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Sindhi Bride and her wedding
Sindhis are an Indo-Aryan language speaking, socio ethnic group who constitute a major part of the Indian business class. During partition, Hindu Sindhis migrated to India while the Muslim Sindhis stayed back in Pakistan. Free from inhibitions of caste and creed, the Sindhis are peaceful, hardworking, hospitable and cosmopolitan in their outlook. Sindhi temples have images of Rama and Krishna alongside those of Shiva and Durga and Guru Nanak.
Even as they are fun-and-frolic loving, the Sindhis were a seafaring people. Their spirit of adventure and wanderlust is phenomenal. Excavations in Mohenjo-Daro have evidences of seafaring activity and urban life in the ancient city. There have been historical accounts of linkages of the ancient Sindhis with the Chinese, Mesopotamian and Incan civilizations.
Sindhi weddings are a razzle-dazzle affair evoking grandeur and magnificence. However, the rituals are based on minimalism. They are a reflection of their simplicity and intimate affinity to nature.
There are two types of Misri ceremonies - KachchiMisri and Pakki Misri. In KachchiMisri, the bride’s family offers five kilos of misri (sugar crystals) in a pot to the groom’s family. Seven married ladies make a sign representing Lord Ganesha using red powder. The PakkiMisri ceremony is the formal engagement ritual where the rings are exchanged between the boy and the girl. It is believed that the fourth finger is the way to a woman’s heart. So the groom puts the ring in the fourth finger of the left hand of the bride. The bride puts the ring on the right hand of the groom, thus completing the heart.
The hands and feet of the bride are beautified with mehndi depicting intricate floral designs. Amid the fanfare the entire family celebrates with a party.
This is a fun get-together with song and dance of the bride’s and groom’s families and close friends. The Occasion is an opportunity for both sides to get closer.
On the day of the wedding, Haldi (turmeric) paste and oil is applied to both the bride and groom.
After applying turmeric paste on the girl’s hand, her father places her hand in the hands of the groom. This ritual, Kanyadan, symbolises the entrusting of the bride to the groom. Hastamilam ceremony: Following Kanyadan, twenty four threads of cotton are wound together and placed over the clasped hands of the bride and the groom. This thread is then offered to the sacred fire. The bride and groom then recite vows as they circle the fire four times. After this, the bride’s brothers and uncles fill her hands with rice, oats and leaves. This ritual, Hastamilam signifies the union of the two souls.
In the symbolic ritual of ‘Datar’, the bride passes a fistful of salt into the palms of the groom, which he returns in full, without spilling. This ritual is repeated with the entire family. The basic idea behind this is that just as salt blends well giving taste to food, the bride will also blend into her new family.
Jewellery of the sindhi bride
The pendant that drapes the forehead, this is worn by parting the hair. Maang Tikka adds a touch of royalty and grandeur to the bride. Ranging from gold to kundan to diamond, Maang Tikka designs can vary in size and color.
Kundan Lambo Sago:
The work on the Kundan Lambo Sago highlights the design done in a unique pattern with exquisite grace, intricate craftsmanship and stone work. This unique piece of jewellery has an exceptionally creative design which gives a distinctive look for the bride.
Era Uncut Diamond Haar:
Era Uncut Diamond Haar is an exquisitely crafted necklace in gold, studded with uncut diamonds and pearls. The gorgeous ornament looks royal and flawless on the neck.
Bajo do kado:
It is an ornament worn around the biceps of the upper arm. A perfect blend of traditional craftsmanship and modern delicacy, Bajo do kado gives the wearer an elegant look.
It is a strikingly beautiful piece of bridal jewellery which adorns the wrists as well as the fingers. A bracelet with strings attached to it, with the strings having rings at the other end to be worn on the fingers. Pouncho can be worn for any occasion or even as daily wear.
Worn around the waist, this exquisite piece of jewellery rests on the waistline. An intricately designed Taragdee featuring kundan and precious stones, looks elegant on the bride and emphasizes her figure. The ornament goes especially well when worn with low waist sarees and below waistline tops.
Sindhi folks enjoy living it up and their wedding festivities, including the pre-wedding ceremonies, last nearly a week. The occasion features loads of fun, with feasts, music, dance and fanfare. The traditional wedding, usually on the Satyanarayan Chandsi or (the New Moon day), reflects Hinduism and Sufism, though the rituals are based on Vedic rites.
The Gods are much preached during the times of weddings. Sindhi temples and shrines have pictures of Krishna and Rama placed by those of Shiva and Goddess Durga and also of Guru Nanak.