Monday, December 15, 2008

Put religions and traditions in a blender & press “Start”!

We want our wedding to do more than celebrate our love, we want it to celebrate our family and friends and how they have contributed to us and our lives, separate and together. The resort has a “textbook” ceremony package, complete with vows and readings – but to me, that just isn’t personal enough.

I am Catholic and Ted is a (lapsed) Greek Orthodox. It is important to me to incorporate some religious aspects in our ceremony, and it will probably happen in the form of different readings. Our friends come from all backgrounds and all religions and it would be interesting to incorporate aspects of each of their customs into our ceremony. Hindu, Buddhist, Jewish, Muslim and various Christian religions, you name it! We share a mutual interest in other cultures and what a great way to celebrate our friends and family.

At least one of our groomsmen, and several guests, are Hindu. I searched around for something we could incorporate into our ceremony and came across this beautiful passage. It could be read during the ceremony or printed in the program:

“Te santu jard—istayah sampriyau royisnu sumansyamanau
Pasyema sharadah shatam jivema sharadah shatam shrunuyam shardah shatam”

“We should be able to live a graceful life that is full of mutual love and warmth. Our sentiments should be auspicious.
We should be able to see for a hundred years, live a healthy life of a hundred years and listen the music of spring for a hundred years.”

Mehendi is also a Hindu ritual. Some believe that the depth of the henna’s color indicates how well a bride will be treated by her mother-in-law. The longer the color lasts, the less likelihood of a catfight. One real perk is that with henna on her hands, the bride is excused from any housework (yeah!), leaving her plenty of time to bond with her husband — and make a baby :)

Jamaican and African-American weddings sometimes include a Broom Jumping Ceremony. It is my assumption that this dates back to slavery days when slaves would marry in secret & jump the broom as a sign of unity. A google seach lead me to the meaning behind this tradition:

“Jumping the broom is a popular African-American wedding tradition that symbolizes the sweeping away of the old and the welcoming of the new.”

I'd love to hear any traditions or customs that you may have!

Are you incorporating other customs into your wedding? Is it because it’s something that you’ve always liked, or as a way to celebrate your guests?

*this post is not meant to offend, harm or be insensitive to any person or group. it is merely a research post on customs that i’ve sourced online – they may or may not be entirely accurate.

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