Wednesday, 4 January 2012

Meaning Of Saat Pheras In Indian Wedding

Taking the pheras simply means going around the fire. Amongst Hindus it is customary for the couple getting married to go around the fire seven times in a slow formal walk. Sikhs walk around the Guru Granth Sahib.
According to religious texts, it is customary to circumnavigation the fire four times. However, many priests now have it done seven times, confusing this with saptpadi, which is separate rite. This ceremony fulfils religious aspects of the marriage and is symbolic of the irrevocable faith a couple must have in each other.

During the ceremony the couple walk around the fire slowly amidst chants of wedding mantras. The two promise that in the presence of Agnidev (the god of fire), parents, relatives and friends they are getting religiously bound in mutual relationship. They assert that they are morally bound and shall fulfil their promise to the best of their abilities.

This ceremony is performed before the fire since it symbolizes energy or Surya, the sun. Surya is the soul of the living world and a form of Lord Vishnu. Therefore, when one walks around the fire, it is symbolic of going around with God as witness. Fire has the potential of destroying one’s sins through burning. Therefore, marriage is conducted before the fire.
The couple walks clockwise. In the first four rounds, the bride leads and the groom follows. In the final three, the groom leads and the bride follows. The priest reads mantras during each round. At the end of each round the couple halt, repeat the Gayatri mantra, and offer prayers to the fire. During this ceremony the bride leads four times and the groom thrice. It indicates that in all households matters she shall lead, since she is more experienced in this sphere. In professional or vocational fields, the man shall lead because he is more experienced. When both consult each other in matters pertaining to the home and outside and work in unison, they establish successful family together.

An Indian marriage is one of
the most serious and scared affair in the society. This is visible from the austerity with which it is performed. A Hindu marriage in particular is all about rituals and customs. There are a number of them which are followed before and after wedding, making it an elaborate ceremony. Every ritual and rite has its own meaning cannot be done away with. However, the most important ones are preformed on the day of the marriage itself. One such custom is solemnizing seven vows or pheras. For more detail, read on.

Without exaggeration, the seven vows or pheras can be said to contain the crux of the practice of marriage. This is attributed to the fact that love marriages performed in temple, marking the holy priest and the almighty as the only witness, only consist of seven vows or pheras. These seven vows are the seven promises which the bride and the groom do to each other for a happy and prosperous life. They are bound together by an unseen bond protected by these promising words.

These seven vows are known as Saptadi, which are performed along with Mangal pheras, which is revolving around the sacred fire. Any marriage is incomplete without these vows and is deemed complete once they are conducted. On the day of the wedding the bride and the groom sit under the Mandap or the scared canopy for this ritual. The bride is seated towards left of the groom before the pheras, while towards the right after they are complete.

The Seven Vows:

Groom:
You will offer me food and be helpful in every way. I will cherish you and provide welfare and happiness for you and our children.
Bride:
I am responsible for the home and all household responsibilities.

Groom:
Together we will protect our house and children.
Bride:
I will be by your side as your courage and strength. I will rejoice in your happiness. In return, you will love me solely.

Groom:
May we grow wealthy and prosperous and strive for the education of our children. May our children live long.
Bride:
I will love you solely for the rest of my life, as you are my husband. Every other man in my life will be secondary. I vow to remain chaste.

Groom:
You have brought sacredness into my life, and have completed me. May we be blessed with noble and obedient children.
Bride:
I will shower you with joy, from head to toe. I will strive to please you in every way I can.

Groom: You are my best friend, and staunchest well-wisher. You have come into my life, enriching it. God bless you.
Bride:
I promise to love and cherish you for as long as I live. Your happiness is my happiness, and your sorrow is my sorrow. I will trust and honor you, and will strive to fulfill all your wishes.

Groom:
May you be filled with joy and peace.
Bride:
I will always be by your side.

Groom:
We are now husband and wife, and are one. You are mine and I am yours for eternity.
Bride:
As God is witness, I am now your wife. We will love, honor and cherish each other forever.

Information Provided By :
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