India Wedding Traditions


Different wedding traditions in India have very many similarities too, despite linguistic and cultural differences that exist. This is not surprising if you look at the way the Indian wedding customs evolved over centuries and their significance to the new couples’ life ahead. In fact, the traditions are centered on showcasing individualities of different groups.

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To get a better insight of India wedding traditions, it is necessary to understand the core wedding customs first. By customs, Indian wedding signifies an important event for the groom’s family which assumes the lawful parenthood of the bride, meaning that, she becomes a member of their family in entirety but more specifically for three critical aspects of that family. Thus the bride becomes an equal partner in groom’s familial responsibilities (Dharma), profession and properties (Artha) and personal pleasures (Kaama.) Given this background, it is the responsibility of brides’ parties to host the wedding party and the reception is hosted by the grooms’ parents as a way of thanking the other parties.

Now, traditions have developed differently in different parts of India in total concurrence to the customs. Groom and his party is welcomed at the venue through ‘vara-pooja’ or ‘vara-satkara’ which is not more than welcoming with flowers, perfumes and music which ends with light refreshments. Note that the bride is not supposed to take part in any of these till the actual wedding, she is busy with her girl friends putting on her Indian wedding dress

If the wedding is on the following day, you are in for some great feasts of traditional programs. In order to let both the parties know each other better, guests are permitted, by tradition, to go to any length in demanding any kind of treatment although not seriously, and both the parties thoroughly enjoy this retrospectively.

Some Indian cultures permit dancing and bands are arranged for this. The bash goes on well into late night and ends with a grand dinner. Non-vegetarian dishes are rarely served in Hindu weddings throughout the weddings and non-vegetarian families invite their guests separately for another party after the wedding.

As per Hindu customs, wedding means the complete acceptance of the bride by the groom and his parents. This is carried off first by Kanyadaan (handing over of the bride by her parents), tying of the nuptial knot (mangal sutra) and Sapta-padi. Sapta-padi stands for the 7 steps the new couple takes together around the holy fire. Regardless of geographic differences in traditions, these are the three aspects that ultimately recognize a wedding as having been customarily solemnized. Revert to Sapta-padi, the couple owe, by the fire, to each other that they remain so in all seven critical steps in their life ahead.

Please enjoy our photos, we love the Indian culture and wanted to respect that tradition when we married in Hawaii