In a recent Marie Claire I discovered that women in Japan are flocking to an ancient Buddhist temple, known as “the divorce temple” to recover their relationship karma. Do they go there to seek counsel from a wise Buddhist monk on their marriage woes? No. Do they go to meditate in search of answers or revelations to help their marriage? No.
Instead, they flush a piece of paper down a toilet. Yeah, you can go back and read that sentence over again, it’s ok. I wouldnt’ make this stuff up, guys. The women write down their wish to sever their marriage on a piece of paper and then flush it down the john to have their prayers answered.
Now, I must admit, I am not the most religious person that ever walked the Earth. Not surprisingly, I am also certainly not a Buddhist. However, I simply could not understand how these women think this is going to help them. (Granted, if I was in a horrible marriage with a skeezeball, I might resort to doing some pretty wacky stunts out of utter desperation as well. Certainly, if I was married to Tom Cruise. Katie, my girl, you are set free!). So this got my mind a-thinkin’ of what other not so typical divorce practices occur around the world. The findings, though divorce is often sad, are rather comical:
- For Arab Muslim men, they simply have to gather two witnesses to hear them say, “I divorce thee.” Simple as that. On a disgusting side note, the men are given the children because they are “the man’s property”, the man may remarry as soon as his newly single heart desires while the woman must wait three months to determine if she is pregnant. If so, she must wait until she has delivered the child to remarry. Ugh. Don’t even get me started.
- Eskimos simply begin to live separately when they decide they can no longer stand one another and desire a divorce. They might be on to something here…
- Australian Aborigine women simply have to elope to divorce their husband. I prefer to call this the “Fly to Vegas and Leave Your Old News Behind” method. Totally classy and respectful.
- In Germany, a bishop called for churches to hold “Masses of Lament” in which family and friends gather in a church to hear the divorcing couple explain their reasons for ending their union. Ummmm, can you say awkward? “Kids, we are gathered here today to tell you why mommy and daddy no longer can stand being in the same room together and want to claw each other’s eyes out.” Yikes.
- And right under our nose in the US, more and more couples are having divorce ceremonies. Much like a wedding except they renounce their vows. Ok, so the exact opposite of a wedding. Some couples are even resorting to divorce parties. This is just bizarre to me. I’m trying to picture my parents having a divorce party when I was 12 and they separated. “Hi! Welcome to the party! Presents go over there; Dad’s pile is on the left, Mom’s is on the right. My dad is a pig. Thanks for coming!”
Until next time…