| From a male point of view, it sounds like a dream.
After all, what guy would not absolutely relish living
a lifestyle where he has multiple wives to choose from whenever he gets
It's called polygamy, "a "form of marriage in which a
person has more than one spouse." Furthermore, it is most often appears
in the form of a religious connection. As a result, those who adhere
to this form of primary relationships do so with a fervor that generally
goes beyond the typical over-sexed lust of a bad boy. Whether the
religious aspect is a cover up for that lust is arguable. Nevertheless,
those who expound it seem to be truly convicted that a man with multiple
wives is a dictate from the throne of God.
To those who have a cursory understanding of the Bible,
some credence seems to be understood in view of those like Kings David
and Solomon who had hundreds of wives and concubines. However, upon
closer examination, it becomes clear that the result of their polygamy
was nothing but constant trouble, confusion, and even challenges to their
throne due to the many children they had. Furthermore, the Judeo-Christian
understanding of both the Old and New Testaments is that of one wife only
for each man.
Old Testament: "And every daughter, that possesseth an
inheritance in any tribe of the children of Israel, shall be wife unto
one of the family of the tribe of her father, that the children of Israel
may enjoy every man the inheritance of his fathers." ~ Numbers 36:8
New Testament: "For this cause shall a man leave his father
and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one
flesh." ~ Ephesians 5:31
| Even more challenging to those who accept polygamy as part of
their religious views is that of the New Testament's very clear delination
regarding spiritual leaders. I Timothy 3:2 states that, "A bishop
(referring to any leader of a congregation) then must be blameless, the
husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to
hospitality, apt to teach;"
When one considers the Mormon leaders like Rulon Jeffs
who married 19 women and fathered 60 children while leading the Fundamentalist
Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (FLDS), the question of whether
or not such religious views have any kind of authoritative basis comes
into serious question. Now that his son, Warren Jeffs, has been exposed
for innumerable abuses since inheriting his father's followers, the concept
of polygamy as an acceptable form of primary relationship is being scrutinized
more than ever.
Although, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
expressly forbids polygamy and excommunicates members found to be practicing
polygamy, various splinter groups continue to promote the practice.
Regardless of polygamy being illegal, those who have chosen to continue
practicing multiple marriages have generally been left alone. The
reason for this is that they have incorporated "informal" polygamy into
their communities. This approach allows a male to enter into relationships
with females beyond their first wife by formalizing the "marriage" using
ceremony instead of formalizing it under the laws of the state. These
groups are merely subject to the laws against adultery or unlawful cohabitation
— laws which are not commonly enforced because they also criminalize other
behavior that is otherwise socially sanctioned.
| The founder of Mormonism, Joseph Smith, had
30-plus wives. We don't know the exact number due to the inaccurate
records that survivied from the early 1800s. His insistence that
men follow his example as being a revelation to him from God continues
to be adhered to by those who consider themselves Mormon fundamentalists.
Even though the practice is illegal, it is still practiced amongst those
who adhere to the tenants of Mormonism.
However, some "Fundamentalist" polygamists marry women
prior to the age of consent or commit fraud to obtain welfare and other
public assistance. In 2005, the state attorneys-general of Utah and Arizona
issued a primer to help victims of domestic violence and child abuse in
polygamous communities. Enforcement of other crimes such as child abuse,
domestic violence, and fraud were emphasized over the enforcement of anti-polygamy
| In all fairness, it must be said that there are indeed
polygamous families where all involved express a sincere commitment to
this type of relationship. Such families seem to be let my men who
convey a sincere love for their wives" and children. In fact, the
women testify of their
However, the general public is much more aware of men like
Warren Jepps who get exposed for their cult-like domination of the more
fundamentalist sects of Mormonism. In his case, he has been charged
with forcing the marriage of a minor female along with numerous allegations
of some very strange disciplinary practices; not to mention a long list
of financial misdealings.
||confidence "regarding such an arrangement to be more beneficial
to all involved. Regardless of the views of those who would argue
with them, the fact is that such families are very insistent concerning
their strong sense of commitment to God and each other; not to mention
being happy in such a relationship.
Nevertheless, the practice of polygamy continues; whether
in the guise of religious belief or by using informal marriage. Furthermore,
the one redeeming characteristic of the Mormon approach to the practice
has been it's willingness to be fairly open about it to the pubic at large.
Unlike the leacherous male who maintains multiple wives and families who
have no idea that the others exist, the Mormon fundamentalists simply declare
the practice as being normal to their lifestyle.
The only reason we include the discussion on this site
is because polygamy is indeed considered to be a bonifide type of primary
relationship amongst those who practice it. Whether that perception
will ever stand up to the law or even the court of public opinion is another
What do you think?
© all rights reserved - 1/25/2007
The mission of this not-for-profit website is to promote clear insights
and toleration regarding the many variations of primary relationships that
exist in our world. We ask for neither acceptance or approval but
hope that each visitor who reviews the pages of this site will leave them
with a better understanding of the numerous cultural, historical, preferential,
religious, sexual, and sociological approaches to coupling that have always
existed and will continue to exist as long as there are at least two human
beings living on this planet. If the effort put into creating and
maintaining this site results in others coming to the realization that
the basic human need to love and be loved takes on many forms which are
accepted by those who practice them, whether right or wrong as determined
by the personal belief system of others, then it will have served it's