Chapter 7: Make Work a Celebration
Questioner: You say that marriage is immoral. And here is Krishna who perhaps goes for the highest number of marriages in history. Is he guilty of encouraging the immorality which marriage is?
I say marriage is immoral, but I don’t say marrying is immoral. A man and a woman in love with each other would like to live together, so a marriage stemming from love will not be immoral. But we are doing just the contrary; we are trying to squeeze love from marriage, which is not possible. Marriage is a bondage, and love is freedom. But a couple in love would like to live together, which is natural. This togetherness will flow from love. Marriage should be the shadow of love and not otherwise.
I don’t say that after the abolition of marriage a man and a woman will not live together. The truth is, only then will they really live together. At the moment they only seem to be living together, they really don’t live together. Mere physical togetherness is not togetherness. Living in close proximity in space is not living together. And just to be coupled in marriage is not really coupling, not true union.
It is the institution of marriage which I call immoral. The institution of marriage would like love to be banished from the world. As such, every institution is unnatural: it is against man’s natural feelings and emotions; it cannot exist without suppressing them. When any two people fall in love with each other, their love is unique and incomparable; no other two people have ever loved each other the same way. But when two persons get married, that marriage is very ordinary, commonplace, millions of people have known marriage the same way. Love is an original and unique phenomenon, while marriage is just a tradition, a repetition. A marriage strangles and kills love. As the institution of marriage becomes dominant and powerful, it thwarts and throttles love to the same degree.
The day we accord love its priority in our lives; the day a man and a woman live together not by way of a contract and compromise but out of love and love alone, marriage as we know it will cease to exist. And with marriage will go today’s system of divorce. Then a couple will live together for the sake of their love and happiness, and for no other consideration, and they will part company and separate when the love between them dries up and disappears. Society will not come in their way in any manner.
I repeat: marriage as an institution is immoral, and marriage that comes in the wake of love is quite natural. There is nothing immoral about it.
Questioner: What will be the position of children in a marriage which his love as its basis? Where will they belong? And will they not become a social problem? Please explain.