Arya Samaj Marriage Retuels Vivah Sanskar or marriage has the greatest significance among the sixteen ‘Sanskaras’ or sacraments of Vedic origin. Arya Samaj wedding rites originate from the Vedas. They are devoid of idol worship. The rituals not only bind the bridegroom and the bride in marital bond of love and respect for each other but also lay down a code of conduct towards the family and society of which they are an integral part. Every phase of the ceremony is infused with symbolic meaning and spiritual significance.
13 Steps of a Vedic Marriage Ceremony in Arya Samaj Marriage Retuels:
1- Varat Satkar : When Reception of the bridegroom and his kinsmen at the entrance gate of the wedding hall where the officiating priest chants a few mantras and the bride’s mother blesses the groom with rice and trefoil and applies tilak of vermilion and turmeric powder.
2- Madhuparka Vidhi :
this ritual the bride offers ‘madhuparka’ to the groom. Madhuparka is a combination of honey, ghee, and curds. Before partaking of this madhuparka, the groom sprinkles it in all the directions, expressing his desire to offer hospitality to guests who may come to his home from all directions. It also expresses the determination of the bride to turn any sourness in their relationship into sweetness.
3- Kanya Dan : common language it is called ‘kanyadaan’. It is an emotional moment when the bride is given away in marriage to groom by her parents. The groom avers that he is happily accepting her hand.
The formal pledge: The bride and groom addressing the people witnessing the marriage ceremony state that their hearts will be united just as water from two separate glasses when poured in a bowl becomes one. Similarly, their hearts will be united and never to be differentiated.
4- Vivah-Homa : the sacred fire ceremony ascertaining that all auspicious undertakings are begun in an atmosphere of purity and spirituality. HOMA is performed by chanting of mantras, oblations to fire and prayers to God to bless the couple.
5- Panigrahan Sanskar : The bridegroom hold the bride’s right hand for trust, co-operation and promises to keep her happy by giving her marital status of a wife in his life.
The bride and groom go round the fire once and stand in their respective places. The groom chants a mantra defining their relationship in a poetic language.
6- Pratigna-Karan : The couple walk round the fire, the bride leading, and take solemn vows of loyalty, steadfast love and life-long fidelity to each other.
7- Shila Rohan : The bride places her brother put sister right foot on a piece of rock. This ritual is for steadfastness in married life.
8- Laja Homa and Mangal Fera
: The bride offers puffed rice or laja as oblation to fire with special prayers for the longevity and well being of the groom. It is followed by four ‘pheras’ or ‘pradikshana’ round the fire in which the bride holds the bride’s hand and does the parikrama. This symbolizes his taking the bride to his own house.
Tying the sacred marital knot denotes binding their life together forever.
(Saptapadi or taking seven steps together by the bride and groom which are the seven vows taken by them to make their marriage sanctified and a success.)
First Step is for Isha – For fulfillment of the material needs of their family and for prosperity.
Second Step is for Urje – to develop physical, mental and spiritual strength.
Third Step is for Rayasposha – to acquire wealth by diligent and righteous means and to spend it wisely.
Fourth Step is Mayobhav – to develop harmonious relationship and be happy.
Fifth Step is for Praja – progeny –to excel in raising strong and virtuous children.
Sixth Step is for Ritu – for togetherness in all times and compatibility.
Seventh Step is for sakha –friendship – to be dependable and faithful to each other and life long companionship.
9- Suryavalokan : Prayers to Surya or Sun.
10-Hridaya Sparsh Mantra : bride and groom placing their right hand on each other’s heart avowing to be loyal to each other.
11- Sindoordaan : Applying of vermillion powder by the groom in the parting line of his bride’s hair to signify their sanctified marital relationship.
12- Blessings to the couple : showering of flowers on the couple for their happiness.
13- Last vidhi Arya Samaj Marriage Retuels Feeding each other with sweets symbolizing their sweet relationship.