The Hindu Wedding is a sacrament. It is full of various rituals and customs as per traditions of society. But the most important ritual during wedding is the saptapadi and a Hindu wedding will be incomplete without it.
In Hindu weddings, the groom and bride takes seven vows while they move around the sacred fire. Following are the main features of these seven vows.
Importance of Seven Vows
According to Hindu wedding traditions, the seven vows made with each other by the bride and groom bind them for the lifetime. These vows are made regarding happy married life of the couple. They are in such nature that may be followed easily and no complication at all is involved in observing them. The couple not following the seven vows commits sin.
Witness of Seven Vows
The fire has very important place in Hindu mythology and is worshiped as a God. All the worships end in havan when various items such as ghee, scented sandal wood and other sacred items are offered to the fire. The priest chant holy mantra during havan. During marriage also, the sacred fire is lighted. The sacred fire is witness of the marriage between the bride and groom. The bride and groom take the seven vows of marriage in front of this sacred fire.
Procedure of Seven Vows
The saptapadi is also known as the seven vows. The priest orders the bride and the groom to make seven rounds about the sacred fire. The bride and the groom start together move around the sacred fire. They make the seven rounds around and in the meantime the priest keeps on chanting the holy mantras which is nothing but the seven vows of marriage. The groom as well as the bride acknowledges these seven vows of marriage.
Contents of Seven Vows
During Hindu Weddings in India, following are the vows taken by the groom and the bride.
# Vow No. 1
The groom asks the bride to offer food and be helpful all the times and in return he would cherish her and provide her welfare and happiness for the children. The bride promises that she would be responsible for the home and household chores.
# Vow No. 2
The groom asks the bride to be with him in protecting house and children. The bride promises to be by his side as his courage and strength. She would rejoice in his happiness. In return, she asks to love her solely.
# Vow No. 3
The groom prays for wealthy, prosperous, education of our children for their long life. The bride promises be faithful and chaste to her husband for the whole life and ignore all other men in her life.
# Vow No. 4
The groom prays for noble and obedient children. The bride promises for joy in all the respects.
# Vow No. 5
The groom asks to be best friend and well-wisher. The bride promises to love and cherish him for the whole life. She says to be with him in all the happiness as well as sorrows and fulfills all the wishes.
# Vow No. 6
Both the bride and groom vows for joy and peace and be together.
# Vow No. 7
In last vows, they become one. Taking God as witness, they promise each other for love, honor and cherish.