Time to take the final exams – attend a Nepali wedding! a grass archway with a tarpaulin wishing Suvakamana (best wishes in Nepali).
Poster’s note: This is a walkthrough of the key elements of a typical Nepali Hindu wedding, which my mother-in-law assembled from several sources and had translated from Sanskrit for me as a non-Nepali bride. It’s a condensed version, with only the crucial steps of what is usually a 3-day process. We hope it may be useful for others involved in a cross-cultural Nepali wedding. Enjoy!
Copyright 2014 Dr. Suniti Acharya. The author authorizes distribution for non-commercial purposes with appropriate attribution, as long as no elements are modified.
In Nepali culture, marriage is a sacrament and is a firm uniting of two souls. It is performed with the involvement of parents and siblings, with a particular role for each member of the family .The ceremony of marriage and the steps involved during the process help to develop a strong bond between the couple, as well as love and goodwill between the families. The affection and duties shown here by the family provide support to each other for years to come.
The ceremony itself takes place under a canopy, where both the bride and the bridegroom take vows around and in front of fire, which is the main witness. The vows contain duties towards each other as well as a code of conduct for various circumstances in life. These vows, as well as rights and duties in the code for both the bride and bridegroom, help them develop a spiritual outlook on life and influence their personalities as life partners, enabling them to take their rightful place in society.
The wedding process consists of three steps.
These steps assume that the groom and the bride and their families don’t know each other very well.
Bibiah Chhine: verbal consent by the father of the bride
The groom’s father and a few relatives come to the bride’s house and formally ask the bride’s father for his daughter’s hand for his own son. On this occasion, the father and introduces his son and the father of the bride also introduces his daughter. This ceremony is very short, and is funny in the sense that both brag about the qualities of their children.
Once the introduction finishes, then the father of the bride gives his verbal consent and offers to send the groom an invitation to the Swyambara (self-selection by the bride; see below).
Invitation to the groom
After the verbal consent, the father of the bride sends an invitation to the groom to attend the Swyambara ceremony of his daughter. This is sent in a formal invitation card, along with a few auspicious items, from the bride’s house to the groom’s house, usually in the afternoon of the day before the wedding.
Saipata (gifts to the bride from the groom’s parents)
After the groom receives the invitation, the parents of the groom send gifts in the care of their relatives to their would-be daughter-in-law. These include jewelry, bridal clothing, cosmetics and several items of food. The bride is seated in a traditional dress to receive the gifts, surrounded by her family and friends. The sister of the groom puts a garland around the neck of the bride, places a tika on her forehead, and hands over the gifts.
Lagan Patrika (Time-table of the ceremony; takes place at the Saipata)
The priest reads out the actual wedding day program with auspicious timings.
Purbanga (at groom’s house, for groom’s family)
This ceremony is performed one day before the wedding and is meant to make peace with the planets. It consists of an elaborate prayer by a priest to inform all the planetary bodies (sun, moon, earth, Jupiter) and the life elements (soil, water, air, fire, and sun) to maintain equilibrium and peace, so that the wedding will be performed in a peaceful and blissful environment.
Note: This ceremony is typically held at a temple and/or a specially erected canopy call a jagge, and is attended by family and close friends. (There is an evening reception, described later, to which friends and acquaintances more broadly are invited.) Also, during the ceremony itself, the groom’s mother is traditionally back at home preparing for the bride’s arrival.
Janti (Procession of the groom)
Accepting the bride’s father’s invitation, the groom comes to the venue with a procession of close friends and relatives, accompanied by music and a band. The groom is dressed in traditional attire.
Welcome of the groom and the party
As soon as the groom’s party arrives, they are welcomed by the bride’s father. Introductions are done. The bride’s father leads the bridegroom and his friends and relatives to appropriate seats at the site of the ceremony.
Vivah homa (Havan)
A sacred fire is lit in the altar under the specially-erected canopy, and the purohit (priest) recites sacred mantras in Sanskrit. Oblations are offered to the fire while saying the prayers. All the wedding rituals will be performed in front or around this sacred fire.
This ceremony gives full authority to the bride to select prospective husband. In olden days, several prospective grooms were invited by the father of the bride, and the girl used to choose one of them based on looks, qualifications and some tests. If the bride likes a prospective groom, she puts a decorative garland around his neck and he reciprocates. The garland is like an engagement ring, indicating the intention to marry.
Kanyadan (Giving away the bride)
Once the bride agrees to marry through the Swyambar ceremony, the bride’s parents offer their daughter in marriage in a solemn ritual called Kanyadan. They wash the hands of the bride and groom with milk and water, purifying them for their new life together. The groom holds his hands open, and the father of the bride holds his open palm over their hands. The mother of the bride then pours water on the hands of the bride and groom. This signifies the giving away of their daughter. After this, the parents of the bride leave the canopy. The symbolic matrimonial knot is tied after this ceremony.
Panigrahana (Acceptance of the bride)
Once the parents give away their daughter, the groom holds his bride’s hands and says:
“I hold your hand in the spirit of devotion; we are both husband and wife. I am the sky, you are the earth. I am the thought, you are the speech. I am the fire and you are the fuel. I am the song, you are the verse; I am ocean, you are the shore. I am the strength but you are the beauty. I am the Purush, and you are my Prakriti.
Let us live together lovingly and bring up our progeny. Let us lead a joyful life of a hundred years. Please ascend this stone and be as firm throughout our married life.
Young lady, I take your hand and promise that I shall that look after your health and happiness. You will survive along with me to very ripe old age.
God has given you to me in our conjugal life, for wealth and for social and household duties, with empathy and kindness.
From god’s grace, the children born out of our deep love and affection will have a long, healthy and good life.
From god’s grace, we shall live with a romantic and beautiful spirit and hear all beautiful things, till we live a hundred years and beyond, loving each other.”
Giving of Suhag chino
The husband marks the part in his wife’s hair with red kumkum powder for the first time. This is called ‘sindoor’, and is a distinctive mark of a married woman (and in a lighter vein can be called a “stop sign”). Another special marriage symbol is the Tilhari, a thick loop made of multiple strings of green glass beads attaching to a large golden ornament, which is worn like a sash. The groom now puts the Tilhari across the bride’s chest.
This stage is one of the most auspicious parts of the ceremony and consists of the couple walking around the fire clockwise four times. It is believed that agni (fire) acts as her custodian for life. Hence appropriate respect is given to agni by carrying out this custom of walking around the fire, during which time God’s blessings and help are sought; loyalty to each other is emphasized and a promise of care for their future children is made.
This is the main part of the ceremony. The couple walks seven steps reciting seven vows. The first is for food, the second for strength, the third for prosperity, the fourth for wisdom, the fifth for progeny, the sixth for health and the seventh for friendship. Details of the vows are as follows:
Groom’s vow: O! beautiful lady, I take this first step with the promise to provide food to you and our family .
Bride’s vow: Whatever food you earn with hard work, I will safeguard it, prepare it, and nourish your friends and family as well.
Groom’s vow: O! beautiful lady, I take this second step with you for the strength of body, character and a peaceful and pleasant home.
Bride’s vow: Yes, I will manage the home according to my ability and reason. Together with you, I promise to keep a home that is healthy and full of happiness.
Groom’s vow: I promise to devote myself to earning a livelihood by fair means, and to discuss and let you manage and preserve our wealth. O! dear lady, I cover this third step with you to thus prosper in our wealth.
Bride’s vow: Yes, I join you in managing our income and expenses. I promise to seek your consent, as I manage our wealth, fairly earned, so it grows and sustains our family,
Groom’s vow: I promise to trust your wisdom in decisions about the household and your choices; I promise to dedicate myself to help our community prosper. This shall bring us social respect. I take this fourth step with you to participate in our world with wisdom and judgment.
Bride’s vow: Yes, I promise to use my wisdom and to strive to make the best possible home for us, and to anticipate and provide necessary things for your worldly life and for the happiness of our family and community.
Groom’s vow: I promise to consult with you and engage you in the maintenance of our source of income; I also promise to contribute to our society. I take this fifth step with you to together grow our assets.
Bride’s vow: Yes, I promise to participate and protect our assets, which are useful for our family and necessary for our happiness.
Groom’s vow: I seek you and only you, to love, to have children, to raise a family, and to experience all the seasons of life.
Bride’s Vow: I will be the means of your enjoyment through life’s seasons; I will cherish you in my heart.
Groom’s vow: Allow us to cover the seventh step together, this promise of friendship. Please be my constant companion and friend.
Bride’s vow: Yes; today, I secured the highest kind of friendship with you. I will remember the vows we just took and adore you forever sincerely with all my heart.
Mahur khuwaune and Hridaya sparsha
This is done to provide some lighter moments after the solemn promises. The couple is asked to share the same bite of a traditional sweet (Mahur khuwaune; “eating sweets”). This is done to promote intimacy. The bride and groom each eat and feed each other three times. In the same lighter vein, the husband and wife also touch each other’s hearts (Hridaya sparsha; “heart touching”), which helps to promote physical closeness.
Completion of the wedding and priest’s blessing
Farewell of the bride
Once the ceremony is finished, the bride is given a farewell by her family (parents and siblings). With this blessing the parents give all their good wishes for their daughter to start a new life as a member of her new family and household.
At this point, the father of the groom assures the father of the bride that he will look after the daughter-in-law as a very dear member of the family and will treat her like his own daughter.
Welcoming the bride
The bridegroom brings the bride home in a specially-decorated car, along with a procession of friends and relatives, accompanied by the musical band.
At the entrance of the house, the couple is welcomed by the groom’s family. The sister of the groom welcomes the bride with a specially decorated tray in which artistic light and flowers are arranged. The sister does “aarti” (light), showing the couple the light from this tray, symbolizing health, happiness and radiance in their lives. She puts tikas on the foreheads of the bride and groom.
After that, the bride steps with her sandaled foot upon 3-5 small mounds of rice arranged in a line, on which small butter lamp are burning, as she enters the house. This ceremony is to regard her as Laxmi, the Goddess of auspiciousness, happiness and prosperity. The symbolism is that now she is the light of the home, so that no other lights are needed. After entering the house ceremonially, the bride and groom go to the prayer room to pray and seek God’s blessing to start their new life. After the prayer, they come to the family room, where all the members of extended family are waiting to receive the bride.
Introduction of the bride and blessings
The bride and the groom sit in a specially designated seat. One at a time, each family member approaches. The bride has put a gold coin in a silver tray and lays it out in front of herself and the groom, as a symbolic gift to each family member. Each time, the couple slightly bows down their head and does Namaste to the family member. That person in turn gives them some money or small piece of jewelry as a welcoming gesture to the bride, and blesses the married couple by putting their hand on the head of the bride and groom. Also, the younger relatives will do Namaste to the bride and she has to bless them.
After the introduction is finished, the bride is a full-fledged member of the family. Then she can go to her room change into lighter clothing, relax and have lunch.
That evening, there will be a reception in the home or a large venue. The bride is dressed again in another set of bridal attire. At the venue the bride and groom are seated in a specially decorated platform. Each guest comes up individually and greets the couple, sometimes forming a line if many guests approach at the same time.
The reception is a very informal event, like an open house. People come and go as they like and rarely stay the whole time. Drinks and snacks are offered on arrival to the guests, and a dinner buffet is set. People come greet the couple, meet parents and friends, drink, dance and socialize, and eat; tables are set but seating is open. There is a DJ playing music throughout the party. After this bride and groom come home and rest in their own room. This is the end of the wedding itself.
Samdhini Bhet and Sora Din Ko Sait
After the formal function of the wedding is completed, there are informal visits meant to bring families together. These are done at times convenient to everyone, but have to be within sixteen days of the wedding.
“Samdhini” is the name of the relationship between the mothers of the bride and the groom. (Similarly, “samdhi” is the relationship between the fathers of the bride and the groom.) The father of the groom has already been greeted by the bride’s father when he accompanied the groom in his procession, but since the groom’s mother stayed home during the ceremony preparing to welcome the bride, the two mothers have not had a formal chance to meet as samdhinis. Therefore, in samdhini bhet, the mothers visit each other’s households and exchange small gifts.
Sora din ko sait
In this activity, the bride and groom visit homes of the senior relatives who welcomed to bride and gave her some token gifts. The bride and groom visit and reciprocate with some small token gifts as a mark of respect. In this way, the new bride has a chance to know the extended family as well, broaden her social circle, and integrate with important members of the groom’s family.
NEPAL'S FIRST WEDDING MAGAZINE. ISSUE 1, WINTER 2011. WEDDING BELLS. My Bridal. Wish List. Issue 1. Winter 2011. Rs 200. Diamonds. A Girl's Best.
It was around this time of deep unhappiness that Devna first heard from a neighbour that VSO was looking for families to take part in a new project called One Community, One Family. It would address family disharmony, while providing training and start-up kits for participant families to start small businesses.
Devna was initially sceptical about taking part – couldn’t she get in trouble and bring shame to her family if she shared how she really felt?
When she learnt that she’d be taking part in a group of 50 other young wives, in a confidential setting, her worries subsided a little and she agreed to take part:
“I felt a bit lighter than before. I felt, ‘Finally, there is someone here to listen to our problems, and our story’. I realised, ‘it’s not just me who faces violence, who has problems. There are lots of women who are also in my situation.’
Devna took part in 20 weeks of training with the other wives, which covered topics ranging from conflict resolution, to her legal rights, to nonviolent communication. The wives were given referral cards with the details of organisations that can step in if they face violence or abuse.
“I showed it to my husband. I told him about gender-based violence and my rights. He became scared by the stories of men who have been punished for mistreating their wives. Then he realised there is someone that cares about me, someone that will listen to me!”
2015 Jun 9 - by NadyaNow that you've been sufficiently introduced to Nepali weddings, let's start from the top with Nepali wedding engagements!
Photo by William Walker Photography
Nepali Wedding: Introduction
Nepali Wedding Engagement - You're Here!
Nepali Pre-Wedding Traditions
Nepali Wedding Traditions
Nepali Post-Wedding Traditions
Nepali Bridal Attire and Jewelry
Nepali Groom’s Attire
Nepali Wedding Food and Desserts
Nepali wedding engagements are incredibly varied between the Hindu and Buddhist communities. In the Buddhist tradition, marriage is not considered sacred and is regarded as a social agreement between the two people being married. As such there is no need to formalize the arrangement by filling out wedding certificate forms or even arranging a ceremony.
Largely Nepali Buddhist weddings take place whenever the couple and the local temple agree to have it. The couple may choose to have an engagement party or ceremony before but it is not required in Buddhist tradition. Conversely, Nepali Hindu wedding traditions require a specific dates and times for the wedding to take place.
It is common for modern Nepali Buddhist couples, especially those living in the diaspora, to hold a small engagement ceremony during which they exchange vows. Often they begin by reciting prayers and end with the couples' families blessing and congratulating them.
Photo by William Walker Photography
The Nepali Hindu engagement ceremony is called the Tika-tala. This roughly translates to the exchange of good wishes and promises through the tikaa, the crimson marking made between the eyes during an aarti.
While the Nepali Hindu engagement ceremony kicks off the wedding, it remains generally low-profile with a simple meeting of the bride and groom. The groom usually comes to the bride's house accompanied by his friends and family. The actual ceremony involves the simple exchange of a promise between the bride and the groom to get married. This is usually solidified with spoken vows. After that the couple agree on their wedding date.
Among the Newari people, a lami, or mediator, goes between the girl's and boy's houses showing both families pictures of their child's future spouse. If both parents agree, the lami takes the horoscopes of both the bride and groom to the astrologer to be compared.
Much like Hindu weddings, Nepali weddings rely heavily on auspicious dates and star alignments. The Muhurat, the date and time of the wedding ascertained by a priest consulting the horoscopes of the bride and groom, ensures that the couple is blessed in their marriage.
Photo by William Walker Photography
Because Buddhist and Hindu Nepali engagement traditions differ so greatly, modern Nepali couples, who are not always from the same faith, will pick and choose what to include. The above couple comes from both Hindu and Buddhist tradition so we see both a Buddhist priest and the tikaa in their engagement ceremony.
Now that we've gotten all the formalities of the engagement out of the way, it's on to the pre-wedding traditions.
Wedding Wishes For a Bride and Groom. Size: 9 X 6 (approx in inch); Envelop included; This exact card guaranteed in perfect condition.
तपाईंको राम्रो काम, आफ्नो सपना पूरा गर्न नजिक हुनुहुन्छ ! तपाईंले कडा मेहनत गर्नुभयो र तपाईले जे गर्नुभएको छ कि तपाईले कमाउनु भएको छ । तपाईं एक बुद्धिमान हुनुहुन्छ, तपाईं भविष्यमा महान काम गर्नुहुनेछ । मलाई तपाईँमा बिश्वास छ । बधाई छ!
Tapainko ramro kama, aphno sapana pura garna najika hunuhunchha! Tapainle kada mehanata garnubhayo ra tapaile je garnubhaeko chha ki tapaile kamaunu bhaeko chha. Tapain eka buddhimana hunuhunchha, tapain bhavisyama mahana kama garnuhunechha. Malai tapainma bisvasa chha. Badhai chha!
तपाईंको ड्रि्री केवल पेपरको टुक्रा होइन । यो पखेटाहरूको एक सेट हो जुन तपाईले उडान गर्न र क्षितिज छोडेर तपाईंको जीवन भनिने नयाँ संसारमा पुग्नु हुनेछ । बधाई छ ।
Tapainko digri kevala peparako tukra hoina. Yo pakhetaharuko eka seta ho juna tapaile udana garna ra ksitija chhodera tapainko jivana bhanine nayan sansarama pugnu hunechha. Badhai chha.
सबैभन्दा राम्रो शब्दहरू जसले जीवनको लागि दुइ हृदयहरूलाई बाँध्छ, म बधाई दिन्छु । तपाईंको वैवाहिक दिनको लागि बधाई छ।
Sabaibhanda ramro sabdaharu jasale jivanako lagi dui hridayaharulai bandhchha, ma badhai dinchhu. Tapainko vaivahika dinako lagi badhai chha.
तपाईंहरु त्यस्ता सुन्दर दम्पती हुनुहुन्छ, जसलाई शुभकामनाहरु दिन हामी तयार छौं !
Tapainharu tyasta sundara dampati hunuhunchha, jasalai subhakamanaharu dina hami tayara chhaun!
यो विशेष दिनको अद्भुत जोडीलाई बधाई छ । यो दिन माया र हँसीसँग भरिएको होस् । आगामी सबै दिनहरु प्रसन्न रहोस् ।
Yo visesa dinako adbhuta jodilai badhai chha. Yo dina maya ra hansisanga bharieko hos. Agami sabai dinaharu prasanna rahos.
यो दिन चम्किलो क्षणको सुरुवातसँगै एक जोडीको लागि सदाको लागि शुभकामना छ ! तपाईंको विवाह भयो, बधाई छ।
Yo dina chamkilo ksanako suruvatasangai eka jodiko lagi sadako lagi subhakamana chha! Tapainko vivaha bhayo, badhai chha.
विवाह सधैं सुखद समय मात्र होइन। यसले धेरै आशा तथा खुशीहरु बोकेको पनि हुन सक्छ । अनि म आशा गर्दछु कि तपाईहरुको पारस्परिक प्रेमले सबैलाई पराजित गरोस् । बलियो हुनुहोस् र कहिल्यै नडराउनुहोस् । शुभ विवाह!
Vivaha sadhain sukhada samaya matra hoina. Yasale dherai asa tatha khusiharu bokeko pani huna sakchha. Ani ma asa gardachhu ki tapaiharuko parasparika premale sabailai parajita garos. Baliyo hunuhos ra kahilyai nadaraunuhos. Subha vivaha!
तपाईलाई थाहा छ कि तपाईं संयुक्त रूपमा बलियो हुनुहुन्छ, संयुक्त रूपमा तपाईं एक हुनुहुन्छ। एक राम्रा विवाहित जीवन तपाईको अगि छ!
दिनहरू अगाडि स्थायी आनन्दको साथ पैक गरिनेछ । दुवैलाई बधाई छ।
Tapailai thaha chha ki tapain sanyukta rupama baliyo hunuhunchha, sanyukta rupama tapain eka hunuhunchha. Eka ramra vivahita jivana tapaiko agi chha! Dinaharu agadi sthayi anandako satha paika garinechha. Duvailai badhai chha.
यी जीवनको सबैभन्दा खुशी बिस वर्षभएको छ किनभने तपाईले उनको साथ जीवन साझा गर्नुभयो । तपाईं खुशी पाउनुभएको छ, र त्यहाँ कुनै पनि विकल्प ठाउँ छैन कि यो भन्दा बढी अन्त कतै पाउनुहुन्थ्यो होला । जीवन पूरा गर्न धन्यवाद छ । विवाहको वर्षाँठको शुभकामना!
Yi jivanako sabaibhanda khusi bisa varsabhaeko chha kinabhane tapaile unako satha jivana sajha garnubhayo. Tapain khusi paunubhaeko chha, ra tyahan kunai pani vikalpa thaun chhaina ki yo bhanda badhi anta katai paunuhunthyo hola. Jivana pura garna dhanyavada chha. Vivahako varsanthako subhakamana!
यो तपाईंको जुनून, र्समर्पण, र उत्साह आउन धेरै सफलताको एक सानो मान्यता हो। यस विशेष क्षणको लागि बधाई छ साथी।
Yo tapainko jununa, rsamarpana, ra utsaha auna dherai saphalatako eka sano manyata ho. Yasa visesa ksanako lagi badhai chha sathi.
तपाईंले सधैं महानताको चिन्ह देखाउनुभयो। अन्तमा, तपाईंले संसारमा देखाउनुभएको छ, तपाई सक्षम हुनुहुन्छ। यो अत्यन्तै महत्वपर्ूण्ा चरणमा कोसेढुङ्गामा सफल भएकोमा बधाई छ।
Tapainle sadhain mahanatako chinha dekhaunubhayo. Antama, tapainle sansarama dekhaunubhaeko chha, tapai saksama hunuhunchha. Yo atyantai mahatvaparuna charanama kosedhungama saphala bhaekoma badhai chha.
राम्रो काम! यस्तो कठिन समयको माध्यमबाट जान्न सजिलो छैन कि तपाई तपाई एक विजेता हुनुहुन्छ । बधाई साथी, तपाईंले यो गर्नुभयो।
Ramro kama! Yasto kathina samayako madhyamabata janna sajilo chhaina ki tapai tapai eka vijeta hunuhunchha. Badhai sathi, tapainle yo garnubhayo.
तपाईंको नयाँ भाग्यमा अभिभावकहरूको रूपमा बधाई छ! यो सबभन्दा कठिन छ, तर तपाईंले पहिल्यै भन्दा कम क्षति मा धेरै लाभ प्राप्त गर्नुहुनेछ ।
Tapainko nayan bhagyama abhibhavakaharuko rupama badhai chha! Yo sababhanda kathina chha, tara tapainle pahilyai bhanda kama ksati ma dherai labha prapta garnuhunechha.
हाम्रो बच्चा पर्ूण्ातया रमणीय देखिन्छ । म तिनीहरूलाई ती सबैको साथ बढ्नको लागी रोक्न सक्दिन जुन हाम्रो नजिक हुनेछ । बधाई छ!
Hamro bachcha parunataya ramaniya dekhinchha. Ma tiniharulai ti sabaiko satha badhnako lagi rokna sakdina juna hamro najika hunechha. Badhai chha!
बधाई छ! तपाईं एक दस वर्षो अनुभवमा सेट अप गर्दै हुनुहुन्छ जहाँ तपाईं त्यस्ता सफल मार्गहरू बनाउनुभयो । वर्तमानमा, राम्रो समय हो । होइन र ?
Badhai chha! Tapain eka dasa varso anubhavama seta apa gardai hunuhunchha jahan tapain tyasta saphala margaharu banaunubhayo. Vartamanama, ramro samaya ho. Hoina ra ?
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This post is about 2075 Teej Quotes Wishes SMS in Nepali language. teej quotes in Nepali, teej SMS in Nepali. Teej is observed 4 her husband's good fortune.