I am engaged with a girl recently. My family was not happy with this engagement initially because both families are not of the same cast (Cast system is dominant here in Sub-continent).Now the things are normal. But the problem is that my parents lived in a village and I lived in another city for seek of my job and study. Some of the relatives of my spouse also live in the same village (also her relatives are not happy about this engagement. The only reason is cast difference). My mother in law is insisting that she would not be going to marry her daughter me until I buy a house at city where I am living for my job/study (I visit my parent twice a month) and also marriage ceremony will not take place at my village. They conveyed these two statements to me. I clearly told them before the engagement that I have not enough resources to buy a house in city but I will take one on rent and so far as marriage is concerned it will take place at village. But right know they are insisting to do at city and also buy house first otherwise they will break this engagement. Both of these are not possible for me and I know it in advance that my parents will also not agree to have marriage ceremony at some other place. My parents are of the view that after marriage, they will help us to shift to city. I liked the girl very much and in fact I prayed for her for many times. I fear that if I say that both of your conditions are not possible for me they will negate the engagement. I do not want to lose the girl. I am really confused about that, I know Allah will do well for me Inshahallah; I just want more on this from you. Also should I clear them about my condition once again? Please take this all in consideration and suggest me some useful guide lines fro Quran and Sunnah as soon as possible.
We do not really understand what you are saying about your family and your fiancée’s family being from different castes. However, if what you mean by caste is tribe or clan or lineage, then the matter is simple and does not need any discussion from us; you will find information in question no. 13780 about this matter.
But if what you mean by caste is that she belongs to a sect that has different beliefs than yours – and we think that you are of ahl al-sunnah (a Sunni) – then in this case we must point out to you that among the sects that claim to belong to Islam are some that are beyond the pale of Islam, and some which have deviated from the path of ahl al-sunnah wa’l-jamaa’ah. Examples of the former include the Qadianis (Ahmadis), Ismailis, Huloolis, Raafidis (Shi’ah) and the Bareilawis. Examples of the latter include the Ash’aris, Maatreedis and Murja’is.
If your fiancée follows the beliefs of one the of sects that are beyond the pale of Islam, then it is not permissible for you to marry her, because they comes under the rulings on mushriks because of their apostasy from Islam. If she follows the beliefs of one of the misguided groups, then it is permissible for you to marry her, but you should be cautious about that, because the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) advised marrying women who are religiously-committed, so that the husband’s own ‘aqeedah would be safe with her, and so that he can trust her with his family and children.
‘Imraan ibn Hittaan was one of ahl al-Sunnah, and he married a Khaariji woman in order to set her straight, but then he ended up becoming one of the leaders of the Khawaarij.
See: Siyar A’laam al-Nubala’ by al-Dhahabi (2/214).
There are stern warnings narrated from the righteous salaf against sitting with and keeping company with the people of innovation and whims and desires.
Ibn ‘Abbaas (may Allaah be pleased with him) said:
Do not sit with people who follow whims and desires, for sitting with them sickens the heart.
Tafseer al-Tabari (4/328).
Because sitting with pigs is dearer to me than sitting with any of those who follow their whims and desires.
Al-Ibaanah by Ibn Battah (2/438).
Abu Qilaabah said:
Do not sit with the people who follow their whims and desires, or talk with them, for I am not sure that they will not tempt you into their misguided ways or confuse you about what you know.
Siyar A’laam al-Nubala’ (4/372).
Whatever the case, no doubt marrying a woman from ahl al-sunnah is better for you and your family and your children, unless this woman is like that because she is living among followers of innovation, and perhaps you will be rewarded for bringing her out of that atmosphere.
See also the answer to question no. 85370.
It is not permissible for you to hold wedding celebrations that include haraam things such as music, dancing and mixing. If that was stipulated previously, it is a false condition and you do not have to fulfil it.
In the answer to question no. 7577 we have explained how to deal with such situations.
In the answer to question no. 9290 you will find information on what it is permissible to use and listen to in celebrations.
If they insist on having a party – so long as it is free of sin – then you can have two smaller parties – as is usually done by people in your situation – one in their village and another with your own people.
With regard to their stipulating that you should buy a house, they have no right to stipulate that you should do that, unless that house will be for their daughter and they want you to put it in her name. There is no reason why the wife should not stipulate that the husband provide her with accommodation in her own land, or in some other place, and after marriage she has the right, if she wishes, to keep it or waive that right.
It is not up to the wife’s family to stipulate the conditions of marriage unless they are doing it on behalf of their daughter, or the conditions are in her interests. But if her guardian stipulates something that has nothing to do with his daughter, that is not permissible. Rather conditions are to be stipulated by the wife or by her guardian on her behalf. In principle the guardian only has the right to agree to the marriage or not. Even the mahr (dowry) belongs to the wife and she is the one who stipulates it or delegates her guardian to stipulate it on her behalf.
The wife or her guardian may stipulate that you will live in their locality, and you are obliged to fulfil that condition, but they do not have the right to stipulate whether the house will be bought or rented.
If you want them to drop this condition altogether, or at least agree that the house is to be rented and not bought, then you must be gentle in negotiating with them, and seek the help of knowledgeable and wise people to speak to your fiancée’s family, and pray to Allaah to make things easy for you.
We advise you to pray istikhaarah, for you may think that this woman will be good for you and your children when in fact that is not the case. We are ignorant and must seek the help of our Lord Who knows what is best for His slave and decrees that for him. We are helpless so we must seek the help of our Lord Who is able to make things easy or not, and He is able to divert things and prevent them from happening. For more details about the istikhaarah prayer, please see the answer to question no. 2217.
We hope that we have answered your question fully. We would also remind you of the importance of making a good choice when seeking a wife, and choosing one who is religiously committed, follows sound beliefs and is of good character. We ask Allaah to grant you a righteous wife who can help you to obey your Lord and protect you from that which is forbidden to you.
And Allaah knows best.