(Arab. Aila, Turk. Aile)
The family forms the basic structure for social life. According to the sacred texts of the monotheistic religions, the first person, Adam, established the first family together with his wife, Eve. God ordained in the Qur’an: ‘O Adam, dwell, you and your wife, in Paradise’ (7:19); with this it was said that Adam and Eve formed a family.
The mutual attraction of the genders is part of Creation and is in service of the continuation of generations and of cooperation as a society. In the Qur’an, in which the importance of the family is expressed in some two hundred verses, it is written: ‘O mankind, fear your Lord, who created you from one soul and created from it its mate and dispersed from both of them many men and women.’ (4:1). It is also written: ‘And of His signs is that He created for you from yourselves mates that you may find tranquillity in them; and He placed between you affection and mercy. Indeed in that are signs for a people who give thought.’ (30:21).
In Islam, the family is the most important social institution, and the environment best-suited for natural and spiritual development of the individual, as here values can be realised and passed along. The family is a school in which love and solidarity are experienced and in which basic human and ethical values can be acquired. Aside from the sexual needs of the partners in marriage, the family is the best source for fulfilling emotional needs such as love, attachment, protection, trust, and psychological support. No institution is better suited for the upbringing of children, either. During the course of a child’s development, the family is the setting of his or her first contact with the faith, the values of a culture, and the traditions of a society. The family fulfils the child’s physical and spiritual needs and watches over the child’s development. God’s commandments, together with the words and deeds of the Prophet, aim at creating a family that is founded in love and respect, in an awareness of rights and responsibilities.
İsmail Hakkı Ünal