Pre Wedding Ceremonies
Indian Wedding rituals are pompous and are as significant as the decorations, fineries, entertainment and flowers. Along with the union of two souls, marriages in India are also the union of two diverse families. Marriages are an elaborate affair of rituals, customs and norms. Traditional Hindu marriage ceremonies are spread over three to four days of festivities.
Before the main wedding occasion a number of pre wedding factors are taken into consideration. Preparing the bride’s trousseau, fineries, the invitation list, and the venue all calls for hard work and skill. Modern day weddings however, rope in an event planner which makes the entire series of events of preparing for a wedding a whole lot easier. The bride and groom have to go through a number of Pre Wedding Ceremonies in India before they finally tie the knot on the day and time chosen as per the muhurat. Some of the important Pre Wedding Ceremonies in India are Sangeet,
Mehendi, Tilak and Engagement ceremony.
India is a country with diverse cultures and each culture In India has their own unique way of celebrating Wedding Ceremonies. These ceremonies are as significant as the main marriage ceremony and form an integral part of the whole spectrum. Pujas and Yajnas are performed for the well-being of the couple.
Haldi is also regarded as an auspicious occasion by the Hindus. Both the bride and bride groom are smeared with Haldi. This ceremony is also known as Uptaan elsewhere in India. A paste is made from Turmeric, rosewater and sandalwood. The bride and the groom are barred from seeing each other after this ceremony till the marriage day.
These Pre Wedding Ceremonies in India may be different for the different races and clans. However each of the custom has one thing in common and that is to prepare the bride and the bride groom for the auspicious marriage day and to invoke many blessings on the couple. Every occasion is enlivened by songs, dance, rituals and general discussions on love, marriage, and after marriage commitments.
Indian Marriages are said to involve maximum rituals, traditions and vibrancy otherwise absent in any other marriages around the globe. Marriages are said to be the binding of two hearts rather than anything else, in which two people come together, chosen by the families mostly, except for love marriages, and solemnly pledge to share every sorrow and joy with one another. The Engagement Ceremony is one of the Pre Wedding Ceremony in which the couple exchange rings with each other. Therefore it is also known as the Ring Ceremony.
The most vital social event in Indian custom, marriage is based on the early Vedic Concept in which union of two souls and bodies make for a supreme union. The main wedding is elaborate and continues for at least 5 days. There are numerous wedding Ceremonies held before the wedding.
Engagement Ceremony is one of them.
Engagement Ceremony in India is known by different names. In some parts of the country it is known as Misri, while in others it is known as Ring Ceremony, still others call it Ashirbad. It is also called Mangni in some other parts of the country. Various are the names, but the significance is all the same. It is the first step to pledging to spend the rest of your life with the chosen one.
On the day of the ceremony of Engagement, the members of the bride and grooms family meet and bless the couple so that they may lead a very peaceful and happy life.
Celebrated by the Bride's family, the Mehendi Ceremony is an amusing ritual observance that derives its origin from the Traditional Indian customs. In this ceremony, Mehendi is put in the hands and feet of the bride, in beautiful and intricate designs, especially done with the help of an expert.
The entire ritual of Mehendi Ceremony has a deeper significance. It signifies love in a marriage and it is highly auspicious if the bride is able to retain her Mehendi for a longer time, since this indicates more love from her husband. The Mehendi Ceremony is accompanied with great merriment and dancing and the females take a major role in Mehendi Ceremony. Held a couple of days before marriage, this function is lit up by the colorful attire, vibrant music, enthusiastic dance and pulsating instrumentals that make it all the more charming.
Basically Sangeet Ceremonies are usually held after The Mehendi Ceremony. The women folk of the household gather around the bride. This is followed by fun, frolic, dance and traditional wedding songs. Sangeet Ceremony is an occasion when the bride is blessed by her elders which is then followed by good food, upbeat music and a whole of family grooving.
Traditionally speaking the Sangeet Ceremonies are very much a part of the formal engagement or the Sagaai program that takes place a few days before the main wedding. It is generally celebrated by North Indian families. However in recent times Sangeet has made its presence felt even in South India. The concept of Sangeet though traditional and age old, is in vogue. Many wedding planners swear by it and says it add the fun dimension to any marriage ceremony. Professional help is taken to prepare for the occasion. With destination weddings taking center stage thematic events are the rage. Sangeet ceremonies in India are now aesthetically pleasing and totally entertaining.
The theme of these Sangeet Ceremonies revolve between the bride and groom - their love life, how they fell in love, how they met, and likewise. The dances are well choreographed and practiced.
Moreover Sangeet Ceremonies also give everyone a chance to get together. Relatives travel long distance to be there beside their loved ones on this special occasion. It speaks of the strong sense of intimacy in Indians. It also shows that, by nature Indians are social beings.
Tilak Ceremony is one of the most important Pre Wedding Ceremonies; it holds an important position as regards its auspicious nature in traditional Hindu customs. The Tilak Ceremony varies from one state to another. It is also very different in case of diverse castes and creeds. Among the tribal in India, the Tilak Ceremony holds good, but the way is quite different from its urban counterpart. Tilak which is also the sign of auspiciousness is generally donned by the male members of the groom's family the uncles, cousins, brothers by using Kumkum, the red vermilion.
The ceremony is usually held in the groom's residence or the venue chosen to host the destination wedding. It is often held in temples to seek blessings from the almighty, to prosper from his marriage, have wider scope, opportunities and have an altogether improvement in life. For example according to the Sikh Mythology it is very essential that the Tilak Ceremony is held in a Gurudwara, so that the chief priest may also recite a hymn to make it more auspicious for the groom.
After the commencement of Tilak Ceremony the bride's father offers gifts to the groom and to all other members of the family. Ranging from fruits to clothes, goods and sweets the gifts are regarded as propitious and are distributed among the different members of the groom's family. In exchange of these gifts, the groom's father sends sugar, coconut, rice, clothes, jewellery and henna to the bride's family to be distributed with much merriment among the members of the family. Generally the relatives of the groom's family carry the objects to the bride's house with much gaiety.
Sometimes the Tilak and Mehendi Ceremonies are held together. This is especially done in order to reduce the hassles of two consecutive ceremonies for both the bride as well as the groom. This merging also makes way for more entertainment and joyfulness.