Telugu wedding rituals are rich, colorful, and interesting and each of them has a meaning. Previously, it used to last for 15 days but now it is celebrated for 3 to 5 days depending on the financial position and the caste of the bride and groom.
The following are the rituals that are performed in a traditional Telugu wedding.
1. Mangala Snanam
It is considered as a purifying holy bath that the bride and groom take separately on the wedding day in their houses before attending the aarti.
2. Mangala Arthi
Relatives of both the bride and groom gather at their houses following which is small plate turmeric, vermillion, and sandalwood are kept, and a small lamp is lit to pray for the couple’s happiness.
3. Ganesh and Gauri Puja
Ganesh puja is performed by the groom and Gauri puja is performed by the bride at their respective places in order to seek blessings before the final wedding ceremony in the presence of a priest and close relatives.
4. Bride and groom’s entry
Here the bride is made to sit in a bamboo basket which is brought to the mandapam by her maternal uncle and the groom is also brought to the mandapam. However, they are not allowed to see each other and are separated by a curtain until and unless kanyadanam is complete.
Kanyadanam refers to handing over the responsibility of the bride to the groom. During this ceremony, the bride’s parents wash the feet of the groom considering him as a manifestation of Lord Vishnu and the bride as goddess Lakshmi. The groom chants “Dharmeca Artheca Kamecha Moksheca Nati Carami” where he promises that he will remain with the bride forever.
The groom holds the hands of the bride who holds a coconut and the priest chants the mantras.
The bride and groom are given a paste made from cumin and jaggery which they are supposed to keep on each other’s head while staying behind the curtains.
During this ritual, the bride and groom wear their traditional wedding outfit, a white saree with a red border for the bride and white dhoti with a red border for the groom.
9. Sumangali and Mangalsutra Dharana
The bride is accompanied by 10 married women where 6 of them hold plates with rice and the rest 4 holds plates with small lamps that are lit in Sumangali.
Now the curtain is removed and the groom ties the Mangalsutra or the sacred yellow thread around the bride’s neck with three knots.
As the priest chants the mantras, the couple holds turmeric smeared rice and pours them on each other’s head.
The bride and the groom complete seven rounds around the fire together while taking the oath.
The feet of the bride is adorned with silver toe rings by the groom.
The Telugu wedding ceremony ends with this ritual where the bride is finally handed over to the groom’s family.
These are the rituals that make Telugu weddings a glorious one.
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