Tuesday, February 27, 2007


“Why should I call grand mother of my mother for two women?” the question always came out from my mind when I was a kid. At the time, my mother had explained that her father had two wives, which we call polygamy. The word “polygamy” has its root in Greek. According to encyclopedia Wikipedia, historically, it may have two meanings that are both polygyny (one man having more than one wife), and polyandry (one women having more than one husband). Nevertheless, the term polygamy is commonly used to refer to one man having more than one wife. In fact, it exits as a custom in the community or society instead of people irrelevant of countries, religions, and cultures around the world. Although it is not a new phenomenon, recently polygamy has been getting much attention, and even it is being dispute. For example, Indonesian government has already created a draft of law to arrange rules regarding polygamy. Indeed. Some people in Utah, United States, which under religion reason have done a demonstration to force legalization on polygamy.

Although, I have already known the reality of polygamy, until now I still have difficulty to accept the concept of polygamy to be a reality. For me, I cannot figure out how one husband can live with many wives. In my opinion, polygamy is a kind of the psychological violence against women. Besides, polygamy bears much bad effects to children of polygamist family. Could you image, if one father has many children from many wives? Of course, he is not able to taking care of them.
There are many reasons of people supporting polygamy. One of the reasons is following Prophet Muhammad’s tradition. For Moslem, Muhammad is a perfect figure, and every single Moslem has to behave as Muhammad had done. In fact, Muhammad was a polygamist, so many Moslems argue that they are polygamists because they want to be good Muhammad’s followers.

Actually, Muhammad was being a polygamist only to help widows. At the time, many Moslem troops died in the war, so their wives became widows, and many children did not have father. Because of this reason, Muhammad married them. In fact, only one of Muhammad’s wives was still young, and the others were old widows. It means that Muhammad gave good principles of it. The first principle is that polygamy has to be used to helping widows and orphans. Second, sexuality could not be used to support polygamy. However, in reality, nowadays men married a second wife who is younger than a first wife is, and she is not a widow. Thus, by pretending to follow Muhammad’s tradition, they can hide the sexuality that is they central motivation.

Another reason of supporting polygamy is the condition of women population. In fact, the population of women is higher than men. In polygamists’ opinion, they should help to balance the population of women and men with practicing polygamy. Evidently, as Indonesia, only above thirty years old, the population of women is higher, and below thirty years old, the population of both women and men is same. Thus, if the population is to be a reason, men should marry with a woman who is above thirty year old. However, commonly a man is practicing polygamy with a young woman. Unquestionably, using population to be a reason to support polygamy is only to hide the main reason that is sexuality.

Finally, although a number of polygamists always use many reasons to support them such as following Muhammad’s tradition, and the population of women, sexuality is the main reason of polygamy.