Rajasthan is a place known for its cultures, rituals and most of all; it is famous for its colorful people. The people of Rajasthan are very colorful and in every manner, very religious and spiritual. The sand dunes, safaris, dance, lush forests, wildlife are few of the traits, which make Rajasthan a special and a different place in the country. Blue pottery, metal craft, woodcraft, leather wear, stone carving, metal lamps, are the famous handicrafts offered by Rajasthani culture.
The reflection of all these colors and cultures can be seen in a Marwari marriage. Marwaris are the people resident of the Marwar region of Rajasthan. These people are termed Marwaris irrespective of their caste, there can be Marwari Baniya, Marwari Brahmin, or Marwari Rajput, can be hindu, muslim or jain., the identity they carry is according to their geographical area.
As all other marriages in Rajasthan, Marwari marriages are very traditional and usually an extravagant affair. The marriage rituals start from days before the marriage and extend to loads of days after the marriage. The pre- marriage, during marriage and post marriage rituals are described as below:
Pre- Marriage Rituals:
Sagai or the engagement ceremony is the step towards the beginning of the marriage ceremonies. In this, the brides brother puts tilak on the forehead of the groom and then he is presented with sweets, sword and many other gifts. A puja for Ganpati Sthapana and Greh Shanti is also performed at the respective houses of bride and groom to initiate the marriage ceremonies with the blessings of god.
This ceremony involves the application of turmeric paste on the hands, feet and face of the Marwari bride and groom in their respective houses. The Marwari bride wears an orange ghaghra choli, while the Marwari groom wears dhoti and kurta. After this ceremony, both the Marwari bride and groom are not supposed to go out of their houses before the actual marriage ceremony takes place.
Mehfils forms an important part of the marriage ceremonies in a Marwari marriage. These are basically an occasion to celebrate and dance in the traditional manner. Separate mehfils for men and women are organized in which ghoomars and other cultural dances are performed by the professional and participations are also seen by the family members.
Its a ritual, where a sacred thread is tied on the hand of the Marwari groom as a part of the Havan or the puja. The Janev or the sacred thread is to keep the evil eye away from the married life of the couple.
The presentation of wedding dress, Jewelry and gifts to the Marwari bride on the day or one day before the day of the marriage is called Palla Dastoor.
Baraat is the denotion of the procession which moves from the house of the Marwari groom till the house of the bride for the actual wedding ceremony. The marwari bride is dressed in his traditional dress of achkan and chooridar along with Rajasthani turban on the head, conventional jootis in the feet, and a sword in hand.
The baraat constituting the groom and his relatives are welcomed by the mother of the marwari bride along with other female members of the family. The groom is then taken to the mandap, where the jaimala, ceremony takes place, from wherein the bride is taken to another mandap for the phera ceremony.
Granthi- bandhan is tying the knot of the brides dupatta along with a dupatta rolled over the groom to signify their beginning of being one entity from two. The knot is either tied by the priest or by the grooms sister.
After the paani grehan ritual, i.e. the groom taking the hand of the bride in his hand, signifying him taking her responsibility from now onwards, both of them take four pheras or circles around the scared fire. Rest of the three is taken at the entrance.
Its the ceremony, where the Marwari bride is made to put her foot on the grinding stone taking the pledge to face every difficulty with courage and being loyal towards her husband always. After which, the brides brothers put kheel in the hands of the bride, and joining the hands of the bride and the groom and then offering the puffed rice or kheel to the sacred fire. This is to bless the sister with her brothers wishes.
Vamang Sthapana and Sindurdaan:
Here, the bride is asked to sit on the left side of the groom, signifying the acceptance of the brides presence in the heart of the groom as the heart is on the left side of the body. Then the Marwari groom applies sindur on the forehead of the bride.
Satapadi is the custom, where the Marwari bride and the groom walk seven steps together establishing their togetherness in all walks of life.
Post wedding ceremonies:
After few more ceremonies, like Anjhala Bharaai, Paharavani, the bidai ceremony takes place as a part of which, the bride leaves her maternal house and moves towards her new house, the house of her husband where she has to live for the rest of her life.
The bride after entering the Marwari grooms house is welcomed by the family groom with great celebration and joy, as a part if the grehpravesh ceremony, and after which all the family members and friends bless the newly wed couple for their happy and blissful married life.
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