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Brahmin narriages

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Haridasa Siva

New member
I am not talking of “Big Fat Indian Wedding”. I am just talking of an urban middle class South Indian Brahmin (SIB) marriage. To my knowledge, Brahmins still have the custom of celebrating marriages for more than 2 days. In the process, lot of time and money is being wasted. Let us first detail how a SIB marriage process goes on (more from the bride’s side).

The bride’s close family occupies the mandap in the evening, say, on day 1. They get ready for the ஜானவாசம் the next day (day 2). The bridegroom’s family (should I say ‘bridegroom gang’, looking at their atrocities during the marriage?) Nowadays they sometimes have a reception that evening. So, the bride who was in her மடிசார் till evening would now go into a Gujarati style pallu saree with make up on her hair, face, etc. So, while she goes through the tradition of ‘புதுப பொண்ணு' and ‘நிச்சயதார்த்தம்’ (I’m referring to the ‘official’ நிச்சயதார்த்தம் on the ஜானவாசம் day), she now undergoes a quick westernization for the ‘reception’. Thanks to the North Indian influence and the party culture backed by the general affluence in the community, even elder women in மடிசார் dance for Bollywood numbers in this reception. (And we claim we are the ‘custodians’ of culture!).

Events on the marriage day (day 3) start much early. Western make-up gives way for an oil bath and turmeric. Straightened hair is now plattered, duly decorated by பூஜடை. The groom who was clad in suits the previous night now goes Gandhian way. We then have ‘காசி யாத்திரை', ‘ஊஞ்சல்’, etc. Do we need them? (It is another issue that men want to go on Kasi yaatirai only AFTER the marriage and not before!). Then comes the main event மாங்கல்ய தாரணம் (Here I pity the father of a ‘bubloo’ girl for he has to keep her on his lap for a length of time). This is followed by ஹோமம் for 2 hours. Though people claim that this ஹோமம் has a lot of benefits, no one – virtually no one- pays attention to it. The poor groom and bride would more often be alone in the hall (guests have either gone to the dining hall or have gone for a sight-seeing). As if it was not enough, we have naagavalli in the evening. I have seen a vulgar display of ‘சீர்வரிசை’ during this time in many marriages. Another interesting feature (though it takes dangerous proportion in a non-Brahmin marriage) is மொய் எழுதுதல். In many marriages, there is a person writing down who presented how much! (For a tit for tat for a marriage in their family?). Even சாந்தி முஹுர்த்தம் is an embarrassment. Nowadays, the boy and girl spend quite a lot of time together before marriage. Hence there is no need for ‘initiation’. But yet it is done with obscene comments from ‘respectable’ elders!

The marriage party continues its work in the morning of day 4 and they leave the venue only by mid morning that day (but only after giving கட்டு சாதம் for groom party). The next one year is spent by the bride side detailing the trouble the groom side caused while the groom side is busy pointing out the ‘omissions and commissions’ of the bride side.

I do understand that a marriage gives a good opportunity for social get-together and for networking. We definitely need to meet our people. But at the same time we need to exercise restraint. Imagine how much money is spent on various rituals and the reception. Food particularly is wasted more than consumed. Bride’s family is in constant stress for only they are responsible for the conduct of marriage (It is better with NBs where at least the financial burden is borne either fully or partly by the groom family). And yet on one is fully satisfied. Can’t we save this money and give it the newly married couple to enable them to start a comfortable living? Can’t we at least share a portion of this time and money for social works or for the less privileged?

In my opinion, no religion or caste can support waste of resources in the name of culture. Let us stand up and shake up the status quo for a better future. I wish to hear from our members.


Lokah samasthaa sukhino bhavantu.
 
S

SwamiTaBra

Guest
Dear Sri Haridasa Siva,

I broadly agree with you. May be people will start drinking liberally as in Punjabi baraats.

Chataram rent is heavy these days, at places going above Rs.1lac.

I strongly feel that vaidika and our present day socialite culture should not be mixed. In fact, there used to 4 day weddings earlier, after which aupasana was carried to the groom's home. That has lost its relevance these days.

A joke: while the window of muhurtam was running out, and bridgroom is posing for cameras and acknowledging greetings from guests, the vadhyar ties the knot in the melee.

We should sit back and try to cut down many of the non-essentials.

With regards,
Swami
 

sarma-61

New member
I am not talking of “Big Fat Indian Wedding”. I am just talking of an urban middle class South Indian Brahmin (SIB) marriage. To my knowledge, Brahmins still have the custom of celebrating marriages for more than 2 days. In the process, lot of time and money is being wasted. Let us first detail how a SIB marriage process goes on (more from the bride’s side).

The bride’s close family occupies the mandap in the evening, say, on day 1. They get ready for the ஜானவாசம் the next day (day 2). The bridegroom’s family (should I say ‘bridegroom gang’, looking at their atrocities during the marriage?) Nowadays they sometimes have a reception that evening. So, the bride who was in her மடிசார் till evening would now go into a Gujarati style pallu saree with make up on her hair, face, etc. So, while she goes through the tradition of ‘புதுப பொண்ணு' and ‘நிச்சயதார்த்தம்’ (I’m referring to the ‘official’ நிச்சயதார்த்தம் on the ஜானவாசம் day), she now undergoes a quick westernization for the ‘reception’. Thanks to the North Indian influence and the party culture backed by the general affluence in the community, even elder women in மடிசார் dance for Bollywood numbers in this reception. (And we claim we are the ‘custodians’ of culture!).

Events on the marriage day (day 3) start much early. Western make-up gives way for an oil bath and turmeric. Straightened hair is now plattered, duly decorated by பூஜடை. The groom who was clad in suits the previous night now goes Gandhian way. We then have ‘காசி யாத்திரை', ‘ஊஞ்சல்’, etc. Do we need them? (It is another issue that men want to go on Kasi yaatirai only AFTER the marriage and not before!). Then comes the main event மாங்கல்ய தாரணம் (Here I pity the father of a ‘bubloo’ girl for he has to keep her on his lap for a length of time). This is followed by ஹோமம் for 2 hours. Though people claim that this ஹோமம் has a lot of benefits, no one – virtually no one- pays attention to it. The poor groom and bride would more often be alone in the hall (guests have either gone to the dining hall or have gone for a sight-seeing). As if it was not enough, we have naagavalli in the evening. I have seen a vulgar display of ‘சீர்வரிசை’ during this time in many marriages. Another interesting feature (though it takes dangerous proportion in a non-Brahmin marriage) is மொய் எழுதுதல். In many marriages, there is a person writing down who presented how much! (For a tit for tat for a marriage in their family?). Even சாந்தி முஹுர்த்தம் is an embarrassment. Nowadays, the boy and girl spend quite a lot of time together before marriage. Hence there is no need for ‘initiation’. But yet it is done with obscene comments from ‘respectable’ elders!

The marriage party continues its work in the morning of day 4 and they leave the venue only by mid morning that day (but only after giving கட்டு சாதம் for groom party). The next one year is spent by the bride side detailing the trouble the groom side caused while the groom side is busy pointing out the ‘omissions and commissions’ of the bride side.

I do understand that a marriage gives a good opportunity for social get-together and for networking. We definitely need to meet our people. But at the same time we need to exercise restraint. Imagine how much money is spent on various rituals and the reception. Food particularly is wasted more than consumed. Bride’s family is in constant stress for only they are responsible for the conduct of marriage (It is better with NBs where at least the financial burden is borne either fully or partly by the groom family). And yet on one is fully satisfied. Can’t we save this money and give it the newly married couple to enable them to start a comfortable living? Can’t we at least share a portion of this time and money for social works or for the less privileged?

In my opinion, no religion or caste can support waste of resources in the name of culture. Let us stand up and shake up the status quo for a better future. I wish to hear from our members.


Lokah samasthaa sukhino bhavantu.

Shri Haridasa Siva sir,

Are you living abroad or in india? because tb marriages have changed much in last few years in my knowledge. second, in nb marriages, even now the entire expense is on girl's side. so which nb community are you referring to? a relative of mine has his daughter married to a nb. both very rich-love marriage, husband & wife in IT earning very high salaries. still full expenses from girl's side only-of course all are rich so does not matter. but that is the reality. this happened four years ago approx.
 
OP
OP
Haridasa Siva

Haridasa Siva

New member
I live in South Africa but visit India every year. I am also in touch regularly with all my friends (both B & NB). I have even attended some marriages in the last 5 years (both sects).

Lokah samasthaa sukhino bhavantu.
 

B.Krishnamurthy

Active member
Dear Mr.Sarma-61,
The practice is not uniform in all 'other than Brahmin communities'.While in Chennai, I stay in NANGANALLUR. The gentleman residing opposite to our flat is not from TB community.I did not ask for his caste.
He hails from SivaGanga district and speak telugu in their house.Otherwise they are Tamilians settled in Tamilnadu for generations.He informed me that in their community, the Boys side will bear all the expenses in conducting the marriage.He refused the offer of 50(fifty percent) share from the Girl's father when he recently performed the marriage of his son.Both the Boy and Girl are in I.T. sector and earning good salary.In fact the Girl's side is richer than the Boy's side.It is another matter that the Girl's father wants to get a PLOT for his daughter so that she and her husband can build a house of their own in Chennai.
In fact IMHO,it is high time someone documents the procedure followed by different communities in Tamilnadu and evolve a economical system of conducting marriages for the benefit of all communities.
There can be some differences in menu for FOOD STUFF as some may be Vegetarians and some Non Vegetarians.
I have attended marriages of different communities in the States where I worked.I found the system is quite simple in Maharastrian marriages and Menu for Food (simple Menu) is almost common in all marriages irrespective of the financial status.
I have read in some magazine that there is a particular sect among 'Punjabhi Sikhs'(they wear their turban in a different style).The marriage is performed in some city in PUNJAB on a single day for all the community.

People from different part of the Globe come there to get married.The fee is Rs.1(one) per couple.It is just like our SAMASTI UPANAYANAM.
Recently I attended a marriage in CHENGLEPET near Chennai.The marriage hall is on the main road near the Railway station.One can walk from the Rly station.Bus facility from TAMBARAM also available.
It was a very Big PLACE with all Modern amenities.Guests were asked to take rest in A/C dining Hall.JAMMAKKALAM was spread on the floor.Everyone was provided with a Pillow,which was as hard as stone.
Someone in their enthusiasm had kept the A/C on.No bedsheets for covering oneself.I found everyone including myself feeling very uncomfortable.Everyone had a feeling that they were sleeping on a ICE BED.
Poor Girl's father would have exhausted his life savings.He was fortunate.He has only one daughter.
 
Last edited:

Nara

Well-known member
..... To my knowledge, Brahmins still have the custom of celebrating marriages for more than 2 days.

[...]

The bride’s close family occupies the mandap in the evening, say, on day 1. They get ready for the ஜானவாசம் the next day (day 2).

From what I have observed, most wedding ceremonies these days require no more than 24 hours in a mandapam. The parties arrive in the afternoon before the wedding day, have a reception in the evening, wedding ceremony next day morning, lunch, and all done. Anything more than this is uncommon.

..... So, the bride who was in her மடிசார் till evening would now go into a Gujarati style pallu saree with make up on her hair, face, etc.
This is obviously incorrect. The first time the bride wears madisar is just before thirumangalya dharanam. The soon-to-be sister-in-laws help wear madisar.

thanks....
 
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