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So this weeks Flashback Friday takes place whilst I am in Bangladesh, so was articles I came across whilst flying…

1.  Polygamy or Adultery 

Polygamy or Adultery

Polygamy or Adultery

An online dating site that targets married people is being accused of breaking the law. A court in France must now decide whether the company is illegally encouraging spouses to cheat.

Is it permitted for a dating website to promote adultery, when fidelity in marriage is written into French civil law?

That is the question underlying a law-suit targeting the French company Gleeden, which boasts that it is the world’s leading “extra-conjugal site conceived for married women”.

Angered by Gleeden’s provocative advertising on the public transport system, the Association of Catholic Families (ACF) has filed a civil case contesting the site’s legality.

Under the Gleeden model, women do not pay to be registered on the site. Men buy credit, opening up different levels of access to registered women. Though accurate information on this is impossible to obtain, Gleeden says 80% of the people who use it are indeed married.

Margot, a Parisian aged 44, is one such user. She has been married for many years, but says she is unsatisfied sexually. However she has no intention of leaving her husband.

“I chose Gleeden precisely because it is for married people. It means that the person you meet knows your situation. There’s no deception. We can talk openly about husbands, wives and children.

I find it all very bizarre how this considered acceptable by some but polygamy is considered so bad by those same people.

As you may know Islam allowed polygyny. It is only allowed, not obligated. So those men who are content with one wife can live happily without committing a sin. Those who are able to control this desire, are discouraged from polygyny because it comes with a heavy burden of having to ensure justice and equality between wives.However, for those men who feel it is necessary for them to marry more than one wife, Islam permits them to do so without feeling guilty about it, so they can live a life of honour and dignity like everyone else. They do not have to hide, and they do not have to have secret relationships.

The other woman having the affair generally has no rights. The man can have an affair with her and not give her any of his time, emotional or financial attention. He can simply stop seeing her at any time. If he has children from her, he may deny that fact and she may have to go to court to prove he is the father. All these problems do not exist when the Islamic system of polygyny is implemented. Thus, it protects the dignity of the other woman too and prevents her from becoming a ” mistress”.

2. The Religious Minorities dating scene in the UK

Jewish Love

Jewish Love

I recently came across this article regarding the difficulties the British Jewish community face in getting married and the similarities they face to the Muslim marriage/dating scene –

The Jewish dating scene is in crisis. It’s stagnant, outdated and, for many of the people stuck in it, it’s utterly demoralising.

It’s a particular crisis for the growing band of Jews who are still single in their thirties and forties. They’re single because they’re holding out for someone Jewish but they’re not meeting anyone, even when common sense dictates that they ought to have been snapped up years ago. 

Thirtysomething Melanie* is one such person, displaying a list of personal attributes so impressive any Jewish mother would share her secret chicken-soup recipe to secure her as a daughter-in-law. Intelligent? Tick! Educated? Tick! Sociable? Tick! Successful? Tick! She owns her home and she’s active in her community. Melanie has also been single for years, despite trying every Jewish dating mechanism going.

This reminded me when BBC Three did a documentary titled Strictly Soulmates, a four part series that aired in February 2012. The series briefly chronicles the adventures of “religious” young British singletons as explained by this introductory summary on its YouTube page:

“Looking for love is tough at the best of times and it can be even harder when your pool of potential partners is small. Welcome to the world of being young, single and religious. This is looking for love as it’s rarely been seen on TV before – with religion in play there are a whole new set of rules and it can be seriously tough to find ‘the one’. Strictly Soulmates takes a fun, entertaining and emotional look at the real life trials and tribulations of a group of singletons trying to find their perfect match from four different religions: Evangelical Christian, Hindu, Muslim and Jewish.”

The Muslim one wasn’t great if I am to be honest as was heavily skewered to the Pakistani community however it was still interesting insights to see the issues such as negotiating religious and cultural boundaries when searching for a marital mate. However as I stated it does have its limitations, since it fails to represent diverse experiences and fall backs into perpetuating superficial binaries.

Religious Minorities Marriage/Dating Issues

Religious Minorities Marriage/Dating Issues

3. Mothers Love

BAmbi

Bambi

Bambi

Bambi

The powerful bond between mothers and their children, as seen across the globe.

Mothers Love

Mothers Love

4. Richest Man in History

Mansa-Musa

Mansa-Musa

When we think of the wealthiest people in the world, we most often think of the Waltons (of Wal-Mart fame), Warren Buffett, or Bill Gates. However, if you go a bit further back in history, you’ll discover that the wealth of the kings, queens, and rulers of yesteryear trumps the bank accounts of most modern day millionaires and even billionaires by a mile. In fact, during his time, one man controlled more wealth than Bill Gates, Warren Buffett, and the most wealthy member of the Walton family, Sam Walton, combined. That man was Mansa Musa I. With an adjusted net worth of approximately $400 billion, Musa is without a doubt the richest man to have ever lived. So who was he? And why haven’t you heard more about him?

Top 10 Richest people in History

Top 10 Richest people in History

Much of Musa’s wealth came from the production of mosques, madrsasas, and universities, many of which are still standing today. The University of Sankore was built during his time, and is still in existence. The quality of life in urban centers, such as Timbuktu, was vastly superior to other parts of the world at the time, largely due to the availability of work, and Musa’s control of the gold and salt trades. When traveling throughout his kingdom on the way to Mecca in 1324, his procession included 60,000 people. Along the way, 12,000 of his followers carried four-pound gold bars, which he gave away to the poor everywhere he went. Unfortunately, this devalued the gold, especially in Cairo, Medina, and Mecca, and Musa subsequently borrowed as much gold as he could from money lenders in Cairo, even though it was loaned at a high interest rate. As a result, he now controlled the price of gold for all of the Mediterranean. He also controlled more than half of the world’s salt supply. Between his gold and his salt, traders from as far away as Europe made annual trips to his kingdom from Venice, Granada, and Genoa, and this gave him the power to set prices as high he wanted.

5.Comic Relief

Comic Relief

Comic Relief

Comic Relief in the UK has raised more than £1bn since the charity was co-founded by filmmaker Richard Curtis 30 years ago, with 78 Million being raised this year.

It is now being taken over to the US, lets hope they will be able to produce more golden moments like this –

Other top highlights of Comic Relief over the years are here.

However the worthiness of the event has been brought to question by this years host, Russel Brand who see’s it as part of the problem. 

Anyway thats enough for me,

Adieu…Adieu….Stormy