Poll: Young in Malaysia, Indonesia oppose polygamy

The vast majority of young Muslims in Indonesia and Malaysia appear to disapprove of the traditional acceptance of polygamy but remain reluctant to openly support interfaith marriages or premarital sex, a new survey shows.

In the survey coordinated by two German-based cultural organizations, 86.5 percent of 1,496 Indonesians interviewed and 72.7 percent of 1,060 Malaysians said they were against polygamy. More females opposed polygamy compared to males, who are permitted four wives under Islamic law.

The findings indicate that opinions among the young in both Muslim-majority nations “have shifted from the traditional viewpoint that sees polygamy as an Islamic precept,” according to a survey summary released Monday by the Goeth-Institut and the Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom.

The all-Muslim respondents who participated in face-to-face interviews last October and November were from 15 to 25 years old.

Read more

7 replies

  1. Nothing strange about these polls. 13.5% of Indonesians and 27.3% of Malaysians are in favor of polygamy. Only around 5% practice it. Consequently following the polls we could expect a large increase in polygamy in the coming years. (See how we can look at polls in a different way!?).

    In fact I see another big challenge in these polls: (you will need to read the full article). Only about 1.5% approve of pre-marital sex. Good. However, pre-marital sex is spreading at a larger rate than that in both countries. Here lies a challenge.

  2. … in favor of polygamy in a poll asking ‘under 25s’. The acceptance of polygamy increases with age, either with the men already having one wife or with ladies not having found any husband at all (or divorced or widowed). The way questions are asked in a poll often influences the answers, as we all know.

  3. “And if you fear that you will not be fair in dealing with the orphans, then marry of women as may be agreeable to you, two, or three, or four; and if you fear you will not deal justly, then marry only one or what your right hands possess. That is the nearest way for you to avoid injustice.” (Al Quran 4:4)

    In non-Muslim societies these days men try to get prenuptial agreements and perhaps women can encourage and enforce prenuptials in Muslim cultures, requiring men to pay a large alimony, if they find a second wife. Marriage is a negotiation and cultures and religions define the broad boundaries.

  4. It is very simple. The nearest way for you to avoid injustice is to marry only one. (Al Quran 4:4).
    Still doubtful, ask your daughter if she want to marry a polygamist? You will have no doubt.

  5. Adding to Dr Zia Shah Sahib’s Comment:

    Prenuptial arrangements are truly legitimate and Islamic. Unfortunately the Nikkah Clerics in Pakistan omit around 25% of the clauses in official Nikkah Form before it is handed over to the bride for signature.

    The omitted paragraphs include clause 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21 and 28. These clauses are basically related to woman’s rights in a marriage. Paragraph 16 deals with Haq Mehr (Dowry Money) and paragraph 17 deals with special terms and conditions that the woman or the man may put forth. Paragraph 18 details the basis on which the man has allowed his wife to demand a divorce from him. The divorce rights are automatically entrusted unilaterally to man alone.

    In view of immense social problems arising out of such illegality we collaborated awareness campaign at our hospital for students, residents and staff and to our astonishment hardly anyone had knowledge of what was going on

  6. Too simple. If everyone would be ‘over careful’ and not have the courage to try his utmost to be just, (even when marrying more than one wife) the fact remains that there are too many widows and divorcees unmarried. It would be a great blessing to take up this challenge. – Moreover, even if not marrying widows and divorcees, it is a greater blessing to meet the challenge of being equal to more than one wife then do what the non-Muslims do … (may be I do not need to go into more details).

    Yes, Islamic law practically ‘invented’ the premarital agreements. I agree that knowledge of these possibilities should be conveyed to all before the Nikah.

  7. Another interesting question is: Why did a Germany based group make this survey at all? Most likely they were more interested in the other question regarding ‘cross-religious marriages’.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.