Thursday, July 2, 2015

the status of marriage

In the wake of the Supreme Court's ruling in favor of same-sex marriage in the United States, I wonder...

The United States tends to frame marriage in religious terms. Ministers and priests usually officiate and various bits of language exalt the union in other-worldly terminology. Other cultures view marriage as more of a social function -- something of which to take note and a reason for a party, perhaps, but not so much as a forever-and-ever assertion that comes from on high.

What I wonder is if marriage itself is sliding into a less-aggrandized status. Yes, there is commitment. Yes, there are creatures that have a single lifelong mate. But there are also creatures that cruise and philander without compunction or guilt.

My Zen teacher, who was never married, once observed conversationally that a man should marry for about ten years and then move on. He was Japanese, so the male-centric cultural focus needs to be factored in, but still.... And then there's the impact on the kids.

I just wonder if a more tribal (or perhaps just "social") easiness were on the horizon... whether the vows anyone might agree with on a particular wedding day weren't beginning to factor in other realities.

I don't wonder about "gay" marriage or "straight" marriage. I just wonder about marriage.

I just wonder.


  1. Keen on doing a tuition-free further education with University of the People?

  2. It seems that in our modern world, we are either constantly test driving partners in search of some miraculous and unlikely perfect of mating, or surrendering the search for someone we can stand who can equally stand us.