Indian Weddings : A colorful And Traditional Extravaganza Binding Two Souls For A Lifetime!
Weddings mean a lot of things to a lot of people! For the bride it’s a big YES to the dress and for the groom it’s losing his bachelor degree in front of 100 odd guests!! For kids - no school, the cousins get to meet relatives with hard-to-remember names and for friends, it’s all about the amusement and hype!
Jokes apart, a wedding is the ceremonial union of two companions when they begin their journey as a family together. This is hosted by the parents’ life-time savings and a couple of month’s hard work and arrangements.
In India, every wedding is one of a kind. The religious and cultural differences have made them a must attend occasions. Many rituals are performed during a wedding ceremony and some usual ones are here.
Haldi :- “Shuru Ho Gayi”
To top the list, we have the Haldi Ceremony which usually takes place in the bride and the groom’s residences before or on the day of the wedding. With the guests bustling around and the youngsters dancing and smearing the auspicious yellow paste over each other, the bride and the groom are all shimmered with this golden façade as they are blessed by the family.
This medicinally valued item which is used to get rid of bad omen, cleanse the future couple to enhance their beauty, is prepared authentically by the elders and dear ones in the family.
Mehendi Ki Raat!
An evening’s pre-wedding musical fun starts with the Mehendi night. Here the bride is beautifully adorned with designs embedded on her skin with the Mehendi leave’s paste squeezed from a cone. Beauticians and innovative experts are entrusted with the bride’s hands and feet to clothe her fully in intricate designs with the initial of the groom inscribed in there somewhere. The groom is challenged to spot it later.
Apart from the cultural and traditional concept twined with this ritual, the healing power of Mehendi as it cools the body, and has all the possibilities to immune the bride.
The Vows / Saat Vachan for a Blissful Assurance
The vows are the epicenter of Indian weddings and it shows the importance given to this fragile bond of marriage. The bride and the groom are given equal share and consideration where the vows are concerned. Today’s younger generation want it in their own contemporary way to suit their lifestyle. The vows are the Sanskrit version of the couple’s promises to each other which is built on love and trust.
The Innovative And Beautiful Varmala!
This is the most entertaining ritual in a wedding where two garlands sewed with flowers and other accessories are each given to the bride and the groom where they exchange it over each other’s shoulders. This takes place once the groom has reached the venue. The real fun starts when both the families start on with their pranks as the groom tries to do his job! It also symbolizes how well the couple is going to understand each other.
Sindoor - Bestow The Title of a Wife!
Indian weddings have some long-living relative mythologies and customs that are not mere formalities but signify some additional values. The Sindoor/ red vermillion powder is one among them. This crimson-lit powder is mixed with mercury, turmeric and lime. It is usually applied by the groom on the forehead of the bride on her partition line. It signifies the ‘wife’ title bestowed on a woman and they are entitled to wear it as long as the husband lives. Hence it is the wife’s prayer submitted to the Almighty every morning for her husband’s long life.
The Musically Performed Emotional Kanyadaan
This is the most valued and poignant event of the evening. Daddy’s grown girl is given to her prince which relays the prestige and honor of both the families. The bride’s father takes her hand and passes it on to the groom’s while special Kanyadaan songs are performed. It is a very emotional moment and an act of great significance that brings a tear of joy to all the near and dear ones!
The Saptapadi - One Step at a Time!
This seven step walk taken by the boy and the Mangalsutra - wearing girl around the burning sacred furnace, officially makes them the man and wife. They are set of promises the couple recite that bridges them together for a happily ever after. They walk with each of them leading the way to circle the fire with the end of their garments tied as a knot. The walk of life they are entitled to lead after this starts from these seven steps and spells their togetherness for a lifetime.
The Indian subcontinent is the one which exhibits beauty and diversity when it comes to exhibiting the serenity of weddings. The one million Indian population belong to numerous religions and customs hence the land is indeed blessed to hoard more than hundreds of wedding rituals and tradition.
The Vivah Sanskar of A Hindu Wedding!
With the Vedic mantras recited in Sanskrit, the pre-wedding and wedding ceremonial prevalence of a Hindu Wedding are definitely cherished to be a part of. The entire month becomes festively lit with relatives near and far, abundant food and delicacies, never ending fun and day and night routine of sacraments. The above mentioned list soulfully becomes part of a Hindu marriage. Hold on to your seats as every dawn and night is packed with unending beguiling events.
Weddings in White and Baskets of Rose Petals!
It’s all white and serene in a Christian Wedding. Flowers, banquets, tranquil church bells, an adorable choir led by a poignant pianist, a friendly vicar and small girls with baskets of rose petals are just the adorable derived components. The cherry-on-the-top vision is the bride in her dream-come-true wedding gown, the giggly bridesmaids and best man with the rings, and the impatient Groom in a tuxedo waiting at the altar. India Christian weddings are the authentic amalgamated occasions of the western service with the uncompromised inclusion of the Indian customs.
Musically Paged Together : Sikh Weddings!
Every episode of a Sikh wedding is spelled with tantalizing musicals and enthralling rituals performed before the holy presence of the Guru Granth Sahib in a Gurdwara. The Anand Karaj, as it’s called has the wedding musical compositions or the Lavan Quadruplets mark the blissful of the beautifully adorned bride and the handsome groom.
The Haldi, Mehendi and other rituals are done with the same sacredness but under different names and order. Many surprising traditions are followed from the pre-wedding bath given to the couple with the Holy water to the groom carrying a sword/ Kirpan while taking the wedding pheras around the Guru.
Muslim weddings : Asking the Qubul of the bride And Signing the Nikahnama!
Muslim weddings are beautiful and pompous, just like a screenshot of a Bollywood movie! Traditions and customs are given prime importance and the wedding ceremony is conducted by a Maulvi and the bride is given Mehr from the groom’s family. Qubul is asked thrice which is her acceptance and then the question is passed on to the groom and finally the marriage contract or Nikahnama is done by the Maulvi, the religious priest with the blessings showered by family and friends.
The Promising relationship with kindness and compassion : Buddhist Weddings!
Buddhists weddings are not religiously active, but are based on the conceptual faith on love and trust between the couple. The wedding takes place in their buddhist vihara (Monastery) where the chants, prayers in Pali language and incense sticks are lit before Buddha’s image and sacrifices are offered to the monks. The parents of the bride and groom unite them in holy matrimony by putting a loop of strings, thereby binding them together for a lifetime of love and happiness!
A Grand Proclamation of Love : Jain weddings!
Jain weddings are simple but the traditions and rituals are given great importance. The Jains do not give much importance on pompous display but each of the pre-wedding, wedding and the post wedding rituals are a treat to the eyes and soul! The wedding rituals include Baraati and Aarti, Kanyavaran, Granthi Bandhan, Pheras and Mangal geet.
Weddings wherever or however they take place are cherished and revered across the country. With its meaning being lost in today’s society, Indian religions and the traditions followed symbolize not only the union of the soul mates but also their family and friends. So dress yourselves up and get ready for a roller coaster ride of food and fun in Indian weddings!