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Another Sikh Wedding

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Introduction

AO1 Describe and explain the details of a Sikh marriage service. The Sikh marriage is not merely a physical and legal contract but is a holy union between two souls where physically they appear as two individual bodies but in fact are united as one. Anand Karaj is the prescribed form of Sikh marriage, the words literally translate as 'Blissful Union". Marriage is seen as only the joining together a man and a woman as husband and wife but as encouraging ties between the families involved. As well as the parents other family members will also be involved in helping in the choice of marriage partners and will also contribute financially, and practically, to the expenses of the wedding. Traditionally, marriages have been arranged. The families involved find a prospective partner and suggest to the couple that they should marry. The couple however are not forced into marrying someone that they do not like, or are not happy to marry. The majority of parents love and respect their children and would not want to force them into a relationship if they were not happy about it. Family background, education, interests and employment are some of the areas parents consider when suggesting a partner for their child. Photographs are exchanged and the couples usually do not meet. This meeting normally takes place at the girls parents home and involves the prospective couple, their parents, brothers and sisters. Grandparents, Aunts and Uncles may also be present if they wish. ...read more.

Middle

on their legs, face, and arms while they sit on a patri (a special red board with embroidery) and are under a red cloth held by four women. This ceremony is done to cleanse and balance the body for his/her marriage life. The event gives a festive touch to the celebration. On the morning of the wedding day, the bridegroom and his family will attend the place decided upon by the bride's family for the ceremony whether it is the Gurdwara or the bride's house etc. A meal is served, but before eating, there is a ceremony to go through. Gharoli is observed in the morning of the wedding day, at the groom's home. During the occasion, the groom's sister-in-law, accompanied by other female relatives, go to a nearby well or Gurdwara to fill an earther pitcher (gharoli) with water, which is later used to bathe and the groom. The Milni then follows this. The Milni is a formal meeting of the fathers, grandfathers, and uncles of the couple. The bride's family offers gifts, such as a turban length and sometimes a token gift of money. The Milni reinforces the idea that the marriage unites not only the two individuals but also the two families. Those present then eat a reception meal. After the reception the guests then gather together in the presence of the Guru Granth Sahib, for the marriage ceremony. This is all taken place in the Gurdwara. ...read more.

Conclusion

This picture shows the sharing of the Karah Parshad. The newly-wed couple sit to receive the congratulations of the congregation, who come forward and place gifts and money in the bride and grooms laps, to make sure that they have a good financial start in their life together. A meal is shared in the Langar, but a reception may also be booked in a hall, hotel and restaurant. The post-wedding rituals of a traditional Sikh wedding consist of Vidaai or Doli ceremony, which marks the end of the celebration. It is a very emotional affair for the bride's family. As the bride departs from her parent's house, she throws back handful of rice over her shoulder, thereby wishing prosperity for her parents and family, which she leaves behind to start a new life with new dreams and aspirations. In India, the couple normally go straight to the groom's parent's house after the festivities, were they are to live. In Britain this also happens but there is now a practice developing of going away on a honeymoon before returning home. Sikh practice required no formal certificate to say that the couple are married. But in Britain,. Sikhs like everyone else are required to comply with the law that requires the formal and legal registration. But if the marriage does not work out for some reason there is divorce. Divorce is not possible according to the Sikh religious tradition. The couple can, however, obtain a divorce under the Civil law of the land. ...read more.

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