Nair matrimony does not have elaborate ceremonies i.e. they are short and simple. They have less number of rituals even lesser religious compulsions. The wedding usually takes places at a nearby temple, bride’s residence or a place that is convenient for both the ends.
The parents of the respective girl and boy share the horoscopes and if they match, they decide upon an auspicious date by consulting the family astrologer. This is an extremely important task and the reason behind is to check the compatibility of the to-be couple.
The horoscopes which have been matched by the astrologer are exchanged during this ceremony and after this the rings are exchanged by the boy and the girl. The respective families present gifts to the other sides. This ceremony remarks the confirmation of the auspicious occasion- marriage.
This ceremony is conducted at the respective houses of the bride and the groom a day before marriage, which includes only family members and relatives and an elaborate feast is organised. The bride is made to wear silk sari and gold jewelry. The two are made to sit facing the east after which they seek the blessings of their elders.
This is the most celebrated ceremony at the Nair’s wedding, which is conducted at the bride’s house. The bride’s aunts apply mehendi on the bride’s hands.
Nair’s weddings are preferred to be conducted at the ancestral house of the bride. But these days it’s more convenient to choose a venue that is near to both the parties.
The attire of the bride is completely gorgeous. She is made to wear the traditional white sari with golden border which stands as an integral part of her beauty. She also wears jewelry right from head to toe made up of pure gold. Other women of both the families wear traditional silk saris to look their best. However, wedding rituals include:
Both the bride and the groom at their respective homes just before the wedding give dakshina to their elders and in turn they are blessed. After this, they leave for the venue.
The groom is welcomed to the venue by the bride’s family. The bride’s father washes groom’s legs and a group of girls accompany the groom to the mandapa with diyas in their hands. He is asked to be seated on a wooden plank to the right of the canopy. After this the bride is brought to the mandapam by her aunts and is made to sit next to the groom.
The marriage ceremony begins by the priest who recites vedic mantras after which the couple walks around the holy fire. Then, the groom ties mangalsutra given by his father around the neck of the bride at the beating of the drums.
The groom now gifts a set of clothes to the bride and accepts it as his responsibility to take care of her needs.
After this the bride and the groom exchange garlands accepting each other as life partners. Then they are escorted to a room where they take blessing of their elders. A huge feast is organized for all the family members, distant relatives and friends.
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At an auspicious time, the bride enters her new house and the elder women take her aarthi to cast of evil. She steps in with her right foot and the house is lit with lamps and diyas. The bride receives gifts and blessings including gold from guests.
Grihapravesh ends the essential ceremonies of traditional Nair matrimony. Even if these weddings do not contain elaborated rituals, they still carry immense importance.