Bengal is known not just for its rich cultural heritage, but its people are also known to be extremely creative and passionate. All this can be seen clearly when one attends a Bengali wedding. These weddings are planned and organized in an elaborate manner and last for many days. Numerous pre and post Bengali wedding rituals are performed and each one has a special significance and is done with a lot of sensitivity.
The pre wedding functions, typical in an Indian Bengali wedding, are as follows:
This ceremony marks the beginning of the wedding festivities. The bride and the groom are blessed by each other’s family and offered gifts in the firm of jewellery etc.
Conducted just a day before the wedding, this ceremony is basically a pooja which is done for seeking the blessings of the ancestors of the bride as well as the groom.
Ai Buddho Bhaat
This ceremony involves an extremely lavish dinner at the bride’s place, the night before the wedding ceremony.
According to the Bengali marriage traditions, the bride and the groom have to sit on piris during the Bengali marriage ceremony. These piris are purchased one day before or on the wedding day and decorated by friends and relatives of the bride.
On the day of the wedding, both the bride and the groom are taken to a nearby pond by females of their house, and a pitcher of water is brought back with the blessings of goddess Ganga with which they are bathed separately.
This ceremony is common in all Indian weddings and involves putting of turmeric on the face and body of the bride and the groom in order to get them ready for the wedding.
Besides the above rituals, some other small ceremonies like Shakha Paula, Gae Halud Tattva, Adhibas Tattva, Kubi Patta, Snan, and dressing up of the bride are other pre wedding rituals performed as per Bengali traditions.
Post Wedding Functions
Just as grand and traditional the pre wedding and wedding functions are, the post wedding ceremonies of a Bengali wedding are also quite elaborate.
A grand feast and reception is organized by the bride’s family, after which the newly wed spend their first night in the bride’s house only.
This is the farewell ceremony of the bride from her maternal house.
This ceremony marks the entry of the bride in the groom’s house.
The bride and the groom welcomed in the groom’s house by the pouring of water beneath their vehicle by the females of the house.
Bharan Poshan And Bahubhaat
A grand welcome meal is prepared for the couple at the groom’s place.
The bride and the groom are not allowed to even look at each other.
This ceremony is conducted when the newlywed couple visits the bride’s house for the first time.
Phool Sajja And Suhaag Raat
On the third night after the wedding, the couple is adorned with flowers and allowed to spend time together, alone in their room.
The next morning, the groom Places Sindoor on the bride’s forehead while looking in the mirror. They also revisit the mandap and seek blessing of Sun God.