Getting married is the most wonderful feeling not just for the couple who is getting married but then also for their parents. It is the best for the couple because form that day they are going to stay together and exchange a bond which is too strong. It is a happy day for the family because their dream of getting their son or daughter married to the best person is going to come true. It is a well known fact that during a kerala hindu wedding all the different customs and traditions are to be followed. It is not just the main wedding rituals that are followed during the wedding period but then there are many pre wedding ceremonies too which are performed.
The pre marriage rituals include two ceremonies. The first is the Nischayam. Once the groom is chosen the elders from both the families decide upon a date for engagement and that is known as nischayam. In this ceremony there is also an astrologer who will give the further dates for the wedding ceremony to be performed. It is during this time that the wedding rings are also exchanged and then the food is served.
Ayana is the next ritual which is to be performed at the bride’s house on the previous day of the wedding where she is blessed by all the elders in the family. All the close family members and friends are invited for this function and then there is lavish dinner. The same is the ceremony at the groom’s house.
The marriage ceremonies in the kerala hindu wedding are either conducted in the temple or then in the Kalayana Mantapa made at the wedding hall. After the bride and groom arrive to the venue separately it is the priest who performs all the marriage ceremonies and rituals if it is held in the temple. If not there then they are received in a good way and made to sit on a plank and then the rituals are performed.
At this auspicious moment, the family priest will also perform the nuptial ceremony by reciting the vedic mantras and then the couple walks around the agni, after which the groom will tie the ‘Mangalsutra’ or ‘tali’ around the neck place of the bride. This ritual is called Talikettu.
The groom gifts the bride a elegant sari and also a blouse on the platter conveying his responsibilities towards her. This ritual is called Pudamuri. After this the bride’s father places her right hand into the right hand of the bridegroom. This custom is known as the Kanyadan.
After the wedding is witnessed the guests are requested to have food. It includes Sadhya or typical Kerala meal including rice, three varieties of pickle, Sambhar, toran curries and sweets, kalan, Avial, olan, pacchadi, payasam, pappads is served on plantain leaves to the guests along with payasam like paladaaprathaman or then chaka prathaman as a dessert.