ANSWERYou have not mentioned whether you are a male or a female because the answer to it differs according to sex. In Islam, it is permissible, though being makruh tahrimi, for Muslim males to marry the females from among the People of the Book [Christian and Jewish women]. However, it is not permissible for a Muslim female to marry a male from among the People of the Book. She goes out of the fold of Islam at the moment she intends to marry him. Both a Muslim male and a Muslim female cannot marry a Buddhist or an atheist. If they marry, this act takes them out of the fold of Islam.
There is by no means racial discrimination in our religion. There is religious discrimination. Being a Gypsy or a Black is a racial issue. There is no religious obstacle to marrying him/her if he/she is a pious Muslim.
A Muslim woman can marry a Muslim German or a Muslim Japanese. What matters is that he must be pious. He must perform five daily salats and abstain from forbidden things.
The most important qualities that a man must look for in a woman he will marry are that she must perform five daily salats and comply with the Islamic code of dress for women. If a woman who claims to be a Muslim does not perform five daily salats and does not observe the Islamic code of dress, it is a sin to marry her. Similarly, if a man who claims to be a Muslim does not perform five daily salats and does not abstain from forbidden actions, such as drinking, committing fornication, and stealing things, it is a sin to marry him. As a matter of fact, it is declared in the hadith-i sharifs written in the book Shir'at-ul Islam:
(Whoever marries his daughter to a fasiq, his supplications and acts of worship will not be accepted.)
(Whoever consents to marry a fasiq man, the statement "She despaired of Allah's mercy" will be written on her forehead when she rises up from her grave.)
(Whoever wants to get my shafa'ah [intercession], let him not marry his daughter to a fasiq.)
[The word fasiq is used for a person who commits sins flagrantly. For example, a person who does not perform salats or who does not observe the Islamic code of dress is a fasiq. It is not right to marry a fasiq, that is, someone who sins openly. Marrying someone with a corrupt faith in particular is in no way right.]
A Muslim male should marry a female who has manners, modesty, and good moral conduct, sufficient Islamic knowledge, is committed to Islam, and covers herself compatibly with Islam when she goes out. He should look for a girl who has chastity and who cares for her religion. Wealth and beauty should not be his priorities. He should not opt for wealth, beauty, race, or color at the sacrifice of chastity and piety. It is stated in hadith-i sharifs:
(One marries a woman either for her wealth or for her beauty or for her piety. Choose the one who is religious. A person who marries a woman because of her wealth will not be able to possess her wealth. A person who marries a woman only for her beauty will be deprived of her beauty.) [Muslim]
(He who marries a woman for her beauty and wealth will be deprived of both. However, both wealth and beauty will be given to him who marries a woman for her piety.) [Tabarani]
Conclusion:The person one will marry, whether a male or a female, must avoid forbidden actions, perform acts of worship, and have good moral qualities. One who values only physical appearance and who does not listen to the advice of experienced elders will suffer the bad consequences of it both in this world and in the world to come.
When one chooses a spouse, the criterion to be used is that the spouse should be a pious Muslim. His or her race and color is not important.