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SlaveOfAllah14

Importance Of Physical Attraction In Marriage

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Bismillah, in the name of Allah, most high, most Beneficient.

Excellent question brother,

So it is true that beauty fades with age, but it is also true, that intellect and beautiful manners, personality will remain.. And develop. If practiced in the long term. Also these non physical characteristics can be categorised in the same section of beauty. intellect can be better than physical appearance in certain cases. (In my own opinion, even if my future spouse is the least attractive but he possesses the most intellect and manners, I'd be the happiest girl).. People who are " pretty" can look down upon those who are not on the same stage of attractiveness as them.. And this is a very ugly characteristic , which is why males who are less attractive have better manners, because they are busy with trying to improve their non physical attributes , in contrast the "pretty" individual is obsessed with gyming to improve their physical attributes.. Meanwhile they forget about how awful and disgusting their Ahlaaq and manners are Sometimes the most beautiful individual can be the least intelligent and the most bad Ahlaaq. So therefore, it depends on the individuals preferences and ideas of what they perceive to be beauty..

Let's work on our Ahlaaq and intellect, also it is important to exercise and keep physically fit.. You will be more beautiful than you already are if you tried your best to achieve these. Always work to better yourself.. Because at the end of the day you feel better inside as well as look good on the outside.

Kind regards,

Anisa

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On 1/6/2015 at 6:04 AM, SlaveOfAllah14 said:

(salam)

Salam,

When you truly love someone (of the opposite gender and outside of family of course) then you will also become physically attracted to him or her (by default).

You can be physically attracted to someone and yet not be in love with him or her.

Not all marriages involve or grow into love (and too often lust is confused for love or love for lust).

And not all marriages involve physical attraction (which also means that for such a relationship love is necessarily excluded especially if we have in mind a healthy couple with properly functioning libidos).

Bearing in mind all of the above it goes to show that although physical attraction is essential (in the case of a couple with healthy and functioning libidos) it can also be shallow if one were to use physical attraction to evaluate marriage prospects.

Also, you would "hardly" find someone who is healthy and who isn't physically attractive at all!

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How do you measure attractiveness?

Also The hadith says a person "should" not a person "must" which means it is a choice and so it is not necessary for a successful marriage.

Attraction I think is therefore not attraction to the good looking hips and legs etc, rather I think it is attraction to overall appearance and a sweet face. which would make looking at ones spouse an uplifting experience.

At least I think that's how it is, my guess is like the guess of a person who guesses how strawberry tastes without having eaten a strawberry.

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On 1/6/2015 at 8:32 AM, Khalilallah said:

How do you measure attractiveness?

Also The hadith says a person "should" not a person "must" which means it is a choice and so it is not necessary for a successful marriage.

Attraction I think is therefore not attraction to the good looking hips and legs etc, rather I think it is attraction to overall appearance and a sweet face. which would make looking at ones spouse an uplifting experience.

At least I think that's how it is, my guess is like the guess of a person who guesses how strawberry tastes without having eaten a strawberry.

Hahaha brother, well said

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From personal experience I can testify that it's true. It might not seem like a big deal theoretically but when you are actually married to someone you don't find attractive, you realize that physical attractiveness does have an important place. When you look at your spouse from across a room, you don't want to feel neutral or disgusted... you want that person to be pleasant to your eyes. 

 

I think it can work under 2 circumstances though

 

1) If the person's 'unattractiveness' is completely out of their hands. In that case I don't think it's fair to hold anything against the person and I think you will get over it and see the beauty in the person over time if you will it, plus I think Allah created something to find attractive in everyone. 

However if they are unattractive because of reasons that are in their control (ie weight, unflattering clothing, hair, unhygienic). I think over time this just builds resentment and you may find yourself with wandering eyes or being jealous of others who are married to people who actually take care of themselves. 

 

2) If they have EVERTYTHING else going for them. Like they are an angel (very much) in disguise. Then you will want to hold onto that person as much as you can because they are a gem if they have an amazing personality, treat you with love and respect, are very pious, compatible personalities, work hard, funny, kind to others etc etc etc. 

 

 

Most people you meet though are about average or above average especially if they put some effort into their appearances

Edited by dragonfly

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Problem 1- there's no certain definition for attractiveness (even physical attractiveness)

Problem 2- in the modern world, people's taste has been shaped by Hollywood pictures. everybody thinks beautiful means a western superstar.

Problem 3- the love for diversity never stops. so you like a face today but once got married you think all other faces are more beautiful.

If you marry a person based on physical attraction, then it means you are the kind of guy who is obsessed with physical beauty and well, there's no guarantee ...

Typical and content is beautiful and beautiful enough.

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what is not recommended according to Islamic teachings is to prefer the apparent attractiveness over the inner ones as piety, honesty and so on. whereas the apparent attractiveness it self is important factor mentioned in traditions. even there are some detailed information stated in traditions concerning the beauty.

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(bismillah)

 Cutting TV and porn out of your life completely would be a very good step.

I second this, it is very effective in making everyone look attractive. Honestly, I am living in the UK and because I avoid these 2, it is very hard for me to see a person as 'not attractive' even fat people. 

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On 1/6/2015 at 3:30 PM, Qa said:

There are many Muslims who are satisfied with their partner's deen and kindness, and convince themselves that physical attraction is not needed, or that it will develop in the relationship. Or, they expect their partner to change during the marriage. However, human nature kicks in, and they find themselves ignoring their partner, or making problems out of small issues, when the root cause is a lack of attraction.

Ahsant. Very well said, brother. As well, I'd like to just add to the point in bold — both men and women really need to be honest with themselves with respect to physical desire, when getting to know a prospective spouse. No amount of piety can undo the harm that is a result of the lack of sexual satisfaction in marriage. 

There is absolutely no justifiable reason to hold oneself to any (spiritual) standard, by silencing basic needs that quite simply beg to differ. You are doing no one any favours by being polite now, and making the significant other suffer later. If you are old enough to identify the need for companionship, and baaligh enough to seek it within Islamic parameters, then you are old enough to recognize your own, individual capacity for desire. 

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This thread by no means, try to discuss the importance of physical attraction over Imaan and Akhlaq of a prospective spouse, as it seems some people have thought so. However it tries to discuss that having 'Physical attraction' is a necessity in a healthy marriage life. In other words, without any physical attraction what so ever, a marriage will be unfulfilling, as has been illustrated by the article and strongly supported by some of the commentators on the article and on this thread. 

Perhaps this is why our Prophet has also encouraged men to inquire about the looks of those they propose to - to give her a prolonged look, to see her hair, to see her outside of her loose outerwear, as brother Qa'im has said. Or in another (sunni or shia hadith, I can't remember), where a man came to the prophet and told him that he wanted to marry this woman. The prophet asked him whether he'd seen her or not. Upon which he replied he didn't. Then the prophet advised him to go and see the woman first. So why all this importance on seeing the women?

Yes, Akhlaq and other traits such as intelligence does actually have an effect on perceiving one's attractiveness and attractiveness is a subjective matter. However from reading the article and the Ahadith, what I got is that one shouldn't marry someone whom they don't have a physical desire for. 

On 1/6/2015 at 6:21 PM, SaharZainab said:

No amount of piety can undo the harm that is a result of the lack of sexual satisfaction in marriage. 

There is absolutely no justifiable reason to hold oneself to any (spiritual) standard, by silencing basic needs that quite simply beg to differ. You are doing no one any favours by being polite now, and making the significant other suffer later. If you are old enough to identify the need for companionship, and baaligh enough to seek it within Islamic parameters, then you are old enough to recognize your own, individual capacity for desire. 

This is what I wanted to open up for the discussion. 

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(salam)
(bismillah)

In our books there are an innumerable amount of hadith from our A'immah where they recommend certain physical qualities in women. Just by the sheer amount of hadith we have in our literature about physical qualities, it is not wrong to look at physical qualities. Of course, the primary conditions should be religiosity and mannerisms. 

(salam)

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What about physical qualities and attractiveness in men?

Some men are really concerned about (if not obsessed by) their wife's physical qualities while they don't care about their own physical attractiveness!

I really like this saying: "Before judging others take a look in the mirror."

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Yes what about the attractiveness of men? I don't even know what women find attractive except muscles and big arms. What about the face? the beard? the hair? the Fat?

Lol. Why do you think girls love those celebrity men (actors, singers and athletes)? Why do they cry when they see them?

BTW - Prophet Yusuf (a.s) was absolutely beautiful, the women of Egypt even cut themselves at his sight.

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Lol. Why do you think girls love those celebrity men (actors, singers and athletes)? Why do they cry when they see them?

BTW - Prophet Yusuf (a.s) was absolutely beautiful, the women of Egypt even cut themselves at his sight.

I have seen girls cry at Sayyed Nasrallah.

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On 1/7/2015 at 12:27 PM, Khalilallah said:

Yes what about the attractiveness of men? I don't even know what women find attractive except muscles and big arms. What about the face? the beard? the hair? the Fat?

Don't dwell on those things because every girl is different (for example I'm not the biggest fan of muscly men). Just take the best care of yourself that you can. Find a style you like and wear it well. Eat well, stay active, wear clean clothes, smell good, groom yourself daily. If you like how you look and find yourself attractive, that should be enough. 

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Or even Sayed Ammar — actually, I have seen almost every age bracket of women cry when he gets up on stage. Or for that matter, Khalil Jaffer, Sayed Mahdi Modaressi, Sheikh al-Hilli, Hasanain Rajabali, etc. A most desirable trait is a combination of their love for God, their understanding of His essence, and most importantly, the conviction with which they stand by and are able to speak to these beliefs.

I believe this applies just as well to men who are not scholars or speakers, and of varying physical appearances. 

Something else I'd like to add to this is with respect to the evolution in our preference, along the course of time, and an increase (or decrease) in our understanding of religion. For instance, a well-built physique may evolve into as trivial a factor when considering a prospect for marriage as becomes food, in one's journey towards Allah, taking on a very basic, almost irrelevant role as our spirit becomes stronger.

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(salam)
(bismillah)

I have removed the unnecessary posts. We do not want to hear about your person dilemma of what you have and don't have. Please continue that conversation in a PM or even on SC chat. Thank you. 

The OP has posed a crucial and important issue, and I believe this topic should be dealt with appropriately. On one hand, we are faced with the Western media promoting only physical beauty, while on the pulpit you are only hearing "religiosity and akhlaq" should be your criteria. While I believe both religiosity and akhlaq should be your main criteria, our A'immah have not shied away from giving us physical characteristics that one may look for, as well.

(salam)

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Well its evident they cannot promote the idea of physical traits, as it falls into many categories, such as periodical, culture, rebellion-ism, individuality etc. The reason why its not promulgated because its a common denominator within the human Psyche and its own environmental conditions.  If we consider beauty from the objectivity of form, shape, size, symmetry on balance, then only a very few percentage of the human population falls into it. These are then observed in the minority within the advertising industry it self. Now as we have established this tiny minority, then we know, from a perspective of human justice, we must remove that idea, and allow the genetically inferior not to fantasies about these type of genetically superior traits, unless, they themselves have it, or have the ability to purchase it. Remember its an exchange of assets.

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On 1/7/2015 at 12:02 PM, Abdul Majid said:

What about physical qualities and attractiveness in men?

 

On 1/7/2015 at 12:27 PM, Khalilallah said:

Yes what about the attractiveness of men? 

As brother Qai'm mentioned, according to the Ahadith, men are recommended to stay fit, healthy, to brush their hair, and put on perfume. 

However, according to a research done, (don't know why the link doesn't get posted), men care about looks more than women do. This is pretty obvious anyways. Another interesting thing that they found in this research was that husbands who considered themselves more attractive than their spouses were less likely to support them emotionally.

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Assalam Alaikum, I would like to add something in the discussion. In western culture, mostly girls r slim and give importance to their bodies and not relations. That is why we see lots of separations, and lots of women don't even marry and younger teenage girls carrying a kid. In our religion being a shia woman , a woman has to sacrifice a lot and maintaining both relations parents and in-laws, maintain home, cook food, pray, taking care of sick and elderly parents, working outside home to earn. Lots of time woman is in unexpected circumstances that she couldn't manage her physical self. So I think men should give consideration to these aspects rather than only physical well-being. A fat woman may have good Akhlaq, pray 5 times, fast, take care of elders and more responsible and truthful vice versa of a slim woman. Lot of shia Muslims do not even pray 5

Times or recite Quran only in the month of Ramzan.

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it really depends on what brand of make up the woman use and if her husband is willing to pay

Photo-of-the-Day-Barbie-Without-Makeup.j

With good taste in fashion, even plus size women can look gorgeous 

barbie-curvy_392x0.jpg

I think what's really attarctive is how much the person is cherishing their own self, laughing, enjoying the little they own and making everything around them flowerish

That being said, Obesity is a sign of self neglect most of time thus unattractive.

plus, biologically speaking, men and women are attractive to the fittest , an instinct to secure the offspring to be healthy. Most of time the fittest are those within   range of physical beauty, not overly obese nor over thin, with muscles for men and with curves for women.

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On 8/5/2015 at 1:18 PM, Chaotic Muslem said:

it really depends on what brand of make up the woman use and if her husband is willing to pay

With good taste in fashion, even plus size women can look gorgeous 

I think what's really attarctive is how much the person is cherishing their own self, laughing, enjoying the little they own and making everything around them flowerish

That being said, Obesity is a sign of self neglect most of time thus unattractive.

plus, biologically speaking, men and women are attractive to the fittest , an instinct to secure the offspring to be healthy. Most of time the fittest are those within   range of physical beauty, not overly obese nor over thin, with muscles for men and with curves for women.

Many many men, especially from Muslims countries find 'plus sized' woman much more attractive than 'normal' sized women, if there is such a thing.

The size of a woman doesn't seem to be a big issue in Islamic communities - I could be wrong about that, but it hasn't been my general impression in real life.

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On 1/6/2015 at 3:30 PM, Qa said:

(bismillah)

The issue of physical attraction has obviously been exacerbated by modern media: (1) Picture-perfect celebrities, who all have personal trainers, hours of makeup, performance-enhancing drugs, lights and sets made to enhance their looks, (2) The Western tendency to outwardly display one's beauty, as opposed to the Semitic tendency to covet it, hide it, and be protective of it. This leads to many hours a week spent on one's looks, and then the display of one's looks at the mall, grocery store, school, workplace, etc. (3) Hardcore pornography, which desensitizes human attraction to a collection of shapes, some of which are completely artificial, and others are rare, uncommon, and require a lot of time and effort to attain. Not to get too graphic, but when men have easy access to shined-up, polished, clean-shaven, fit, made-up, silicone-filled women, it's no surprise that sexually-repressed Muslim men who spend their days online look for a pornstar wife. (4) The general material #yolo outlook in capitalist culture, which glorifies one's looks and ignores the things that are needed for longevity in a relationship, as well as ignoring the akhira.

With that said, physical attraction is still human. It has been abused by the factors above, but it is still based on something universal that we all look for in our relationships. There are many Muslims who are satisfied with their partner's deen and kindness, and convince themselves that physical attraction is not needed, or that it will develop in the relationship. Or, they expect their partner to change during the marriage. However, human nature kicks in, and they find themselves ignoring their partner, or making problems out of small issues, when the root cause is a lack of attraction.

So while the importance of physical attraction has been exaggerated in recent times, the shari`a still stipulates a lot of recommendations related to one's looks. Remember that Islam is not purely a spiritualistic religion - it deals with our basic earthly side as well. Islam makes the connection between healthiness and attractiveness, with thousands of prophetic and Imamic dietary recommendations (see Tubb an-Nabawi or Wasa'il ash-Shi`a). The Prophet has also encouraged men to inquire about the looks of those they propose to - to give her a prolonged look, to see her hair, to see her outside of her loose outerwear. Likewise, the Prophet recommended that men shorten their beards, dye their grey hair, cut their hair short, and to work during the day and pray for part of the night. The Prophet also advised that we take part in physical sports (archery, horseback riding, wrestling, racing). Furthermore, fasting is recommended, which eliminates toxins, and cuts out unnecessary foods. Fatness is makrooh and seen as a defect in Islam, while in some pre-modern cultures it was seen as a desirable trait. Allah hates when we fill our stomachs, or when we eat when we're not hungry. In Islamic sexual ethics, great emphasis is put on pleasing the woman (application of scents and good breath, foreplay, etc.), while in Western sexual ethics, pleasing the male is the focus. I can go on and on, but almost anyone who follows the sunna will get physical results.

In the end, you want a healthy spouse. No one wants to marry a fat guy/girl, yet our communities have a huge obesity and overweight problem. You'll notice in hadith al-mi`raj that the issue of food and wasteful eating comes up over and over again. Moreover, we all need to work on lowering our standards. Cutting TV and porn out of your life completely would be a very good step. You'll begin seeing and appreciating beauty in simpler things in a person. Then, love what Allah loves, and hate what Allah hates, and you'll find yourself looking for religiosity and dropping some of those irrational things that we want in a wife or husband. If you're already married, then don't take the regular sex as a sign that you don't need to maintain or improve your looks. Always seek to improve your relationship, both physically and spiritually, and grow to please one another.

I'm a Christian but this is one of the best advice I have heard regarding the relationship between marriage and attractiveness from a non-Christian. 

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