Weddings announce the arrival of a new life. They mark the celebration of the unison of two different people and their families. Various cultures across the globe embrace this important and life changing event with different rituals and traditions, each with a significance of its own.
Let us unravel top 10 wedding customs in India and understand their true essence.
- The ‘Kundali Matching’ Ceremony:
An important step right before the marriage date is announced is the “Kundali-Matching” ceremony. In this ritual, the birth chart of the prospective Bride and the Groom is studied to analyse the position of the stars and the planets. This helps in judging and predicting the compatibility of the soon-to-be married couple. The marriage is confirmed only when a minimum of 18 out of 36 gunas match.
- Sangeet Ki Rasam:
There is a short and sweet ‘Sangeet Ceremony’ that is organized a few days before the D-day. It is like a small pre-party wherein majorly family members come together and sing and dance in unison. Family members, cousins and even friends perform on traditional “shaadi” songs and all indulge in a merry time with the Bride and the Groom.
The Mehendi Ceremony takes place a day before the marriage and mostly women are involved in this ceremony. The Bride applies intricate and elegant designs of henna on her hands and her feet. This ceremony is important since henna is considered to be auspicious and has herbal and medicinal properties.
In some families, this ceremony is prevalent among men as well as the Groom.
- The Shaadi Mandap:
The Bride and the Groom take their vows and perform other wedding rituals on their D-day under the mandap which is a structure decorated with crystals or flowers raised on an elevated platform. Relatives and guests sit facing this mandap and witness the beautiful and sacred unison of the Bride and the Groom.
- The Havan:
The mandap consists of sacred/holy fire – Havan in the centre. The Bride and the Groom encircle this fire seven times. With each round, they make a wedding vow which brings them a step closer to a newly married life. In this ceremony, the Bride’s brother gives the Bride some puffed rice which the Bride submits into the holy fire.
- The Jai Mala:
After the wedding vows, the couple exchanges floral garlands that shows their mutual acceptance towards this marriage. This is one of the essential wedding customs of India and declares the couple as husband and wife.
- Applying the Sindoor:
The Groom applies Sindoor (vermillion) to the Bride’s hair. The colour of the vermillion is red, maroon or orange and it transforms her identity from a woman to a married woman.
- The Mangal Sutra:
This ceremony is very crucial just like applying vermillion. The Groom embellishes his Bride with a mangal sutra which is a necklace made of gold and black beads. It is considered sacred and is known to invoke the blessings of Goddess Lakshmi.
- Remembering The Almighty:
Before all the wedding rituals commence, the Bride, the Groom and their family members pray to The Almighty to bless this union and to shower his choicest blessings on the newlyweds.
- The Bride’s Dress:
Although times are shifting and couples want to choose from a wide range of colour choices, the colour red remains prevalent in most weddings. Red stands for fertility and prosperity and is regarded auspicious.
The Art of Living Matrimony accepts and embraces the diversity of wedding customs in India and provides individuals a safe and private space to interact, connect and indulge.