Is the marriage valid which is performed secretly from parents?

Details of the Question
Is the marriage valid which is performed secretly from parents?
The Answer

Dear Brother / Sister,

The Act of Marriage is a contract, a settlement and an agreement that is why it has certain conditions has to be fulfilled. If any of the conditions within this agreement are biased or not fulfilled that Act of Marriage would not be valid.  
1. The individuals who wish to get married have to be ready by person or by their duly appointed representatives.
2. The statement of both parties’ own will to get married. Both parties has to state that they accept the Act of Marriage by saying “I do”.
3. Affidavit of permission from the parent of the girl. This rule applies to all the sects except the Hanafi sect.
4. The witnesses had to be ready. These witnesses has to be two (2) men or one (1) men and two(2) women who reached their maturity age and who are sane. So it means there has to be one (1) man present in the witnessing.  
There is another condition apart from the conditions we mentioned above, and that is the announcement of the marriage. This rule applies to the Maliki sect only. However according to Ottoman Family Law Ordinance it is stated that the marriage contracts which were not registered to the district judge (cadi) will be considered void and the official marriage is strictly emphasized. 
They prefer religious wedding in order not to commit any sin when they feel alone however after doing that they find themselves in a very hard situation.
When a woman and a man with or without the permission of their family gets married in the presence of witnesses that marriage will be certain and valid and unless the man divorces the woman, the woman cannot get married with someone else. In this regard this is very inconvenient and dangerous. As a matter of fact we are receiving tens of questions regarding this matter. Such as “I had a religious wedding with a guy, he does not divorce me. What should I do?” “I got married with someone else before getting divorced from my other religious wedding. Would it constitute adultery?” We are facing with many such horrific problems. As a result of such situations what happens is impossible to compensate. That is why we never approve religious wedding without an official wedding.
A man who acted in anger from time to time which he would regret afterwards came to Mohammed’s (S.A.V.) presence and asked him:
- Give me a job that would get me to heaven, so I can do it and go to heaven!

Mohammed’s reply was very brief and clear:

- Beat your anger; do not act upon it that will be enough for you!

As it is pointed in the example above, anger is not an ordinary and simple state; as a matter of fact a man who cannot beat his anger would pull the trigger and kill a human being without hesitating. After this moment on the rest he is left with is lifetime regret.
Due to such results of anger, Mohammed (S.A.V.) frequently warns us for this reason:

The outcome of anger is always definitely regret and what we need to know about this anger that it has varying types of it.

He warned the people around him by saying:
-If you want do something good that would take you to heaven, do not act upon your anger, beat your anger, swallow it, and stay away from provocations that would lead to anger.
Some thinks anger is only a violent act resulting from temper.
However, there is a type of anger which is the outcome of a sexual provocation and this type of sexual anger has more dreadful results than the temper type of anger which would make someone to kill another by pulling the trigger without any hesitation.
Furthermore, because the sexual anger would have more dreadful results compared to a temper driven anger Mohammed (S.A.V.) has warned us to stay away from such views and environments that would provoke our sexual anger, and advised us not to exceed the limits of intimacy; he even gave us a striking warning among his other warnings about this matter:
- A human being whose sexual instincts arisen would be same as a human being who lost whole or two third of his mind. It means he would take any risk without thinking; he would turn towards rebellion with his sexual instincts arisen.
When two strangers from opposite sexes would come eye to eye, face to face in solitary places would mean to form basis to this sexual anger to arise slowly. At first innocent conversations, then shaking hands and holding hands, then such time would come the waves of the sexual tension would drift the sides to such points they start to see impossible things as very possible. Just as the girl on the phone who is desperately seeking for guidance and help.
A girl over the phone was asking me on the other end of the line:

- We would like to have a secret religious wedding with my schoolmate, what do you think?

Of course my response was with a harsh reaction.

-I told her I am against every sort of suicide. At the beginning of her life, a girl trying to secretly get married without the permission of her parents, risking her life is most probably the same as committing suicide. Maybe not for the boy but for the girl the result is not any different than a suicide.
-She insisted asking is there no other way?

I said yes there is and it is very easy too.

She got excited:
- Make an official wedding. So you can spare yourself and your family from a great devastation.

- But that is impossible, neither my family would give permission nor our school nor ages would allow us for such thing.

- So neither your age and school nor your parents would allow you to do such thing, how would you dare to have a secret religious wedding and what is this rush for? 

- For a long time we know each other and we see each other, we got used to each other, we seem to start avoiding and not being able to think these obstacles ahead of us, so we are ready to take the risk to have a religious wedding.
As we can see in the example above, not avoiding becoming eye to eye with a stranger and exceeding the limits of intimacy would lead the sides to this type of sexual anger and temptation. It would make them unable to think the results of their actions. Then the inevitable end comes and makes them to take the risks which would make them suffer and regret for the rest of their lives. They would not only drag themselves into this mess but they would also drag their families along with them and devastate them as well.
Even for Shafi’i sect, without the permission of the parents religious wedding cannot be done.
According to Hanafi sect, if the sides would not get an agreement, the parents do have the right to oppose and separate the sides.
Apart from these, it is against the law to have religious wedding prior to the official wedding. It would constitute a felony.
However, the ones who are drifted away by the sexual anger and temptation would not be able to think any of these logically.
Ahmed ŞAHİN

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