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Understanding the Deeper Meaning of Gujarati Matrimony

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Gujarati wedding is an example of a big Indian fat wedding without a single dull moment. Gujaratis are known to have warmth and a sheer vibrancy that would make even the most hostile person to shake a leg or two. Every community has a set of beautiful rituals that complete a marriage ceremony. Similarly, Gujarati matrimony has some beautiful traditions attached.

Talking about the wedding rituals of the Gujarati Matrimony and their meanings:

Gol Dhana

The first step towards the wedding is the engagement. Gujarati wedding ceremony also marks the first step in the form of Gol or Gor Dhana. The ceremony which translates to Jaggery and Coriander Seeds indicates an old practice by distributing a small quantity to people present.

The couple exchanges rings and the bride’s family gifts the groom sweets with matli filled in a steel container that signifies a sweet beginning of the association of two families.

Mehendi Ceremony

Mehendi and Gol Dhana are more of family functions than rituals and take place a couple of days before the actual wedding ceremonies happen. Mehendi, like any other Indian wedding is the ritual where the bride applies henna on her hand and feet along with friends and families celebrating. Mehendi is said to have cooling properties that helps in bringing the stress level down that a bride might face due to wedding.

Sanji

Sangeet or Sanji is a popular sangeet ceremony of the Gujarati Wedding Ceremony. The purpose behind the function is that both the families get introduced with each other in an environment that is casual and fun filled. With music and dance, drums and Garba dominating the Sanji night, friends and family come together to dance the night away.

Mandap Mahurat

A traditional procedure where the bride’s and the groom’s family worships the ground location of the proposed mandap. This ritual is carried out to clear the mandap of all the evil influences and to seek the blessings from Mother Earth.

The Mandap Mahurat is then followed by a Grah Shanti Puja that is a prayer where the family seeks blessings from all the planets and is conducted at the bride and groom’s houses respectively.

Pithi & Mameru

Pithi and Mameru are rituals that are conducted just a day before the actual wedding day. The proceedings of a Peethi ceremony is as follows: • Bride is made to sit on a low stool • Women in her family apply Peethi, a paste of sandalwood, rose water, herbs, and a few drops of perfume The Peethi is directly applied to the bride’s skin to make it glowing and super soft. The groom also have a Peethi ceremony but the bride’s is more elaborate. Mameru is a tradition where the bride receives gifts from her maternal uncle. The gifts include silk sarees, jewellery and traditional wedding bangles called as choodo that are made of ivory.

After the pre-wedding rituals comes the wedding day:

Baraat

Dancing on loud beats along with friends and family, the groom proceeds towards the location to begin the wedding procedures. The groom is supposed to ride on a white mare during the ceremony.

Ponkvu & Jaimala

On arrival, the groom is greeted by his mother-in-law. After the aarti, the mother-in-law tries to grab groom’s nose and the groom tries to save himself. Next, the bride and groom are introduced to each other with a garland exchange.

This is followed by madhuparka, kanyadan, hast milap and mangal pheras.

After the wedding is complete, the bride and the groom seek blessings from the elders present in the location and then the bride leaves for the groom’s home.

At the groom’s home, the bride is welcomed with a tradition of Ghar Ni Lakshmi followed by Aeki Beki, a game where the bride and groom are supposed to find their rings in a bowl filled with milk and rose petals.

This makes a complete fun-filled Gujarati Wedding.

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