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Rituals (Marriage Ceremony

):
The Hindu marriage, or Vivaha, is a spiritual union of two individuals performed
in the presence of God. The ceremony takes place in the Mandap (Wedding Pavilio
n) which is built to represent the universe. The ceremony itself is very ancient
, compiled from Vedas (Oldest sacred books of Hinduism) which were composed thre
e thousand years ago. The Hindu wedding ceremony involves the following:.
Dwar Puja (Welcome to the groom)(Milni):The groom's party arrives in a processio
n and is greeted by the bride's parents and relatives.
Jaimala (Garland ceremony): The bride and groom exchange garlands signifying the
ir respect and acceptance of one another.
Ganesh Puja (Prayer to Lord Ganesha): Every Hindu ceremony begins with an invQca
tipn to Lord Ganesha (Lord of Prosperity) to ask that all obstacles, be rempved.
Aspecialprayer is said for the bride and grooms to ask for a righteous and trut
hful life and guidance-to follow the family traditions and virtues.
Kanya Daanam (Giving away of the Daughter): The bride's parents invoke the divin
e presence & formally give their daughter's hand in marriage tQthe groom. The gr
oom formally accepts and then promises to treat the bride as his equal with love
and respect.
Gath Bandhan (tying of the Knot): The priest ties the ends of upper garments of
the bride and groom in a sacred knot symbolizing everlasting togetherness.
Saptapadi: The bride and the groom take seven steps together, symbolic of seven
vows that they pledge to ecach other.
The seven vows are:
1. We will be honest to each other and will maintain good character.
2. We will accept each other's family as our own.
3. We will provide for each other.
4. The groom will always support the bride and never betray her.
5. We will comfort each other in bad times and share happiness in good times.
6. We will stay together, whatever happens.
7. We will be forgiving and understanding towards each other.
Shila Vidhi (Rock ceremony and Dhruv Darshan): After the sixth circle around the
fire, the bride and groom stand on a piece of stone and look northwards to the
North Star and pray for stability of their marriage. After both of them accept t
he vow, they are allowed to circle the fire for the seventh time.
Sindoor Daan (Application of vermilion or red powder): The Sindoor ritual is one
of the most significant parts of the Hindu marriage ceremony. During this ritua
l the groom applies Sindoor, a vermillion powder, the parting of the bride's hai
r which symbolizes their mutual acceptance. As the groom applies the red powder
to the bride's head, he is affirming that on this day he is devoting his life to
her forever.
Aashirvaad (Blessings): At the conclusion of the ceremony, the priest blesses th
e newlyweds and the guests offer their blessings by showering rice ,and flower p

etals. .