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Switch to Forum Live View How Important is Religion to a Relationship
5 years ago  ::  Jan 08, 2009 - 11:20AM #1
Talies
Posts: 6
I am involed in a ending Marriage. My wife and I have been mairried for just over 8 years and togather for just over 9. I saw many warning signs but, anyway the question on My mind is how important is it that you share a religion with your partner, or at least have tolorance for the way they think?
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5 years ago  ::  Jan 08, 2009 - 11:41AM #2
KatherineOrthodixie
Posts: 3,689
As far as sharing a faith, that depends on the individuals.
As far as having tolerance for your loved one's beliefs, that should go without saying. Unless their beliefs are dangerous, illegal or harmful to you.
Mutual tolerance and respect is an integral part of the marriage relationship. If you have no tolerance or respect for your partner's beliefs, don't get married.
Now it may be a different case if you or your partner suddenly changes beliefs to ones that are unacceptable to you.

For me personally, sharing a common faith is a must.
“The Law of the Church is to give oneself to what is given not to seek one’s own.” Fr. Alexander Schmemann
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5 years ago  ::  Jan 08, 2009 - 8:44PM #3
mom-6
Posts: 511
[QUOTE=Talies;1005058] how important is it that you share a religion with your partner, or at least have tolorance for the way they think?[/QUOTE]

Because one's religion can be such an integral part of who and what the person is, I don't see how NOT sharing that element of your life with your spouse can lead to anything but problems.

Even if one of you is more 'into' your spiritual life than the other, if there is not at least a nominal connection on the spiritual level, then there is a huge gap in the intimacy of relationship that makes a good marriage.

Ideally, both spouses will be on the same page spiritually/religiously.  However, if you aren't at least in the same library...go figure.

I take it that you and your soon to be ex were not on the same page, and maybe not even in the same book?
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5 years ago  ::  Jan 08, 2009 - 10:20PM #4
Anesis
Posts: 1,540
Excellent post, mom-6! Those are my thoughts exactly! And as Katherine suggests, it depends on how much value each individual places on their spirituality. There are people who place less value on their spirituality than on their respect for diversity, and there are those, like me, who place a tremendous value on their religion/spirituality. In fact, it is the most important thing in my life, so if a partner can't join me in that spirituality and religion, I really prefer not to be with him.
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5 years ago  ::  Jan 08, 2009 - 10:57PM #5
Sailorlal79
Posts: 1,365
I'm an atheist, and I don't think I would be compatible with someone who wasn't. It does greatly determine you're outlook on life.
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5 years ago  ::  Jan 09, 2009 - 12:51AM #6
SatanicStalker
Posts: 719
My religion is integral to every aspect of my life, but my religion is also unique... I have found the spiritual truths within myself and made them a religion, rather than taking the truths of an established religion and applying them to myself, so as a result my religion is entirely one-of-a-kind and it is also constantly changing. Therefore if I had to find someone of the same faith as me to be in a relationship with, I'd have to find a really nice mirror.

But I don't want someone who is just like me. If two people believe the exact same, one of them is unnecessary. They are redundant. So acceptance and respect are absolutely necessary for a relationship, I couldn't really be with someone who could not respect Satanism or my particular version of it, or take it seriously. But, at least for me, the same faith would be impossible.

It probably helps a lot to be in the same book, as mom-6 said, it would probably be rather tricky for a strict Muslim to be in a meaningful relationship with a Satanist, for instance. But I still don't understand why two Christians, even if they are different types of Christians, would have a problem with faith incompatability. But I don't really need to I guess, since I'm not a Christian nor is my mate. But my mate is not a Satanist and I have no problem with that either. He respects that I am a Satanist, and he loves me for it, and that's all I ask of him.

~Stalker
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5 years ago  ::  Jan 09, 2009 - 2:15PM #7
appy20
Posts: 10,165
It also depends on what you want the other to DO about those beliefs.  If both can respect and tolerate each other's differences, that is good but can both of you live without participation in spiritual types of worship without the other?  My last boyfriend and I broke up over church.  We weren't arguing over our beliefs although they were different. Or rather, we could discuss our differences in an interesting way.  We didn't get mad.  LOL.  We were enthralled with the debate of it.  He wasn't the type that had to have a doormat in his life.  I didn't need one either. 

We argued over the importance of the role of his particular church in our lives and the lives of our children should we have them.  I tried to accept the church.  I attended 90 days and hated it.  I offered and did attend another 30 days and tried to tolerate it. I could not.  I could have accepted my s.o. going to church on Sunday but he could not tolerate going without me.  He would not consider another church.  I worked full time, six days a week sometimes and just could not see spending Sunday mornings in a church with beliefs I oppose.  I didn't want to marry in his church.  I would have accepted kids being raised in it.  Although, I did not want kids either.  I knew that having a child was the most important thing in the world for him and I loved him enough to do that. 

We tried to work it out.  We went to Couple's therapy.  The therapist kept pointing out to him that it wasn't her or his place to change my beliefs.  We had to accept each other.  I could tolerate his beliefs. She tried to get him to do some type of compromise or rethinking.  I could cherish him in spite of the differences but I just couldn't make myself go to that awful church.   I just began dreading Sunday with all my heart.  I felt bad about it.  I tried harder.  I just began resenting that one day of the week so much when I had to attend. It would not have bothered me if he had gone by himself.

At the heart of it, he really wanted his wife to be a certain type and that type went to church. I wasn't it.  He wasn't a bad guy; I tried my best.  I don't think less of him. It takes two to work something out.  He just wouldn't budge.  I budged as much as I could bear.

It is much harder to overcome the larger issues. Not impossible but it takes two.
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5 years ago  ::  Jan 11, 2009 - 12:01PM #8
Ceren
Posts: 1,430
I think it really depends on each case.

The same thing goes for other things.... Would a vegetarian marry a non-vegetarian? It depends on how important vegetarianism is for you. If you're a PETA activist, I doubt you would marry a meat-lover.

The same thing with religion.
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5 years ago  ::  Jan 11, 2009 - 12:05PM #9
Sacrificialgoddess
Posts: 9,496

Ceren wrote:

I think it really depends on each case.

The same thing goes for other things.... Would a vegetarian marry a non-vegetarian? It depends on how important vegetarianism is for you. If you're a PETA activist, I doubt you would marry a meat-lover.

The same thing with religion.




That actually describes my inlaws.  She's a vegetarian, very involved in PETA.  Her husband is a meat eater.  They love and respect each other nonetheless.

Dark Energy. It can be found in the observable Universe. Found in ratios of 75% more than any other substance. Dark Energy. It can be found in religious extremists, in cheerleaders. To come to the conclusion that Dark signifies mean and malevolent would define 75% of the Universe as an evil force. Alternatively, to think that some cheerleaders don't have razors in their snatch is to be foolishly unarmed.

-- Tori Amos
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5 years ago  ::  Jan 11, 2009 - 12:13PM #10
Ceren
Posts: 1,430

sacrificialgoddess wrote:

That actually describes my inlaws. She's a vegetarian, very involved in PETA. Her husband is a meat eater. They love and respect each other nonetheless.




But I guess that then you have to accept the fact that your husband/wife will be out of a HUUUGE part of your life. I guess for some people that might work, but for others it won't.

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