Weddings are a big event in Indian culture; people in various parts of India are following their traditional wedding ceremony. Everyone has their own style and following the unique custom to represent the culture. Tamil wedding rituals and traditions that are following from pre-weddings to post-weddings are from thousands of years ago. The weddings are not missing the fun and joy. Expect few months in the year; the wedding ceremony is performed on the days of all months of the Tamil calendar. The Wedding ceremony is incomplete without any rituals.
There is the thought of people that colors used in weddings should be auspicious. So the common colors the weddings are filled with are red and gold. From the decoration to the outfit of the groom and bride and their families will use only these two colors that are red and gold. Many wedding rituals are there, but few rituals are mean to be compulsory. Let us find why the rituals are so important?
1. Sumangali Prarthanai
The Sumangali Prarthanai is a pre-wedding ritual dedicated to sumangalis. Sumangali is referred to as the married woman who led a successful married life. Usually, these sumangalis are invited by their close relatives and friends.
The family must invite the odd number of sumangali such as three, five, and seven to the sumangali prarthanai. And they should wear nine-yard saree madisar while doing this ritual. After completing the puja, these sumangalis will bless the bride to lead her life with her husband to a flourishing and successful life. And at the end, sumangalis are gifted with saree or jewelry.
2. Pallikai Thellichal
The Pallikai Thellichal is also a pre-wedding ritual performed to bless the couple’s successful life and their union. They will take seven separate earthenware pots and place nine different types of grains and a bit of curd into the pots. These earthen pots are beautifully decorated with vermilion and sandalwood paste. It will be decorated by five or seven married women from both the bride and groom families.
After the pots are prepared, they will place in a special spot within the house where it is designed with sand or Kolam, or they are immersed in a water body.
3. Mangala Snaanam
Mangala Snaanam is the ritual taking place on the wedding day at the first light of day. It is also called a ‘purifying path’ which is performed separately by both sides. That is, the groom and bride should take Mangala Snaanam. It is started by applying oil to the hair and paste of turmeric, sandalwood, and kumkum to the face, hand, and leg. After this ritual, the bride/groom is sent to take a bath in holy water to cleanse their body and soul. Then they become ready for the wedding ceremony.
4. Kashi Yatra
Kasi Yatra is a fun mixed, and playful ritual performed at the mandap. In this ritual, the groom dresses up like a person who has given up everything and walking out with simple pair of slippers, a walking stick, and some food items to go off to Kashi or Varanasi.
While he is stepped out to the mandap, the bride’s father will stop him outside the wedding hall and promise the groom to give her daughter to marry. He will talk about the importance of married life. Then groom accepts the proposal and returns to the mandap to marry her daughter. The umbrella should be in the hands of the groom throughout the wedding ceremony.
5. Pada Puja
The pada puja ritual also takes place on the wedding day in the mandap. In this, the bride’s mother washes the groom’s feet with holy water, sandalwood, milk, and kumkum. After this ritual is completed, the bride is guided to enter into the mandap.