The Jains bestow great significance to marriage. Jain community in India is mainly found in the states of Rajasthan, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Delhi and Utter Pradesh. For the Jain community, marriage is a sophisticated affair and they don’t believe in flashy and extravagant wedding ceremonies. Jain weddings are simple and sober without any grandeur or show-off. For them, marriage is not just a unity of two people, but a social bonding between two families. The whole wedding takes place in three stages namely- pre-wedding rituals, main wedding rituals and post-wedding rituals. Before the wedding ceremony begins, a series of pre-wedding rituals are performed to mark an auspicious start to the wedding. Whether you’re planning to hold a Jain wedding or simple attending one, brush up your knowledge about the simple and sophisticated pre-wedding rituals of a Jain marriage
Lagna Lekhan involves a pooja (prayer) that is organized in the bride’s house. Close friends and family are invited to this occasion and a pandit (priest) decides an auspicious date and time, known as mahurat or lagna, for the wedding ceremony to take place. A Lagna Patrika (letter) indicating the time of the wedding is sent to the boy’s house along with a special type of sweet known as laddu.
Lagna Patrika Vachan
Lagna Patrika Vachan involves the reading out of the Lagna Patrika at the boy’s house. This is done either at the engagement ceremony or at some other auspicious time. It is read out by the priest only after the groom has performed the Vinayakyantra pooja
Sagai or engagement
Sagai or engagement is usually held at the groom’s house. The groom adorns a traditional outfit and wears the Jain headgear, cleans his hands properly and carries out the pooja for Vinayakyantra. Then, the tilak is applied by the brother of the bride on the forehead of the groom and gives him several gifts such as money, sweets, coconut, clothes, a ring and a gold chain. After which, the lagna patrika is read out by the priest. The groom takes the blessings of the elders after all the rituals are performed.
After the engagement, it is another important ritual that is performed prior to wedding. It is usually performed 1-2 days before wedding. It takes place at both the bride and the groom’s house. The priest performs all the religious rituals and customs.
In the Barati ritual, a Barat or a wedding procession is carried out by the groom and his family and friends to the bride’s residence. On the arrival of the Barat, the brother of the bride welcomes the groom and his family and applies tilak or tikka on the forehead of the groom. He is welcomes with money, sweets, clothes and coconut. The groom also applies tilak on bride’s brother forehead and presents a coconut to him.
Thereafter, all the married women in the bride’s house perform a traditional Aarti. All the females of the family sing the Mangal geet (devotional songs).
Hereafter, begin the Wedding rituals of Jain marriage, performed to solemnize the marriage.