Indian weddings are popular for being larger than life. Indians, in particular, have known since childhood that weddings are celebrated like festivals that span 3-4 days. During this time, a number of rituals and ceremonies are conducted that perfectly showcase how rich, vibrant, and beautiful our culture really is.
However, in recent times, it is often seen that newer generations are not quite aware of the significance of such ceremonies and traditions. This is partly because of changing preferences and evolving ideas of “fun” during weddings. It is also because the importance of these rituals is not communicated properly from one generation to the next.
This needs to change. After all, the traditions and rituals are there for a reason. They hold the key to a prosperous and happy marriage.
Traditional Ceremonies – There’s A Reason Why They Exist
The traditions that we have for Vedic Hindu weddings have been followed for thousands of years. Ancient people had deep spiritual and religious wisdom, which is why they created specific ceremonies to ensure that the new couple can receive godly blessings and positive energy to start their new journey.
So, if you think about it, these rituals are actually religious ceremonies or poojas and are deeply sacred. As such, they should be respected, embraced, and honored. After all, when they are conducted properly, the bride and groom are showered with prosperity, happiness, a good partnership, balance, strength, and wisdom.
In fact, if you are merely attending the wedding and still take part in these rituals sincerely, the positive vibes will surely touch your life as well!
Exploring The Significance of Some Popular Ceremonies
From Varmala, Kanyadaan, and Pheras to Sindoor, Mangalsutra, and Vidaai, there are many different ceremonies in a traditional Hindu wedding. Also, the way they are conducted shows the richness and practicality of our culture.
For example, during most of the ceremonies, the Shehnai is played by a Shehnai player or an Indian wedding band. This musical instrument is considered highly auspicious and its sound is thought to create a sense of sanctity in the environment. Also, it creates a traditional atmosphere at your wedding, which helps you embrace your culture even more.
Now, let’s explore some popular ceremonies to understand their significance better.
The Varmala is a wedding garland that is made of beautiful flowers. During this ceremony, the bride and groom exchange the garlands, while monks recite Vedic mantras. In some parts of India, this ritual is considered so important that the bride and groom chant the holy verses themselves. Essentially, the mantras turn a simple event into a pooja, which invites divine blessings.
This ceremony symbolizes the public acceptance of the bride and groom’s new relationship. It is also a symbol of love and commitment.
Kanyadaan is another important ceremony in a Hindu wedding. It is performed by the parents of the bride in front of the holy fire. The father of the bride places his daughter’s hand into the hands of the groom. This signifies that the bride is now the responsibility of her husband.
It’s important to note here that the holy fire is given great significance in most of the ceremonies. After all, in the Vedas, fire is considered the messenger between the people and their gods. It bears witness to everything that happens around it.
The Pheras are perhaps the most important ceremony in a Hindu wedding. Before the ritual, the sister of the groom ties the end of the bride’s saree with the groom’s “angavastra.” This symbolizes their union.
Then, the bride and groom take seven rounds of the sacred fire, making a holy vow after each round. Also, the monk speaks specific holy verses during the entire ceremony. This makes it a highly sacred ritual.
4. Sindoor and Mangalsutra
After the Pheras, the groom applies sindoor (vermillion) on the bride’s head, while the monks chant Vedic mantras. This ritual is kind of an official declaration that they are now married. For the bride, it marks the beginning of her journey as a bride for the rest of her life. In fact, the red color of the sindoor will forever symbolize her love for her husband.
This is followed by another ritual where the groom ties the Mangalsutra around the bride’s neck. This Mangalsutra symbolizes eternal love and commitment between the bride and groom. After this ceremony, the wedding is official.
5. Final Thoughts
As you can see, each of the ceremonies during a Hindu wedding has a specific purpose and meaning. Due to the involvement of the holy fire, Vedic mantras, and instruments like Shehnai, these ceremonies become more than just ceremonies. They become sacred poojas. As such, we should all try to become more respectful towards these age-old traditions and keep it classy!