timberland boots size 9 How Bihari Weddings Are Celebrated

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Bihar is one of the extremely backward regions in India. Though these days Biharis have turned quite liberal, they still stick to their modest traditions in every aspect. They don’t exhibit any artificial pomp and are very proud of the rural touch of their roots. Usually a traditional Bihari wedding lasts for a month, but these days it has been reduced to a five days affair.

A Hindu Bihari matrimonial rite begins with “Satyanarayan Katha”, a prayer that is performed by the groom and his family, under the supervision of a “Pundit” or priest. All the attending family members are supposed to fast. The “havan” is performed on the last day to conclude all the wedding rituals.

Then the ritual “Haldi Kutai” takes place, in this groom’s mother and other “suhagins”(married ladies) grind the turmeric to a paste that is sent to the bride for the ritual “ubtan”.

After that, an auspicious day is fixed for “Cheka”, which is the engagement ceremony. In this ceremony, 5, 7, 9, or 11 members from the groom’s family along with the groom visit the bride’s house along with gifts, known as “Chekas” and the bride and groom exchange rings. The next day, the same ritual is repeated by the bride’s family and they visit the groom’s house.

The “Shagun” is performed in which the bride’s priest, accompanied by her brother, the barber, and four other members, take auspicious gifts to the groom’s family. The bride’s brother applies “tilak”/”teeka” on the groom’s forehead that signifies that family’s acceptance of the wedding. The brother gets along a lot of gifts like vessels, clothes, jewelry etc.

Shagun is followed by Tilak. IN this ceremony, Haldi paste, specially made by the bride’s mother, is brought in a silver bowl that is applied on the groom. “Tilak” is the one of the biggest ceremonies held by the groom’s party, this is equivalent to a wedding reception.

On the wedding morning, once again the “haldi”/turmeric paste ceremony is performed so that the bride and the groom beautify and purify their bodies after which they are dressed up the “Jaimala” ceremony.

“Silpoha” a ladies’ ritual, is held early in the wedding morning wherein the groom’s mother in her “Chunri/shawl”, along with her mother in law or her husband’s elder brother’s wife grinds “akshat” or rice on a flat grinding stone. While grinding they seek blessings of gods and ancestors. After that, a ritual “Imli Ghutai” is performed by the groom’s maternal uncle and aunt just before the “paricchavan”. It is to drive away evil omens and to warn the groom not to indulge in any form of vices. In this ritual, the uncle feeds a betel leaf to the groom, but the groom keeps it between his teeth while his mother takes it from him and eats it herself. This act signifies that the mother will accept all the evil omens falling on him upon her.

Now the wedding function begins. The bride is brought to the wedding ground where she performs an “Aarti” of the groom and then the couple exchange garlands. Before the commencement of wedding rites, the bride’s mother and other married women hold the “Galsedi” ceremony. During this ritual, the mother carries a plate that contains a small lighted lamp, betel leaves and small lumps of cow dung. All the women, one by one, heat the betel leaves on the lamp and foment the groom’s face, forehead and eyes at least five times each from their left hand.

After that, the bride’s brother or brother in law escorts the groom to the “mandap” for “Kangna Bandhana” ceremony for which the bride adorns a yellow silk sari with zari/gold borders without absolutely no jewelry on her body. The pundit/priest ties the bracelets made of mango leaves, raw cotton thread, colored rice, turmeric and money, on the right hand of the couple and for the next four days they have to wear this symbolic bracelet. Then the barber, present in the “mandap”, cuts the fingernails and toenails of the both the bride and the groom.

Then the “kanyadaan” takes place. In this ceremony, the bride’s father stretches out his right hand to the bride’s mother who places her right hand on it, signifying the giving away daughter. All this time, the priests chant the mantras. The groom then retires to his room and once again the bride changes her dress for the “Kanya nirakshan” which means an introduction to the groom’s family and relatives.

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timberland boots size 9 How Bihari Weddings Are Celebrated