Traditional Maharasthrian Wedding

“Simplicity is beautiful”. Therefore, a traditional Maharasthrian wedding is based on this motto. After all, it breathes life into the events that are part of the marriage ceremony. Starting from the pre-wedding rituals like Sakhar Puda and Halad Chadvane to the bride dressed in a beautiful Navari, which is a Maharashtrian saree. In the end, simplicity is an essential part of Traditional Marathi wedding.

Traditional Marathi Wedding
Groom Attire for a Maharasthrian Wedding

Traditional Maharasthrian Pre – Wedding Rituals

1. Pathrika Julavne

As it is prevalent in the Hindu culture, Patrikas or horoscopes of the respective bride and groom are matched to check their wedding possibility according to astrology and holy scriptures. After finding a good match and compatibility, the pandits or family priests then fix up an auspicious date and time (Muhurtha) for the wedding.

2. Sakhar Puda

The engagement ceremony, fondly called Sakhar Puda in Maharashtra as it signified by Sakhar or Sweets. Coconut with Taluk gets exchanged between the maternal Uncles of both bride and groom. The mother of groom applies Haldi-Kumkum (Turmeric and Saffron) on the bride’s forehead and places a rupee coin dipped in wet kum kum on to the forehead of the bride. In the next phase, then proceeds by gifting sweets, jewelry and saree as a mark of acceptance. In the same manner, the bride’s mother follows the same tradition and gifts the groom. Afterwards, engagement rings is exchanged and 5 people from each side sign the document of acceptance of the engagement.

3. Muhurtha Kadhanae

After the engagement, the wedding preparations starts. it begins at an early stage where the bride’s mother sends out invitations to married women or Suhasanies. They must wear Green bangles, called Chuda Chathavanae and the bride is also made to wear green bangles. The bride must wear the bangles up until 15 days after the wedding. They are called to the bride’s house to prepare the turmeric, pulses powder (In other words, Sandage) in mortar and pestle which is used later in the Maharasthrian wedding ceremonies. One of the activities involves Satore making and is distributed among relatives and friends. Rukhvat is made and the baskets of sweets are distributed among friends and families.

4. Shopping and Invitation cards

The wedding card design is decided and the guest list must be prepared. The wedding shopping, called Lagnacha Basta, is done and invitations are given to friends and families. The invitations are first exhanged between the bride and groom family and It is advisable to have well prepared guest list.

5. Kelvan

The Marathi wedding consists of Kelvan, which is in other words, the ritual of worshiping the Kuldevta or family deity. They pray for the bride and groom days prior to the wedding. Meal must be arranged by the close family members and friends for the bride and groom to be.

6. Haldi Chadavane

The turmeric and saffron paste that was prepared by Suhasanies, applied on the bride and groom, using mango leaves. It is applied on the forehead, shoulders, hands and feet of the bride and groom.

Traditional Maharasthrian Wedding Ceremony

Although Maharasthrian wedding have similarities with other traditional Indian wedding rituals, it also have other unique ceremonies.

1. Ganpati, Devdevak and Guarihar Puja

The start of any auspicious Maharasthrian ceremony is incomplete without the worship of Lord Ganesha. Ganpati Pujan performed for a bright future of the couple and then the family worships deity at the wedding pedestal or Mandap. During Guarihar Puja, the bride is all dressed up in her wedding attire and she worships the goddess Parvati for long and prosperous life. Thereafter, the maternal uncle of the bride gives her Akshatha and she offers it to the Goddess. Therefore, tri-devta puja (in other words, praying the 3 gods) is done.

2. Punyavachan and Seemant pujan

Girl’s paternal aunt welcomes the Groom to the pedestal with sweet and Pooja Thali. Later on, every one present at the venue welcomes the groom to the Venue.

3. Antarpat

Furthermore, the groom arrives towards the Mandap for the wedding, surrounded by a curtain. Afterwards, the curtain acts as a cover to obstruct the view of bride sitting in the Mandap from the groom. The curtain has Tilak of swastik on it. The Priest starts chanting Mangalashthakas and the curtain gets removed. This marks the union of the couple as the couple exchanges garlands after that. During this ceremony, all the people nearby shower them with rice grains. The priest end his chant with Subhamangala Savadhan

Bride with Garland in Marathi Wedding
Bridge with Flower garland – Traditional Marathi Wedding

4. Sankalp

Thereafter, the priest chants mantras, vows of the marriage. It denotes that the couple promises to take care of each and prosper in each other’s growth.

5. Kanyadaan

The father of the bride gives her to the groom with love and blessings, through an action offering her hand to his hand and showering rice grains. In return, the groom promises to love and respect his wife forever.  

6. Saptapadhi

A sacred fire ignited in middle of the Mandap. Bride chants three of the seven Mantras and the groom repeats them while sitting beside the sacred fire. The bride chants the fourth mantra alone in silence. Afterwards, the bride and groom worshiped as avatars of Laxmi and Vishnu by their parents. They then tie a turmeric thread on each other’s hands. Later on, the groom ties the Mangalsutra around the neck of bride and vermilion must be put on her head. The bride and groom must encircle the sacred fire seven times followed by Saptapadhi in which all the seven vows are chanted loudly.

7. Karmasamapti

The couple performs the Laxmi Pujan till the fire fades after the Mangalsutra ritual. Then, the groom gives a new name to the bride. Lastly, the comedic event of twisting the ear of groom by the bride’s brother happens as a part of the ritual, to remind him of his marital duties. Then they take everyone’s blessings.

8. Vidhai

Vidai is the farewell of the bride from her parental home to her new home at her husband’s family. Afterwards, the unique procession here is that, the groom carries the Parvati idol from Gaurihar Puja to his house, marking the end of Vidhai

Traditional Maharasthrian Post Wedding rituals

1. Grihapravesh

Afterwards, the family of the groom welcomes the newlywed bride. The feet of the couple is washed with water and milk. Afterwards, the bride pushes down a vessel filled with rice known as Kalash for her entrance in her new home.

2. varat

The new family goes to a mandir to seek blessing. Then after returning, the bride is shown around the house to make her feel comfortable in her new home.

3. Sathya Narayan Pooja

A special pooja performed the remove the turmeric thread tied around the bride and the groom

2. Reception

Afterwards, the final celebration of a Traditional Maharasthrian wedding happens. Reception, and all the guests arrives for meeting with the bride and the groom to give them their blessings. The families of bride and groom gift each other dresses for this event and they must wear it to the respective positions.

Also See : Traditional Kannada wedding