Marriages all over India are the mixture of happy and sad moments, the articles describes the cultures and rituals followed in a Marathi wedding
Marriages in India have always been an affair of grandness and sanctity, associated with the religious believes and social values of particular regions and states of the country. India is a country, which is famous for its colours in terms of different people and their cultural activities, and so are the different states and cities of the country. The cultures, religions, clothes, language, appearance of people keeps on changing with the change in the region and the state or as we move from place to place, within the country. Same is the case with the marriage rituals and practises, the customs or traditions vary from region to region, culture to culture in the country. Maharashtra, the third largest state of the country, having the second largest population and the richest state of the country, celebrates the occasion of marriage with the same pop and gaiety.
The state of Maharshtra mainly constitutes with people following marathi culture, so the rituals for the marriage in the state are also according to the marathi rituals and customs. The marriage ceremony in a Marathi wedding, takes place in the morning in front of the lord. The most important and the sacred practise followed in a marathi wedding is the matching of the horoscopes of the prospective bride and groom before the marriage. Match of the horoscopes is considered to be very important for the Marathi bride and the Marathi groom to lead a cheerful married life.
Like weddings in all other cultures, Marathi weddings are divided into pre, during and post marital functions and ceremonies. Following are the rituals practised in a marathi wedding:
Pre- wedding rituals:
Sakhar Puda: a packet of sugar if exchanged between the families of the bride and the groom to mark the informal engagement of the two alliances.
Wang Nischay: it is also called the formal engagement of the bride and the groom, in front of the idol of the family god or goddess. Separate prayers are performed at the respective houses of the bride and the groom, after which both families meet and take blessing from the god and the priest.
Haldi Chadawat: a paste with turmeric powder and some other ingredients is formed and mango leaves are immersed in the paste, one day before the actual ceremony. On the day of the haldi ceremony, the paste is applied on the whole body of the bride and the groom with the mango leaves in the direction from down to upwards direction, in their respective houses.
Wedding day rituals:
Ganesh Puja: prayers are offered to the lord Ganesha in the morning on the day of the wedding to seek his blessings for a smooth and happy processing of the marriage rituals.
Seeman Pooja: This is the welcome ceremony or the reception of the groom and his family at the entry gate of the marriage venue. After the pooja, the parents of the bride, washes the feet of the groom, and offer him with a bunch of gifts.
Ceremonial Breakfast: This is the breakfast, which is offered to the groom, family and the guests for the marriage ceremony. The food is of great variety and is served with great lavishness.
Gowri- har puja: a simultaneous puja called Gowri- har is performed with the bride and the groom eating their breakfast.
Wedding ceremony: The wedding ceremony takes place in the morning hours of the day. The bride is taken to mandap or the place of wedding by her maternal uncle, and the bride and groom are not allowed to see each other, till the recitation of the spiritual rhymes or mantras is performed. Ceremonies of kanyadan and satapadi are performed same as done in the hindu weddings, where the parents of the bride gives away the responsibility of his daughter to the groom and requests him to take care of her daughter for the rest of her life. Satapadi is the ceremony, where the bride and the groom take seven pheras or circles around the sacred fire, after which they are declard married.
Post wedding rituals:
Reception: reception is the big feast or treat given to the guests and the relatives after the wedding ceremony. The ceremonial sweet is distributed by the bride and the groom themselves to the guests.
Greh- pravesh: it is the reception of the newly wed bride in the house of her in- laws, where she receives a grand welcome by her new family and is given blessings by the new relatives and family members for leading a happy married life.
Few useful links: