Marriage and Bride Essay

Submitted By mandychristne75
Words: 2070
Pages: 9

Marriage Rituals
Sally Hanson
ANT 101
Carrie Perkins
October 27, 2014

Throughout history many cultures have adopted various customs and rituals when it comes to marriage. Some practice arranged marriages while others let two people “fall in love” and go through the courtship process. Many cultures have some type or form of ceremonies, some last a week while others are only 24 hours or less long. The Hindu people are ones that practice arranged marriages and they have had this practice for centuries on the other hand the Oraibi nation let a couple meet and “fall in love’. Meanwhile, both of these cultures have very elaborate and ornate ceremonies and processes before, during and after the ceremony before the couple can be fully wed. While not everyone feels this is a good thing to do. Most people feel that one should choose their mate. Arranged marriages today are still practiced in some cultures because of culture beliefs about arranged marriage, males feel that they are dominate and have to choose a mate for their child also some have religious beliefs. In the Hindu culture negotiations for marriages start at a very early age. Families typically use friends that they have in common, or marriage brokers, or matchmakers. The marriage brokers and matchmakers are typically illiterate and belong to the lower strata of their society. These matchmakers supply information to the adults or to the guardian of the children. Once everyone has gotten their information they arrange a meeting party to get the girls/boys together this is called “showing of girls and boys”. The men choose the girl for the boy and the women have been given the authority to pick the boy for the girl. Both the men and women will meet the boys/girls one at a time and ask them questions to test their knowledge in a variety of subjects, from what is your name? What do you know about hunting, cooking, sewing and so forth. If the adult does not like the answer that someone gave they automatically take that boy/girl out of the selection. Once the selection has been narrowed down the final settlement of the marriage depends on the dowries and presents which consist of cash, jewelry, for the girl, presents such as dining room, drawing room, bedroom, and office furniture along with silver, clothes, shoes, and whatever else is of great value. A girl of poor complexion could be selected and sought after through the strength of her family’s dowries and presents offered by her party. It has been stated by a Hindu man “I have not married my wife but have married her wealth.”(Mitra,1946). Once everything has been set in place “it will appear that the boy and the girl to be wedded do not receive much consideration. Their wishes are seldom ascertained; they are trust upon each other. They have no chance of knowing a bit of each other’s nature, temperament, sentiments, feelings or aspirations.”(Mitra, 1946). In other words these two people to be joined in marriage are strangers to each other. Men and women of the older generations are still strongly in favor of this age long custom of their people. They still think that the arranged marriages according to this old custom are much happier than those that are not prearranged. They feel that the boys and girls are not of sound mind to make the life altering decision on their own and choose the correct partner. The guardians of the boy and girl also rely on the horoscopes of the boy and girl, they look to see if they are going to make a happy and peaceful match if they do not then they no longer continue to negotiate the match up of the two up they will move onto the next boy/girl. Once negations have been meet and all are in agreement the ceremony, Pucca Dekha, commences. This is the final seeing of the girl and boy, then the Gaye Halund begins the smearing the bodies of the bride and the bridegroom with a thick solution of turmeric. This first stage of the ceremony may take