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Getting married to a foreigner

I am from India. My devotee friend in a foreign country is suggesting that I get married to a nice devotee girl from his congregation. She is very sincere and not influenced by western culture. She wants to come to India so that she can become a better devotee of Krishna. Is it advisable for me to get married to foreign girl? I do not mind supporting her in her Krishna consciousness but will it not be maya? Is it difficult to stay with foreign devotee girl? Are there good examples in past of Indian boys getting married to foreign girls? Some times I feel that foreign girls of this type are more sincere then Indian girls. Am I right?

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  • Volunteer

    Hare Krishna dear Devotees, please accept my humble obeisances! All glories to Srila Prabhupada!
    i will try to explain as i understood from hearing lectures and reading books.

    ---- if girl's face becomes red out of shyness then one should immediately accept her hand for marriage because it shows her purity and shyness. Even Hollywood actresses are not able to make their faces to become red. It is nature's science! (from the lecture of HG Audarya Dhama Prabhu Ayurvedic doctor and preacher, author of many books about correct family life..., Russia)

     

    ----because girl is not attached to one place as much as a boy so when they get married than it is better if girl moves to boy's place and accept boy's cultural priorities. For a girl it is very easy where as boy is not changeable, or hardly.

    In the history we know Arjuna who had four wives with different family backgrounds and surely cultures. One of his wife was from Manipal, another from watery world...

     

    ---Srila Prabhupada says that if girl can do two things than he will personally arrange her marriage:

    1. if she is a nice cook and

    2. if she is chaste.

    ----Chanakya Pandit says that if a girl is beautiful OR has good qualities then one should marry to her without looking to her family background. 

    What do You mean by culture? 

    Because HH Gopal Krishna Gpswami Maharaja was studying in Toronto for over 2 years Srila Prabhupada told him to get married to one Devotee girl from that country because for 2 years he used to that culture and it will be good for understanding a girl so he did

    In this way culture is something which is changed and can be changed. But dharma for a woman is to be a good mother and chaste wife. It is everywhere like that. Excepting the places where now everything is getting degraded. 

    So if girl is a Devotee and is chanting for many years it means she left all bad habits and stood to the right way. And it says that in every 7 years ones body changes completely. So if one is eating Prasadam for over 7 years then to call that Devotee as westerner, mlechchha, yavana... or something like that it is an offense. 

    ---it says that child gains father's qualities and mother's talents. 

    So if one thinks that if one will get married to a karmi girl so that she does not know many devotional rules and regulations, so chance to exploit her or something like this then he is a fool, who is thinking only of mingling happiness but does not know what will be in the future. 

    She will teach kids to become sense enjoyers and as a result demons will grow up. 

    So it is very important to have a wife who is also Devotee who is also trying to serve to Lord and to raise Krishna Conscious children, so whatever she does child will follow her...

    ------------------

    What Indian people mean by saying  a "westerner"?

    I got answer today to this of my question. I was cleaning the room by washing the flour so my roommate Mataji came and asked if i am able to wash the flour :O

    i was shocked and understood that Indian people think that if one is from west she is not able to do housework and all. 

    ....little bit strange why it is so. Because usually in west servants salary is too high than in India so only rich people are having servants to clean the house etc but mostly they do it themselves....

    So these were few points.

    hope others also will add some information! 

    Your servant, 

    • Hare Krsna!

      Well, first of all we should understand two points:

      -we are all influenced by our culture

      -we are all individual, despite our culture

      Let's talk about the first point. 

      It is impossible to say that someone is not influenced by one's culture. I am myself from West and all my Indian friends say I am much more Indian than them, but still, of course I was influenced by my culture. Although I am far more Indian than Westerner, there are important things that are deeply rooted in my personality, and that is natural. My parents, my family, my friends, the school I went to, the way I learned things, it is not sensible to say that it all means nothing and I have no influence at all from Western culture because I became a devotee. In the same way, if someone lived for his/her entire life in India, you cannot say that such person has nothing Indian at all, no influence at all of Indian culture. That's just not the way things really are. 

      Regarding the second point, we cannot say that Indian girls are like this and Western girls are like that. I have lived in different countries, in West and India, I came to know all kinds of people. I've never been to a place where all women are the same of all men are the same. We cannot say that if a girl is a westerner she is more sincere if she is an Indian. I've seen very sincere Indian ladies who are devotees, and in the same way I've seen very sincere Western devotees as well. By the other hand, I know both westerners as well as Indian ladies who really doesn't seem to be sincere at all. So if anyone thinks that the sincerity in devotional service comes from any bodily condition - like if one is born here or there - that is a terrible philosophical mistake. To be born in one or another body cannot define the sincerity of a person. Aren't there male Indian devotees who are sincere? Why shouldn't be Indian ladies who are sincere as well? That is a kind of prejudice based on bodily conception which is not healthy at all for any devotee.

      So, apart from those points, maybe you could think on the following point: if you need to “erase” her past and roots to justify that you are getting married to a Westerner, than why to get married to a Westerner? If she is exactly same as an Indian, with no influence of Western culture, why not to get married to an Indian? Or are all the Indians influenced by the Western culture much more than a Western herself? Sorry, but that is not very logic. 

      I've seen Indians who need to give a reason why to get married to a Western, and usually that doesn't work well. We should do things that we don't need excuse to do. What I mean to say is that we should be very clear about our feelings and very sincere about our reasons. 

      I don't see any problem in marriage between Indians and Westerners. That can work very well, no doubt. I know many that have worked. And I know many that didn't work. And the point is usually the same. Very often Westerner girls find out they are not as Indian as they thought when they have to face certain situations, and very often the Indians get married to Westerners expecting they will be completely Indians. If you are looking for sincerity in a girl, then go for it, either if she is Indian or Westerner. But be sure that this is the real reason why you are marring her, and that you can accept and adjust to the differences, since that's what healthy couples do - both have to accept, tolerate and adjust a lot. If you want someone who is not influenced by Western culture at all, don't ever go for a westerner. That won't work for sure. 

      People in general have an attraction for what is different and distance, and that's why we can see a lot of marriages nowadays between people from different countries. But if we are not sincere enough to accept that we are getting married to someone whose culture is so different, and if we don't get ready to overcome the obstacles that will come, if we pretend to ourselves and try to hide our feelings and give some other reasons for our choices, then we put that burden in the other person and we base our life in something that is not much real - what will always create trouble.

      So, since you asked for advice here, my advice for you is: don't get married to a Westerner if you are not ready to accept and deal with the differences; don't believe that any Western girl will be completely far from influence of the Western culture, so don't get married to one if you are not ready to deal with the differences. But, if it is fine for you to adjust, if you are understanding kind of person, if you can start a relationship like that without fear and guilt, then you can have a good experience. 

      Just one more point about maya. It looks like maya for me the desire to get married to a Westerner who behaves like an Indian, cause it seems that it is just a bodily attraction. It seems you want an Indian person in a Western body. There's nothing to do with maya to get married to a Westerner girl, but if you need her to behave like an Indian, then it is probably just some maya... 

  • Volunteer

    Dear Ramkrishna Prabhu,

    Please accept my humble obeisances.

    All glories to Srila Prabhupada.

    My devotee friend (non Indian) is married to an Indian devotee husband. The boy married her at the request of his father. She was visiting India on pilgrimage with her mother and they were staying in an Indian's home for some time. The father of that family observed my friend and he concluded that she was more cultured and devoted that many Indian girls he knew. So he requested his son to marry her.

    When they got married, at first the Indian women and girls of the boy's community were making much fun about my friend, expecting her to be attached to many bad westerner habits. But later it turned out that due to practicing devotional service seriously, she was indeed more well behaved and devoted than many of them.

    So this would be a good example... But, of course, every situation is different, we have to evaluate.

    Your humble servant,

    Madhavi-lata d.d.

  • Volunteer

    Hmm. This one is a tricky question. Marriage isn't as it was in the last generation (where people were happily accepting arranged marriages). 

    To define maya: it's Krishna's material energy that causes you to lose focus in Krishna. Now maya exists always, we are always partaking in maya. only few people in this material world are free from maya becuase they have no attachment whatsoever. their heart, mind, everything is Krishna Krishna and Krishna!! Take the example of Sri Sukhdev Goswami, he was completely free from maya,

    Now to answer each of your questions:

    Is it advisable for me to get married to foreign girl?

    This depends on you. You have to see if you guys can work out. You are raised in one culture, and she in another. This isn't something we can just say immediately, without knowing either of you. The point is, you need to look at things from your end and her end. You have to see if it will work or not. Then if you both think it will work, then decide further. First get to know the girl, that is the most important thing.

    I do not mind supporting her in her Krishna consciousness but will it not be maya?

    She wants to go to India to become a better Krishna devotee. This is not maya. I get the feeling that you may be inferring that marrying a foreigner is maya, but you have to keep in mind that there is no such thing as race, ethnicity,etc. We are all servants of Krishna, we have a different skin color, and different cultures/values, but we still belong to this planet earth, and we are all homo sapiens. Because she seeks to becomes a better devotee, maya is immediately taken out of the equation. 

    Is it difficult to stay with foreign devotee girl?

    I don't have this experience, but it falls down to whether the cultures and values are similar. 

    Are there good examples in past of Indian boys getting married to foreign girls?

    There probably is quite a few. As far as good example, it depends on how you define that. From the top of my head I don't know anyone

    Some times I feel that foreign girls of this type are more sincere then Indian girls. Am I right?

    sometimes yes. But times are changing, the global culture and attitude is shifting away from the traditional vedic perspective, so there are occasions where you see a foreigner who is more sincere. Again, it just depends though. But then again, what defines sincerity. 

    ----------------------

    The point I'm trying to make is that asking us is a nice thing, but you should get to know her. If you plan to live with your family, make sure to see if she is liked by the members too. Being a devotee of Krsna, the best thing to do is ask Krsna. He resides in our hearts, he knows us better than anyone else, and he is our best friend. He won't guide us wrong. he will help us if we ask, because he genuinely cares.

    NOTE: take everything about what i said above (except the ask Krsna part) with a grain of salt. I'm not married, nor do I have any experience. I'm just stating my opinion, which of course can be incorrect too. 

    Haribol, I wish you the very best!

    • Volunteer

      Hare Krishna, Prabhuji.

      First of all, you didn't mention any details regarding your good self's expectation from girl, family background of yours and financials condition etc which need to take decision at very first stage whether you should think of this any further or not.

      Our beloved Maharajaji used to tell us, "No one tell us full story and ask for advice, how can I advice him/her as it will surly mislead them". So, general advice could be given here but most of them may not fit to your condition.

      Just a thought of marring a foreigner devotee girl has raised many questions in your mind now than what to speak of sequences you may be put into future and can't keep on asking here or else.

      You need to be more mature on practical level while taking decision for your life partner. So many practical questions are faced even marring Indian girl than what to speak of any other.

      Its my personal suggestion, please do concentrate on your daily devotional sadhana, have some better means of income before step into or even think of marriage life. After that consider what your parents willing and how much support you may get in case if you wish to marry some devotee girl from other cast or same.

      I highly recommend you to seek guidance from some senior Gruhastha devotee (no Brahmachari please) locally.

      More explanations are already shared by other devotees here and after reading, understanding what they say, confusion persist than simply discard this thought from your mind to marry a girl suggested by your friend as it may disturb your present peaceful spiritual life.

      Hare Krishna.

      yrs

      Gaur-gadadhar das adhikari

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