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Hindu Program Book - Style 1

These templates are just for references & any alteration is possible.

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XXX and YYY
June 3rd, 2006










Part-1

The Hindu wedding ceremony is a sacrament contained within the Vedas (Ancient Hindu scriptures), from the Vedic period, which historians place between 3000-5000 B.C. The marriage ceremony is the thirteenth among the sixteen samskara, or rites of passage that a Hindu observes during his or her lifetime. The marriage is performed to unite two souls so firmly that, although their bodies remain separate, their souls unite and harmoniously become one. The couple embarks on a new life enriched by their union with the blessings of God, their ancestors and elders, and the good wishes of all of their friends and relatives. The wedding takes place under the sacred alter known as the mandapam. The four pillars of the mandapam symbolize the four parents of the bride and groom, and the vital role they have played in raising their children, sheltering, and supporting them . The ceremony embraces the five elements of nature: fire, earth, water, air, and light. These elements play an integral part in the ceremony. The priest will read mantras from the Holy Scriptures in Sanskrit, the root of all modern Indian languages. The ceremony commences with the music of Naadaswaram, an Indian wind instrument. The marriage rites are as follows:

Gowri Puja
In a private ceremony before the start of the wedding, the bride performs a puja to invoke the blessings of Goddess Gowri, the icon of an ideal wife for a long, prosperous, and happy married life.


Arrival of the Groom and Ganesha Puja
The groom is escorted to the mandapam by his family members and friends, and is received by the bride’s parents. He prepares himself for the ensuing marriage rites by performing a purification ceremony. This ceremony begins with a prayer to Lord Ganesha, who is the remover of all obstacles and symbolizes truth, friendship, and happiness.

Rakshaabandhanam (Bond of Protection)
A sanctified thread dipped in turmeric water, which protects the wearer from harms and trouble, is tied to the right wrist of the groom with the blessings of Durga, the Goddess of Power.

Arrival of the Bride
Before the bride enters, a cloth screen is held in front of the groom. The couple will not see each other until the “Sumuhurtham”, or auspicious moment previously determined by Hindu astrology. The maternal aunts of the bride escort her to the mandapam, followed by her female cousins and close friends. The bride is carrying a coconut sprinkled with turmeric and kumkum (Vermillion powder) to ward off evil sprits. She seats herself between her parents on the opposite side of the screen from the groom.



Part-2

Kanyaadaanam (giving the bride away)
The bride’s father offers her hand to the groom and declares that on this auspicious day, he is giving his daughter away. The groom takes her hand and together they take a solemn oath in the presence of God, to remain entirely devoted to each other. They declare that their hearts have been united, and that they have become one.

Sumuhurtham (Auspicious time of marriage)
This is the most auspicious time of the marriage when the bride and groom place a paste of brown sugar, turmeric powder and cumin on each other’s heads; the three ingredients of the mixture represent their commitment to share their life through sweet and bitter times. The screen between the couple is then removed, signifying that the two separate individuals are now united in marriage.

Maangalyadhaarana
The groom ties the Mangala Sutra (the sacred thread with two gold pendants) around the bride’s neck, making three knots. These knots symbolize the bonding between the two souls for a hundred years.




Thalambralu
The bride and groom shower each other with holy rice and flower petals, symbolizing a happy, prosperous, and peaceful married life, free of impediments.

Paanigrahanam
The couple holds hands and takes their vows in the presence of the Lord and of those assembled. They then exchange garlands.

Brahmamudi
To symbolize their union, the loose ends of the bride and groom’s garments are tied together in a matrimonial knot symbolizing a firm and lasting commitment.

Agnihomam
A small fire is lit and the couple offers prayers to Agni, the God of fire, by placing butter and herbs into the flames. Agni dispels the ignorance from our lives and leads us to eternal light and knowledge.

Saptapadi
The couple takes seven steps around the fire, symbolic of the seven steps of life. With each step, the couple takes a vow.

Part-3

Together we shall cherish each other in sickness and in health, in happiness and in sorrow.
Together we shall be life-long friends.
Together we shall share each other’s ideals.
Together we shall nourish each other’s strengths, powers, and fortune.
Together we shall make each other happy.
Together we shall provide and care for our children.
Together we will look forward to the mysteries of the future with awe and spiritual unity.

Asirvachanam
The priest and family bless the newly married couple.

Mangala Harathi
The ceremony ends with the offering of good wishes to the bride and groom with lighted camphor.

Nakshatradarsanam
The priest helps the couple to identify the star of Arundhati in the sky to which they pray to obtain the highest of blessings.

We would like to thank our family and friends for all their love and support through the years.

XXX and YYY
























Hindu Program Book - Style 2

These templates are just for references & any alteration is possible.

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The Marriage Ceremony of

XXX & YYY

February 18, 2006
Omni Mandalay Hotel







Part-1

THE VIVAHA (MARRIAGE CEREMONY)

XXX and YYY are marrying according to the customs of the Hindu samskaras, which owe their origins to traditions of the Vedic era, dating more than five thousand years ago. The samskaras, which are roughly equivalent to the sacraments of the Roman Catholic faith, are performed at five occasions during a person’s life. The vivaha samskara, the Hindu marriage ceremony, unites husband and wife. The ceremony brings the bride and groom into a union spiritually, mentally, physically, emotionally, and morally. Tradition emphasizes that the marriage is not only a union of two individuals, but a joining together of two families. The vivaha by which XXX and YYY are being united today comprises of the following rituals, performed in the Vedic language of Sanskrit:

1. SWAGATHAM
Swagatham signifies the welcoming of the groom. XXX, accompanied by members of his family and friends, enters the wedding hall and an assembly of YYY family and friends welcomes him ceremoniously. XXX family also personally receives YYY family and blessings are exchanged.





2. VIGNESWARA PUJA and PUNYAHAVACHANA
The bride’s parents lead YYY to the mandap. After XXX is seated on the mandap, the pandit (priest) commences the marriage ceremony by invoking the deity Lord Ganesh (also known as Lord Vigneswara, the Remover of all Obstacles) to cleanse XXX mind

3. RAKSHA BANDHAN
The Raksha, a flower or leaf, is tied to a sanctified yellow thread. This thread is tied to XXX left wrist and YYY right wrist. This is traditionally done to ward off evil and to ensure that the ceremony proceeds smoothly.

4. VARA PUJA and VADHU KALYANA MANDAPA PRAVESAM
By virtue of the previous ceremonies, XXX has temporarily become a stand-in for the deity Lord Vishnu and YYY has become a stand-in for the goddess XXX, Lord Vishnu’s wife. Accordingly, XXX receives offerings from YYY parents.

XXX is now escorted to the mandap by her family. She enters the mandap with a green coconut, a symbol of purity, sprinkled with tumeric and kunkum. As XXX is seated on the mandap across from XXX, a curtain is drawn so that he may not see his bride’s face before the auspicious time (Subha Muhurtam).


Part-2

5. KANYADANAM
This is a special moment for the bride as she accepts her change from an unmarried woman to a wife. The father of the bride gives away his daughter by placing her hands in the hands of Duminda, thereby symbolically giving the goddess Lakshmi to her husband Lord Vishnu. In Hindu scriptures there is no greater gift than Kanyadanam. By virtue of this act, the parents, the twelve preceding generations, and the twelve succeeding generations of the family are said to receive salvation.

6. SUBHA MUHURTAM
At exactly 11:42 am, the pandit proclaims that the Gods, Heaven, Earth and the Planets are in consonance to bless Nirupama and Duminda in marriage. The couple places a paste made of cumin seed and brown sugar on each other’s heads. This paste signifies a harmonious mental union between them. At this auspicious time, the curtain separating the bride and groom is lifted, and Nirupama and Duminda see one another for the first time as husband and wife. Immediate family members then bless the couple with sacred rice.

7. MANGALAYA SUTHRA DHARANA
The mangalaya suthra (sacred neckalace) is equivalent to a wedding band in Western tradition. It is blessed by all witnessing the ceremony. Duminda ties the mangalya in three knots around XXX neck. The three knots symbolize the holy trinity of the Hindu religion: Brahma (the Creator), Vishnu (the Preserver), and Maheswara (the Destroyer). The couple then exchange garlands. The exchange of garlands symbolizes their unification as one soul in two bodies.



8. THALAMBRALU
The couple sprinkles purified rice, pearls, and flowers on each other as a symbol of fertility, prosperity and happiness.

9. BRAHMAMUDI and PANIGRAHANA
The pandit ties a knot using XXX clothing and YYY clothing to symbolically bind them together for life. This knot contains betel nut, coins, rice, and flowers to signify longevity, prosperity, fertility, and happiness.

10. SAPTAPADI
In Hindu tradition, it is said that if two people walk seven steps together they become lifelong friends. Here XXX and YYY take seven symbolic steps, while taking these seven vows:

With God as our guide, let us now take…

The first step to nourish each other and develop our physical, mental, and spiritual powers;

The second step to grow together in strength, through the sharing of experiences, and by enabling each other to blossom infinitely;

The third step is to create and share great prosperity;

The fourth step to commit to the pursuit of life long happiness, daily filling our hearts with joy, peace, and spiritual practice;

Part-3

The fifth step to care for and protect the integrity, honor, and well-being of our family and friends;

The sixth step to help in humanitarian work, lessen suffering, and promote human good;

The seventh step to be united in life-long friendship and mutual devotion in all phases of our lives (dharma, artha, kama, and moksha).

LAJA HOMUM
In Hindu culture, unwed persons may not perform homum to invoke Lord Agni (God of Fire) without the aid of their parents. As a newly wed couple, XXX and YYY perform homum for the first time. They proceed to walk around the holy fire three times to acknowledge Lord Agni as a witness to their marriage.

SURYA, CHANDRA and ARUNDHATI DARSHANAM
Here the couple is shown the direction of the sun, the moon, and the Arundhathi star (the Northern star). This is meant to symbolize the reliability, perpetuality, and the consistency of their union.

MANGALA HARATHI
At this time family members thank the Gods for allowing the matrimonial ceremony to occur without impediment. It is customary to do this in the form of song.

ASHIRVAD
By reciting Vedic Mantras, the pandit offers blessings to the new bride and groom. He invites parents, family, and friends to bless the newlyweds by showering them with sacred rice.
Thank you for joining us in blessing the newly married couple.

We would like to express our heartfelt gratitude and appreciation to our family and friends who have traveled here today and to everyone who has contributed and helped to create this celebration.

Om





Hindu Program Book - Style 3

These templates are just for references & any alteration is possible.

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The Marriage Ceremony of

XXX and YYY

Saturday July 1, 2006

The Wedgwood Room
8090, Albert hall, NY, USA Ceremony conducted by xxx






Part-1





Welcome, all of our guests.
The Hindu wedding ceremony is based on traditions and rituals that originated in ancient Sanskrit scriptures known as the Vedas. Over time, the Vedic rituals have been combined with different traditions, creating unique wedding customs in each region of India.

Today, the Vedic ceremony will combine elements from both Hindu and Sikh traditions, reflecting XXX and YYY heritage respectively. It is meant to symbolically unite the bride and groom so that after marriage they unite as one in spirit.

The majority of the ceremony will take place in the mandap (a wedding canopy built of four poles to represent the universe). Each of the five Indian elements—fire, water, air, earth and space—are represented within the mandap. Agni (the holy fire) exists as a divine witness to this sacred union and symbolizes the illumination of knowledge and happiness. An Indian wedding is a grand social affair that’s typically celebrated over several days with family and friends during spirited events, including song and dance festivities and henna parties. Relationships are renewed and rejoiced.









This Hindu marriage ceremony will be conducted in the ancient language of Sanskrit. The main aspects are described below:
SWAGATAM – BARAAT (ARRIVAL OF THE GROOM):
Wedding celebrations commence with
XXX family welcoming YYY,
his family and friends to the wedding
venue. The Milni ceremony is a special
greeting of the baraat, performed between
members of each family.

Neil is then escorted to the entrance where
Krishna, XXX mother, welcomes him.
She blesses him and performs aarti
(moving a small flame in a circular motion
in front of his face to free Neil from obstacles
and bad luck). Krishna then applies a tilak
(red mark on YYY forehead) as a sign of
welcome and to invite good luck.

YYY then steps onto an earthen pitcher,
crushing it into many pieces. This demonstrates
that he has the ability, strength and
determination to overcome all obstacles
that the couple may face. Neil is then
escorted by XXX parents to the mandap.

KANYA AAGAMAN (ARRIVAL OF THE BRIDE):
XXX is escorted to the mandap by AAA, her brother, and her cousins.

Part-2

JAIMALA (EXCHANGE OF WEDDING GARLANDS):
The couple exchange garlands, signifying the union of two bodies and two souls into one entity, then proclaim their love and mutual acceptance of one another.
LORD GANESHA AND NAVAGRAHA POOJA (OPENING PRAYERS):
Every auspicious occasion begins with an invocation of the Lord Ganesha, the elephant-headed god. This is to ensure a ceremony free of impediments and a marriage free of all hardships. Prayers asking for continuous happiness and prosperity are then offered to Navagraha (the nine planets) and the presiding deities of marriage.
MADHUPARKA (HONORING OF THE GROOM):
With the accompaniment of mantras by the priest, XXX parents welcome and honor the groom by washing his feet. It is believed that through the parents’ prayers, the man that their daughter will marry is an embodiment of Lord Vishnu, and he is honored as such.
AAA, XXX father, then offers Neil madhuparka (a sweet drink made of honey for good health, clarified butter for strength and beauty, and yogurt for brilliance). Madhuparka also symbolizes the sweetening of relations between the couple’s families.

GAANTH BANDHAN (TYING OF THE KNOT):
For good luck, a married woman ties the corners of Neil’s and XXX garments together with a knot to represent their inseparability. KANYA DAAN (GIVING AWAY OF THE BRIDE): The rituals proceed as XXX parents perform the Kanya Daan, considered one of the most sacred gifts that parents can offer to God. Both parents wash the couple's feet with milk and water to purify them for their new life together then apply tilaks to their foreheads. AAA guides XXX hand on top of Neil’s, symbolizing his blessing of their union. The bride and groom's hands are filled with betal nuts and rice, signifying unity, prosperity and happiness. AAA then holds an open palm over the couple’s hands while Krishna pours water then milk over her husband’s hands. This subsequently falls on the bride and groom’s hands, purifying their union and blessing them with happiness and prosperity. The gesture symbolizes a promise from the father of the bride: “I offer you this most precious gift— my daughter—to take as your own, to cherish and protect. Take my daughter to be your life partner.”



Part-3

VIVAAHA HAVAN (LIGHTING OF THE FIRE):
Agni (the sacred fire, considered to be the
sustainer of life) is lit using ghee (butter),
wood, incense and camphor. As XXX
and YYY sit side-by-side facing the fire,
she holds his hand while XXX
makes offerings of ghee to the
fire and the priest chants mantras
for their longevity as a couple.

MANGAL PHERAS OR AGNI PARIKRAMA
(CIRCLING THE FIRE):

XXX and YYY walk around the fire
seven times, accompanied by the
chanting of mantras and assisted
by AAA, who offers a fistful of puffed
rice to the bride and groom as a
sign that he wishes happiness upon
his sister’s marriage. In the first four
parikramas, the bride walks ahead of
the groom, signifying that she will
lead in all matters pertaining to
household activities, along the path
of dharma, arth, kaama and moksha.
In the final three parikramas, the groom
walks in front, signifying that he will
lead in matters related to community activities.
Together, they will live a righteous
and spiritual life. They also offer
rice each time they circle around
the fire, symbolizing fertility and prosperity.

PANIGRAHAN (THE GROOM’S PROMISE):
XXX holds YYY hands and promises,
“I will hold your hands forever. I do so
to keep you happy and I am proud to be your husband.
May God, who has united us, bless me so that I will be an ideal husband.” He then recites the hymns for happiness in their lifelong relationship.
SHILA ROHAN (STEPPING ON THE ROCK):
XXX places her right foot on a piece of rock while Neil recites a statement that encourages her to be as strong as the rock and firm when they face future difficulties together.
SAPTA PADI (THE SEVEN SACRED STEPS):
The ceremony of the seven steps is the most important part of the ceremony. Prayers are recited as the couple walks the seven steps together, symbolizing that they are now lifelong friends who share the same thoughts, desires and aspirations. They have become two bodies with a single soul. While holding hands, Neil and XXX walk the seven short steps together, taking a vow at each step:
















Part-4

1. Let us live with honour and respect.
Let us walk together so we get food.
2. Let us be happy and enjoy life. Let us walk together so we get strength.
3. Let us share joys and pains together. Let us walk together so we get wealth.
4. Let us not forget parents and elders. Let us walk together so we get happiness.
5. Let us observe all acts of charity.
Let us walk together so we have family.
6. Let us live a long and peaceful life.
Let us walk together so we have joy.
7. Let us be friends who share love and sacrifice.
Let us walk together so we have friendship.

The couple then ends this ritual with XXX seated to YYY left. Since the heart is on the body’s left side, this signifies that XXX will YYY in his heart at all times.
SAUBHAGYA CHINNA (MARKS OF AUSPICIOUSNESS) AND MUDRIKA (EXCHANGE OF THE RINGS):
XXX adorns YYY, as his wife, with sindhoor (red powder) on her forehead, thereby promising to cherish and protect her as if she were his own life. He also offers her the Mangal Sutra, an auspicious necklace, which symbolizes the couple's togetherness, love and their sacred union. Both XXX and YYY then conclude these rituals by exchanging wedding rings.

SURYA DHARSAN:
XXX then requests YYY to look towards the sun, symbolizing enlightenment.
AASHIRWAAD (BLESSINGS):
The priest prays for blessings from the supreme Lord for the well being of the newly weds and of those assembled. Relatives and friends then sprinkle rice and flowers on the couple. Afterwards, the couple seeks blessings from the Gods, parents and elderly relatives by bowing to their feet. Married women from the family bless the Bride by whispering ‘Akhand Soubhagyawati Bhav’ (blessing for abiding marital happiness).

PRONOUNCEMENT:
The Bride and Groom are then declared legally and spiritually as one.










Part-5

VIDAI (FAREWELL TO THE BRIDE):
The ceremony is completed with the departure of Bride and Groom, which is known as Vidai, Farewell to the bride by her parents, siblings, relatives and friends, indeed a very emotional part of the whole event. The Bride is leaving her parental home to build an entirely new life with her husband and members of his immediate family in a different environment altogether. She leaves with tears of joy and sorrow but carries the very best wishes of all who witnessed her matrimonial ceremony and throws a handful of rice so that house of her childhood remains prosperous and happy.
The Gupta and Parmar families sincerely thankyou all for joining us in our celebration today. We feel blessed to have the love of such wonderful family and friends, which has led to the happiness that we share today.












Hindu Program Book - Style 4

These templates are just for references & any alteration is possible.

Back

















The Wedding of

XXX

&

YYY

April 15, 2006

8090, Albert hall, NY, USA



Part-1

Schedule of events

Bara Yatra/Baraat   3:00 pm
Wedding Ceremony   3:30 pm
Cocktail Reception   5:30 pm
Dinner Reception   7:00 pm

Wedding Party


Parents of the Bride: XXX and YYY

Parents of the Groom: XXX and YYY

Brother & Sister-in-law of the Bride: XXX

Brother & Sister-in-law of the Groom: XXX

Flower girls: XXX YYY

Markundi for Groom: XXX and YYY

Maternal Uncles of the Bride: XXX

Priest:   XXX

We remember fondly on this day Subrina Biswal, sister of the groom. The Hindu Wedding Ceremony

The Hindu wedding ceremony is based on traditions and rituals originating in the Rig Veda, the earliest of the four ancient Sanskrit books of knowledge, collectively known as the Vedas, which form the basis of Hinduism. This sacred Vedic wedding ceremony is meant to unite two people so firmly that after marriage they become one in spirit even though they retain two separate bodies. The ceremony takes place in a Mandap (altar). The flowers signify beauty and joy; the grains represent the food necessary to sustain life. The fire, representing Agni (the God of Fire), is a divine witness to the union and brings warmth throughout the couple’s life.

Bara Yatra/ Baraat
The marriage celebrations commence with the arrival of the groom with his family and friends in a procession called the Bara Yaatra or Baraat. The bride’s mother will welcome the groom and give her blessings. The groom will then step onto a clay vessel crushing it into many pieces. This demonstrates that he has the ability, strength and determination to overcome all obstacles that the couple may face in their married life.

Ganesh Puja
The ceremony begins with the worship of Lord Ganesh, who is the remover of all obstacles and a symbol of peace, friendship, and happiness.

Kanya Aagman
The arrival of the bride will be preceded by a procession of flower girls. The bride will then be escorted to the mandap by her maternal uncles. The bride and groom will exchange garlands (Jai mala), signifying the union of two bodies and two souls into one entity as well as proclaiming their love and mutual acceptance of each other.

Kanya Daan
The ceremony proceeds with the Kanya Daan, the giving away of the bride by her parents. The bride’s parents wash the feet of the bride and groom with milk and water, purifying them for their new life together. The bride's father places his hand under his daughters and puts her hand on top of the right hand of the groom, symbolizing the union of the couple and his blessing. The bride and groom's hands are filled with betel nuts, copper coins, and rice, signifying unity, prosperity, and happiness. Water purifies their union and milk blesses them with happiness and prosperity.









Part-2

Hasta Melap

To complete the symbolic union, the groom’s scarf is tied to the bride’s sari in a cord known as Hasta Melap or “Complete Union.” This knot and the joined hands of the couple symbolize the union of two souls joined together in holy matrimony. The family and relatives present also come together to bless the couple and shower more grains of rice and rose petals on them for their everlasting happiness.
Agni Sthaapna
The sacred fire, representing Agni, the God of Fire, is lit to symbolize purity and act as witness to the union. The bride and groom jointly offer ghee, or clarified butter, rice, and sandalwood to Agni to signify the spirit of sacrifice and partnership.
Mangal Phera
The bride and groom will circle the fire four times. The four pheras symbolize the four goals of married life. Dharma - to remain true to one’s beliefs and values; Artha – to provide for one’s family; Kama – to obtain emotional and physical fulfillment; Moksha - to achieve enlightenment and liberation



Sapta Padi

The couple holds each others hands and take seven steps, each symbolizing a sacred vow:
1. Let us live with honor and respect.
2. Let us be happy and enjoy life.
3. Let us share joys and pains together.
4. Let us not forget parents and elders.
5. Let us observe all acts of charity.
6. Let us live a long and peaceful life.
7. Let us be friends with love and sacrifice.

Sindhur Daan
The above pledges having been made, the groom puts a red mark on her forehead and places the sindhur powder in the parting of her hair. The brilliant red vermilion powder represents the life giving blood that flows in us all. By anointing the bride with the vermilion, the groom is promising to cherish her and protect her as if she were his own life. He also promises to protect her with his own life. At this time, he also offers her an auspicious necklace – Mangal Sutra - to signify their marriage.

Part-3

Akhand Saubhagua Vati

The mothers of the bride and groom, and close female relatives will whisper blessings to the bride and sprinkle grains of rice over the couple as a blessing.
Aashirwaad The priest prays for blessings from the supreme Lord for the well being of the newlyweds and of those assembled. Then friends and relatives sprinkle rice and flowers on the couple. The couple touches the feet of their parents and the elders in both the families thereby demonstrating their respect for them and at the same time receiving their blessings.

I Am My Beloved’s And My Beloved Is Mine

-XXX















Part-4

Slave Nanak proclaims, that in the fourth round we have found the Eternal Lord.

The Hindu Wedding
Ganesh Pooja
(Worship of LordGanesh)

Lord Ganesh (the Hindu God) is the removerof all obstacles. He is worshipped to ensure an impediment free ceremony. The worship is also performed to invoke God’s blessings for the longevity of the couple.

Kanya Daan
(Giving away the Daughter)

Kanya Daan is performed by the father who pours a libation of sacred water symbolizing the giving away of the daughter to the groom. As a condition in offering his daughter for mar-riage, the father requests a promise from the groom. The groom promises to assist the bride in attaining: Dharma (piety), Artha (wealth), and Kaama (desire). The groom makes the promise by repeating three times that he will not fail the girl in realizing dharma, artha and kaama.







Vivaaha Havan
(Starting the nuptial Fire)

A fire is lit, symbolizing purity and acting as a witness of all ceremonies that follow.




Panigrahanam
(Holding of Hands and Tying the Knot)

The groom holds the bride’s right hand, clutching her fingers with his right palm. Then, he proclaims to his bride,
May Bhaga (the giver of wealth who presides over love and marriage), Aryama (the Lord of Effort), Savita the Sun (the source of all energy), and the Devas (all celestial beings), the enlightened ones, bestow all enjoyment on us; and may all these Gods endow us with good children and bless that you may live forever. These Gods have given you unto me to be the Queen of my family.

During this ceremony, the ends of three scarves are tied together, an act preceding their marriage union

Laja Havan
(Offerings to the Fire)

Part-5

The bride and the groom put parched rice, which is handed to them by the brothers and cousins of the bride, in the sacred fire and recitea hymn praying for their prosperity.

Sapta-Padi
(Circling the Fire Seven Times)

The sapta-padi is the most important ritual of the wedding ceremony. The bride and groom walk around the nuptial fire seven times, each time making a promise to each other.

The priest recites the following hymns detailing their vows:

With God as a guide, let us take,

the first step to provide nourishment and pure food for our household,

the second step to develop our physical, mental and spiritual powers,

the third step to increase our wealth by righteous means and diligence,

the fourth step to acquire knowledge, happiness and harmony by mutual love and trust,

the fifth step so that we are blessed with strong, virtuous and heroic children,

the sixth step for self restraint and longevity,

the seventh step to become true companions and remain lifelong partners by this wedlock.

Having taken these steps together, I assure you that I will not swerve from the path of my love and friend-ship with you. So should you also not swerve. Let our thoughts, decisions, and actions be one and in unison. Let us be kind, loving, considerate, good and open-hearted to each other. Let us share our food, possessions, strengths, and advantages together. Let us be complementary to each other as thought and speech are to each other. The sapta-padi ceremony concludes with a hymn signifying that the union is eternal. The bride and groom are pronounced man and wife.

Sindhur Dharan
(Placing Red Powder
on the Bride’s Head)
In this ceremony, the groom places sindhur (red powder) on the crown of the bride’s head. The sindhur is indicative of a blood union, and it is the unmistakable mark of a married woman.





Part-6

Akshataaropana
(Blessing the Couple)

The priest distributes sacred rice to the congre-gation. On a signal from the priest, the married couple is showered with the sacred rice. This ritual signifies that the congregation, who are the divine angels, have witnessed the wedding and bestowed their blessings on the newlyweds for longevity and prosperity.



Doli
(Farewell to the Daughter from her Family)

The bride’s family says farewell to their daughter. The bride sits in the Palki as her brothers and cousins physically carry her outdoors. This is a tearful moment as it symbolizes that the bride is leaving her parents’ home for good. (This will take place after the reception).

“Whatever I am any devotee desires to worship with faith - that faith of his 1 make firm and unshakable”. 9V. 21

“I am the same towards all beings. None is hateful, and none is dear to Me. But those who worship Me with devotion dwell in Me, and I too dwell in them” Ch. 9 V. 29

Srimad Bhagavad Gita
























Hindu Program Book - Style 5

These templates are just for references & any alteration is possible.

Back























Ceremony Performed By:

XXXYYY











Part-1

Hindu Wedding Ceremony
Chanted by the priest in Sanskrit verse, the prayers that compose the Hindu wedding ceremony are derived from Vedic scriptures that are over four thousand years old.

Barat
(Groom's parade)

The groom arrives on a decorated horse accompanied by his family and friends in the form of a parade.

Milni
(Greeting the Party)
The bride's family receives the groom and his family. It is very typical for each relative to embrace his counterpart - grooms and bride's fathers, maternal uncles (mamas) and paternal uncles (chachas) - in the other family at least 3 times each.

Var Puja
The Welcoming of the Groom




Accompanied by his family and his attendants, the groom arrives at the site of the ceremony, and is greeted by the bride’s parents. The mother of the bride welcomes the groom with an aarti, or prayer, and welcomes him to the ceremony. After receiving the blessings of his elders, the groom is escorted by the parents of the bride to the Mandap accompanied by his parents and groomsmen.

Ganesh Puja
(Worship of Lord Ganesh)

To commence the Hindu wedding ceremony, a prayer is offered to Lord Ganesha, the elephant God, whose blessings will remove any major obstacles from the ceremony and from the couple's new life together. Ganesha is the Lord of all circumstances, therefore no Hindu ritual or auspicious occasion is ever undertaken without Him. Jasmine garlands and the Mangalsutra (sacred wedding necklace) are placed at Ganesha's feet to invoke his blessings. His grace will overcome all obstacles, destroy all evils, and enable the ceremony to proceed with tranquility.

The Entrance of the Bride

The bride arrives and is escorted by her sisters, bridesmaids, and flower girl to the site of the ceremony.

Part-2

Jaimala
(Exchange of garlands)

The bride and groom exchange garlands symbolizing their willingness to accept each other

Kanya Daan
(Giving away their daughter)
The bride’s father joins the hands of his daughter and the groom, declaring to all gathered that he hands her to the care of the man of her heart. The bride’s father seeks a pledge from the groom of his enduring love, fidelity, and security in caring for the bride. Once the groom has agreed, the bride and groom both pledge to support each other in fulfilling the four goals of human life: Dharma, the duty to lead a moral life; Artha, the duty to lead a joyous and fruitful life; Karma, the duty to lead a pleasant and productive life; Moksha, the duty to attain enlightenment.

Gath Bandhan & Phere
(Circling the fire)
The bride and the groom are joined together by tying a corner of their outer garments, symbolizing the bond of marriage. After this a small open fire is lit in the center and the fire God is invited to witness the marriage. Fire, a purifying agent, is also a source of energy. Only fire can separate this bond of unity between bride and groom. The couple walks around the sacred fire seven times, making it a witness of their union as husband and wife.






Saptapadi
(Taking Seven Steps)

Saptapadi is translated in Sanskrit to mean “seven steps”. These steps are representative of the marriage vows. The priest then guides the bride and groom to take seven steps hand in hand around the sacred fire. The number seven refers to the earth, sun, moon, and the four planets visible to the naked eye all locked together in harmonious interrelationships governed by a single law. The Saptapadi is the most important ritual of the wedding ceremony.

The Priest recites the following hymms detailing their vows:

With God as a guid, let us take,

· The first step to provide nourishment and pure food for our houehold,

· The second step to develop our physical, mental and spiritual powers,

· The third step to increase our wealth by righteous means and diligence

· The fourth step to acquire knowledge, happiness and harmony by mutual love and trust,

· The fifth step to be blessed with strong, virtious and heroic children,

· The sixth step to have self restraint and longetivity,

· The seventh step to become true companions and remain lifelong partners by this wedlock.



Part-3

Having taken these steps together, I assure you that I will not swerve from the path of my love and friendship with you. Let our thoughts, decisions, and actions be one and in unison. Let us be kind, loving, considerate, good and open-hearted to each other. Let us share our food, possessions, strenghts, and advantages together. Let us be complementary to each other as thought and speech are to each other. The sapta-padi ceremony concludes with a hymn signifying that the union is eternal. The bride and groom are pronounced husband and wife.

Mungalsutra & Sindoor Daan

(Placing red powder on bride's head and necklace around her neck)

The groom now places sindhur, or red powder, on the crown of the bride’s forehead and welcomes her into his life. The sindhur is indicative of a blood union, and it is the unmistakable mark of a married woman. He then places a Mangalsutra (necklace) around her neck, symbolizing his enduring commitment to their marriage.

Ashirvad
(Prayer and Blessings)

Once the wedding rituals have been completed, the couple touches the feet of their parents and the priest, asking for their Aashirwaad, or blessings.




Vidai
(Departure of Bride and Groom)
(To occur after the wedding reception)

Vidaai marks the departure of the bride from her parental house. She throws phulian or puffed rice over her head. She conveys her good wishes for her parents through this gesture. A beautifully decorated palanquin or car takes her to her new home. The bride and groom leave as a married couple and receive blessings and shower of flower petals from all of their guests.

Dear Family & Friends,

As our hearts are joined and we begin our new life together, we pause to look at everyone here on our special day. We find it difficult to put into words our feelings to those who share our love and happiness. Words seldom go quite deep enough when thanks should be expressed. We would like to give special thank you to our parents, relatives, friends, and the entire wedding party for putting the time and effort to make our wedding possible, some of whom have traveled a distance to be with us. May God bless you always.

Love,

XXX & YYY



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Welcome to the marriage of
XXX and YYY.










Part-1

The traditional Hindu wedding customs originated centuries ago from the Rig Veda, the most ancient Hindu scripture. The ceremony is performed in Sanskrit, the most ancient surviving language. The ceremony is solemnized in the presence of God and the five elements of nature: Fire, Earth, Water, Air, and Light. The Hindu ceremony represents an eternal bond between the Bride and Groom.

Officiating Priest: Padamnabhan Joshi (Greater Baltimore Temple)

Barat: Bridegroom’s Procession

The Groom, accompanied by relatives and friends, arrives at the Bride’s doorstep. The Bride’s Mother performs welcome rituals. These rituals also serve to drive away evil spirits and protect the Groom. The Groom is escorted to the Lagna Mandap.

Ganesh Puja

Prior to the Bride’s arrival, blessings are invoked from the Lord Ganesh for the protection of all involved and the removal of all obstacles. Lord Ganesh is worshipped at all auspicious occasions because he is deemed to be the most benevolent of all Hindu deities.




Jai Mala Arpan: Exchange of Garlands

The Bride and Groom welcome each other by exchanging flower garlands. This gesture symbolizes the unifications of their hearts and the giving of their consent to marry each other.

Kanyadhan: Presenting the Bride

Panigrahan: Holding of Hands

The father presents the Bride. The father places his hand above the Groom’s hand and then places the Bride’s hand over his hand. The father symbolically offers the Bride to the Groom by removing his hand and leaving the bride’s hand in the Groom’s hand.

Holding each other’s hand, the Bride and Groom accept each other and exchange marriage vows. This also signifies that they will go hand in hand throughout their lives.

Granthi Bandhan: Tying the Matrimonial Knot

The Bride and Groom are united by yet another symbolic action of tying the matrimonial knot and strengthening further the bonds of love and an everlasting relationship.


Part-2

Laja Homs: Offering of Puffed Paddy


The Bride’s brother gives her a puffed paddy which she offers into the fire to reaffirm her bond with the families and her prayer for the welfare of her husband and the two families.

Mangal Fera: Holy Rounds Around the Fire

The Couple proceeds around the Holy Fire seven times as the priest chants blessings from God.


Sapta Padi: Seven Steps

According to Hindu scriptures the following seven steps are taken together by the Bride and Groom.

The first step is for providing for each other.

The second step for life power in good and bad times.

The third step for prosperity and devotion.

The fourth step for children and their well being.

The fifth step for care, trust, and honor.

The sixth step for self restraint and longevity.

The seventh step for eternal love and friendship.

Sinduran & Mangalsutra: Applying the Red Powder & Giving the Marital Necklace

The Groom applies Sindoor (vermillion-red powder) to the Bride’s hair along the part, signifying the Bride as his wife. This is the sacred powder which confirms them as husband and wife. The Groom then places the Mangal (black bead necklace) on the Bride.

Ashirvad: Blessings

The newly married couple is blessed with good wishes from parents, relatives, and friends.

Vidai: Farewell

This denotes the parent’s farewell to their daughter. The Bride now begins an important role in her life as a wife. The Bride throws a fistful of rice so that the house of her childhood remains prosperous and happy.



Part-3



We would like to give special thanks to Panditji for performing our ceremony, and we’d like to thank our parents, families, and friends for sharing this special day with us. Thank you for your blessings as we begin our life together.
~~ XXX and YYY




















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The Wedding Ceremony of

XXX and YYY

Saturday, February 11, 2005

Performed by XXX






Part-1

We are honored to welcome you to the wedding ceremony of XXX and YYY. We would like to engage you by providing an explanation of our wedding ceremony.

The Hindu Wedding

A Hindu marriage is based on absolute trust, mutual affection, capacity to adjust and sharing responsibilities equally. At every stage of the ceremony, verses are chanted and prayers are offered to ensure a good married life. Duties are assigned and freedom given to both the bride and groom. The union is sacred and the vows do not give room for separation. All prayers start by invoking the blessing of Lord Ganesh (the remover of all impediments) during the course of the newlyweds married life.

Marriage is a sacred bond that unites a man and woman as well as their families. God and the guests are witnesses to the ceremony. The presence of God is acknowledged through the Agni (holy fire). Before any ceremony begins, Lord Ganesh is worshipped as he represented knowledge. This knowledge removes ignorance and therefore all obstacles in life, including those to conducting the pending ceremony.





The ceremony is traditionally performed in Sanskrit. Today, it will be performed in both Sanskrit and English. The following sequence of rituals represents the significant parts of the ceremony.

Mangala Vadyam – The wedding ceremony begins with Mangala Vadyam which is the playing of the auspicious Shenai, a trumpet-like instrument.

Var Agaman – XXX mother welcomes YYY and his parents. She bestows her blessing on him by placing a red tilaka (red powder) mark on his forehead. Sanjeev is led to the Mandap where the ceremony will take place.

Kanya Agaman – XXX is accompanied by her parents as she walks up the aisle towards the mandap. During this time, the priest chants verses blessing the couple from the Hindu scriptures and epics, such as Rama Sita and Shiva Parvati.

Varmala - XXX and YYY put flower garlands on each other to welcome one another into each other’s life. The exchange of the garlands symbolizes high respect and surrender of ego to each other. The fresh flowers also signify beauty and love for each other. The bride’s parents place a shawl on the couple’s shoulders. They also symbolically tie the ends of their garments in a sacred knot proclaiming the couple’s acceptance of each other.


Part-2

Kanyadan – In Hindu culture, giving away of the Kanya (daughter’s hand in marriage) is the most precious Daah (gift) that the bride’s parents can give to the groom.

Hastmelap ( Joining of the hands) - The priest asks both Deepti and Sanjeev to put forward their right hands, palms facing up. As the priest recites holy versus, the bride’s parents place an edible paan (leaf), sopari (betel nut), flowers, rice, money, and water in their palms. The father of the bride requests the groom to accept his daughter in marriage by saying “I offer my daughter to you in marriage to continue your generation and I wish you to be faithful to her and keep her with you in every walk of your life”. The groom responds with “I accept”. The bride’s parents give their daughter’s hand in marriage to the groom by placing her hand on top of his. The priest invokes the powers of God to provide stability and continuity of their married life.

Agni Puja – Prayers are offered to the Agni (holy fire) to dispel darkness and ignorance from the lives of the couple and to lead them to light and knowledge.

Mangal Fera – Circling the Holy Fire




This is perhaps the most important phase of the marriage ceremony. The bride and groom holding hands, circle around the fire seven times representing commitments made in the presence of God, Family, and friends. The first six rounds, which are led by Sanjeev, represent the goals of life that are set forth in Hindu scriptures. Dharma (duty), Artha (wealth and prosperity), and Kama (life’s enjoyments). The seventh round is led by Deepti which represents Moksha (life’s spiritual values).

Sapta Padi – Seven steps of Commitment (vows)
XXX and YYY take seven steps as husband and wife which symbolizes the beginning of their journey as life partners. Together they exchange the following vows. Together we will

Love one another and to be faithful to each other

Embrace each others’ families as our own

Share our happiness and sorrow

Share ourselves physically, mentally, and spiritually

Be kind and generous to human kind

Part-3

Cherish each other and continuously strengthen our

Love

Support each other’s goals

Mangalsutra/ Ring exchange (tying of the sacred necklace) -

YYY gives XXX a mangala sutra, a necklace made of gold and onyx which has been blessed by his family. XXX and YYY also exchange wedding rings at this time.

Sindoor – XXX applies sindoor (vermilion powder) to the parting of YYY hair. This red line identifies her as a married woman.

Kamsarbhakshan – Offering of Holy Food

The bride’s mother brings Indian sweets for the couple, which they feed, to each other. This holy offering signifies “sweetness in married life.”

Dhruva Darshan – The priest recites hymns requesting the blessings of the Gods and wishes prosperity to the newlyweds. The couple prays Dhruva and asks for its blessing for a stable, steady relationship. Dhurba (North Star) is stable and does not change its position over time.

Ashirwadam – Blessings The newlyweds receive blessings from the priest, and seek blessings from their parents and elders in the family.

This marks the end of the ceremony. XXX and YYY walk down the aisle for the first time as husband and wife receiving congratulations and blessings from their honored guests.

















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XXX & YYY

April 22, 2006

Parents of the Bride:

Mr. XXX & Mrs. YYY

Parents of the Groom:
Mr. XXX & Mrs. YYY

Wedding ceremony conducted by:
Dr. XXX





Part-1

Baarat/Milni    9:30am
(Guests please assemble outside the entrance to the wedding hall for arrival of the groom)

Dwarpuja (Guests please be seated inside

Bridal Processional

Wedding ceremony    10:00am
Lunch    12:30
Vidai    2:00
Cocktails    6:00
Reception    7:00

Om Shree Ganeshay Namah


The Hindu wedding ceremony is based on traditions & rituals originating over forty centuries ago from the Sanskrit books of knowledge, known as the Vedas, which form the basis of Hinduism. This sacred wedding ceremony is meant to unite two people so firmly that after marriage they become one in spirit even though they retain two separate bodies. The two individuals come together, entwining their two households into one family.

The ceremony takes place in a Mandap (wedding canopy), which is built to represent the universe. Pots in the four corners of the Mandap represent the earth and its four directions. The four pillars signify the four parents and their roles in raising the bride and groom. The flowers signify beauty and joy. The grains represent the food necessary to sustain life. The fire, representing Agni (God of Fire) is the divine witness of this union and brings warmth through the couple’s life.

Baraat
The groom arrives for the wedding, in a procession, along with his family and friends.

Milni
A Hindu wedding not only commits the bride and groom to each other for the rest of their lives, it also binds the family and friends of both the bride and groom to share their joyful and difficult times together. The bride’s family welcomes the groom’s family.

Dwarpuja
The groom is ceremonially greeted at the entrance by the bride’s parents. He is then escorted to the Mandap where the wedding ceremony will take place.

Kanya Agaman (Bridal Procession)
The bride arrives at the Mandap. Traditionally, the bride is escorted to the Mandap by her female relatives. A curtain is held in front of the groom signifying that the bride and groom are still separate individuals

Jayamala
The bride greets the groom and acknowledges the groom as her betrothed, in the presence of all assembled, by garlanding the groom. The groom reciprocates.

Swastivachan, Ganapatipujan, and Kalasthapan
The priest commences the marriage ceremony in the mandap by invoking the blessings of Lord Ganesh. Offerings are made to the forces of Auspiciousness and to the Nine Planets to remove obstacles, to accept the prayers and to bless this assembly and the couple to be married. Offerings are also given to Varuna, the Lord of Seas. A copper vessel containing holy water, flowers & coconuts is worshipped. The holy water is used to sanctify the Mandap.


Part-2

Madhuparka
The bride’s parents offer madhuparka (mixture of yogurt and honey) to the groom, who accepts it with a prayer that he may imbibe its purity and sweetness.

Shakochar
The priest invokes the memory and the blessings of the respective fathers, grandfathers, and great-grandfathers of the bride and groom for this holy matrimony.

Pani Grahan and Kanyadaan
In the Hindu way of life, a married woman is given a special status from an unmarried girl to a wife. The bride is given away by her parents who abstain from eating to make themselves pure in body and mind for the occasion. They wash his feet as they believe that he is none other than the Hindu Lord, Vishnu, to whom they are handing over his rightful consort, the Goddess Laxmi in the form of their daughter.

Granthibandhan
The priest ties the groom’s clothing to the bride’s in a knot to bind them together for life. Throughout the ceremony, oblations are made to God to invoke His blessings in the form of Havan: Samagree (crushed sandalwood, herbs, sugar, and rice), Ghee (butter), Camphor and samidha (twigs) are offered into the Agnikunda (the ceremonial fire).





Shilarohan and Lajahuti
The brother of the bride (or the next closest relation to a brother) gives the bride ‘Kheel’ (parched rice), so that she may offer it to God, and assists her to step upon a rock, which symbolizes strength of purpose and firmness. The groom asks the bride to be firm like a rock, and resist foes and help thwart undesirable forces.

Parikrama
The bride leads the groom three times around the Agnikunda, offering obligations to God each time. The groom then leads the bride four times around the Agnikunda. After this the groom sits on the bride’s left – the same side as his heart, demonstrating that she is always first in his heart.

Saptapadi
The couple takes seven symbolic steps together representing the beginning of their journey through life together. With each step, they seek the blessing of God to enable them to fulfill the seven vows:

~ Together we will nourish each other & remain healthy

~ Together we will fill our hearts with strength & courage to accomplish all the needs of our home

~ Together we will prosper and share our worldly goods

Part-3

~ Together we will fill our hearts with great joy, peace, happiness and spiritual values

~ Together we will raise strong, virtuous children

~ Together we will remain life-long partners by this wedlock

~ Together we will cherish each other in sickness and health, in happiness and sorrow and we will work for the prosperity of our family

Suhag
After the couple exchange and accept each others vows, the groom ties a mangalsutra (a sacred necklace made of black beads) around the bride’s neck signifying the mark of a married woman, and as a symbol of his love, integrity and devotion towards her. The groom places sindhoor (red powder), the traditional mark of a suhagwati stree (married woman) in the bride’s hair, signifying their roles as husband and wife.

Aashirvaad
The couple seeks blessing of their parents, the priest, and elders in the family. They also receive the blessings of all assembled and are showered with rice and flowers.

Vidai
This is a touching and emotional farewell to the daughter. The bride now begins an important role as a wife, and becomes a part of the bridegroom’s family. She throws a fistful of rice, so the house of her childhood remains prosperous and happy.

Marriage poem

Esp if we need an 8th page

Thank you for being part of one of the most important moments of our lives. We are truly blessed to be surrounded by so many loved ones. Your thoughts and best wishes are the greatest gift to us!

Many thanks to all our family members and friends who have helped make the day so wonderful and memorable!

Visit our website for updates & pictures:

XXX and YYY

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The Hindu Marriage Ceremony of

YYY

And

YYY

Minister: Mr XXX

Sunday 28th May 2006









Part-1

ORDER OF EVENTS

Welcome and Refreshments    12.30pm

Wedding Ceremony    1.00pm

Drinks Reception (Birmingham Botanical Gardens – Garden Suite)    3.00pm

Dinner    5.00pm

Dancing    7.30pm

THE HINDU MARRIAGE CEREMONY

A Hindu marriage is solemnised in accordance with the approved rituals from the Vedas, the foundational scriptures of Hinduism. They signify the union of two souls into one harmonious whole. The priest conducts the ceremony in Sanskrit and leads the bride and groom through the following ceremonial actions:

1. VARANA: Welcoming the bridegroom

The bride’s mother welcomes the groom and escorts him to the wedding place.

2. SANKALPA: Resolution

This is a preparatory ceremony, conducted by the bride’s father who will give her away, which entails “mental preparation” to perform the wedding. It begins with offering prayers to God and ends with welcoming the groom according to Vedic rules.


3. SAPTAPRADAKSHIN: Walking seven times around the groom

SUBHADRISHTI: The solemn rite of the bride and bridegroom looking at each other.

MALABADAL: Exchange of garlands

The bride is bought to the wedding place. She walks around the groom seven times. She then stands in front of the groom. The bride and groom stand in front of each other and exchange garlands as a mark of their betrothal.

The symbolic significance of this ritual is that God casts his auspicious eyes upon this world from the moment he created it. The two people – a man and woman – who are to be united as husband and wife and lead a life of harmony need a special kind of preparation to act as complement to each other. That preparation – casting a glance – which is considered to be auspicious, at each other, symbolises how God beholds the world He created.





Part-2

4. KANYA SAMPRADAN: Giving away the daughter to the bridegroom

The bride’s father will give away his daughter to the groom. The priest puts the bride’s right hand into the groom’s right hand and recites the sacred “mantras” from the Vedas, and thus joins them together.
5.HOMA: Lighting of the sacred fire

ASHMAROHAN: Mounting the stone

The bridegroom ignites the holy fire and recites “mantras”. Then each puts a foot on a stone which is symbolic of steadfastness, righteousness and fidelity in married life. They go round the fire three times offering puffed rice to the fire. The “mantras” they recite are prayers for long life, happiness and prosperity.

Hindus used fire as the symbol of God during the Vedic period. Since God is present everywhere, anything existing in the universe can be chosen as His symbol. They chose fire, the dispeller of darkness, the symbol of purity, the giver of warmth, as the symbol of God. The lighting of fire as the symbol of God is a necessity during a Hindu wedding because Hindus believe God is the principal witness to the wedding. The marriage is a sacrament and thus indissoluble.





6. SAPTAPADI: The seven step walking ritual

The couple walk seven steps together reciting “mantras”. This ritual expresses the sharing and equality within their marriage.

7. PANIGRAHAN/SINDOOR: Holding hands and taking marriage vows; vermillion ceremony

The bridegroom holds the bride’s hands and marriage vows are taken. They pray to God for the union of two souls. Furthermore, the bridegroom asks the invited guests to bless his newly wedded wife.

The sacred fire is now extinguished and the priest blesses the couple by putting “tilak” on the foreheads of the bride and bridegroom. And, finally, the bridegroom puts “sindoor” into the parting of the bride’s hair. This symbolises that she is a married woman. The Wedding Party

Parents of the bride: XXX and YYY

Parents of the groom: XXX and YYY

Sisters of the bride: XXX




Part-3

Sister of the groom: YYY

Bridesmaid: XXX YYY

Ring bearer: YYY

Best man: YYY

Groomsmen: Martin and Edward Bateman, XXXYYY

With special blessings from XXX and YYY




















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The Marriage Ceremony of

XXX

And

YYY

May 27, 2006

8090, Albert hall, NY, USA








Part-1

May Our Prayers Be The Same,
May Our Goals Be The Same.

Common Be Our Purposes,
Our Deliberations Harmonious.

May Our Desires Be One,
And Our Hearts Be One.

May Our Intentions Have Oneness,
And Blissful Be Our Togetherness.

The Rig Veda
Introduction
A traditional Hindu wedding (Vivaha) is comprised of a series of religious ceremonies and rituals. Among Hindus, marriage is one of the sixteen sacraments (Sanskar) of Hindu life. Vivaha is the sacred, spiritual partnership between two individual’s in mind, spirit, body and soul in this and their future lives. A Hindu marriage is not only a union between the bride and the groom, but also a bond between the two families for generations to come.

Baraat (Groom’s Procession)
XXX arrives at the hall with his family and friends where YYY family and friends welcome him. The women of the family will shower him with flower petals.

Milni (Meeting)
XXX and YYY parents will meet and exchange garlands signifying the union of the two families. This also signifies that both families accept the match. YYY cousins help XXX dismount from his horse and the guests are invited to follow both families into the wedding hall.

Swagatam (Welcome)
XXX, escorted by YYY cousins, is greeted by her family in front of the mandap. YYY escorted by her sister and friends, also arrives at the mandap.

Jaimala or Varmala (Exchange of Garlands)
Var means to accept as your own. The bride and groom meet and greet each other in the presence of their parents, family members and friends and exchange flower garlands to formally convey their mutual acceptance, respect and love for each other. The sweet scent of flowers symbolizes happiness of married life.

Vedi Pravesh ( Entering the mandap)
Keeping the tradition of giving special care to the guests, YYY offers XXX a special place of honor to her left. At this time her father offers him water for symbolic absolutions.





Part-2

Ganesh and Navgraha Puja ( Prayer to lord Ganesha and the nine planets )
In Hindu tradition, lord Ganesha is invoked before any undertaking or journey. The ceremony commences with the invocation to Ganesh, the lord of good fortune and auspiciousness. The priest recites hymns to seek his divine grace and blessing of success, peace, happiness, and the removal of all obstacles for YYY and XXX. A prayer to the nine planets asking their blessing for peace and wealth follow this.

Kanyadaan (Giving away of the Bride)
Daan in Sanskrit means “to give away free”. Kanyadaan, Go Daan, Bhoomi Daan and Swarna Daan are the most auspicious Daan. Kanyadaan is a specially significant because the Bride’s parents are giving their daughter away so that the Grooms family can continue their family line. YYY parents place her hand in XXX hand and with holy water flowing from their hands, they give away their daughter. XXX promises YYY parents that henceforth, YYY will be his responsibility and that he will protect her and take care of her. Her happiness shall be his happiness and prosperity.

Ganth Bandhan (Tying the knot)
Ganth Bandhan means nuptial knot. YYY and XXX scarves are tied together to symbolize their life long union.


Havan (Fire)
Havan is a small sacred fire used in Vedic ceremonies. Agni (Fire) denotes the presence of the creator and is considered to be the ultimate eternal witness of YYY and XXX marriage as well as a symbol of purity. XXX with his bride to his right sits in front of the holy fire and offers his prayers for purity and prosperity. Offering’s to Agni represent a commitment made in the presence of God.

Mangal-Phere
YYY and XXX walk around the ceremonial fire clockwise seven times as the pandit bestows his blessings for an eternal happy and healthy marriage. During the first four rounds, the couple seeks the four basic goals of human life:

Dharma – To lead a life of morality and self – righteousness.

Artha – To be meaningful source of wealth, prosperity and happiness.

Kama – (Love of family) – To love each other and have a happy family life.

Moksha – (Eternal happiness) –To lead a life of purity, compassion, kindness and grace that eventually paves the way for eternal happiness.

Part-3

Saptapadi ( Seven steps – seven marriage vows)

YYY and XXX accept the following marriage vows at each step:

Together we will share the responsibility of home and family.

Together we will develop mental, physical, and spiritual strength.

Together we will prosper and share our worldly goods.

Together we will fill our hearts with great joy, peace, and happiness.

Together we will raise strong and virtuous children.

Together we will remain faithful and life long partners

Together we will cherish each other and our families in sorrow and happiness.

Sindoor (Love and happiness)
XXX places Sindoor in the part of YYY hair to symbolize their marriage.

This signifies that the bride is now his wife. XXX and YYY now exchange their positions, indicating that they are married. From henceforth, YYY must always be seated closest to the groom’s heart. YYY mother brings sweets to the couple for the bride and Groom to feed each other to signify that their life remains sweet always and that they continue to share at all times.

Mangalsutra
XXX puts a Mangalsutra around YYY neck. Henceforth, now XXX is a married woman.

Anguthi Rasam (Ring ceremony)
XXX and YYY exchange wedding rings.

Ashirvaad (Blessing)
The newlyweds seek the blessings of Panditji, their parents, their relatives and friends. The family and guests shower them with rice and flowers






Part-4

Thank You

Dear Family & Friends,

We would like to thank all of you for sharing this special day with us. It was only with your love and support that we have arrived at this point in our lives. It means so much that you are able to join us to celebrate the beginning our new lives together. We would like to give a very distinctive and elite thanks to our parents and siblings, and a very special thanks to our relatives, family-friends, friends, those who have traveled a great distance to be here with us on our special day, the wedding organizers, and the entire wedding party, for putting in the time and effort to make our wedding possible. And a special thanks to those who could not be here with us but are present in our thoughts and our hearts. We love you and will always cherish you.

- XXX & YYY
















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Welcome to
Soluna & Amit's
Wedding
June 30,2001
11:00 a.m.    Wedding Ceremoney
6:00 p.m.    Social Hour
7:30 p.m.    Reception

Wyndham Palace
Walt Disney World Resort
1900 Buena Vista Drive
Orlando, Florida 32830



Part-1







When I saw you I
fell in love, and you
smilled because you knew










A Hindu wedding ceremony is a solemn and religious occasion just as in other cultures. The large crowds, which attend these lavish events in the ‘marriage season’, may be a bit talkative and restless, but always scintillate with so much feminine glamour and radiance all around. Besides the rituals performed by the bride, bridegroom, their respective parents and close relatives, the priest most importantly reads mantras (verses) from the holy scripture, Vedas, which were originally written in Sanskrit. The priest uses the following substances in the ceremonies:
* Fresh flowers - to signify beauty;
* Coconut - to signify fertility;
* Rice, jaggery & other grains-to signify the food req. for
sustenance of human life;
* Ghee (purified butter) - to feed the sacred fire; When I saw you I fell in love,
and you smiled because you knew.

Pokavu
The actual wedding day begins with what is known as the Pokavu, the arrival of the groom. The mother-in-law greets him at the entrance to the wedding hall. A small ceremony is performed and then she tries to pinch the groom’s nose. This playfully reminds the groom that he has come to their door to ask for their daughter by rubbing his nose on the door.

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He is then escorted to the mandap (the four pole canopy where the actual wedding ceremony takes place) by his mother-in-law. The groom is also accompanied to the mandap by the best man and also a young girl, usually his sister, cousin or niece.}

Madhuparka
During the Madhuparka, the groom’s feet are washed and he is fed honey and milk while sitting under the Mandap. During this time, the bride’s sisters and cousins try and steal the groom’s shoes, adding mischief and humor to the ceremony. At the end of the day the groom retrieves his shoes by offering his sister in-laws some

money.Kanya Agamana
The bride is then walked to the Mandap by her maternal uncles in a ceremony that is known as Kanya Agamana, a tradition that has survived from the early days of child marriages. The bride is normally dressed in a white and red sari with embroidery in gold thread. White is for purity and red signifies abundance and fertility. Often the bride has another sari on top of her head, which has been presented by the groom’s family usually accompanied by some jewelry.


Antarpat
At this point, the Antarpat, or the curtain separating the bride and groom, is lowered.

Kanya Daan & Hasta Milap
It is now time for the bride to be given away in a ritual known as Kanya Daan. This is done by the bride’s father joining the right hands of the bride and groom as a symbol of their union. At this point a loop of white raw cotton, wound round 24 times symbolizing different characteristics and virtues of human life, is put round the shoulders of the bride and groom.. Garlands and rings are exchanged.

Mangalpheras
After this a small open fire is lit in the center and the fire God is invited to witness the marriage. Fire, a purifying agent, is also a source of energy. Only fire can separate this bond of unity between bride and groom. The bride and the groom are joined by a piece of white cloth, one end of which is tied to the bride’s sari and the other thrown over the groom’s shoulder.During the Mangalpheras, the couple circles the holy fire four times. The four circles symbolize the four basic human goals of Dharma, Arth, Kam, and Moksh. The bride’s brothers are called in to participate in the ceremony.

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The bride’s brothers and male cousins initiate all the rounds, signifying their consent to the marriage. During the first three rounds the bride follows the groom. This signifies "I shall follow you wherever you go-in happiness or hard times". In the final round the bride goes in front and the groom follows, which signifies that during old age when the time for departing comes, the bride wishes not be left as widow.

After the fourth circle, the bride and groom compete to be the first to sit down. In the past, this tradition was thought to predict who would dominate the marriage, since family elders noticed that these simple traits and gestures could reveal the bride’s resourcefulness and intelligence. Today this game carries much less significance since the bride and groom are both aware of this tradition, making it more competitive then insightful.

Mungalsutra & Sindoor
The groom’s family now gives the bride a gold and black-beaded necklace, known as Mungalsutra. Next, the groom sprinkles a red powder, known as Sindoor, in the middle of the bride’s forehead. The Mungalsutra and Sindoor are symbols of the eternal








bond of marriage, and a long and protected life for the groom and bride.
It was you who made my heart
Dance among the stars...

Sapta Padi
The Sapta Padi or more fondly called ‘the seven steps’ is performed with a unique variation. The groom helps the bride touch seven betel nuts with her right toe, while they recite the seven vows.

Akhand Saubhagyavati
Another quite interesting aspect of the wedding is the Saubhagyavati, in which several married women from the bride and groom’s families get onto the altar to whisper secret blessings into the right ear of the bride. When it is the bride’s mother’s turn, the groom reaches out and grabs the Pallu of her sari, a tradition called Chero Pakarvo, which began as an excuse for the groom to ask for the gifts that he is entitled to from the brides’ family.

Aashirwaad
Once the wedding rituals have been completed, the couple touches the feet of their parents and the priest, asking for their Aashirwaad, or blessings.

Vidai
The ceremony is completed with the departure of the bride and groom, which is known as Vidai. Farewell to the bride by her parents, brothers and

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sisters, relatives and friends is indeed a very emotional part of the whole event. The bride is leaving her parental home to build an entirely new life with her husband and members of his immediate family in a different environment altogether. She leaves with tears of joy and sorrow, but carries the very best wishes of all who witnessed her matrimonial ceremony.





























Hindu Program Book - Style 12

These templates are just for references & any alteration is possible.

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Part-1




















The Wedding Day Events
Arrival of Family and Friends
10:30 am - 11:00 am
Vedic Hindu Marriage Ceremony
11:00 am - 1:30 pm
The Imperial Ballroom
Light Indian Refreshments
1:30 pm - 3:00 pm
The Imperial Ballroom
Cocktail Reception
6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
The Crystal Ballroom
&
Sapphire Room

Formal Dinner & Dancing
7:30 pm - 12 midnight
The Imperial Ballroom

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Hindu Vedic Marriage Ceremony
Conducted by Shri Murali Krishna garu

Marriage is a highly auspicious occasion in Indian culture, conducted according to the 6,000 year-old Vedic Hindu tenets. According to the Vedas, the Hindu scriptures, marriage is a sacred, life long commitment between a man and a woman. Marriage is the thirteenth of the sixteen samskaras (sacraments). Marriage, considered the strongest of social bonds, is said to spiritually merge two souls opening the doors to "Grihasthashram" (household life). Of the four stages of life, Grihasthashram is believed to be the most difficult. The Hindu marriage ceremony consists of prayers, invocations and vows recited in Sanskrit, the oldest language from which most Indo-European languages have originated. Hindu marriage is sanctified by seven pledges made by the bride and groom and commenced when the bride and groom have completed seven steps around a sacred fire. Symbolic gestures and rituals encompass the ceremony and ensure that the bride and groom are united in the presence of God (Lord Vishnu), Agni (the sacred Fire) and the Pujari (Hindu priest). The ceremony is held under the canopy of the Kalyana Mandapam or wedding pavilion, which is decorated with fresh flowers. Nadaswaram (Indian wind instrument) music traditionally accompanies most South Indian weddings.
The main aspects of the Hindu Ceremony are as follows........

Ganapathi Puja -To commence the Hindu wedding ceremony, a prayer is offered to Lord Ganesha, the elephant God, whose blessings will remove any major obstacles from the ceremony and from the couple’s new life together. Ganesha is the Lord of all circumstances, therefore no Hindu ritual or auspicious occasion is ever undertaken without Him. Jasmine garlands and the Mangalasutra (sacred wedding necklace) are placed at Ganesha’s feet to invoke his blessings. His grace will overcome all obstacles, destroy all evils, and enable the ceremony to proceed with tranquility.

Gowri Puja - The bride offers prayers to invoke the blessings of Goddess Gowri Devi, the icon of an ideal wife. The Goddess’ own marriage is the symbol of everlasting love. Ardhanarishwara is the concept of the perfect emotional, mental and physical union between Gowri and her divine husband Lord Shiva. By invoking the Goddess’ blessings, the bride prays for a long, happy, married life with her husband.

Vara Puja - Kashi Yatra - The bride’s parents welcome the groom with great honor and offer him gifts. The groom is persuaded by the elders to enter into holy matrimony and take his soul mate along as they journey through life pursuing their goals.



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the Bride’s father prays to the Lords of all eight directions to protect her from all s.ides. The Gods in turn promise their protection and join the Bride’s parents in offering the Bride to the Groom.
Sumuhurtham - At the precise auspicious moment a paste made of cumin seeds and brown sugar is held by the bride and groom on one another’s heads, while the cloth veil is still in place. The cloth veil is then removed, which symbolizes the opening of the physical world that kept the Bride and Groom from uniting and now allows them to join in holy matrimony.









Talambaralu - The bride and groom shower one another with rice mixed with saffron "Talambaralu." This denotes the couple’s desire for happiness, enjoyment and contentment.

Mangalya-dharana - The Groom ties the Mangalasutra, a sacred necklace with the Mangalyam (gold pendant) around the Bride’s neck. The sacred necklace symbolizes safety and security offered to the Bride by the Groom as he asks her to share in a long and happy married life with him. The Groom secures the necklace by tying three knots which represents the "Trimurthis," Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva (the Holy Trinity).
Agni Saakshi - "Fire as the witness." The holy fire is lit symbolizing purity and serving as a witness to the vows that are to follow. The couple offers prayers to Agni (the God of Fire). These prayers have a special significance for the couple who say, "Today in your presence, we have become one, and only you can separate us from one another." The Bride and Groom will make an offering of rice into the Agni, which symbolizes fertility, friendship, and the good fortune of their marriage. It is believed that Agni will dispel darkness and ignorance from the couple’s life and lead them into the world of light and knowledge.

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Sapthapadi - The Bride and Groom pledge and declare to all those present that they have accepted one another voluntarily. The couple takes seven steps, symbolic of the seven marital vows, around the sacred fire.
As they hold hands and walk around the fire, the Bride and Groom pledge the following vows:
- Let us take this first step vowing to keep a pure household, avoiding all things injurious to our health
- Let us take this second step vowing to develop mental, physical and spiritual strengths
- Let us take this third step with the aim of increasing our wealth by righteous means
- Let us take this fourth step to acquire knowledge, happiness, and harmony by mutual love and trust
- Let us take this fifth step to pray for virtuous, intelligent and courageous children
- Let us take this sixth step for longevity
- Let us take this final step to vow that we will always remain true companions and life-long partners
And thus, the two halves are made a perfect whole - The Bride and Groom are now married and as a symbol of the seven steps, the Groom places rings on the Bride’s toes.

Exchange of Garlands - The Bride and Groom exchange Jasmine garlands.


Arundhati - The Pujari gestures to the sky and shows the Bride and Groom the seven "Rishis" or Saints and the Star of Arundhati to which the couple must pray to obtain blessings.

Mangalaharati - Women sing signifying the successful completion of the ceremony and wishing the Bride and Groom harmony and prosperity. The songs are in praise of the Gods.
Maha-Aashirvadam -Arundhati - The Pujari gestures to the sky and shows the Bride and Groom the seven "Rishis" or Saints and the Star of Arundhati to which the couple must pray to obtain blessings. The Pujari blesses the newly married couple and their parents. In turn all those present bless the couple by showering them with rice and flowers. The Pujari offers the following prayer:
"Live in Peace, Live in Prosperity. Have satisfaction in your achievements. Let your family grow and be enriched. Let your life be free of worries. Be blessed with long life and good health. Be good to all others. Prosper through work. Observe religious duties. Add to your knowledge and experience. Be blessed with children. May you always have food and wealth to your satisfaction."
Mr. Anand H. Sastry & Mrs. Lakshmi Anand
along with Dr. Barindra and Mrs. Heide Desai
Thank you for your good wishes and blessings
("Maha Aashirvadam") for their children.

Part-5

"Keep in touch with Friends & Family..."











"Keep in touch with Friends & Family..."











Hindu Program Book - Style 13

These templates are just for references & any alteration is possible.

Back

Part-1

According to Hinduism there are sixteen religious rites to be performed by every Hindu. These are called sanskaras. Vivah (marriage) is one of these Sanskaras according to Lord Manu. Vivah is a union with consent between a man and a woman for life and is religiously solemnized. It is the ceremony prior to the entry into the householder’s life, the second of four stages in the life of a Hindu.

The Institution
Vivah
is a union which binds not only two hearts together but two families as well, and in Hinduism this union is especially sacred. For the strength to love, to obey, to discriminate and to understand, humble supplications are made by the dulhan (Bride) and the dulha(Bridegroom) at the time of the Vivah. A married couple living according to the dictates of Dharma, pooling their mental and physical resources together for the success of the marriage union, can achieve nothing but complete marital bliss.




Var Paksh Swagat Milani
(Welcoming the Wedding Party)
On the wedding day, at an auspicious hour, the dulha, bedecked in resplendent ornamental costumes, with a crown on the head and yellow or pink gown, arrives with his family and friends at the dulhan’s residence where the ceremony takes place. This is his Baraat.

Dvar Puja
At the entrance to the dulhan’s residence, the fathers of both dulhan and dulha embrace each other. The dulha is garlanded. Vedic hymns are chanted by the priest in attendance. A short puja or prayer service takes place. The dulha accepts a gift from the dulhan’s father.

Parchan
The dulha enters the premises where the mother of the dulhan and her female friends welcome him. They honor him with Aarti, give him gifts and extol his virtues in their songs. Some of them may be seeing him for the first time and for this reason Parchan, which means an examination, is done. They see his face and his physical features.

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Janwaas
After the Parchan ceremony is over, the dulha and his baraat retire to a place of rest provided by the dulhan’s father. Jan means people and Waas means to rest. They tarry for a while and obtain some rest prior to the elaborate ceremony to follow. The dulhan will soon leave her childhood companions and the comfort of her parent’s home to seek a new life and new friends. The sadness of parting is noticeable and is also a reminder to the dulhan’s mother to be prepared to endure her daughter’s parting with fortitude.
Bride Enters Mandap
Pooja to Lord Ganesh is performed,
followed by Raksha Sutra
Raksha Sutra
is a cord of protection. In this part of the ceremony the barka(dulha’s elder brother) enters the Mandap and after a short ritual he places a cord of protection around the neck of the dulhan. In placing this cord on the dulhan’s neck the dulha’s brother takes a vow to protect the dulhan in all distress and adversities which may befall her.

Bridegroom Enters Mandap
He is welcomed by Bride’s Father

The Vivah preparation now begins and proceeds in the following stages. The dulha enters the Mandap for the first time. Madhuparka is a sweet liquid combination of ghee, dhai and honey. Under the bedecked atmosphere, the dulha’s hand is held by the dulhan’s father and his request is that the relationship between the two parties remain as "sweet" as the liquid combination ghee, dhai and honey, which are the ingredients of Hindu hospitality. At the same time a loin cloth is presented to the dulhan on which he sits.

Kanyadaan
Kanya means a maiden dulhan and Daan means to give. The sacrificial fire is kindled by the dulhan’s priest and then the rest of the ceremony takes place. The dulhan, now adorned in a richly colored sari, enters the Mandap . In a touching ceremony the dulhan hands are placed in the dulha’s while water is being poured in a continuous flow by the


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dulhan’s brother The priest reads the sacred vow which the dulhan’s father takes in giving his daughter away. Now, in all solemnity she is handed to the man whom she loves and will obey henceforth. The dulhan’s father now vows by the sun, stars, the deities and by man to give his daughter away to the dulha.

Panigrahan
Pani means the hand. Granhan means to grasp. The dulha now formally grasps the hand of the dulhan and leads her gently to his side where she sits beside him on his right.

Bhawar
Bhawar means circle. After the dulhan seats herself on his right, the fire ritual commences. The priest chants vedic hymns. Offerings are made to the fire. The dulhan leads first with the dulha behind her. Thereafter the dulha leads with the dulhan following. Together they go

around the sacred fire seven times, four by the dulhan and three by the dulha, throwing grains each time into the fire known as lawa . Their garments are knotted together as they go around the fire. The significance of throwing grains is that they both will join together in performing the Yajnas, sacrifices and religious rites which a Hindu household is required to perform throughout their married life. Moreover the dulhan, by leading first, is demonstrating her determination to stand first beside her husband in all their happiness and sorrows during their married life.

Sapta Padi
(Taking seven steps together) The couple then walks seven steps together reciting mantras which express their principal duties as householders:
1. Let us take the first step to provide our household with a nourishing diet.
2. Let us take the second step to develop physical, mental, and spiritual powers.

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3. Let us take the third step to acquire and increase our wealth by righteous means and proper use.
4. Let us take the fourth step to acquire knowledge, happiness and harmony by mutual love and trust.
5. Let us take the fifth step so that we are blessed with strong, virtuous and heroic children.
6. Let us take the sixth step for self restraint and longevity.
7. Let us take the seventh step to be true and faithful companions and remain lifelong partners by this wedlock.

Shila Rohan
Shila means a rock and Rohan means to thread on. After throwing the lawa, the dulhan now places the toe of her right foot on a small piece of solid rock. She thus shows that her devotion towards the dulha will not be hollow, but solid as the piece of rock on which she places her toe. The dulha accepts her promise and removes the rock with his right hand.

Saat Vachan
The dulhan, still seated on the right of the dulha, now makes seven request which he is required to give consent to. She then goes over to his left where she seats herself and thus becomes his wife. From request number one thru six, the dulhan seeks to be consulted on all important issues relating to their successful matrimonial life. The final request is that they should be devoted to each other and nothing should come between them. The dulha answers in the affirmative, and he himself makes one request of the dulhan, that in accordance with Dharma, she shall be devoted to him in mind and body. She answers in the affirmative.

Touching of the Heart The bridegroom then comes over bride’s right shoulder touches her heart saying:"I hold your heart in serving fellowship, your mind follows my mind. In my word you rejoice



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with all your heart. You are joined to me by theLord of all creatures.

Sindoor
Sindoor
is vermilion powder. The above pledges having been made, the dulha now applies sindoor on the forehead of his dulhan. He puts a red dot on her forehead and places the powder in the parting of her hair. This is the traditional mark of the Hindu married woman whose husband is alive. The dulha requests that she keeps this mark on her head signifying her marriage to him. The dulha says "I bedecked thee Oh bride with this mark of mine. Keep it as long as I live. May you always be happy and have long life.

Aashirvaad
Aashirvaad
means blessings Once the wedding rituals have been completed, the couple touches the feet of their parents and

he priest, asking for their Aashirbaad.
All those assembled shower flowers on the couple and bless them on their marriage.
The dulha and his baraat now proceed to have khichari together in the Mandap.

Vidai
The ceremony is completed with the departure of the Dulha and Dulhan, which is know as Vidai. Farewell to the dulhan by her parents, siblings, relatives and friends is indeed a very emotional part of the whole event. The dulhan leaving her parental home to build an entirely new life with her husband and members of his immediate family in a different environment altogether. She leaves with tears of joy and sorrow, but carries the very best wishes of all who witnessed her Vivah Sanskar.



Part-6

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