>>Islam at a Glance
Islam at a Glance
By Suhel Farooq Khan
Polygamy in Islam

Unlike other religions, Islam rejects the concept of celibacy to seek the pleasure of God. Islam considers marriage as a religious act that is necessary for establishing a responsible, just and stable society.

Muhammad (Peace be upon him) has equated practicing marriage to perfecting half the religion.

In Islam, marriage is not seen as only a vehicle for the fulfillment of physical needs, it is taken as a foundation for a caring society built upon love and affection.
Islam attaches equal responsibilities to both partners in marriage.
Polygamy is not a requirement or recommendation for Muslim men and is only a conditional exception.

Islam forbids physical intimacy without marriage. It leads to the eradication of many social evils prevalent in societies that have marginalized the institution of marriage. Islam allows men to have more than one wife, only with quite stringent conditions and gives preference to having one wife.

Raising of this issue by the West seems quite hypocritical because a significant majority of their population practices polygamous relationships with a multitude of partners either without or outside marriage, shunning commitments and responsibilities towards them, in most cases.  
Polygamy was a usual practice throughout the biblical period. Most Messengers of God like, Abraham, David, Solomon and Jacob etc. (Peace be upon them) all had more than one wives.

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