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Hindu marriage

Updated: Aug 18, 2023

The world is a mix of cultures and, of course, weddings couldn't be different. India is a country with very peculiar customs when it comes to wedding ceremonies. Today we are going to talk about Hindu Marriage. Check out.

Hindu marriage

Preparing for a Hindu Marriage

The Hindu Wedding is a true marathon for the bride and groom and their families. It consists of elaborate celebrations, which go through several phases and can take several days. In the week before the ceremony, different rituals are performed, mainly those related to fertility.

For the ceremony, the bride and groom have their bodies ornamented. The bride's hands, as well as those of her friends, are painted with henna paint. On the morning of the wedding, the bodies of the bride and groom are massaged with perfumed oils of various essences, while chanting mantras, purifying the body and soul, according to tradition.

The importance of Indian jewelry in marriage

Brides are adorned with diamonds for the wedding. When the marriage celebration is over, it is customary for the bride's father to say to his son-in-law: "Now I give you this girl adorned with gold".

The only good that belongs to women is jewelry, which they get from their family when they get married. If the couple divorces, the woman will be entitled to take only her jewelry. Everything else goes to the husband's family. If the wife becomes a widow, the widow cannot even wear these jewels on her body, but pass on to her daughters the ones that belonged to her.

Gold, for them, symbolizes the goddess Lakshmi and represents abundance and purity, and its use on the feet is prohibited.

September and March are the months when most Hindu Weddings take place, when jewelry stores are crowded with families choosing jewelry to adorn the bride. Some pieces indicate caste or religion and cannot be worn by people who do not belong to them. While in Western marriage the symbol of union is the wedding ring, in India, the bride gets married loaded with gold. The most used parts are:

– Nath (nose stud);

– Bor (adornment worn on the forehead);

– Paizeb (ankle bracelet with little bells) and the popular foot rings (only in silver);

– Mangalsutram is the most traditional piece, which comes from the Sanskrit “mangal” (prosperous, blessed) and “sutram” (cord).

Hindu marriage

Hindu Marriage Traditions

- On the wedding day, the bride and groom bathe in sandalwood, reciting some mantras that help with purification for the wedding.

- Generally, the groom arrives mounted on a white horse and with a turban on his head. In some cases, he also carries a sword and may be challenged by one of the bride's relatives to a fight. This is all to see if the groom is able to defend his bride's honor.

The bride's parents wash the groom's feet before the ceremony while guests welcome the couple.

- The bride and groom are separated by a silk curtain during the ceremony, as they cannot look at each other. Just after saying the mantras, the Antarpat call is withdrawn.

- During the ceremony, when the groom comes to the bride she serves him honey and yogurt and the two exchange necklaces.

- The wedding cord can only be removed from the bride if her husband dies. This cord is made with 108 pieces of cotton thread braided and dyed yellow. The necklace also has a pendant that they believe attracts even more luck.

- In India guests throw rice at the bride and groom (like here in Brazil).

- When the ceremony, a lighted flame must be taken from the bride's house to the couple's new home. the bride and groom arrive at their new home they have to stay without talking until late afternoon. Then, they begin a new sequence of ritual offerings to the gods and their ancestors.

- In Hindu Wedding, the most important moment is Saptapadi, when the bride and groom go around the sacred fire speaking positive mantras to the new family.

Discover more traditions here on our blog.

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