Weddings

Punjabi Sikh weddings are as much about celebrating culture as religion. There are many traditions that are followed – some weddings may follow all traditions, while some do not. The celebrations usually begin a couple of days before the wedding ceremony itself with the Maiya – a symbolic cleansing of the bride and groom by their family. This is done separately, and repeated the following day. The Maiya involves family members taking turns to rub a mixture of flour and spices over the person getting married.

For the wedding ceremony itself – the Anand Karaj – The man traditionally wears a turban, while the woman wears colourful jewel covered outfits and mehndi – henna designs on her hands and feet.

The wedding ceremony can be performed by any Sikh who can read the Guru Granth Sahib (written in Punjabi and Sanskrit) but is usually performed by an elder who runs the Gurdwara (Sikh temple).

Before the ceremony begins, there is Milni – this is where the groom introduces his family to the brides family.

Milni

Milni

This is followed by Saggan where the bride and groom are fed by various family members.

Sometime before the wedding ceremony – in my case just minutes, but usually weeks or months before – the engagement ceremony or Karmai is performed. The groom is given gifts by the brides male family members and fed Saggan.

For the ceremony itself, the bride and groom sit on the floor in front of the Guru Granth Sahib, with their guests sitting behind them, men on the right and women on the left. A number of readings and poems are spoken from the book and hymns are sung. The final part of the ceremony involves the groom leading the bride around the Guru Granth Sahib four times, while being passed between her brothers – this was traditionally done because the bride could not reveal her face before Anand Karaj was complete, so she couldn’t see where she was walking without her brothers guiding her!

The wedding is followed by the Langar or communal meal.

After the ceremony, the couple return to the home of the bride’s family, where she gets a farewell from her family. Before the groom can enter the house however, the brides sisters try to stop him getting in the door until they are bribed with money or jewellery. Once in the house, the sisters play tricks on the groom and his best man such as pouring ice down their back or salting their drinks (Doli)!

Doli

The newlywed couple then leave by car (which is pushed away by the brides brothers) to be welcomed into the grooms house by his family.

12 Responses to Weddings

  1. Punjab,Raba says:

    nice turban dude! who tied it for you

  2. i love sikh says:

    i want to learn all about sikh,,,and i love this culture

  3. Pingback: How to Organise a Sikh Wedding Day | atrocious Whiteplex

  4. Anonymous says:

    Nicely tied turban – where did you learn to tie it, or did you get some help? I’m marrying a Sikh girl in a few weeks, and am trying work things out!

    Is there a tradition that after the wedding the bridge returns to her parents home for a few days?

    • Vince says:

      Hi, I didn’t tie it myself, I got some help! The material is up to 30ft long and it takes a while to tie, so you should get some help if you can!

      The tradition is for the bride to go back to her family home after the wedding, but only for a few hours I believe – the bride and groom then go to the grooms family home.

  5. Anonymous says:

    very great sit im a Australian girl with a sikh partner due to be married in july

  6. SONIA says:

    I LIKE UR COUPLE U COMPLEMENT TO EACH OTHER WISH U GOOD LUCK AND HAPPINESS.MY NAME IS SONIA AS WELL.

  7. Kate says:

    Really lovely site. Im a british girl with a sikh partner so its nice to understand things..

  8. Rajdev Grewal says:

    Great job Vince and Sonia.We thoroughly enjoyed the wedding.
    You make cute couple. Wish you a very long happy life together.

  9. Vince says:

    Cheers mate, I’ll get some more photos on soon!

  10. Jas Sandhu says:

    Amazing site dude even i learnt something! Been to so many weddings without knowing whats really going on…lol. Wheres my photo?? you and sonia make a great couple…had so much fun at the wedding. See you soon

    Jas and Bal

    P.S got to find Kimon a sikh wife too!! lol

  11. Pingback: Weddings | The English Sikh

Leave a Reply