Welcome to XXXX (Bride Name ) and XXXX (Groom Name) wedding ceremony. The Hindu marriage ceremony is over 5,000 years old. The ceremony is performed in the presence of a sacred fire and an assembly of family and friends. Each act of the ceremony has a symbolic and spiritual meaning. Our ceremony will be performed in English and Sanskrit, the ancient, sacred language of India.
The priest chants Sanskrit mantras (hymns) from the Vedas (the Hindu Scriptures).
The Ceremony will be performed in the following sequence :
The Arrival of the Groom XXXX arrives at the hall accompanied by his family and friends who are singing and dancing in celebration of his wedding.
Var Puja & Milni
Bride mom welcomes Groom with an auspicious red turmeric mark on the forehead called 'Tilak' and receives Groom with a welcoming ritual, Aarti. Groom then steps forward onto an earthen pot crushing it into many pieces. This demonstrates that Groom has the power to overcome all obstacles the couple may face in their married life. Groom is then escorted to the Mandap by Bride's Family.
Taking of the shoes The priest requests that Groom remove his shoes. Bride's family tries to steal Groom's shoes while Groom's family tries to guard his shoes. At the end of the day, if the bride's family is successful in stealing the shoes, Groom must offer his new family money or gifts to retrieve his shoes.
Kanya Agamana and Manglaashtaka
Arrival of Bride and request for blessings Bride is escorted to the mandap by her maternal uncles. The priest recites eight sacred vedic hymns (Manglaashtaka) to bestow upon the couple and to announce the arrival to Bride. The cloth is removed and the couple exchange flower garland to signify their acceptance of each other in marriage.
Kanya Daan & Hasta Melap
Giving of the Bride & Joining of the Hands Bride's father gives his daughter to Groom in marriage witnessed by the fire God. The Kanya Daan (Giving of the Bride) is the highest form of gift that parents can offer.
The ends of Bride and Groom's garments are tied together with betelnuts, copper coins and rice symbolizing the unity and eternal bond of marriage. The priest then kindles the fire, and the couple makes nine offerings to the fire to ask for the removal of darkness and ignorance.
Circling the Holy Fire Bride and Groom then circle the fire four times. The four rounds represent the four purposes of life: Dharma (spiritual way of living), Artha (prosperity), Karma (energy & passion) and Moksha (salvation). The bride, representing spiritual energy, completes the first three rounds. The groom completes the last round signifying balance and completeness. Bride's brother witnesses the rounds and places rice grains in her hands to signify that they will provide support and protection for their sister. At the end of the fourth round, there is a rush by the bride and groom to get to their seat. It is said that whomever sits down first rules the house !