15 TRADITIONAL HINDU WEDDING CEREMONIES
Best Hindu Wedding Traditions You Should Understand
A Hindu wedding is an extravagant festival in itself that is celebrated between two families spanning several days from pre- to post-wedding. It’s a sacred, spiritual, physical, and emotional bond between two souls that binds both families forever Hindu weddings are deeply immersed in tradition and cultures and are often filled with so many ceremonies and rituals that will help you in planning an awesome wedding. The main wedding ceremony is conducted as per Vedic traditions in our mother language of Sanskrit and can be translated to English by the priest.
Hinduism is one of the oldest religions in the world and that’s why many of its sacred rites and customs have lasted for eons. The journey of Hindu wedding ceremonies is a long way that will only ramp up on the day of the wedding itself. And every ceremony here is unique and has a deep meaning behind it like in the saatpheras, every phera has a pledge that is to be taken by the bride and groom.
Mehndi and sangeet, wedding attires, breathtakingly beautiful mandap, baraat, mangal pheras, or even the emotional vidaai all represent the exuberance of people celebrating culture-rich ceremonies. The relatives not only add fun to the environment but also play a significant role in performing every ritual. That’s why Hindu weddings are an intimate celebration of an everlasting bond involving knotty planning that lasts for several days.
Well, there is a lot to talk about and much more to know about Hindu wedding dates. Let’s jump into the depth of Hindu pre- and post-wedding cultures and traditions by understanding their meaning and taking a look at what’s involved in each element.
- Roka/Shagun Ceremony
Roka ceremony is the first official ritual or we can say the first step towards the wedding. It’s a very small and intimate event to officially announce the consent of both families and the couple to get married. It can be placed at either bride’s or groom’s house where both families come together to bless the couple and exchange gifts, sweets, and clothes between them. It generally symbolizes that families are ready to accept and welcome a new member to the family.
- Godbharai and Engagement Ceremony
Earlier Baraksha and Godbhari were separately performed by both the family members and the couple was not allowed to meet. But with the passage of time, many things have changed and that’s so these rituals. Now, these two ceremonies are organized on a single day at the same venue instead of celebrating separately on different dates. The groom’s family blesses daughter in law by giving her sweets, clothes, and gold products like chains or rings, or bangles, and in the same way bride’s family also blesses the groom by giving him a gold chain or ring, clothes, sweets, fruits as shagun. Also, just like in western culture, wedding rings are exchanged between the couple and from onwards a couple is said to be fiancés. So, we also call this day the ‘Ring Exchange or Engagement Ceremony’. Dance programs especially the couple dance of bride and groom have become popular these days among many people.
- Lagna Patrika
It’s a pre-wedding ceremony which is generally performed 2-3 days before the wedding. A mandap with floral decoration and bells is set up at both the groom’s and the bride’s homes. Its four pillars are symbolized the four parents who worked hard to raise their children. The priest is called to chant mantras for inviting all the gods and goddesses to be part of the wedding and to bless the couple. The priest also to writes Lagna Patrika which is sent to the groom’s home in time for the tilak ceremony. After this ceremony, the dholak and dance celebrations start, and also the to-be bride and to-be groom are not allowed to step out of the home till their wedding day.
- Haldi Ceremony
The Haldi ceremony in Hindu weddings is a sacred bath where a thick paste of turmeric, oil, and water is applied all over the couple’s skin and clothes by their family members. The yellow color of Haldi is considered an auspicious color in the Hindu tradition that signifies purity, fertility, beauty prosperity, goodwill, and glowing health. Also, it brightens the skin of the bride and groom by detoxifying it and making their skin glowing for their grand day. Haldi is antiseptic and has strong healing power so it also gives them immunity and prevents unwanted skin allergies. The couple and their families wear yellow clothes. It’s one of the fun-loving Hindu wedding ceremonies.
- Mehendi Ceremony
Basically, a Mehendi ceremony takes place a day or two before the wedding day. Henna is beautifully applied to the hands and legs of the bride with a hidden groom’s name in the design by the henna artists. The groom’s hand is also filled with a bit of Mehendi. The Mehendi represents positive spirits, growth, good luck, and freshness, and it is believed that the darker the color of the Mehendi, the more love her future husband. Like any Hindu this ceremony is also incomplete without dancing, singing traditional songs, and dholak.
Earlier, it was the function of only ladies from the brides’ side and thus called ‘ladies sangeet’ but now it involves the families of both the bride and the groom to make it more interesting and fun-loving. All the family members and relatives dance and bless the couple for their future. The bride and groom’s dance are also performed at the end of the ceremony.
- Tilak Ceremony
Tilak ceremony is generally performed on the day before or on the wedding day at the groom’s house. The elderly close male members of the bride’s side participate in the ceremony and put vermilion on the groom’s forehead and give him coconut, sweets, clothes, and jewelry. It’s generally performed by the bride’s brother. The groom’s father also sends clothes, jewelry, henna, and sweets. It helps in making a bond between both the families.
- Baraat or Vara Yatra
Then finally on the wedding day, the groom with his family and relatives reaches the wedding venue with a band and Baja which is called baraat or vara yatra. The groom comes on either horse or elephant or even car nowadays. They dance and light firecrackers all through the way. On arriving at the venue, the bride’s family welcomes the groom and his family with tilak, akshat, arti, and garland. Our team will help you in getting the cheap wedding halls near Delhi.
Mostly Hindu families perform this ritual on the arrival of the baraat. The bride’s family meets and welcomes the groom’s family with gifts or envelopes. The bride’s brother would receive the groom’s brother, the bride’s father would receive the groom’s father, and so on.
- Kanya Aagman
After the groom and his family are welcome, there would be a grand entry of the bride into the wedding hall. The bride generally enters underneath a canopy and will be joined by the bridesmaid, her maternal uncle, and her brother to the mandap.
- Varmala Ceremony
Varmala ceremony also called jaimala is performed once the bride arrived at the mandap. Manglashtak is chanted and both exchanges flower garlands in front of the guests. Then an elaborate photo session takes place and guests give gifts and blessings to the couple.
- Jutta Chupai
As the name refers, in the Jutta Chupai ceremony, the bride’s sisters hide the groom’s shoes right before he steps onto the mandap and demands money. The bride’s side tries hard to steal the shoes and at the same place, the groom’s side makes a lot of effort not to happen this.
- Kanyadaan and the Saatphere
Kanyadaan is the most important and very emotional ritual in the Hindu wedding where a father places his daughter’s hand into the groom’s hand. They also wash the groom’s and bride’s feet with water and milk indicating that they have been purified for a new life. Then, the groom’s sister knots the end of their clothes together signifying that their bond is unbreakable now. After this, saatphera ritual would be performed where the bride and the groom take seven rounds around the sacred fire. Each phera has its vows that would be taken by the couple. This ceremony would end with the blessings of God and elders.
Vidai took place at the end of all the wedding ceremonies. Vidai is the most emotional moment when the bride leaves her family to enter into a new life. It’s an official goodbye to her family to move into the law-s house. The bride with tears in her eyes takes a handful of rice and throws it back to their family over her head. It’s a way of thanking her parents and also signifies good luck and prosperity. The father and brother slightly push the car from behind. It denotes that they are helping her to begin her newly married life.
- Greh Agman
Now the bride is welcomed by tilting a Kalash Laden with rice from her right foot and stepping into a dish that is filled with Alta. Then she enters her new house. A Dwar Wokai ceremony is performed by the groom’s sister when she asks for gifts or cash to allow them into the house.
Hindu weddings are an emotion-ridden spectacle and packed with multi-page invitations and a lavish feast. It will be a lot of fun to be a part of the Hindu weddings as these are so colorful, vibrant, and magnificent that people from all over the world want to connect with them and even prefer to celebrate their nuptials as per Hindu tradition. Delhi has one of the hubs having innumerable wedding banquet halls for functions that are known for organizing a perfect Hindu wedding ceremony.