• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

With reference to a Hindu wedding ceremony, describe and explain the many points of symbolism.

Extracts from this document...


With reference to a Hindu wedding ceremony, describe and explain the many points of symbolism. Ritual is very important within the Hindu religion. If ritual is performed correctly, good karma will follow and if not, the opposite will occur. There are whole books dedicated to ritual such as the Veda, the oldest scripture in the world. Key factors in making the right match include the partner being Hindu, also preferably from the same caste and compatible horoscopically. Also, the horoscopes show what the best date for the wedding to take place is. Although India is a large country and weddings vary, most key points are shared. In India the wedding itself would be at the bride's home but in England a hall is booked. In preparation for the wedding, henna is used to decorate her hands and feet lasting many weeks symbolising her entry into her marriage. A red spot is painted called a 'tilaka' showing she has been blessed by god. She is wearing a red sari, the colour of happiness, with gold jewellery, the best she can afford and black paint around her eyes called kajal. The groom gives her a ring that she wears on her toe. The groom will wear a kurta-pajana; a lose fitting top and trousers and a veil of beads. The bride and groom's parents will worship Ganesh and the family deities asking them to be present at the wedding and make sure everything goes to plan. Throughout the ceremony itself the priest keeps a fire burning by pouring ghee into the flames symbolising the presence of the Gods. He also throws rice and spices into the fire symbolising fertility. ...read more.


2) a) Explain why, from a religious perspective, i) it is considered important for a Hindu to marry a Hindu, Within the Hindu religion it is considered very important for a Hindu to marry another Hindu. The main reason for this is because marriage in Hinduism is not seen as a lifestyle choice but a duty and religious stage of life, from 'student', the first ashrama, to 'householder', the second ashrama according to the Varna-ashrama-dharma. When married, a Hindu has the opportunity to achieve three goals: > A release from all basic human desires through marriage and having children. > A contribution to society though hard work. > The duty of carrying out whatever demands his particular caste places upon him. The 13th saskara is reached when a Hindu marries. Marriage in Hinduism is quite obviously a religious action. Therefore in not marrying a Hindu, you cannot easily for-fill these tasks given to you. You can preserve the purity of your religion and caste by marrying in the traditional way. By marrying a Hindu, you will have your horoscopes compared, will have the same religious state of mind, and are therefore compatible. If two Hindus marry, the families will get along and there will be no feuds. You will keep your parents happy by marrying a fellow Hindu in the correct manner. If you do not, there may be a major disagreement in which your family may not ever fully forgive you. They may even believe that in abandoning the correct tradition of marriage, you are abandoning the Hindu religion. If you marry a Hindu you will gain respect from the Hindu society whereas if you don't there may be a lot of disrespect and gossip about you. ...read more.


In fact large parts of Hinduism itself are all about ritual and tradition. So if you do not marry in the correct manner, all this will be lost, bad Karma will follow and you will never be released from samara, the series of births, deaths and re-births and atman will never be rejoined with Brahmin. -This is a Hindu's main goal and therefore it is essential to have an arranged marriage. You do not really know this person you will spend the rest of your life with. Your husband/wife may have a problem such as gambling, a health condition or an alcohol addiction that you did not previously know about. In love marriages, you have usually been with and lived with your partner for several years before getting married and you therefore will almost certainly know every detail about him/her. After weighing up the points for and against marriage, although I can see from a Hindu's point of view why arranged marriages are a good thing, I have one major disagreement. A Hindu's main argument for arranged marriages is that it is a religious stage of life and not a lifestyle choice. As I am not Hindu, I do not believe this or other Hindu beliefs to be true. Therefore I personally disagree with arranged marriages. I feel that to marry, you must first be in a loving, longstanding relationship with a strong bond of trust and love. Marriage, to me, is something that shows commitment and love between two people and I find the concept of arranged marriages quite absurd. If to me, marriage is a gesture showing a couple's love and therefore surely the couple must be in love before taking vows of their love to one another? Aisling Knight 11.4 March 2001 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Hinduism section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Hinduism essays

  1. The concept of Atman

    Jamison uses a bit of a more modern analogy of a worn out car. Within his book concerning Hinduism, Jamison writes that "The atman is the driver of a car. When your car wears our, you get out... you are not part of the car."

  2. Examine the Hindu views on arranged marriages. To what extent can Hindu arranged marriages ...

    Once the families have agreed on their children's marriage they consult a family priest or an astrologer to fix the wedding date according to their astrological charts and thereafter invitations are sent to family and friends. The Hindu marriage ceremony entails several functions before the "big day".

  1. Examine the ways in which the Bhagavad-Gita supports the life of duty and action ...

    This also emphasises the importance of Karma Yoga, which suggests that because it can lead to the destruction of the soul, that its importance is more extreme than that of renunciation. Many people that `the main gospel of the Bhagavad Gita is Karma-Yoga'[4][4], as much of the Bhagavad Gita explains this.

  2. What is meant by "Karma"?

    In this realization Buddhists accept that they should try to nurture and help others by setting them on the right path in order to ultimately achieve nirvana.2 Buddhists also believe that in accepting death as a part of the Samsara, life begins to have more value to us.

  1. How Do Hindus View Suffering?

    If Brahman is then the controller of a person from the inward out, then whatever problems an individual is faced with should not really affect them. This is because it is the owner of the body, not them that has to deal with the problem, but Brahman.

  2. The Beginning Of Hinduism.

    But there are some beliefs that nearly all Hindus believe. 1) There is one God. This is Brahman or the Spirit of the Whole World. Brahman is in everything, everywhere and always. But we cannot see, hear or touch Brahman.

  1. Examine and Comment of Christian and Hindu Beliefs about Life After Death

    The bible has portrayed heaven as the 'kingdom of heaven', where 'kingdom' refers to a place of monarchy and sovereignty, where people will be reunited with God. However, Christians can not just enter heaven when they die, but will have to show that they are worthy of entering heaven, 'For

  2. Christianity and Hinduism seem to have profoundly different views in relation to God and/or ...

    (Bhakti & Jnana Yoga) From this I believe it is a more realistic relationship within Christianity as they are to follow his teachings, the same as with a parent and a child. Whilst Hinduism involves more complex and intellectual areas of development in order to achieve a relationship with Brahman.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work