marriage to cousins

edited December 1969 in Faith Issues
???is there anything in the coptic church that states it is wrong to marry your cousin or relative?? Please, I am really confused and i need an answer quick!! I'm new to the forum, by the way. Thanks guys!!
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Comments

  • Welcome to the forums Marmoora,

    Marriage to cousins is more an American cultural taboo than anything else.

    As for as the church is concerned, it is permitted. In Egypt, it is not even an issue.
  • I'm sure there is nothing religious about cousin marriage..But I know there is a greater chance of genetic diseases in marriage between relatives...That's why it is not common in the USA ..Just medical reasons.. and on a personal note, If you are already cousins what is the point of marrying each other?
  • Dont you guys get confused wit the cousin fing. back in the 1970s the sheikhs of the mosks were trying to get the muslims to marry christians so they can convert them so the pope told all the christians in egypt to marry their cousins to prevent them marying muslims.that has ended now.pope shenouda now does not advise it im not sure if he banned it but for the sake its proven it harms the child so we have no right to do that.is that cool
  • Hi!!
    i know this discussion was ages ago...but lets re-open it, cos i find this topic very interesting!
    this is my very first time to put up one of these things!

    I think that there are many advantages to marrying ur cousin!
    Firstly, u get rid of the in-law problem, cos they already love u, so there will be no amenosity, or the usual problems between in laws. ;)
    Secondly, u'll have the first and loyal love of family...so there's a guarantee that they will care for u even more!
    thirdly, u'l have similar up-bringing, so u'l see eye-to-eye in various issues, such as raising kids

    The only time wen it'd be weird is if u were bought up livng together like brother and sister...but if u were bought up in like different countries, or u didnt grow up together, u'd still have all the advantages above, and no feeling that u are marrying ur bro/sis :o

    We wer recently talking about this issue, and while it isnt so common in western socities, its still common in egypt.
    And i know many ppl who have done so, including one of our priests! and their children are all fine!
    Genetic problems can happen with anyone, not necessarily just cousins...i guess there may be a slightly higher..but at the end of the day, wat ever God's will is will be done...no one can control or change that! :)

    So, i guess im all for it! ;D
  • [quote author=faith,hope,love link=board=1;threadid=31;start=0#msg512 date=1080908215]
    Hi!!
    i know this discussion was ages ago...but lets re-open it, cos i find this topic very interesting!
    this is my very first time to put up one of these things!

    I think that there are many advantages to marrying ur cousin!
    Firstly, u get rid of the in-law problem, cos they already love u, so there will be no amenosity, or the usual problems between in laws. ;)
    Secondly, u'll have the first and loyal love of family...so there's a guarantee that they will care for u even more!
    thirdly, u'l have similar up-bringing, so u'l see eye-to-eye in various issues, such as raising kids

    The only time wen it'd be weird is if u were bought up livng together like brother and sister...but if u were bought up in like different countries, or u didnt grow up together, u'd still have all the advantages above, and no feeling that u are marrying ur bro/sis :o

    We wer recently talking about this issue, and while it isnt so common in western socities, its still common in egypt.
    And i know many ppl who have done so, including one of our priests! and their children are all fine!
    Genetic problems can happen with anyone, not necessarily just cousins...i guess there may be a slightly higher..but at the end of the day, wat ever God's will is will be done...no one can control or change that! :)

    So, i guess im all for it! ;D


    Hello,
    I’m sorry to say that I must disagree with you. I’d like to make it perfectly clear that it IS perfectly “O.K.” to marry one’s cousin, it is recognized by the church, and if one feels that they are meant to marry their cousin, then so be it. However, I can’t agree that there are “advantages”. Your first point was based on a stereotype and common generalization and you make it sound like there will be definite problems between in laws of the two people that are to be married. This has absolutely nothing to do with whether the people married are relatives and depends solely on the personalities of the people involved. It’s safe to say that if people’s personalities are similar they will get along; if their personalities are different they probably won’t, regardless of whether or not they are related.

    Secondly, I would pray that you have the love from the family of anyone whom you choose to marry. Marriage is a large commitment and not something that should be taken lightly. In the Coptic Church, where divorce isn’t permitted (except under rare and specific circumstances) it is essential that a person ensures they marry the person who they will be comfortable living with till the day they die. That also goes for their family; when you marry a person, you don’t marry only them, you marry their entire family. God willing you marry somebody whose family loves you whole heartedly. Just because a person is your relative doesn’t automatically mean they will give you their “loyal love”

    Thirdly, an upbringing depends exclusively on one thing; a persons parents. Just because two people are siblings, does not mean they have the same process of thinking, the same way of reasoning, the same aspirations, the list goes on. Undoubtedly two siblings will have a great amount of similarities, but that doesn’t entirely mean that they will raise their children in similar ways. I have several cousins, and neither of us is even remotely similar, just to give one out of the possible billions of examples. The compatibility between two people doesn’t rest primarily on their upbringing. Their hobbies, financial status, interests, and maybe even physical appearance such as height could all play a role in deciding whether or not two people would decide to get married.

    Finally, you sound like a person who has seen positive outcomes from marriage between cousins, which is a great thing. As long as a marriage is successful, and both people are pleased then their previous relations don’t matter. You stated all the things that would make a marriage, dare I say, perfect? However, you made quite a few blatant generalizations, and despite their ideality, they simply aren't true. The success rate of a marriage has nothing to do with whether or not people are relatives, but deals with a large amount of other factors that could be debated over forever. In closing, I think you said it best “what ever God wills will be done”
    -Mark
  • Peace and love my fellow Egyptian brothers and sisters.

    On this topic, I would like to say that I personally believe it is an incorrect practice that is no longer needed. In the past, due to Arab invasion and so forth, our forefathers resorted to such marriages in order to keep strong the faith and the ancient bloodline. We should now recognize that because our current does not require such practice, that we should try to avoid marriage of cousins for health reasons.

    PiKristos Aftonf!
  • Hello,
    I’m sorry to say that I must disagree with you. I’d like to make it perfectly clear that it IS perfectly “O.K.” to marry one’s cousin, it is recognized by the church, and if one feels that they are meant to marry their cousin, then so be it. However, I can’t agree that there are “advantages”. Your first point was based on a stereotype and common generalization and you make it sound like there will be definite problems between in laws of the two people that are to be married. This has absolutely nothing to do with whether the people married are relatives and depends solely on the personalities of the people involved. It’s safe to say that if people’s personalities are similar they will get along; if their personalities are different they probably won’t, regardless of whether or not they are related.

    Secondly, I would pray that you have the love from the family of anyone whom you choose to marry. Marriage is a large commitment and not something that should be taken lightly. In the Coptic Church, where divorce isn’t permitted (except under rare and specific circumstances) it is essential that a person ensures they marry the person who they will be comfortable living with till the day they die. That also goes for their family; when you marry a person, you don’t marry only them, you marry their entire family. God willing you marry somebody whose family loves you whole heartedly. Just because a person is your relative doesn’t automatically mean they will give you their “loyal love”

    Thirdly, an upbringing depends exclusively on one thing; a persons parents. Just because two people are siblings, does not mean they have the same process of thinking, the same way of reasoning, the same aspirations, the list goes on. Undoubtedly two siblings will have a great amount of similarities, but that doesn’t entirely mean that they will raise their children in similar ways. I have several cousins, and neither of us is even remotely similar, just to give one out of the possible billions of examples. The compatibility between two people doesn’t rest primarily on their upbringing. Their hobbies, financial status, interests, and maybe even physical appearance such as height could all play a role in deciding whether or not two people would decide to get married.

    Finally, you sound like a person who has seen positive outcomes from marriage between cousins, which is a great thing. As long as a marriage is successful, and both people are pleased then their previous relations don’t matter. You stated all the things that would make a marriage, dare I say, perfect? However, you made quite a few blatant generalizations, and despite their ideality, they simply aren't true. The success rate of a marriage has nothing to do with whether or not people are relatives, but deals with a large amount of other factors that could be debated over forever. In closing, I think you said it best “what ever God wills will be done”
    -Mark

    Salutations,
    Well, i must admit, i did make generalizations...but marriage isn't generally easy...but perhaps marrying into ur family may cancel some of the problems a married couple may face
    Not all ppl in the world are going to agree...and many times have ppl broken off their engagements, or perhaps, dont even consider marrying due to the fact that they're families wont agree. Albeit, there are many families that dont necessarily get on...but more often then not, familes will generally get on. Of course there are many cases where ppl may automatically get on with their inlaws. but i was merely implying that perhaps it wld be easier.

    And of course one shld have love for any family they plan to marry into...its a prerequisite of any marriage! and yes, i agree that when u marry someone, u are marrying their whole amily too...now, once again, perhaps it was a generalisation, but it may be easier, since u already love them , to begin with. Now, its true, that u may get on just as well with Umo George and Tant Mary (ie ur future inlaws...once again a generalization of typically gypo names :P) at church as well as, maybe even better, than ur family.

    There is an egyptian saying that goes none of ur fingers are alike...as in not- everyone is the same. so u are correct in saying that just cos they're siblings, they will bring up their kids the same way. But there is a higher possibility , i guess, that u will have been brought up the same, then the kids of Umo George and Tant Mary at church.

    Families differ from person to person. in my case, i see that my cousins and i have been brought up with the same morals, and valules, and ideals, as me..despite the fact that we live on 2 opposite sides of the world.

    my intentions in putting up this posting, is to show POSSIBLE advantages of marrying one's cousin. for any one considering, these perhaps were just things can consider.

    and yes, i have seen it successful. and to this day, ppl at my church, here, in a western country, still marry their cousins that are living in egypt. Why is that?? there is beyond to be advantages to it, or else they cld have just as easily (infact, it WLD BE easier) to marry someone from here.
    Anyone who marries their cousin here, is ridiculed, mocked, and a topic of gossip, unfortuantely. not to mention the problems they will face with visas and so on. thus there must be something which is still attracating youth to this concept...i merely tried to name some of the possible reasons. Of course i may very well be wrong, and i am making generalizations...

    And i said it before, and im glad u picked up on it..at the end of the day, God's will WILL be done! so we just have to hold on to that

    can i ask u a personal question?? wld u ever consider marrying one of ur cousins?

    +faith,hope,love+
  • [quote author=faith,hope,love link=board=1;threadid=31;start=0#msg586 date=1081670078]

    Salutations,
    Well, i must admit, i did make generalizations...but marriage isn't generally easy...but perhaps marrying into ur family may cancel some of the problems a married couple may face
    Not all ppl in the world are going to agree...and many times have ppl broken off their engagements, or perhaps, dont even consider marrying due to the fact that they're families wont agree. Albeit, there are many families that dont necessarily get on...but more often then not, familes will generally get on. Of course there are many cases where ppl may automatically get on with their inlaws. but i was merely implying that perhaps it wld be easier.

    And of course one shld have love for any family they plan to marry into...its a prerequisite of any marriage! and yes, i agree that when u marry someone, u are marrying their whole amily too...now, once again, perhaps it was a generalisation, but it may be easier, since u already love them , to begin with. Now, its true, that u may get on just as well with Umo George and Tant Mary (ie ur future inlaws...once again a generalization of typically gypo names :P) at church as well as, maybe even better, than ur family.

    There is an egyptian saying that goes none of ur fingers are alike...as in not- everyone is the same. so u are correct in saying that just cos they're siblings, they will bring up their kids the same way. But there is a higher possibility , i guess, that u will have been brought up the same, then the kids of Umo George and Tant Mary at church.

    Families differ from person to person. in my case, i see that my cousins and i have been brought up with the same morals, and valules, and ideals, as me..despite the fact that we live on 2 opposite sides of the world.

    my intentions in putting up this posting, is to show POSSIBLE advantages of marrying one's cousin. for any one considering, these perhaps were just things can consider.

    and yes, i have seen it successful. and to this day, ppl at my church, here, in a western country, still marry their cousins that are living in egypt. Why is that?? there is beyond to be advantages to it, or else they cld have just as easily (infact, it WLD BE easier) to marry someone from here.
    Anyone who marries their cousin here, is ridiculed, mocked, and a topic of gossip, unfortuantely. not to mention the problems they will face with visas and so on. thus there must be something which is still attracating youth to this concept...i merely tried to name some of the possible reasons. Of course i may very well be wrong, and i am making generalizations...

    And i said it before, and im glad u picked up on it..at the end of the day, God's will WILL be done! so we just have to hold on to that

    can i ask u a personal question?? wld u ever consider marrying one of ur cousins?

    +faith,hope,love+


    Just to make it perfectly clear, I don’t think there is not something “wrong” with it, nor do I look down upon it however it’s NOT something I would do. I can feel a "why?" coming on. My foremost reason is because of speculations of children that grow up with various birth defects. I have read the links provided by mikesl, and I have done my own research prior to posting anything, however I still feel that my eyes don’t deceive me, I’ve seen several cases of this, it maybe coincidental, or it may not. Regardless of any evidence, I wouldn’t want to take that risk on my child. Another reason might just be my family. Something that you touched on earlier was the way people are brought up. I can safely say both me and my cousins are well brought up, have manners, and are respectable people. On the other hand, we have completely different behaviors and would not be compatible for marriage. The way a people are raised is important in a marriage, but the way people think, in a sense of assessing a situation and actions taken, are far more important(to me anyway). So, to wrap it up, NO, I wouldn’t marry my cousin. It's alright for others, but not for me. To play devils advocate, I can see one advantage to marrying a cousin. You know of much of their previous life and it negates the “asking around” that your parents would do in a traditional Egyptian marriage. Finally, to throw in a bit of random information for you, my grandmother is the product of a cousin marriage. So my great grand parents were cousins. It’s even in my family, but again, not for me. Happy Easter
    -Mark
  • Happy Easter!!! ;D
    Yes...true there are various birth complications...and i believe that such unfortunate occurances can happen regardless if its family or not..albeit there are higher rates...
    And i guess its different from person to person.
    Something just happened (like yesterday) to prove that perhaps some of my generalizations were just that...2 ppl i know, who are cousins planning to marry (whom im friends with) just had a massive fight about the various insignificant details of marriage, with both parties unwilling to make a compromise!! :o (despite the fact that they're family!!!!!)
    Funny timing too!!
    thus, i guess wat it finally comes down to, is the actual family, and once again, and most importantly God's will...
    So clearly u know ppl who married their cousins. Do u know why?? like wat possessed them??
    +faith,hope,love+
  • [quote author=faith,hope,love link=board=1;threadid=31;start=0#msg598 date=1081737499]

    No ma'am I’m not exactly sure what caused them to decide to marry. I guess "love", which is a topic that could cause me to go off onto another tangent. Or maybe they just couldn’t find any1 so they figured good ol' cousin mina could be a good candidate. Not sure, I made up the name mina btw. Could have been anything. Perhaps they even saw some of the advantages you previously pointed out. I feel kind of weird having a back and forth debate for every1 to read on a message board. You should IM me
  • ??? wats IM?? lol, im new at all this, and am quite uneducated in this technically jargon!! :P
    well, its not like any one is really reading any of this...or is there?? if there was wld they not have said something by now??
    this discussion want really a "hot" topic, was it??
  • Faith,hope,love,
    ;D ;D....i think it was a "hot" topic. IM is the abrreviation for Instant Message. Its a quick message you can send to some one's screename and they will receive it as a pop up on their desktop. You need to download AOL Instant Messenger to do that (unless you have another type of IMing program). You can dowload it here:

    www.aim.com

    Good Luck and God Bless. ;D
  • haha, i wasnt aware this was a "hot" topic, or i would have strayed far away from it. i keep a very low profile. do you have MSN? [email protected]
  • Thanks Banoub!! ;D

    and nope...i do not have msn...lol..this intenet is used for educational purposes only!! :P
    um...i think the reason this wasnt a hot topic, is cos no one does this anymore!! cousins are considered brothers and sister...not marriage potentials- cos we live in western worlds...and this is their view!
  • yes i think you're right. that could also be another reason i wouldnt consider one of my cousins as a potential bride
  • hey,
    Im really glad u posted this question. cos its always been in the back of my mind.
    I use to think it was not a thing to do...until i started seeing ppl around me doing it, and i realised that there must be something there I didnt see.

    I guess out i have gotten out of, from this discussion is:
    1. It really does vary from person to person, and how westernised their views are...ie if they see thier cousins as siblings
    2. It varies from family to family
    3.Not to make generalisations...cos like i said, it just varies from person to person...
    4. Clearly ppl who consider marrying their cousin in a western country (even tho they might be cousin Mina from egypt) are going to face A LOT of tribulation...cos clearly, its not easily accepted
    5. Its not against our religion...in fact, one of the priests in our church even encouraged a girl at church to marry her cousin...saying it was extremely advantageous!
    6. While there may be advantages to it, they may not necessarily apply to everyone.
    7. While there may be genetic problems...only God can possible know the outcome...and they are rare...at the end of the day its in His hands. It just depends on if the couple are willing to take the risk...if they see a risk at all!!
    8. Who knows wat God has planned for each of us??

    +faith,hope,love+
  • hey... marmoora-barboora i'd like to go back to the first ? only cause someone had mentioned that u when u marry ur wife/husband, u also marry her family
    but keep in mind, in the process of getting married, u r not going to marry ur inlaws or ur family
    by this i mean that u will not be at the alter with them, u will not sleep to their faces, and wake up to their faces
    yes, they will now play a role in ur life, sometimes a good role... sometimes an unfortunate role... it all depends on who u end up with and who u love
    so when u marry, dont marry because their family is good, marry because the person u should be in love with is perfect for you...
    a funny line that a bishop had once said in arabic at a lecture i attended was marry the daughter of the wise mother, dont marry the daughter of the crazy mother...
    other than that i would not marry my cousin mainly because being a grl born in america... i find the thought quite disgusting no offense to anybody
    its acceptable, i would just never do that
  • Good point SMS. By the way, I like your signature: "The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, But fools despise wisdom and instruction..."
  • Thanx ;D
    i would've put all of Proverbs 1, its such a beautiful chapter.... such a beautiful book!!!
    (not that i read it or anything... i just looked up wisdom in an online concordance and went from there!) :D
  • Hmm, what would keep me from marrying my cousin? Let's count the ways, shall we? I would have to first say genetics. I don't want to increase the chances of producing dysfunctions in my children. Second, for personal shame. Our forefathers practiced forms of incestual marriage in order to keep our Egyptian blood pure from the invaders. Also, some of the children of Pharaoh would marry each other, brother and sister, in order to keep royal blood. These practices are no longer necessary. Third, family tree problems. It's just easier to connect two unrelated families than to marry two related ones. ;D So Marina, madame, I don't think you gave us your opinion on the matter...
  • Maybe there is nothing wrong with it and the church apporves it, but I am against it. The kid comes out with many defaults.


    [glow=red,2,300]Look! It's glowing! ;D[/glow]
  • [quote author=Mathitis link=board=1;threadid=31;start=15#msg1272 date=1083592940]
    Maybe there is nothing wrong with it and the church apporves it, but I am against it. The kid comes out with many defaults.


    [glow=red,2,300]Look! It's glowing! ;D[/glow]


    did you mean defects? ???
  • Try to respect everyone’s views. You may find it “disgusting” but marriage to cousins is permitted by our church, and nothing accepted by god should be called disgusting. You can simply say its not something you would do but there is no need to degrade it or refer to it in a demeaning manner.
  • If in the process of expressing your opinion, you slander someone else’s, then you might want to change the way you express your opinion. Saying things like “how disgusting is that?” could be offensive.
  • I'm gonna have to agree with Mark423 on this one. If I did something and someone reffered to it as "disgusting" I would be offended. The point of this website and discussion is to express opinions with out hurting people. Keep in mind that marriage to cousins is a very much practiced "ritual" among Egy's and among those, Coptics. Many people that participate in these discussions may have parents who are cousins, or may be married to a cousin themselves.
  • i'd like to just start out by apologizing to everybody in this forum, seeing how upset everyone has gotten over ppl calling the marriage of 2 relatives, disgusting, and i just realized i used that word myself
    so i'm sorry
    next, i'd just like to say that y marry ur cousin? i don't agree with the advantages that were listed before because if two non related ppl are truly in love, they will make things work out between their families, etc...
    also, before the pope wanted ppl to intermarry within their families, they were marrying non related ppl... so thats the original way it started... rite?
    even back to the times of Adam and Eve... i think
    wut im tryin to say here is that marrying ur first or second, etc... cousin is really unnecessary as i believe Akhenaton had already said
    also, enough children are born wiht defects every day... y put ur child or ur grandchild at risk?
    again, sry for any misunderstanding that when on with that word
    i respect all ppl's opinons on these discussions and i enjoy reading what other ppl think
  • SMS,
    Your opinion, as does everyone else's, counts. This topic is a very touchy one that many people have strong feelings over. This topic has been stretched to its most outer limits and analyzed again and again. Let's try and keep it from becoming a heated discussion as we are all related through Christ. God Bless You All for your input and understanding.

    May the Peace of the Lord be with you all,
    -Chris
  • [quote author=Banoub link=board=1;threadid=31;start=30#msg1294 date=1083613628]
    SMS,
    Your opinion, as does everyone else's, counts. This topic is a very touchy one that many people have strong feelings over. This topic has been stretched to its most outer limits and analyzed again and again. Let's try and keep it from becoming a heated discussion as we are all related through Christ. God Bless You All for your input and understanding.

    May the Peace of the Lord be with you all,
    -Chris


    ur right
    its a very controversial subject to us egyptians because its normal in egypt, but here in the western lands and in other lands of immigration... its considered odd... and very different
    so i guess when it comes to this topic, everyones got there own opinion, and there is no right answer because we were all raised in different societies and in different ways
    and as u said Chris...
    [move]We are all related through Christ. God Bless You All for your input and understanding.[/move]
  • Aside from any offenses being thrown around, I would like to make a correction to what Mark said earlier. The fact is, the church does not approve of cousin marriage per say, but due to unfortunate circumstances (i.e. Muslims forcing Copts into marriage), our Egyptian forefathers resorted to this method to keep the faith in the families strong. Now that we no longer face these threats on such a degree, the church actually looks down upon the practice of cousin marriage, and does not necessarily "approve" of it.
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