06 March 2011

Marriage Preparation by Ancient Chinese

There are much teachings about how to be good husband and wife. These are good but may be a bit late. We should get ready at an earlier stage and to prepare for marriage. Some churches do well by requiring their to be marry couples to complete a pre-marital counseling class. Despite the male polygamy system of the ancient Chinese, they do have some teaching on marriage and its preparation. Here is the detail.I-Ching Part 57 54归妹Marriage – Build Long Term Partnership. It may be colored with my own view of the premarital counseling class that I am teaching. But hope you can learn something from it. Merger and Acquisition is like marriage too and hence for those in business, there is something to learn too.  Here is the summary:

Summary on Marriage Preparation or M&A Lessons:
Marriage is good and for joy and growth in abundance. It is meant to last. However, there are actions that will destroy the relationship and productivity. Always seek agreement before taking action. Always do the things you are suppose to do and don’t cross boundary without approval. Wife is to submit to her husband.

Wisdom from the Stage Lines:
  1. Marriage with extra resources given to ensure success.
    A marriage life needs a lot of adjustment for either party. The lesser the external problems, the easier and better for the young couple to cope. Hence, it is most advisable for parents and friends to give the newly wed as much support as possible. However, in the typical Chinese wedding, because of 'face' reasons, young couples may have to start with a lot of debts incurred from having a too expensive an wedding that could hardly afford. Best of course is for the young couple to prepare well with their savings, persuasion and taking control of the situations. 
  2. Married yet all alone. Continue to give of one’s very best irrespective of the negligence of the other partner.
    Marriage is a 100%-100% covenant. I will do my part irrespective of whether the other party does it part. Marriage is frequently ruined by either party insisting on the other party to apologize first or to change first. But in reality, changing others begin with us first, changing our ways we treat the other party.
  3. Marriage of lower choice. Do not hurry. Prepare oneself well and wait to marry the 1st choice.
    Before marriage, it is my advice to courting couples to open their eyes 'big-big' and make sure they choose the right one. Never believe their promises that they will change once they get married. If they can't change during courtship which so much motivation to do so, why will they change when there is no longer any motivation? However, once the couple is married, then the choice to choose the right one is gone and each one must instead try to be the right partner for the other. They should close the eye that look for defects and open the eye that look for the good that the other is doing. Mutual praises and encouragements produce a happy and progressive marriage.
  4. Marriage delayed to make sure we get the right one and at the right time.
    Take your time. Any hurried into marriage tend to lead to problem. Trust that if this is not the right one, the right and better one will show up. Don't believe in the pressure tactics that it is once in a life time opportunity, grab it or loose it forever. A troubled marriage and a divorce are terrible things to happen to anyone. It is wiser to be unmarried rather than be in a troublesome and suffering relationship.
  5. Marrying down. Character and conduct is more important than external dressings. Don’t outshine the other side. Give respect to the spouse.
    While it is good to have marriages of equal social standings but the mindsets and hearts are lot more important. Riches are external things and may be lost. Character is eternal. Make sure you marry one of the right character.
  6. Empty Marriage. Invest time and resources to have a fruitful marriage or partnership.
    Relationship needs investment of time and effort to build. 
For related topics of wisdom according to Ancient Chinese see Chinese Wisdom

Updated 29 Apr 2013 ---- additional comments added to the wisdom of the stage lines.

Lim Liat (C).
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