Wicca Supports Warm, Loving Marriages
Wiccans use the phrase “As long as love shall last” in their marriage ceremonies called handfastings. What does this mean? Let’s look at a definition of love. Webster’s Dictionary defines love as something that “suggests very great fondness or deep devotion for someone or some thing.”
I will go a step further and describe love as a commitment to the well-being of another person. We can be temporarily angry with a loved one but still retain a full commitment to his or her well-being.
Love remains the reason we get married in the first place. Wiccans do two things. They celebrate the value of love and they hold the realistic idea that it sometimes does not last in some relationships.
Some mainstream religions push the idea that marriage is always “until death do you part.” This bothers me. Is a loveless marriage helpful? For anyone? What does it say to children? Your mother and I hate each other, you get to have such a bitter relationship, too.
The religions who push marriage regardless of love keep saying “a commitment to the institution of marriage.” The institution is more important than the people? (Personally I try to stay out of institutions.)
Wiccans believe you stay together (are married) as long as love shall last. It can last for a year or perhaps a lifetime and beyond. You are not shackled to a person merely because someone or some institution said so.
No one should be made to stay in a loveless relationship. It can only harm the participants. As with all relationships, a marriage is here to teach us lessons in life. If we have learned all we need to (spiritually, that is) from a particular relationship, it is likely that it is time to transform the relationship. You could remain friends, for example. Otherwise, we may be stunting our spiritual growth. Let’s face it. Sometimes, we literally need to move on and away from a person. Think of it. Are all of your childhood friends still your best friends?
This is one reason we add as long as love shall last to our handfastings.