Bengalis, the people of Bengal is known all over the world for their vibrant and colorful cultural life. Bengalis have age-old wedding rituals and customs performed by the people. In various Bollywood and Hollywood movies even the rituals of Bengali wedding are highlighted with great pomp and show. The rituals of a Bengali marriage are categorized as pre-engagement, pre-wedding, wedding and post wedding rituals. The priest plays an important role in a Bengali wedding and he performs all the rituals of each part of the wedding accomplishment. The pre-wedding rituals are ashirbad, aai budi bhaat, holud kota and dodhi mongal.
Bengali Wedding Rituals start with the ritual called ‘bor jatri’ where the groom and his guests make way to the bride’s residence in the best attire. Bor Boron is a ritual where the groom is welcomed by the bride’s mother. They are usually welcomed by showing holy earthen lamp, smattering trefoil and Kula, sweets and drinks. Then groom and bride perform the rituals according to the guidance of the priest. Then they exchange the garlands which is called mala badal, the main climax of the wedding ritual.
Sampradan is the next ritual after the mala badal ceremony where one elder male members of the bride’s family accomplish the sampradan. The bride and groom chant mantras in front of the Agni which is a symbol of fire God. Then both make seven circular rounds to solemnize the occasion. They offer anjali to the fire God. At last vermilion is placed on the forehead of the bride by the groom and the bride covers her head with the gifted saree of the groom.
The wedding rituals continue after the main wedding ceremony. The post-wedding rituals are grand celebrations for merriment. Sweets and other delicious foods are offered in each wedding ritual. Grand feast is organized as wedding reception where all the sumptuous Bengali cuisine is served.