Who knew that India was this Catholic?

Any couple who have sex to be considered married, Madras High Court rules

That\’s pretty much the old Catholic view. The priest and any ceremony are only confirming what is already true if the couple have bonked.

This means they would also need to divorce should they break up

That\’s rather less Catholic it has to be said.

I can forsee the odd problem with the idea though: raping someone makes them your wife.

18 comments on “Who knew that India was this Catholic?

  1. It does remind me of the late Senator Earl Butz, who said of the Pope: “he no play-a the game, he no make-a the rules”.

    Butz finally lost his position for some even less PC remarks, but I always felt he had a point…

  2. That-s pretty much the old Catholic view. The priest and any ceremony are only confirming what is already true if the couple have bonked.

    Is that old Catholic in the sense of the rules that the Catholic Church has always obeyed, or old Catholic in the sense of what the Catholic Church used to teach before it got taken over by Reverend O’Bubblegum and his ilk, or Old Catholic in the sense of the Mainland splittists who seem to have faded away after their rejection of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary?

    Because it does not look like Catholic doctrine as I understand it. If all it took was sex, then every man who visited a prostitute would be getting married, probably many times and so the Church-s insistence on monogamy would disappear entirely, not to mention there would be no more sins of the flesh such as premarital sex as sleeping with women you were not married to would be physically impossible.

    From Wikipedia:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marriage_(Catholic_Church)

    With few local exceptions, until 1545, Catholic marriages in Europe were by mutual consent, declaration of intention to marry and upon the subsequent physical union of the parties.[14][15] The couple would promise verbally to each other that they would be married to each other; the presence of a priest or witnesses was not required. … The Catholic Church also has requirements before Catholics can be considered validly married in the eyes of the Church. A valid Catholic marriage results from four elements: (1) the spouses are free to marry; (2) they freely exchange their consent; (3) in consenting to marry, they have the intention to marry for life, to be faithful to one another and be open to children; and (4) their consent is given in the presence of two witnesses and before a properly authorized Church minister.

    So no, from what I can see, having sex does not and never has consistuted a marriage in the eyes of the Church. At least by itself.

    Which is also obvious or we would not have ever had a debate about common law marriages.

    What India seems to have done is just introduce said Common Law marriages into India. Thus screwing any number of men who find themselves dragooned into relationships and obligations they did not consent to. It is the exact opposite of a Christian marriage – no free consent at all.

  3. I can forsee the odd problem with the idea though: raping someone makes them your wife.

    Not to mention all those incest laws. Sleeping with your sister makes her your wife. And age of consent laws. As sleeping with a 12 year old, which is probably legal in India come to think of it, makes her your wife.

    None of this makes anyone stop and think that perhaps the Church-s teachings are a little more complicated than just sex? After all as TW has observed some priests are known to shack up with their house keepers. Does this make them married?

    Has the Church ever, and I mean ever, going back to Roman times, said that a rape victim is married to her rapist? Given that Saint Augustine said that no shame or harm should come to a rape victim – even if she enjoyed the sex – I find that hard to believe.

  4. James P – “Butz finally lost his position for some even less PC remarks, but I always felt he had a point…”

    A turning point in the downward spiral of Western civilisation. I mean if you cannot trust a journalist not to print a joke so vile that no mainstream newspaper has ever been able to reproduce it even though it was off the record, who can you trust?

    But the real question is what sort of game does Butz think the Pope is playing? If it is one involving your wife, in bed, then he may have a point. The Pope on the other hand may think he is playing a game that involves God and Judgement. In which case it is a game he is very much playing. Along with the rest of us.

  5. What the judge said was “if any couple choose to consummate their sexual cravings…”. So no, rape is not covered.

    Furthermore, these introductory remarks seem to be obiter dicta. In the case under consideration, the couple had lived together as man and wife and had two children together: it seems entirely just that the husband should pay maintenance.

  6. As for Earl Butz, his joke was in Frisky Dingo. All Americans want is cold beer, warm pussy, and a place to take a shit with a door on it. The word coloreds was changed, but in the show the line was uttered by a black man. I guess times have changed.

  7. It’s not Catholic as in Roman Catholic but it is in line with the old Vedic religion, which specifies three types of union considered marriage. This is the second type. It doesn’t cover rape at all. The third type involves abduction (from unwilling in-laws) but not rape.

  8. @SMFS #4
    Deuteronomy 22:28-29 NLT – If a man is caught in the act of raping a young woman who is not engaged, he must pay fifty pieces of silver to her father. Then he must marry the young woman because he violated her, and he will never be allowed to divorce her.

  9. In Western Europe, marriage was a purely civil affair, which the Church gradually took over. Hence marriage “at the church door”, after which the couple went inside for God’s blessing.

    Marriage predates religion. It extends deep into prehistory. It is simply a social recognition of the pair bonding intrinsic to our species’s mating system. Which is why every culture and every little uncontacted tribe has it, regardless of what religions they have later adopted.

    Despite apparently everyone knowing this, there is still this bizarre idea that it’s a “Christian intistution”. As if the Japanese or Aztecs or Zulu had never thought of it until a Christian missionary arrived. Totally bizarre.

  10. PaulB

    In the case under consideration, the couple had lived together as man and wife and had two children together: it seems entirely just that the husband should pay maintenance.

    Doesn’t seem just to me. If he wanted to be married, he would have married her. If she didn’t want to have children, she wouldn’t have had children. The State has stepped in and fundamentally changed a freely chosen relationship just because one side of that arrangement saw a chance to grab some cash.

    Richard Allan

    As for Earl Butz, his joke was in Frisky Dingo. All Americans want is cold beer, warm pussy, and a place to take a shit with a door on it. The word coloreds was changed, but in the show the line was uttered by a black man. I guess times have changed.

    But that was not the joke. Rolling Stone reproduces it (although I remember the second one being “a pair of loose shoes”.

    http://www.rollingstone.com/music/pictures/rolling-stones-biggest-scoops-exposes-and-controversies-2-aa-624/earl-butz-mouths-off-14569028

    I do not recommend people actually read the joke though. It was not that funny even at the time.

    Herbie

    Deuteronomy 22:28-29 NLT – If a man is caught in the act of raping a young woman who is not engaged, he must pay fifty pieces of silver to her father. Then he must marry the young woman because he violated her, and he will never be allowed to divorce her.

    That would be really interesting if any of the Christian Churches had ever made the slightest attempt to enforce this law. Or considered it binding. Now there have been a hell of a lot of Churches, some of whom have made a really determined effort to impose religious law. But I can’t think of one that has considered this legal or rape anything other than a crime.

    Can you?

  11. The Old Testament has never applied to Christians. Rabbi Saul knew it was way too barmy to flog to the gentiles. No bacon sandwiches, no foreskin, no polyester-cotton mixes, no chance.

    To quote Acts 13:46

    “Lo, we turn to the gentiles. And get shot of all this Bronze Age bollocks in the process.”

  12. This translation of Deuteronomy 22:28 is controversial. The KJV has

    If a man find a damsel that is a virgin, which is not betrothed , and lay hold on her, and lie with her, and they be found…

    which is more literal. The NLT has now changed its translation to:

    Suppose a man has intercourse with a young woman who is a virgin but is not engaged to be married…

    The Hebrew words used in 22:28 are different from those in 22:25 where NLT retains “rapes her”.

  13. PaulB

    This translation of Deuteronomy 22:28 is controversial. … The NLT has now changed its translation to:

    We need a special phrase for when they change traditional translations to something that miraculously appears in line with modern Leftist orthodox. Suspicious as f**k does not seem to do it justice.

  14. The main problem is that this is (possibly literally) academic. The Jews were Levantine pastoral tribalists. Er, tribal pastoralists. Whatever. They didn’t thus have any concept of rape as Western Europeans have it, as a crime against the person, since their conceptual framework has no understanding of the individual.

    Fucking the wrong girl is a crime against her family-tribe (as evinced by the punishment- compensation paid to the head of the family-tribe, the patriarch). As are other sexual crimes tribal crimes (e.g. not being a virgin). A concept still extant in Islamic (levantine) societies.

    Trying to shoehorn these texts into our language usages just doesn’t work. The concept of the person is entirely different.

  15. We need a special phrase for when they change traditional translations to something that miraculously appears in line with modern Leftist orthodox.

    Perhaps you do. But in this case it’s the now abandoned NLT version which was innovative: here‘s an 18th century exegesis.

Leave a Reply

Name and email are required. Your email address will not be published.

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>