Hello from IWA Team,
Today, we’re excited to give our valued readers details about traditional Islamic or Muslim Wedding.
Muslim Wedding Program
A Muslim wedding often goes on for five days, and this time is filled with fun and festivity. The wedding ceremonies are conducted at a time convenient for the bride and the groom as well as their families.
Legan Chir and other ceremonies
After the wedding date is finalized, the groom’s father sends a cash present to the bride’s father.This gifting of money is known as Legan chir. The next two days are spent visiting each other’s houses. When the groom’s family visits the bride’s house and vice versa, each family takes along a plate full of mehendi paste, while the children of the family take candles, which they light before they enter the house. The family serves a lavish meal, and people sing songs to tease the boy and girl.
This ceremony takes place on the third day and is equivalent of the haldi or turmeric ceremony. After the bride is anointed with turmeric paste gifted by the groom’s family, she is accompanied by a married friend at all times. The bride wears yellow sans any jewelry for this ceremony.
A mehendi ceremony is held on the eve of the wedding. The bride cannot step out of her home till she gets married. Another interesting feature about this wedding ritual is that the cousins of the bride apply a dot of mehendi paste on the groom’s palm.
The groom is accompanied by his family members, relatives and friends as he sets course for the bride’s home. When the glittering procession arrives at the wedding venue, a band of musicians play some popular songs as a sign of welcome and to announce their arrival. The groom and the bride’s brother drink sherbet together, while the bride’s sisters play pranks and slap/tickle the guests with floral batons.
Nikaah or a Muslim Wedding
The Nikaah takes place on the fourth day.The ceremonies can be conducted either at a convenient place like a wedding hall or at the home of the bride or the groom. A Maulvi, who is an Islamic law officer, presides over the ceremonies. He appoints two Gawah or witnesses on the groom’s behalf. He also requests the two Walis (the respective fathers) to be present during the ceremony. The logic behind this is that the father of the bride has to make sure that her rights are protected, while the father of the groom makes sure that his rights are endorsed.
Men and women are seated at different places in traditional Muslim communities. While the women sit in the Zenana, the men are seated in the Mardaana. The Maulvi then reads verses from the Holy Quran.The wedding is solemnized after the Ijab-e-Qubul ceremony, which means proposal and acceptance. The groom proposes and the bride has to accept. In Muslim weddings, this act of consent by both parties is very important.
The elderly members from both families take the decision on the mehar or the nuptial gift. The groom’s family is supposed to gift the bride a sum of money – this is a compulsory ritual. The Maulvi asks if the bride has consented to the wedding and if she will accept the mehar. After receiving a response in the affirmative, he reads out the marriage contract to the groom. The groom has to give his consent to the contract, after which the marriage contract or the Nikaah-nama has to be signed by the groom, bride, the Walis, the Maulvi as well as the witnesses.
After the contract is signed, the Maulvi delivers a sermon. This is known as Khutba and it comprises of verses from the Quran. The meaning of the sermon is explained to everyone and the couple is told about their duties towards each other.
Blessing the Groom
Once the wedding ceremony is over, the older women shower him with their blessings, and he in turn, salaams them. All the guests at the wedding pray for the newly wed couple and wish them a happy married life.
Dinner, prayers and Aarsimashaf
Dinners at Muslim weddings are lavish and delectable. The spread generally includes several meat dishes that are cooked according to traditional recipes. Men and women eat separately. Post-dinner, the newly wed couple sits together for the very first time. A dupatta or shawl is placed over their heads as they read prayers from the Quran as directed by the Maulvi. The couple can look at each other only through a mirror.
This is like Vidaai, where the girl leaves her parental home to travel to her new home. It is an emotional event, where the parents bid farewell to their daughter with a heavy heart. The father of the bride places her hand in the groom’s and asks him to take good care of the girl.
Welcoming the bride
When the bride reaches her in-laws’ home, the mother-in-law holds the Quran, the Holy Islamic book over the girl’s head as she steps into the house. This marks the auspicious beginning of the couple’s life together in that house.
On the fourth day after the marriage, the bride must visit her parental home. This auspicious day is known as Chauthi. The girl’s parents receive her with great joy – this is her first visit to their home in her new role as a married woman.
Valimah is the wedding reception that the groom’s family hosts after the wedding or the Nikaah. It is a happy and festive occasion, where both the families celebrate the new union along with their friends and relatives.
Thanks for visiting,