All You Need To Know About Maharashtrian Wedding Tradition
Is your significant other Marathi? Or are you one and would love to know more about the rituals that take place during the wedding? In either case, this article will help you a great deal. In our daily lives, we don’t pay attention to our cultural roots which is why we are usually unaware of our traditions. However, in case one is getting married soon, they ought to know these rituals perfectly. Therefore, scroll over this article to find out more about some Maharashtrian wedding tradition and rituals.
It is often said that a Marathi wedding is one of the most straightforward weddings in India. However, some unique rituals are quite uncommon and are peculiar to this region. You will find out more about them once you go through the subsequent sections. Are you ready?
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Pre Wedding Rituals
- Sakhar Puda: This tradition can be analogous to an engagement ceremony. It takes place a few days before the wedding. The groom’s mother gifts the bride a packet of sugar. This symbolizes her acceptance of the girl into the family. Sakhar Puda finely marks the beginning of wedding rituals in a Marathi wedding. Along with the packet of sugar, the bride also receives a saree and jewelry from the groom’s family!
- Muhurat Karane: Muhurat means the time and date on which the wedding will take place. The family priest decides this according to the horoscopes of both the bride and the groom. The wedding preparations then begin as five married women are invited to pound some turmeric. A pestle tied with mango leaves is used to do the same. Sometimes, the bride’s side also holds an exhibition of the food items cooked by the bride. This is termed as a rukhvat.
- Wedding Invitations: The order for wedding invitations is usually given months before the wedding takes place. However, the very first invitation is presented to Lord Ganesha, who is associated with removing all the obstacles and gracing the event with his divine presence.
- Kelvan: Kelvan is simply a Pooja that takes place a few days before the wedding. In this, both the families of the bride and the groom offer prayers to their family deity. All the relatives and friends attend this Pooja. After the Pooja successfully ends, a meal is also offered to the entire gathering.
- Halad Chadavane: This is typically a Haldi ceremony. The turmeric that was pound by the five married women during the Muhurat Karane is used now. These women apply this paste to the groom’s head, shoulder, feet, and hands with mango leaves. The leftover turmeric paste is then sent over to the bride’s place where it is similarly applied to her. This ceremony typically takes place a day before the actual wedding.
- Ganapathi Puja: The wedding begins with offering prayers to Lord Ganesha, requesting him to grace the occasion and seeking blessings for the happy future of the couple.
- Punyahvachan: The next Maharashtrian wedding tradition is that of Punyahvachan, where the bride’s parents accompany her to seek everyone’s blessings. She touches the feet of all the elders present at the occasion.
- Devdevak: A Marathi wedding does not begin without invoking the family deity or the Kul Devta. During the Devdevak ceremony, prayers are offered to the family deity at the site where the wedding will take place.
- Seeman Puja: During this Maharashtrian wedding tradition, the bride’s mother welcomes the groom and his family at the wedding venue. She applies tilak on his forehead, washes her feet and feeds him with sweets.
- Gurihar Pooja: At this point, the bride is made to wear traditional wedding attire along with the jewelry. It is generally gifted to her by her maternal uncle. Then she offers her prayers to a silver idol of Goddess Parvati places on a mound of rice. She provides this rice to the goddess and seeks blessings for a blissful life.
- Antarpat Ritual: Antarpat is the cloth that is held before the groom, which prevents him from seeing the bride. The groom now reaches the mandap wearing a traditional wedding cap and settles down on his designated place.
- Sankalp Ritual: The priest begins chanting the wedding vows during this Maharashtrian wedding tradition. These are called the Mangalshtakas. The maternal uncle of the bride leads her to the mandap. The Antarpat is removed such that the couple can see each other. The couple then exchanges the garlands, and people shower unbroken rice on them.
- Kanyadan: Kanyadan incorporates giving away of the daughter by the father to the groom, thereby providing his blessings. The groom accepts these blessings and believes that he is receiving love in exchange for love. He also says that his bride is the divine love that is showered upon him from the sky and received on earth. The bride then seeks a promise of love and respect from the groom. The bride’s parents then worship the couple as avatars of Lord Vishnu and Goddess Lakshmi. The bride and the groom then tie a piece of turmeric on each other’s hands, which is known as Kankan Badhane. The groom then places a mangal sutra around her neck and pours vermillion on her head. The bride then applies sandalwood on the groom’s head.
- Satapadhi: This Maharashtrian wedding tradition calls for the couple to take seven rounds along with the sacred fire. While doing so, they chant the seven ritualistic wedding vows.
- Karmasampati Ritual: This signifies the end of the wedding rituals. The couple prays before the sacred fire before it extinguishes. The father of the bride playfully twists the groom’s ear. This is symbolic of reminding him of his future duties. Then the couple gets up and seeks blessings from the relatives present at the occasion.
Post Wedding Rituals
- Varat: Varat is a Maharashtrian wedding tradition in which the bride bids a tearful goodbye to her family and is taken to the home of her husband. The groom also takes the silver idol of Goddess Parvati with him. Varat is the name of the procession that leads the bride to her husband’s home.
- Grihapravesh: The literal meaning of this term is the entry into the house. It is usually the first ritual conducted after the wedding. The groom’s mother washes the feet of the couple with milk and water and welcomes them. The bride then knocks down a vessel of rice, and the couple enters the house with their right foot.
- Reception: In this event, a huge feast is offered to the members of the community and the relatives. The newly married couple meet all the friends and the family during this ritual. The bride usually wears the saree and jewelry given to her by the groom’s family!
Groom: A Marathi groom usually wears a beige or white cotton kurta with a dhoti. There is a red or gold cloth draped on his shoulders. The turban is called a pheta, but he may also wear a traditional Gandhi style cap.
Bride: She wears a silk saree accentuated with gold borders in a Marathi trouser style draping. It can be a Paithani or a traditional Nauvarisaree. A Marathi bride wears green bangles, mangalsutra, thusi (necklace), nath, armlets.
Both the bride and the groom wear a Mandavalya, which is two threads of pearls tied across the forehead.
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