a long time. “Well, I selected this man. It doesn’t matter how nasty he is.” Or he will say, “I chose this girl. It doesn’t matter how sloppy she is.” Their egos play a most important role. That is the only disadvantage.

As the society has become individualistic, arranged marriages have become very rare. This gave an opening to pre-marital, material relationships. It also brought into societies the institution of unwed mothers and an unsocial attitude between the relatives and the husband and wife. In marriages where the parents do not approve, it is nothing but a hassle for the rest of the life. Or the marriage doesn’t suit the brothers and sisters, or vice versa. There are a lot of situations in marriages that will surprise you. In only a few cases the mother-in-law accepts the daughter-in-law. This is because of woman’s psychological deficiencies. She does not take care of the pros and cons of other women. Every mother-in-law thinks she knows better than the daughter-in-law. But when that mother-in-law was a daughter-in-law, her mother-in-law knew better than she. It is natural.

The best course for a human relationship is for each couple, when they get married, to take a vow to do their job and play their part right. Whether your parents and relatives approve of it or not, you should always be respectful to them. Every marriage can become successful if both partners play their part honestly. Now, it is not possible that in marriage dark days won’t come. In reality, marriage is an institution where two individuals of opposite polarity decide to build a cozy environment which is called a home, and then through the thick and thin of the time, they adjust their behavior. Without adjusting the behavior, no marriage is possible. People feel that divorce gives a way out when two cannot live together. Why hang them together? No divorce has solved the problem. Basically divorce creates problems. If you divorce a man with 28 mistakes and marry a man with 18 mistakes, you have only overcome 10. And then after a couple of years of marriage you’ll find the guy actually had 38!

The question arises: What is an ideal marriage? Ideal marriage is a way of life in which a husband and wife compromise to face the time and space together for the security of their own life and their children’s. These days many marriages are dissolved between the ages of 36 and 45. This is a time period when marriage can become a boredom, and everybody wants to look to new values. You must be aware that nobody looks to new values and there is no such thing as boredom. Marriage is the institution which cannot get boring because it is a continuous hassle against time and space. How can a thing become boring when you have to exert every minute of your life to keep it going?

The life cycle runs by 18 years, the mental cycle by 7 years, and the conscience cycle by 11 years. So between the ages of 36 and 45 the development of two individuals needs more sacrifice, more cohesiveness and more understanding. This period of life is known as the renewal of values. And, if in renewing values we re-establish different values but do not discard our basic object – that we are married to keep things going – then divorce will hardly be possible.

Marriage is in institution which depends upon honoring the Word. There is nothing more precious than one’s word. In the beginning there was the Word, the Word was with God and the Word is God. That is why the scriptures say, “Whosoever honors the word of his marriage is honored in the court of the Lord.” The Word of God is nothing but a test of two individuals, a given promise. The Guru says, Bhai jina di pakareeay sar dije bhaena charrie. “Once you give your hand to somebody in the relationship, let your head roll off but not your hand go.” The institution of marriage can be anything in ritual. But in reality it is an honest, living Word of two individuals. And it must be lived unto God, unto the last breath, through time and space, come what may. If this is missing, everything is a sexual, physical, emotional relationship for temporary convenience. It is mental prostitution. So don’t misunderstand the institution of marriage, its cause and effect.

It has been found that during the pregnancy, as woman goes through the psychological, physical and mental changes, she forgets the basic value that it was the woman who married the man, not the mother of the child. The child is the by-product of the relationship. The by-product should not be given a preference over the basic relationship. It is a common fault which has been found in 40% of the marriages, and it is a common complaint which exists in 80% of the husbands. They feel they are neglected, unloved, and separated from the love of the woman the moment she becomes a mother. No intelligent woman should allow this to happen.

Another thing in life which always kills marriage is competition between work and attention to the self. This iceberg of emotional tendencies has caused 80% of marriage destruction. A man leaves home at 6:30 and is supposed to be at work at 8 o’clock. From 8:00 to 4:00 he does his job. To him, coming back home is a desire to relax, be taken care of, be happy – exactly as a child comes home from school. But when that man, in the shape of an adult but with the mind of a child, comes back home, you have been waiting eight hours for that opportunity to grab him. There comes the conflict. For example, “Darling, Mrs. X called up at 3:30 today. I was trying to reach you at work, but you were at a meeting. It is their child’s birthday. I have already bought the present, and I think we should go.” And the husband says, “Just wait a minute.” He goes and opens the back of his car and brings in a huge bundle of papers, and she says, “What is this? Have you brought a present also?” He says, “No, this is the office work which my boss wants me to complete at home, and I’m supposed to give it to him at 10 o’clock tomorrow.” Now there is a definite clash. A wise woman will permit him to work, go herself with the present, apologize for the circumstances, cover her husband socially, gracefully. There is one tendency of men which is very strong, but they don’t talk about it. Basically every man desires his mate to cover him socially with grace. If a woman is not covering him socially and gracefully, he may not complain, but he will never forgive her.

Two things in life man will never say directly: when he sexually desires you and when he’s mad at you because you didn’t protect him socially. They will start picking at different things for different reasons and will not talk directly at that time. Social coverage of the personality of a male is the strongest vitamin or protein you can give him. If a woman knows the art of covering a man socially and protecting his interest economically, she doesn’t need any other qualification. Out of this relationship of marriage the male needs a social and economic protection, whereas the woman needs social and personal security.

Some societies, because of their social, regional, geographical and climatic environments, have different rituals about marriage throughout the world. But in reality it is not wrong to say marriage is a carriage of taking responsibility and reaching up to infinity. One girl sat with a boy and they started discussing their matrimonial proposal. The girl said, “Suppose, my dear, I lose my eyes.” He said, “Dear, I’ll become your eyes.” She said, “Suppose I lose my legs and hands.” He said, “Dear, I’ll become your legs and hands.” And finally in the end she said, “Suppose, dear, I lose myself.” And he said, “Darling, then I’ll become yourself.” She said, “All right. I think we must marry each other.”

Marriage is to lose yourselves into one another. It is the process of amalgamation. If you put copper and zinc together, you’ll end up with a new alloy – brass. There is neither copper nor zinc. In the institution of marriage two people become totally inter-merged. They lose their basic properties and come out with a common alloy which is socially known as a married couple, with totally different virtues and different allocations of duties in life.

There is a situation called mental reservation which destroys the most happy marriage. Therefore, if you ever come across such a situation, it is much better not to let your mental reservation develop but to openly discuss it with your mate and try to overcome it, and in case you can’t overcome it, you should consult a professional on the subject.

Now we have come to a very difficult topic: the behavior of marriage in relation to becoming parents. It has been found out that when the woman becomes the mother she becomes more attached to the child than to her husband. This is the first situation in marriage which creates a subtle jealousy. As young people or as young married people, you have a certain behavior. But when you become parents, sometimes the woman changes the values of life drastically. It is a very, very sad situation. And that has been the cause of ruin for many marriages. Actually speaking, a child should be considered as a trust of both parents and a gift of God.

In the Western world, if anything has been very shabbily treated it is the institution of marriage. But if there is anything important in human life, it is the institution of marriage. When you are not socially or structurally or sexually compatible, mental imbalance is always in the background. In such cases, both partners must discuss their mental backgrounds – possibly with an expert – and try to overcome their difficulties.

1977 YB Teachings, LLC
Above Article Copyright Yogi Bhajan 2002. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.



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