Hindu marriages are said to be ‘The Big Fat Indian Weddings’. Hindu marriages comprise of innumerable rituals and traditions for different aspects of life. It is believed that each ritual is very important to keep the couple and their families happy in the future. These customs have been formulated after intense scrutinization by our intellectual ancestors. Every other culture of India has a different set of rituals for marriages with a large framework of wedding ceremonies. Ultimately all of it ends in the uniting of two families.
The act of combining and contributing to the rise of a new generation is justified socially as a marriage. Indologists look upon Hindu marriages as a Sanskara having three objects.
- Dharma (fulfillment of religious duties)
- Rati (Sex gratification)
- And Praja (procreation)
According to the very sacred books Hindus follow, these duties are said to be a part of the mandatory Sanskara every human has to follow in order to get free from the cycle of birth and rebirth. To ensure that these duties are conducted without any obstructions, marriages have this long list of rituals.
Why are Hindu Marriages considered to be so important?
- Dharma is considered to be the highest aim of marriage.
- The rites performed in Hindu marriages bring you many steps closer to Nirvana.
- Rites are performed before Sacred God Agni, by a sacred Brahmin and by reciting auspicious Mantras hence brings in a lot of positivity.
- The act of union between the man and woman is an essential sanskara according to Hinduism.
Now, the Hindu ancestors had formulated 8 types of marriages based on the intention the man and woman had. Just have a look in which category do you fall. This would be fun as well as a knowledge gained for you!
The supreme form of marriage among all! Brahma marriage is the marriage of one’s daughter to a man of good conduct learned in the Vedas. Here dowry is never a consideration instead the knowledge and acceptance of holy scriptures by the bride and groom are measured.
In this, the woman is married to a priest, a man of intellect and money, belonging to an aristocratic class. This used to be the practice followed by many Royals in ancient times to forge diplomatic ties with allies and enemies alike.
In this, a woman is made to marry a sage who is reluctant to enter marriage, so that she may get intelligent progeny and good home environment
This kind of marriage is said to be entering wedlock for biological function of sex satisfaction and having children
In today’s word, it is termed to be a Love marriage. This is where a groom and his bride could wed without their parent’s knowledge or sanction.
Asura marriage is when the bridegroom receives a maiden, after having given of his own free will as much wealth as he can afford, to the bride and her kinsmen. This was considered to be a very low form of marriage.
In this marriage, a maiden is forcibly abducted by a man. The groom will forge battles with the bride’s family, overcome them and carry the bride away to convince her to marry him. Because of its use of force this marriage is essentially rape in modern thoughts and is considered to be a sin.
When a man molests a girl who is sleeping, intoxicated, or mentally challenged, it is called Paishacha marriage. This is termed to be rape in modern civilizations and is the worst crime or form of marriage.
Ceremonies of a Hindu Marriage
Rituals associated with Hindu Marriages
- Solha Shringar
- Parikrama/ 7 Vows