Day 6/50: Building the Proper Approach to Marriage

Day 6/50: Building the Proper Approach to Marriage

וַיֵּ֥לֶךְ אִ֖ישׁ מִבֵּ֣ית לֵוִ֑י וַיִּקַּ֖ח אֶת־בַּת־לֵוִֽי 

A man of the house of Levi went and married a daughter of Levi.


Rabbi Chaim Dov Stark, Mashgiach Ruchani of Yeshivas Aderes Hatorah, tells over:

One leil Shabbos, when I was around 18 years old, a great rav came to speak to a small group of bachurim in my yeshiva. He looked like a malach. We sat down and listened to him speak, and it was not at all what we expected.


“You know,” he began, “my wife is not the most beautiful woman in the world.” He jokingly pretended to check the ezras nashim as if to make sure she wasn’t listening. We were a bit taken aback. Then he continued, “My wife is also not the smartest woman in the world.” At that point we were feeling really uncomfortable; this wasn’t the way we thought a person is meant to talk about his wife. Then he added the words that have stayed with me for my entire life: “But you know what? My wife is the only one for me.”


I don’t remember if he continued speaking for another hour or only for a couple of minutes, but those words have never left me. In fact, much of the wisdom I have gained from my rabbeim and from seforim on these inyanim can be summed up by this approach to marriage: “She may not be the most beautiful and she may not be the smartest, but she is the only one for me.”


A Torah-based marriage is one in which the husband and wife sincerely believe that there is no one else in the world for them, in which he has eyes only for her, and she has eyes only for him. There can be no one else. 


If a bachur is accustomed to looking at things that should not be seen, then when he jumps into married life, it will be impossible for him to feel that his wife is the only woman in the world. This man has never prepared himself for this kind of relationship! He is used to exploring ”options,” always being on the lookout for something new and exciting. How can we expect a person with this mentality to be happily ”stuck” with just one woman and pretend that there is no one else? In his warped way of seeing things, he will find married life uneventful and boring. He won’t be able to avoid thinking, ”How can I enjoy being married, when there’s a whole world out there?”


🌞 Today I shall…

…guard my eyes, thereby training myself to develop the proper approach to marriage.