Tuesday, October 14, 2008

5. Rituals for the Bride

Bale Iduva: Bangle wearing ceremony for the bride
In her house, the bride, dressed in a (deep red/ maroon) silk sari and long-sleeved blouse (in a bold break from tradition, brides now have three-quarter sleeves, ha!), is led by her 'bojakarthi' (Bride’s maid)'. A mat is spread on the floor and the bride and the bangle-seller sit on it. Glass bangles of various colours, such as red, green and black are slipped onto the bride's wrists by the bangle-seller. Black bangles are believed to ward off evil and have to be put on the bride's hands at this time.

Bath: Ritual bath for the bride
A lady from the 'aruva's' family or the 'bojakarthi' leads the bride for her ritual bath and three 'muthaides' pour water over her (too bad no men doing that).

Dress: The 'bojakarthi' helps dress the bride
After her bath, the bride's 'bojakarthi' helps her dress for the wedding ceremony (complete with silver shackles on feet and metal spikes driven through head). Once she is ready, the bride applies 'vibhuthi' (sacred ash) on her forehead, chews betel leaves and areca nuts (who is game for a spitting competition now?), before being led to the 'muhurtha' site in a ceremonial walk (by beauteous maidens, ripe for matrimony, holding lamps).
As in the bridegroom's case, the 'bojakarthi' holds an umbrella covered with a white cloth over the bride's head throughout the ceremonial walk (Again, same birds deal).

No comments:

Post a Comment

I have an opinion and so should you! Leave your bouquets, brickbats and battle axes here, preferably in a language I can understand. If coyness gets the better of you, then email me (emailbasicallyblah@gmail.com).