First there was Elizabeth Hurley and Arun Nayyar’s big, fat, unapologetic Indian wedding. Then recently, the cheeky and controversial pop star Katy Perry tied the knot with her British comedian/actor beau Russell Brandnear Jaipur. And now, Jodhpur, Rajasthan might again be the venue of choice for the mother of all celebrity weddings. Yes, the media is rife with whispers of the uber-couple, Brangelina becoming ‘man and wife’ in Jodhpur by the end of the month. So what is it about Rajasthan and Hindu wedding traditions that are drawing all the A-list entertainers from the west to the east?
The Perry-Brand wedding was a lavish, vibrant Rajasthani fare, which lasted for 6 days. The couple chose to wed in traditional Rajasthani trousseaus. Their 80 people strong wedding party was entertained with music, dance and wildlife safaris in Ranthambore in the days leading up to the D Day.And then ancient rituals and Sanskrit mantras filled the air tying them together in holy matrimony. Where else in the world can you have a mix like this?
While it is being reported that Brad and Angelinawill be getting married in Jodhpur soon and that Guru Ram LalSiyag will perform the ceremony. The 84-year-old guru has been a spiritual guide to the power couple for a long time. Clearly, the couple’s wedding will be the celebrity event of the decade, even by modest standards. But what can those of us without the bankrolls of the Brands or the Jolie-Pitts expect from Rajasthan?
India is all about colour. And nothing could be truer of the royal state of Rajasthan. From the clothes to the homes, everything is a delightful rainbow waiting to explode. It’s said that the reason for this is Rajasthan’s barren landscape. The only way to add colour to the dessert state was by the human touch.
Folk music of Rajasthan can put any Grammy winning track to shame. Music is an integral part of people’s daily life, and needless to say it’s at its best during weddings.
Rajasthan is filled with palaces, forts and more, which even today are inhabited by the royals of the region. Clearly, extravagance plays a big role in people’s lives. People’s love for luxury and pomp is seen in everything from jewelry to decorations to henna art and even the grand, custom-made wedding invitations.
History and Culture
People of Rajasthan have almost perfected the art of the grand wedding over centuries. And now, with historical monuments serving as enviable hotels, the venue of one’s fantasy wedding can be even more regal. Whether it’s the Jag Mandir of Udaipur or the Mehrangar Fort of Jodhpur, a slice of the royal life is available to a whole new section of society.
After all the revelry and fun have quieted down, at the end of the day, a wedding is a sacred union. It would be a hollow event without the presence of a true spiritual guru and his infinite knowledge. Every aspect of the traditional Hindu wedding ceremony has a profound, divine meaning. The detailed vows bind them with duties and love, not just to each other but also to each other’s families and loved ones. It’s a commitment, which in India, isn’t taken lightly.
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