In Hindu marriage, the priest plays a very important role. He is the one who performs all the rituals, recites slokas or mantras, and does all the other ceremonies necessary for the marriage. The priest is usually a Brahmin, who is well versed in Hindu religious rituals and traditional ceremonies.
In Hinduism, Lord Ganesh plays a pivotal role as he is considered the primary god, the one for all occasions. During every new beginning, prayers are offered to him as a sign of respect and to get his blessings. In Hindu wedding, Ganesh Puja plays a very important role. Around 15 days before the wedding, a puja is performed and the priest ties a holy thread around the wrist of the groom in the name of Lord Ganesh. This is a symbol of respect and prayers are offered every day thereafter to Lord Ganesh to get his blessings.
Agni, or the sacred fire, plays an important role in all Hindu religious ceremonies, including marriages. Evoking the sacred fire is considered very religious and for almost every ceremony, Hindus evoke the holy fire. In Hindu marriages, Agni Puja is considered an important practice, as lots of other rituals are offered in that sacred fire. In Hindu mythology, Agni, the lord of fire, is considered the one who purifies everything.
Mangalya dharanam is the tying of Mangal Sutra, the holy necklace, around the bride’s neck. The groom ties the holy thread around the bride’s neck and makes three knots. This is considered the most important thing in a Hindu marriage, as it signifies the start of a new life for the bride and groom as the man and wife.
Kanyadhan is the process in which the bride’s father pours out some holy water, signifying that he has given his daughter to the groom. This is considered a very important ritual in a Hindu wedding, as it signifies the importance of togetherness. The groom actually promises his father-in-law that he will defend the bride under all circumstances in his life. During this ritual, prayers and offerings are made in the name of Kama, the god of love.
Saptapadi is the ritual in which the bride and the groom recite mantras by which they are supposed to adhere to. The groom holds his bride’s hand and goes around the sacred fire from the right side. He starts off with his right leg, which is considered auspicious. Every time they make a round, they recite mantras and this is done for seven steps with seven mantras to recite. These mantras are also called wedding vows. They pray together for various things in life including good health, prosperity, unity, spiritual strength, harmony, and many more.
After all the rituals are done, the bride is sent to the groom’s home. The most important aspect of a Hindu wedding is that over the last thousands of years, their rituals and customs have not changed to a large extent. They follow Vedas, which are considered the oldest and the most profound source of information available to mankind. Hindu marriages play an important part in holding the society intact, despite the differences that exist.