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The Path to Marriage

The Path to Marriage

Dating the Jewish Way


Why marry? The mystics explain that the natural compulsion to marry expresses a deep soul-ambition: its desire to reconnect with its other half. Every body is occupied by half a soul. Body and soul reach completion when they are reunited with their other half.

And it's a mitzvah. In fact, a Jewish home is one of our greatest mitzvot So we don't just wait for Mr./Ms. Right to appear—we actively search them out.

The mitzvah starts, and the search commences, at age eighteen. Don't worry about a perceived lack of financial ability. G‑d who sustains all of creation can and will provide for one more family!

Whom to Marry

Obviously the person you will marry should be compatible with your personality and particular emotional needs. But here's the Jewish angle:

First and foremost, a Jew marries another JewFirst and foremost, a Jew marries another Jew. Marriage is the union of two souls; a feat only possible with spiritually compatible souls.

A Jewish marriage is also a commitment to the continuity of our nation. Jewish parents raising Jewish children with Jewish values is our non-violent way of combating all the bigots who aspired to relegate our people to the annals of history.

There are also certain technical matters to be taken into consideration. Among them: certain restrictions on whom a Kohain can marry, and ensuring that your potential spouse has received a valid get (Jewish divorce) if previously married.


In Jewish tradition, dating is not intended for entertainment purposes; it is reserved for men and women actively seeking their life mate.

Jewish law precludes a man and woman from being secluded together. Thus, the preferred venue for a date is a public or semi-private location.

Successful dating requires the mind to exercise its judgment in an area which instinctively belongs to the heart. Obviously, the heart, too, must be involved. But the mind blindly following the heart can be a recipe for disaster. Allow yourself to "fall in love," but only after your mind has decided that this could be the right person for you.

For more on this topic, see our section on Finding Your Soulmate.

Illustrations by Yehuda Lang. To view more artwork by this artist, click here.
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MLK Brockton Ma August 22, 2016

Path to marriage I meet my husband just a couple months before he was drafted into the army .We only had a short time before he had to report in . We were married in 1962 that's when he got out of the service . What Al was going to do for a job was a good question ? Al did find a job at the first place he applied Al was hired right there and then . He applied for a job at a well known bank and was hired right on the spot without any experience. Reply

Eliezer Zalmanov for May 19, 2015

Re: marriage not for every man That might be true in some instances. But in the vast majority of situations, couples mature and develop together. As they grow, so will their ability to support themselves and raise a family. Reply

Anonymous May 12, 2015

marriage not for every man In order to marry you need a good job or lots of money, drive an automobile,a home or need to be in reasonably good health...if you do not have these things don't even look for a're just wasting your time and her time. Reply

mechael los angeles, usa May 24, 2011

zivug vs. beshert..... i was told that most of us do not marry our zivug's (our true "other-half") soul mates. so why are we told that when we do get married, we have found our "soul-mates"? sorry to spoil the party, but from what i have been told, we usually (for purposes of tikun and gilgulim) usually marry our partners in this world.......our beshert's, Reply

Syed January 26, 2011

Serious! This write up has useful guidelines regarding marriage as fulfilling mitzvah. In the sense of mitzvah, I have seriously started to think about fulfilling this mitzvah of marriage in a proper manner. May G-d help me. Reply

Anonymous January 26, 2011

Excellent About to embark on dating for marriage and this ,"Allow yourself to "fall in love," but only after your mind has decided that this could be the right person for you." is so helpful :-) thank you Reply

Anonymous Malta, Europe January 24, 2011

Amazing, thanks! Reply

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