(Last Updated on : 14/07/2011)
Maharashtrian weddings are elaborate and charming affairs with light moments, like the bride`s brother twisting the groom`s ear and so on. The couple is first initiated into Grihasthashram, which is a vow taken by both to unite and be together all their life while pursuing dharma
. The bride questions the groom to promise her that he will never violate her limits or maryada and the groom asks her to always remain dedicated and loyal to her. Thus the Maharashtrian wedding believes in the equal bondage of love and dedication between both the husband and wife. They lovingly agree to dedication and have progeny.
Matchmaking in Maharastrian marriage
The process of match making is called Lagnaach Bedi. Although these days love marriages are quite widespread, many boys and girls still prefer to go in for marriages fixed by parents. Typically, Maharshtrians go in for marriage association between equal status families. However, family pundit finalizes the marriage union only after matching of the horoscopes. After this, the pundit decides the auspicious date for the wedding.
Once both the boy and girl reach the suitable age, the parents of the concerned parties start the hunt. They look out for a match from a family of equal standards. Though now days most of the times the bride and the groom choose themselves and then only the introduction of both the parties are done. The task of ensuring the compatibility of the boy and girls stars plays a very important role. The horoscope of the bride and the groom are then shown to the family pundits. All the `gunas` have to be matched only then can the boy and girl tie the knot. Only after it has been determined that the horoscopes have matched can both the parties start with the preparations
Costumes - Bridal costume and Grooms Attire
The Maharashtrian Wedding dress is as usual gorgeous and eye catching as the wedding dresses in other communities. The bride wears a conventional Maharashtrian green coloured sari. Most commonly the Paithani sarees
are used. The bride for the wedding wears the typical Maharashtrian seven pearl studs. The bride also wears green bangles, considered to be very fortunate for any function. The bride wears toe rings, pearl and bead nath or the nose ring
and a bright bindhi. The groom is dressed in dhoti or salwar and kurta, or sherwani-churidar.
Pre Wedding Ritual
After fixing the marriage the families of both bride and groom exchange a packet of sugar to informally mark the engagement.
This ceremony symbolises the proper and formal engagement performing the Kuldevta Pujan.
Usually in the day before wedding the haldi or turmeric paste is applied from the feet to the upward direction in the whole body of the bride and groom in their own home.
On the day of wedding several customs are executed like Ganesh Puja, Seeman Puja, ceremonial break fast and Gowrihar Puja
At the auspicious day of wedding, the elderly members of the bride`s family welcome the guests at the doorstep. They apply perfume by an attardani on the back of the right hand of the guests and rose water is sprinkled from gulabdani. Maharashtrian truly reflects the rich heritage and culture of the family. Sweets are distributed very often during the ceremony.
The wedding ceremony begins with Ganesh Pujan. Then the antarpat ceremony takes place where a silk partition is placed between the bride and the groom. After the chanting of several specific mantras the antarpat is removed. Then the guests shower unbroken rice over the couple. The process of kanyadan and saptapadi
are similar to those of any Hindu marriage where the father gives the hand of his daughter to the groom and later the couple take seven rounds or pheras around the havan
. Then the groom ties a mangalsutra
around the bride`s neck accepting her as `ardhangini` or life partner.
After the marriage is over the newly married bride bids a tearful farewell to her parental home and makes a new journey to her own house.
Post wedding Rituals
The newly married couple are welcomed and received by the groom`s mother at the threshold of the door of their house. This ritual includes washing the feet of the couple and `aarti
`. Then they make entry in their home after the bride tips over a vessel full of rice.