Alienturnedhuman wrote:Balibari wrote:Are we agreed that some form of official union is desirable in a society like ours? I can't produce evidence to support my view but I think it's a good thing. That given, it seems to me a purely legal ceremony should be the default, with those belonging to whatever religion having a subsequent religous ceremony in order to ratify the union in the eyes of their god, fellow believers etc. The key to this would seem to be to eliminate the stranglehold that Christian dogma has on the concept of marriage, at least here in the UK. Every wedding I've been to (except my own) had some religious element or another, regardless of the beliefs of the betrothed. But the word marriage will always be the important term here. To let the religious 'keep it' seems unfair, they don't own it. The fairest solution seems to me to clearly define marriage as a legal union between two (or more...?) people, and let religious groups come up with their own terms for the subsequent, specialist ceremonies.
I think the state should be responsible solely for legal union (whether we call it 'marriage' , 'unions' , 'Peopleglue' or whatever) and that is the only thing that counts.
Religions are then free to 'bless' relationships, with or without the legal union, but it is just window decoration. The religious organisations can call this what they want too, if they can call it 'marriage' or whatever, it's equally meaningless in the law. If their faith is important to them, then it will carry more weight with them, but it will have no legal implications at all.
Perfect. This is essentially what Buddhists do, and they seem a generally chipper lot. Buddhism sees marriage as a secular matter and followers simply adhere to the laws relating to marriage in whichever country they live. So a Buddhist wedding in the UK would be no different to a civil ceremony with no religious content whatsoever. Afterwards it's common to have a separate ceremony at a temple, a sort of blessing, conducted by monks, but it's entirely voluntary and has no legal aspects. In other words there are two distinct ceremonies, one purely legal (and deemed more important), the other purely religious.