The Sikh Wedding Ceremony

Sikhs are known all over the world for their zest and joie-di-vivre. The Sikh wedding ceremony is an elaborate affair and involves a lot of sanctity. A Sikh wedding ceremony is generally held in a gurudwara. Sikh priests conduct the wedding in the presence of the holy book Granth Sahib.

The wedding ceremony is known by the name of Akhand Path. After the ceremony ends, the bride and the groom are made to seek the blessings of the holy book. The bride does not wear a sari like in a conventional wedding ceremony but instead sports a salwar-kameez. She is also adorned with jewellery including gold bangles, a necklace and earrings. Her dress has to be red in color and contains the embroidery of golden thread. The Holy Book is used for the wedding ceremony as the last guru of the Sikh community declared that after his demise, no one would be given the honor of being a guru and hence their community was supposed to revere this book as the guru. Guru Granth Sahib is an amalgamation of the pious writings composed by various gurus so far.

The groom does not dress up this lavishly and sports a kurta pajama. Since the marriage is done in a traditional style, the groom is supposed to bear a sword as it reflects the martial customs of the Sikh community. However, he arrives at the venue seated on a horse accompanied by a wedding band that churns out some popular tunes using instruments like a trumpet and a drum. A marriage ceremony is more like a festival. Just like in a Hindu marriage, the couple takes seven rounds around the holy flame or the fire pot; here the couple takes four rounds of the granth sahib. The groom is given a chuni in his neck during the ceremony, which is tied to the chunni of the bride’s salwar kameez. The priest also recites some hymns from the holy book in the ceremony as the couple takes rounds of the holy book. The relatives of the newlywed couple shower rose petals on them as the ceremony reaches its end. At the end of the wedding, the priest urges all the wedding guests to stand up as he recites the pious ardas. The priest after the Ardas, declares the couple as groom and bride. The Prasad is then distributed to all the wedding guests. The Hindu ceremonies are organized in the night as per the astrological discretion. Unlike Sikh weddings, they are quite flamboyant with use of music or a DJ during the wedding feast.

Although the Sikh wedding ceremony is held in the day, a reception can be organised in the night to celebrate the wedding.

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