Parsi weddings are different from usually over the top, flashy Indian weddings. The Parsi community prefers to celebrate the ’lagan’ (marriage) in a simple style with a focus on traditions and rituals. To set the tone of a Parsi Wedding, blooming hues of red and white are used. These customs are interesting to know about as they are an integral part of the cultural kaleidoscope which is India. Here is a look at the lovely Parsi Wedding Rituals.
The Rupia Peravanu Ritual – Parsi Wedding Rituals
Rupia Peravanu is a type of Engagement Ceremony. It is the first ceremony of the Parsi wedding and involves the groom’s family (not more than nine people) visiting the bride’s house. She is given blessings with silver coins, coconut and other gifts. The bride’s family then adds more silver coins to the bag given by the groom’s family. And then they proceed to the groom’s house to reciprocate the gesture. The house is decorated with chalk designs and garlands during this ceremony. It’s mostly the women of the house who take part in this ritual.
2. The Madhavsaro Ritual – Parsi Religion Marriage Rituals
In this ritual, both the families plant a tree in a pot and keep it on the main entrance of their respective houses. This pot is positioned there for about a week after the wedding and is watered every day. This sapling is a symbol of fertility. Later it is removed from the entrance and planted at a permanent place.
3. The Adarni Ritual – Parsi Wedding Ceremony
In this ritual, the bride is visited by her to-be in-laws and family with gifts, jewellery and clothes. They are served delicacies by the bride’s family, traditionally including Sev and Dahi, Boiled Egg and Bananas.
4. The Supra Nu Murat – Zoroastrian Matrimonial Rituals
Supra Nu Murat is the equivalent of the colourful Haldi ceremony. ‘Supra’ is a special bundle of betel nut, betel leaf, dates, turmeric and a piece of coconut. It is pounded in turns by five married women sitting sit in a circle. This Supra paste is then applied to the groom and the bride by their respective family members.
The Nahan Ritual – Parsi Wedding Rituals
This ritual is the one which cleanses the body and souls of the bride and groom and wards of the evil eye. They take a holy bath and start getting ready for the main wedding ceremony.
More On Haldi Ceremony: Top Haldi Songs List Hindi, Marathi, Punjabi to Make Everyone Get Up and Dance!
5.1 Wedding Attire
The bride wears a white ornate silk or chiffon Saree, traditionally known as the Parsi Gara. These Sarees are passed down from one generation to the next. They are aesthetic and admirably comfortable to wear. The saree is delicately used to cover the head with one end during the ceremony. Simple Jewellery is adorned in addition to red bangles gifted by the in-laws. The groom’s wardrobe consists of Dagli (white overcoat) and Fetah (long black traditional hat). Black formal shoes teamed with a simple white Kurta and shawl complete the attire of the groom.
6. Achoo Michu – Parsi Religion Marriage Rituals
This is the first main marriage ritual. A stage is built in a fire temple and the bride’s mother takes raw eggs, coconut, rice and dates to ward off her son-in-law against the evil eye. She then sprinkles water on his either side to complete this Parsi wedding ritual. Afterwards, the groom’s mother does the same for her daughter-in-law.
7. Var Behendoo – Hand Dipping Ceremony
The groom is presented with a water pot or ‘chambooru’ and he dips his hand into it. He then drops a silver coin beside the pot. This ceremony is believed to purify the hands of the groom
8. The Ara Antar Ritual – Parsi Wedding Rituals
In this ritual, the bride and groom sit facing each other and a cloth is hung between them. A priest circles them with a thread seven times. After that, they are supposed to throw rice at each other. The one who throws first is believed to rule the household!
More on Indian Rituals: Indian Wedding Rituals that are Strange: Part 2 (Funny)
9. Marriage Ceremony
The main marriage ceremony is a solemn affair. It starts with Lighting the Spiritual flame. The couple sits beside each other and two lamps are placed on either side of them. It signifies the couple’s spiritual union and burns throughout the ceremony.
The wedding ceremony is carried on by the priests and this part is called ‘Payvand-e-Zanshooi’ which is Persian for ‘joining through matrimony’. The priest makes the couple utter the ‘Payman’ or vows in Persian which consists of leading a life with honesty, mutual respect and let go of negativity. Then they are asked if they wish to get married and the couple says “PasandeKardum” to seal the deal. The couple exchanges wedding rings now and is considered married.
10. Hath Borvanu & Pag Dhovanu – Parsi Religion Marriage
Hath Borvanu is another Parsi wedding ritual which is a profitable one for the bride’s sister. She asks for ransom from the groom for untying the knot and washing the couple’s hands. She then threatens to pour milk playfully on the groom’s shoes as well so that the groom can’t leave. Which means, another opportunity to get some money! Similarly, Pag Dhovanu involves the washing of the groom’s turban.
Reception Party – Parsi Wedding Ceremony
The lavish affair of the Parsi Wedding comes to conclusion with a delightful reception party hosted by the groom’s side. The couple is invited to the dance floor to their first dance, and the rest of the people join in later for a cheerful dance.
The delicious food menu consisting of Parsi delicacies like Patra-ni-Macchi, Pulao-dal, Alima-Murgh and Sali-Na-Ghosht. The custom of Dahikoomron is also celebrated in which involves the bride and groom eating from the same plate. The night ends with the couple going home and the mother of the groom performing the Achu Michu ritual once again.
The Parsi Wedding is full of unique customs and tradition and we hope you enjoyed learning about them. Have we missed anyone off the Parsi Wedding rituals? Tell us in the comments below!