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Indian Weddings are like Henna Tattoos - True beauty and hard work

Published August 6th, 2011

...Modern Hinduism is largely based on the puja form of the worship of devas as enshrined in the Puranas, a Hindu wedding ceremony at its core is essentially a Vedic yajna (a fire-sacrifice), in which the Aryan deities are invoked in the Indo-Aryan style.

It has a deep origin in the ancient ceremony of cementing the bonds of friendship/alliance (even among people of the same sex or people of different species in mythological contexts), although today, it only survives in the context of weddings.

The primary witness of a Hindu marriage is the fire-deity (or the Sacred Fire) Agni, and by law and tradition, no Hindu marriage is deemed complete unless in the presence of the Sacred Fire, seven encirclements have been made around it by the bride and the groom together.

Gribhnami te saubhagatvaya hastam mayapatya jardastirayathasah|

Bhagoaryyamma savita purandhiramahyam tvadurgaharpatya devah||

That is – “Oh dear! On this auspicious occasion of our life, I take your hand in mine in the presence of invoked deities. Oh blessed woman! You be with me as a fortunate partner for a very long time.

I hand over the control of my family in your hands, discharge your duties joyously.”

Indeed how happy is that moment when a bridegroom takes this solemn vow in the presence of invoked deities. His loneliness and indifference end there and a new life begins in which he gets all the means for attaining the noble objectives of life.

This resolve of sacrifice and austerity leads to real happiness. If a person solemnly obeys the pledge taken during wedding ceremony, he can create an environment of heavenly bliss in married life. Wife is truly an incarnation of Lakshmi (Goddess of wealth). The human life remains charmless and stale in the absence of this wealth. How true is the following proclamation of the groom:

Amoamasmi matvam matvamasyamoham|

Samahmasmi —ktvam dyauraham prithvi tvam||

“You are Lakshmi. I was poor without you. Indeed there was no joy without you in my life. Oh beautiful lady! Our union is like sama (one of the Vedas) and its —aca (verse), and the earth and the sky.”

In the abovementioned vedic —aca, the rishi has given a very important elucidation of marriage. The institution of marriage is not solely related to a specific person but affects the entire society. Therefore, those marriages which are entered into without any consideration for the welfare of the person concerned as well as the society, lack the stamp of sanctity and commitment.

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the bride arrives - under a beautiful tent which is carried by her family and friends to the wedding hall

  • June 14th, 2011
  • Panasonic DMC-G10
  • 14mm / f/3.5 / 1/50 sec

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they get ready for the ceremony which will take nearly 2 hours or so - the ceremony is basically a fire puja ( offering / invocations) and the taking of the vows - these days many pundits ( priests) combine the "classic christian vows" as well..

  • June 14th, 2011
  • Panasonic DMC-G10
  • 40mm / f/5.6 / 1/40 sec

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the bride's parents and the groom's parents perform the puja and invoke the blessings and call on the gods and devatas to come and bless the couple - and to witness the ceremony

  • June 14th, 2011
  • Panasonic DMC-G10
  • 36mm / f/5.5 / 1/20 sec

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they go around the fire seven times and complete the process ...If a person solemnly obeys the pledge taken during wedding ceremony, he can create an environment of heavenly bliss in married life. Wife is truly an incarnation of Lakshmi (Goddess of wealth).

  • June 14th, 2011
  • Panasonic DMC-G10
  • 14mm / f/3.5 / 1/100 sec

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the priest in this case took full charge and recited the mantras in sanskrit first and then explained the whole thing is English later...well done

  • June 14th, 2011
  • Panasonic DMC-G10
  • 14mm / f/3.5 / 1/80 sec

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exchanging garlands - feeling happy and cheerful and a little playful -

  • June 14th, 2011
  • Panasonic DMC-G10
  • 18mm / f/3.9 / 1/60 sec

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the smoke gets in her eyes....“You are Lakshmi. I was poor without you. Indeed there was no joy without you in my life. Oh beautiful lady! Our union is like sama (one of the Vedas) and its —aca (verse), and the earth and the sky.”

  • June 14th, 2011
  • Panasonic DMC-G10
  • 14mm / f/3.5 / 1/60 sec

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on the way to the lunch -

  • June 14th, 2011
  • Panasonic DMC-G10
  • 14mm / f/5.6 / 1/125 sec

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reception in the evening

  • June 14th, 2011
  • Panasonic DMC-G10
  • 14mm / f/3.5 / 1/25 sec

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the bride and the groom at the reception - many wedding receptions are held in 5star hotel ball rooms and this too was in one of those.

  • June 14th, 2011
  • Panasonic DMC-G10
  • 18mm / f/4 / 1/30 sec

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reviveramesh
Ramesh Ramakrishnan, Iyer  about 6 years ago

@yang matt - that is nice yang - thanks - do you shoot weddings?