Editor's note: Beginning in the 1950's, the Chabad-Lubavitch community in Crown Heights, Brooklyn has hosted student groups for "Encounter with Chabad" weekends. In the earlier years, one of the highlights of the weekend was the audience the students had with the Lubavitcher Rebbe, in which they would pose their questions to him.

The following is part of a tanscript of one such dialogue between a group of students and the Rebbe in 1963, as recorded by Rabbi Shmuel Lew.

Dating and Marriage

Student: What is your opinion concerning dating for people our age?

Rebbe: Every young man and woman looks forward to a happily married life, but this starts only after marriage. If you "try out" the relationship too much before marriage, this influences all of one's married life. The relationship between a man and woman prior to marriage should be only in the same measure as the relationship between two people of the same gender. But if more is added — and usually after a while much more is added than at the start — then you are taking away very much from the relationship between this man and woman after they marry....

All relationships make people closer, and everyone wants to be happily married. But the idea of trying out the relationship in a certain measure before marriage started a few decades ago, or less. Yet there have been happy marriages for thousands of years. This is just an experiment of a few years' duration, and it is very difficult to be sure about the effects. The effects can show strongly non-beneficial results of a premature relationship before marriage.

Student: Isn't there a difference between relationships before and after marriage? Isn't this the way that society accepts?

Rebbe: I'm speaking of the personal feelings of the man and woman themselves — not whether society will be happy or not. Nowadays some are happy with the extreme right, some, with the extreme left, or any level in-between. Society is multicolored and differently shaded, and every kind of behavior is tolerated.

My opinion is that this influences the feelings of the married couple after their marriage. They hope for a marriage for many decades or years, and it is not worth allowing the pleasure of a few months to spoil something for decades, for tens of years.