My uncle is a matchmaker in France. That’s HIS Mitzvah. Professionally, he works in computers. He made over 100 matches that resulted in marriage. Once he asked an older gentleman in his fifties – why he didn’t get married all these years. He answered “I Forgot to.”
Today people are getting married later. Why? One reason is they want to “enjoy life” or “have a good time” and one day they will settle down. Some are still in good time mode. Some never get out of it.
One big problem is is that the person who you might have a good time with may not be the person you want to marry. Generally, one wants a spouse that is responsible and wants to raise a family that has good values. A person who will give you a good time may be irresponsible, fickle but fun. Thus people don’t always find the mate that is a good marriage partner. About 50% of couples that do get married end up in divorce.
Getting into Marriage Mode – Talking on the Same wavelength
So how can a person find the right mate? Look for what qualities you want in your marriage partner – not a person that will give you a good time. A person that will make you happy is not the same person that will give you a good time.
The simple solution is put yourself in marriage mode – instead of party mode. A Jewish observant professor – asked her class – how many people have no intention to marry the person they are dating? Many of the men’s hands went up. One of the woman who was dating a man that raised his hand was sincerely vexed. They were on two different wavelengths.
Observant Jews date to find out if a partner has potential to be a spouse. Obviously, they also want someone with whom they can enjoy life, communicate and have mutual respect. Their mindset is on finding out if their date is a good prospect for marriage. They are celibate until marriage. This helps them make a more unbiased decision.
Do You Really Want to Tie the Knot or Not
My friend ran a singles event for Hanukah for people over 30. It was a success. When I asked how it went, One person at the party noticed people were kind of lost. He mentioned his take on the event. He said many people there seemed to be there just to go through the motions. There to not feel guilty that they didn’t make their effort.
Apparently, one should pinpoint what is stopping them.
That was a novel thought to me. I thought people were sincerely interested in marriage.
Reasons for Remaining Single
Apparently many have reasons for not getting married. For some it is the fear of commitment. Some are looking for perfection.
Some are reluctant because something bothers them about their partner.
Marriage is not necessarily for a person to find a mate that will fulfill their requirements to the tea.
Marriage is to help the individual reach a greater level of perfection.
Thus the people whose list of requirements are lengthy or one or two aspects bothers them about the other is not necessarily a reason to reject a mate.
If a wife angers her husband – it is not a reason for him to reject her. A woman just sometimes mirrors or latches on to character flaws that the husband is to correct. So, Instead of returning anger for anger, it behooves him to correct his faulty character trait. (Also woman are very good at winning an argument :))
What are the priorities
Once an older boy was searching to get married. He went on many dates to no avail. He went to ask the Steipler Gaon, a great Rabbi, why was G-d making it so difficult for him to find the right mate for him. He already went on many dates. The Steipler answered him back “The second girl you met was your bashert (destined mate).”
Apparently, he rejected her because his standards didn’t conform to what was good for him.
Someone asked me “Why did G-d not let the Jews stay in Egypt longer – in the desert they claimed that they longed to return to Egypt?” The Jews were to stay there 400 years but only stayed 210 years.
I answered “How long did it take the Jews to leave Egypt?” The boys knew it was 18 minutes. Why didn’t G-d leave them more time? Because if they did remain in Egypt longer – they would have been slaves till today. The commentators explain that – if the Jews had not left at that time – they would have remained with a slave mentality till today.
What is a slave mentality – “The world is against us. Why do we suffer? Why are we mistreated in society? …” G-d took us out just in time – so that we wouldn’t develop a slave mentality.
G-d does all for the good – so even though something may not suit you – G-d may do something to ultimately help you.
Thus if a person receives a proposal for a marriage minded date – a person should think twice before rejecting it. G-d sent this person into your path – the least one can do is to offer it the appropriate consideration.
I used to take dates proposed very seriously. Sometimes I would go out even if the woman was average and did not fit completely my preferences – because I knew if G-d didn’t want it to work out, He would arrange that this match would be broken off. Obviously, the minimum requirements must be there.
I heard of some requirements for mates – some reasonable some not – he has to be rich, she has to buy me a house, he has to be perfectly righteous and have never failed in his service to G-d.
My cousin gave me a list of priorities to search for in a mate – A Kind heart, Has proper Torah values, has a desire to grow in spirituality, responsibility, attractiveness.
It’s a Mitzvah to marry
One needs to know that his wife is an ezer kenegdo – literally – “a helpmate against him” – if he does good – she helps him – if he does wrong she goes against him. (Or that is the way it is supposed to be).
Some will be quick and careful for purchasing a proper Etrog for Sukkoth. Yet when it comes to marriage they push it off.
Once one realizes that marriage is a mitzvah – thus one should put aside some of their caprices for the priorities. A Rabbi once gave the following advice – write a list of 10 of the most important qualities you seek in a mate. If you find five out of the 10 – the are worthy marriage partner to seriously consider.
Marriage of the Same Religion and Similar Backgrounds
Some say opposites attract. But more commonality , common sense says will cause more common thoughts and feelings.
One reason for a Jew to marry Jewish, asides from the fact that it is prohibited for a Jew to marry out of Judaism, in the Torah is that – it it not fair to the resulting children. Psychologically, children from mixed marriage suffer from a lack of self-definition. They do not know if they belong in one camp or another. If they should celebrate this holiday or another. Should they believe A or B? What a great suffering to put children through for “love.” Love should be responsible and to build people and couples not just for one’s own selfish gratification.
The Levels of Marriage
Marriage is the ultimate conduit with which to serve G-d. There are several levels of marriage – like it says in the book of the River, the Kettle and the Bird.
One Level is where the couple – are like trading partners on a river. One does a and the other does b. they have different interests, but both gain.
A greater level is the kettle – where the fire and the kettle work in unison towards a particular goal – in this case to boil water.
A Higher level – is when the couple is like one, souring to spiritual heights like a bird.