Wedding Ceremonies In Sikh Culture

Crazzy Paul By Crazzy Paul, 12th Aug 2013 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Writing>Culture

A Sikh Wedding ceremony is a culmination of colors, music and Jovial celebration where two families come together for a blissful purpose of bringing two souls together to begin a new life.

Wedding Ceremonies In Sikh Culture

Sikhism is the modern day religion which covers the teachings from all the major religions in the world. The Sikh culture promotes racial equality and respect of all religions. Punjab's rich culture is the outcome of the thousands of years of historical influences on the traditions and rituals and values.

The Sikh Culture's true charisma can be seen at the wedding ceremonies where people get Dressed, carry out rituals and embrace each other following the traditional manners. A Sikh Wedding includes the following procedures:

The Wedding procedures in a Sikh wedding are categorized in three categories – Pre-Wedding Rituals, Wedding Rituals and Post Wedding Rituals.

Pre-Wedding Rituals: These ritual include several different traditional processions which involves:

1. Karmai: This ceremony is conducted one week or a month before the wedding. It is the same as an engagement ceremony. People from both sides of the couple's family get together at the Gurudwara for the ceremony where the couple exchange the rings. The Gurudwara priest recites the prayers from the holy Granth Sahib alongside. After the ceremony all the relatives have the community meal called 'Langar' in Punjabi.

2. Gana: This is a ceremony where the bride and the groom are made to sit together and the bride's left and the groom's right wrists are tied with a red thread. The bride's wrist is also tied with auspicious pieces like iron key, sea shells and trinkets which hold different auspicious beliefs.

3. Maiya: After the couple gets engaged, they are not allowed to see each other till the wedding day. This ritual of confiding of the couple is called 'Maiya.'

4. Mehndi: At this ceremony, the bride is sent a platter of mehndi by her mother-in-law to be applied on her hands and feet by a mehndiwali. The mehndiwali secretly designs the initial letter of the groom's name into the mehndi and it is said that if the bride is able locate the letter her marriage would be a happy marriage. The friends and siblings and other relative dance and sing throughout the ceremony.

5. Gharoli: This ceremony involves the bride to be made to sit in a room lit up with four earthen pots which are kept at the four corners of the room. This is done so that the bride absorbs the glint of the lamps and her skin shines like of a bride. Batna is applied on the bride's face, legs and hands in this ceremony. Batna is a paste made of turmeric and mustard oil which beautifies the bride's skin so that she looks beautiful at the wedding ceremony. The family and relatives of the bride collect water from a nearby well of a Gurudwara in a pitcher during the Batna Ceremony with which the bride would take bath. While taking the pitcher back home the friends and relatives of the bride sing and dance folk songs on the way.

6. Khare Charna: This is a ceremony which is done on the groom's side. The groom is made to sit on a raised stool and a linen cloth is held up over his head from all four corners by four girls and the rest of the people feed the groom with traditional sweets.

7. Chooda Ceremony: The bride's Mama and Mamie (maternal uncle and aunt) conduct this ceremony. A bowl of cream and a set of red bangles is passed through their hands with trinkets which are bought by the brides friends. These trinkets are then tied to the bangles and the bride has to move her hands over the heads of their family members, relatives and friends. If a trinket drops above anyone, it is considered that he/she may be the next one to get married.

8. Sehra Bandhi: Like in the bride's home the ceremonies of Batna and Mehndi are performed. In place of Chooda, the groom is tied with a Sehra on his forehead by an elderly relative and a pink turban which is later passed on to everyone present in the ceremony for touching it as it holds a very religious and sentimental value for the Sikhs. During the Sehra Bandhi Procession, the Bhaiji or the priest of the Gurudwara conducts a pooja for prosperity in the lives of the couple.

9. Ghodi Chadhna and Milni Ceremony: This ceremony is carried out just few hours before the wedding ceremony. In this the groom rides a mare which is offered wheat and pulses to eat as a traditional custom. The groom then rides on the mare to the bride's house or the wedding venue with all his relatives and friends dancing all the way. This procession is called 'Baraat'. After the Baraat reaches the brides house or the wedding venue, the relatives are welcomed warm heartidly and are showered with rose water. The milni ceremony is performed where male members from both the sides of the family felicitate each other according to family hierarchy. Different kinds of gifts and jewelry are given in honor. These gifts or cash money is know as 'Shagun.'

Marriage Rituals: In a Sikh there are not much complicated ceremonies like in Hindu Punjabi wedding. Though the aura of a Sikh wedding is much more spiritual as it is conducted in a Gurudwara.

The main Event consists the following ceremonies:

1. Varmala: This is a ceremony where the bride and the groom put garlands in each other's neck. After this the relatives come one by one to give their blessings and congratulate the couple.

2. Anand Karaz: This is the ceremony which is conducted at a Gurudwara. The bride and the groom are taken to the Gurudwara from the wedding venue or the bride's house. There, the bride and the groom sit together while the priest recites holy hymns from Guru Granth Sahib. Ananda Karaz means 'Blissful Union'. This ceremony involves the recitation of four hymns which were composed by Guru Ram Das.

3. Phere: After the recitation of each of the four hymns, the couple takes the round around the Granth Sahib. These rounds are taken to set the promises for being loyal and supportive to each other throughout their life. After the phere cermony everyone enjoy the grand feast which contains different traditional dishes.

Post Wedding Rituals: The ceremonies which are followed after the main wedding ceremonies include:

1. Doli Procession: This ceremony involves the bride departing from her parents only to go to another house which is of her husband. The bride throws back puffed rice over her head which are a custom which depicts the prosperity of the brides maternal home. This is the most sentimental and intensely emotional part of the whole wedding. The bride is carried into the palanquin by her brothers or the male members of her family.

2. Pani Varna: After the bride reaches her matrimonial house she is greated by her mother-in-law at the entrance of the house. The mother-in-law holds a glass of sweet water from which she and the bride has to drink.

This is the full circle of the Sikh a wedding with the bride being embraced by her new household and new relationships are made for entire lifetime.

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Sikh Matrimonial Services In Delhi, Sikh Matrimonial Services In Noida

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Comments

author avatar cnwriter..carolina
12th Aug 2013 (#)

so very interesting this...thank you for sharing

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author avatar Zola
12th Aug 2013 (#)

Such an interesting article. I once attended a Gujarati wedding - so much colour, tradition, symbolism. Thank you for sharing.

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author avatar Mariah
17th Aug 2013 (#)

I love the music colours and great atmosphere at Indian weddings.
Thank you for an interesting share
Mariah

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author avatar Mariah
17th Aug 2013 (#)

I love the music colours and great atmosphere at Indian weddings.
Thank you for an interesting share
Mariah

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author avatar Crazzy Paul
17th Aug 2013 (#)

thnks to all...

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