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Telugu marriage is a very sophisticated affair and it includes various ceremonies and rituals which take place a few days before marriage. According to Telugu people, marriage is not an agreement but in their culture wife is considered to be ardhangini which means a part of husband .Wedding for Andhrites means lots of customs, traditions, rituals and long hours of enjoyments for both family and relatives. The match making is often done by some elder person bringing rishta or match in the family for the eligible boy or girl. Telugu people choose their partners within their community unless it’s a love marriage. In a Telugu wedding, costumes are often selected with great care .Brides mostly wears a saree which is usually red in color or sometimes some other bright colors which is accompanied by a lot of heavy jewelry as she is the center of attraction. The grooms wear some traditional south Indian dress like dhoti and some shirt or shervani.
Telugu Wedding Rituals
The Muhurtam means the final day and time of marriage is selected after consulting a family priest and it is also an important ceremony.
This Pendlikoothru or Haldipaspu takes place prior to the wedding and in this ritual a paste of oil and turmeric is applied on the girl and boy at their respective homes by their family members for their purification and after that they take bath and relatives give gifts and sweets to them.
On the day of marriage before the Muhurtam a bath is taken by boy and girl individually which is considered to be holy bath or Mangala Snaanam and after that goddess Gauri is worshiped by the bride and Ganesh Pooja is done by the groom.
In this ceremony, the girl is taken to the wedding place or mandap by her maternal uncles in a basket made of bamboo and there is a curtain sited between bride and groom so that they do not see each other until all the rituals are done. Kanyadaan is basically done by brides father or brother in which they give their daughter or sister to the groom. The priests or ‘pujaris’ recite Vedic mantras during the ceremony. After the marriage rituals are over, Groom’s feet are washed by the bride’s parents as groom is considered to be equivalent to god.
Manglasutra is basically a chain of gold with black beads on it. It is worn by Indian women after marriage. The groom ties it around the bride’s neck and after this bride and groom exchange garlands and shower thalambratu which is uncooked rice mixed with turmeric over each other and this ceremony is called Akshata.
During this ceremony, bride and groom take seven steps or ‘Pheras’ around the ‘homa’ or sacred fire and pujari reciting mantras in each round the bride and groom takes. Just before the pheras, the brides saree is tied to groom’s dhoti or shawl and these pheras are considered to be most important part of the marriage and with the completion of these a marriage is considered to be completed.
There are number of other rituals which are performed a day after the wedding. Once the weeding ceremony concludes, the groom takes his bride to his home and she enters a whole new world of responsibilities (towards her husband and his family both), leaving behind her own small world.
write by Gabriel