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Anyone Familiar with Arya Samaj Rituals


Greetings and Salutations,

I was invited to an Arya Samaj wedding and an Arya Samaj temple by a few members. (However, both of them, temple and wedding, are quite far away from my locations, so I might not be able to visit as often or visit ahead of time to find out). I did read their 10 principles on their website, and also if I'm right, they don't do idol worship. But other than that, I'm clueless on what to expect in their temple and / or wedding. Also, how big is the AS community, especially in USA?

I have many friends who follow Arya Samaj's way, Typically they are from the Panjab region.
They do Hindu Havan, but ladies and men both participate. Everybody chants Gayatri and does the Havan.

Arya Samaj Marriage Rules and Eligibility

  1. The groom must be at least 21 and bride’s age must be 18.
  2. Anyone who is Hindus, Buddhists, Jains, Sikhs can perform Arya Samaj Marriage procedures.
  3. Anyone who is not Muslims, Christians, Parsis or Jews can also perform Arya Samaj Marriage.
  4. Inter-Caste Marriages and Inter-Religious Marriages can be performed in an Arya Samaj Marriage provided none of the marrying parties is Muslims, Christians, Parsis or Jews.
  5. If a Non-Hindu couple would like to perform an Arya Samaj Marriage, a conversion process called Shuddhi must be performed first. Muslims, Christians, Parsis or Jews, if out of their free will and consent are ready to convert and embrace Hindu Religion, the Arya Samaj Mandir perform a ritual called ‘Shuddhi’ meaning purification. After such a conversion, the couple can perform an Arya Samaj Marriage.

Core beliefs
Members of the Arya Samaj believe in one creator God referred to with the syllable 'Aum' as mentioned in the Yajur Veda (40:17). They believe the Vedas are an infallible authority, and they respect the Upanishads and Vedic philosophy. The Arya Samaj members reject other Hindu religious texts because they are not "pure" works, and because these texts promote things do not support their ideology and are therefore against the Vedas. For instance, they believe epics like the Ramayana and the Mahabharata are legends of historical figures, and reject them as reference to supreme beings and avatars. The members of Arya Samaj also reject other scriptural works such as the Puranas, the Bible, and the Quran. Worship of idols (murti puja) is strictly prohibited.[48] Samaj also denies the concept of a personal god.

The core beliefs of Arya Samaj are postulated below:

  1. The primeval cause of all genuine knowledge and all that is known by means of knowledge is God.
  2. God is truth-consciousness: formless, omnipotent, unborn, infinite, unchangeable, incomparable, omnipresent, internal, undecaying, immortal, eternal, holy, and creator of the universe. God alone deserves worship.
  3. The Vedas are repositories of all of true knowledge. It is the paramount duty of all Aryas to study and teach and to propound the Veda.
  4. One should be ever ready to imbibe truth and forsake untruth.
  5. All acts should be done in accordance with Dharma, i.e. after deliberating upon what is truth and untruth.
  6. The prime object of Arya Samaj is to do good to the whole world, i.e. to achieve physical, spiritual and social prosperity for all.
  7. Our conduct towards all should be guided by love, by injunctions of Dharma and according to their respective positions.
  8. One should dispel ignorance and promote knowledge.
  9. One should not be content with one's own prosperity only, but should consider the prosperity of all as his own prosperity.
  10. All human beings should abide by the rules concerning social or everyone's benefit, while everyone should be free to follow any rule beneficial for him/her.

They are very progressive and work for social upliftment. They recognize women as equal to men in all aspects of life. They also support widow marriage.

These are the regional Associations of Arya Samaj in the USA.

Mostly from the Panjab region in India, so they will speak Panjabi. Their food and dressing habits will be similar to other Panjabees.
I have not come across a count of the followers of Arya Samaj.

Whenever a nontraditional Hindu function has to be performed, I strongly recommend An Arya Samaj.
May it be an Interreligious wedding, or Kanya Danam by a mother, or a girl wanting to do the last rites for her parents, and all other times where a Hindu Priest (due to their limited knowledge or Traditions) will not help, you can always find an Arya Samaj outfit or a person from that group will pitch in and help. Secondly, their charges are minimal, and sometimes they will even waive the fees.
In keeping with the Panjabi culture majority of Arya Samaj's followers are Non-Vegetarians.
When it comes to Prasad or meals after Havan they do not include non-vegetarian food.

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