Defining Marriage

What exactly is marriage? Is it a religious institution, or is it a civil institution? What is the purpose of marriage?

Points to ponder:

#1 In the USA, it is possible for two adults to live together without being married.

#2 In the USA, one adult can grant another adult Durable Power of Attorney.

#3 In the USA, one adult can grant another adult Power of Attorney for Health Care.

#4 In the USA, an adult can make out a will which designates another person as executor. The will can also designate a beneficiary.

#5 There are nations in which polygamy is legal.

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