Weddings in Pakistan
Brief account of Mangnee, Mayoon, Mehndi, Nikah and Valima
Pakistan is a land of thousand faces, a country simply overflowing with cultural richness. A blend of many languages, religions, traditions and cultures, Pakistan is one of the most culturally diverse countries on earth. In a land so varied, the possibilities for a marriage are endless, and customs vary according to religion, region and community. Whatever the preferences, a wedding in Pakistan is bound to be unforgettable - every marriage is the sign for an important family celebration. Although most of these celebrations do not necessarily fall in the boundaries set by religion and are heavily influenced by customs of neighbour and overseas countries, people participate in them with passion and enthusiasm.
It is usually the first event of a wedding. From this day on, the bride is proscribed from the groom's eyes till the day of marriage. Yellow color symbolizes the day of upton, the other name of mayoon. To mold into the colors of upton, family and invited guests wear yellow garments. Starting of this day is with the recitation of Qur'an. After the religious formalities, family and friends bring the bride/groom for the ceremony. The friends and family sits in circle with their percussion equipments (Dholak and Duff) and sings through out the evening.
This event is very colorful and full of traditional songs and dances. It is spread over 2 days - one day over at the groom's place to put Henna on groom's hand and the second day over at the bride's house to put Henna on her hand. Sometimes, both parties agree to have a single function on just one day and split the cost. On this day, groom's family delivers the wedding dress to bride's family, and then her family takes groom's wedding attire to his family.
Nikah is the signing of official paperwork in the presence of a Moulvi (Islamic priest). After signing the papers and performing a religious ceremony, the couple is declared husband and wife. Shadi is the actual wedding ceremony and all guests are invited. The ceremony is arranged by the bride's family and Baarat (groom's friends and family) come to the bride's house. Red clothing symbolizes this day of Shadi. The bride's gown is very elaborate, as are her veil and jewelry. Men wear a distinctive traditional turban. Dinner is served by bride's family. Rokhsati (the bride leaves her parent's home to start a new life) is the last event of the day.
Valima is the fourth and last day of the wedding. The groom's side invites all the guests to celebrate this event. The newly wedded couple welcomes the guests and family, and then mingles with them throughout the dinner.
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Weddings in Pakistan