Wayist philosophy about the institution of Marriage
In the west, the time when people got married “just to get out of the house”, or to have access to sexual intercourse without societal scorn and disrepute, or to do “due diligence” to take care of an accidental pregnancy, is pretty much over. Children born out of wedlock (and their parents) used to suffer discrimination, but those days are mostly over. Nowadays, couples pretty much don’t have to get married.
In the West, couples can share accommodations, enjoy one another’s company and sexuality, yet maintain autonomy of their individuality and personal income. Some countries have laws that regard cohabiting couples as legally married after a certain period. In the eyes of the State, marriage effects a change in legal status upon individuals that has far reaching legal consequences. Couples, who require this, have researched their options and chose to continue their relationship in this manner.
Wayists in the East, however, generally follow different standards because some communities react against unwed couples and their children. Wayists conform to societal norms if it becomes clear that their free-thinking actions and Wayist beliefs may cause undue hurt or discomfort to loved ones—or they would leave the community.
Spiritual marriage is something different than marriage in the eyes of the State. It is an additional bond, a spiritual bond under spiritu
al laws but is not recognized in the eyes of the State. It brings about additional vows; about different expectations and outcomes. This may not be everyone’s cup of tea.
It is possible to come to temple or church to request a spiritual marriage without it being a marriage legal in the eyes of the State. On the other hand, it is also done every day, where couples seek a bond of marriage legal and binding only in the eyes of the State, without the element of spiritual marriage. The latter is commonly referred to as a secular marriage. Secular marriage rules regulate matrimonial affairs according to State laws; how an estate will be managed, who has rights to what property, and especially laws in terms of children.
Spiritual marriage is all-encompassing. It goes far beyond the laws of the land.
Wayist spiritual marriage is when otherwise unrelated people get together to form a new legal partnership, to enter into a social and spiritual contract with each other.
What differentiates this partnership from a business partnership is primarily that the marriage partnership establishes a new extended family, fusing together several parties from the wedded couple’s respective backgrounds (some unwittingly) in a new bond and familial relationship. This is an important aspect of the marriage. It will play a crucial role in the future lives of all people affected by this. As with other partnerships, the partners in marriage pool property and resources, and share everything. Bank accounts, movable property and real estate is shared in common as are responsibilities for children and one another's well-being and best interests are shared. Marriage partnerships are intimate and all-encompassing. It is not something to engage without guidance and deep reflection.
The Wayist traditional view of matrimony is communal, democratic, egalitarian and pragmatic. From a Wayist view of the realities of the world, monogamy is not ideal; some Teacher even describe it as cruel and unrealistic, since it typically creates orphans, widows, and liquidation of assets upon disagreements which inevitable end in disastrous divorce.
From a Wayist view, instituted polygamy is as imbalanced as polyandry, and neither is equitable and both systems have been proved to be damaging and potentially cruel.
The Wayist view of an ideal marriage is today nothing if not just an ideal because the laws of countries have changed over the years. Wayist ideals are still rooted in the days of the longhouse communities where women and men alike reached consensus to marry men and women who would band together to love and cherish one another, form larger families of people who vow to care and support the family and the children of the family. Traditionally, and even today in practice, Wayists do not value the “bloodline” or “seed” as much as do advocates of the popular social systems in this regard. The Wayist marriage partnership is a spiritual affair which, even in a monogamous marriage involves a wider community of extended family.
Follow the Rule of Law
Wayists always follow the laws of the country where they live. We are taught to be political activiusts for change when we disagree with our country's laws, and if we cannot get what we want we should leave an unjust country to live elsewhere where we have a clear conscience.
In some countries, ministers of religion are not allowed to officiate weddings on behalf of the state. Typically, those countries do not hold to the principle of freedom of religion. Different countries have different (and changing) laws with regards to matrimonial contracts. However, even when contracts are recorded by state officials, Wayists traditionally secure the blessing from ordained Monks, Leaders or Teachers at the local Wayist Center after the civil registration formalities have been completed. In countries where freedom of religion is instituted, Wayists prefer to exercise their privilege to have their wedding officiated and blessed by an officer of their local sangha with whom they have a personal relationship—a relationship that may serve many future purposes in the married couple’s life. Wayist ministers of religion officiate monogamous weddings in countries where the law place such limitations, and no more. As stated in our Primary Text, Wayists always follow the law of the land whether or not we agree with it; when we don’t agree, we may exercise our democratic rights to lobby for change, or leave the unjust country, but for as long as the law stands and we are resident in the country we must follow the law.
In view of the traditional importance of the marriage ceremony, isolated Wayists without access to a temple, shrine or an ordained monk may want to adopt the standard service that could be performed by relatives and friends of the bride and groom.