Contrary to the perception of the 'big fat Indian wedding', which generally involve a series of customs and ceremonies, the marriage organized in a typical Malayalee style is very simple and brief. Although elaborate rituals are not followed at a typical Malayalee wedding, the ceremony is very impressive to look at. The simple Malayalee marriage is generally divided into three phases. During the pre-wedding days, the muhurtham and date for the engagement and wedding are figured out. On the engagement ceremony, the nishchaya thaamboolam are exchanged by the prospective bride and the groom's parents. You can also witness the exchange of engagement ring on the same day, at many Malayalee weddings.
The wedding ceremony is preceded by a ritual, wherein the bride and groom seek blessings from their elderly family members, by touching their feet. The custom paves the way for the nuptial knot, which is tied at the bride's ancestral home (preferably) or any venue, say, mandapam of a temple or the temple itself. The wedding ceremony is followed by reception, traditional feast and grihapravesham. Overall, the typical Malayalee marriage ceremony is true delight for the eyes. In this section, we have elaborated the Malayalee pre-wedding, wedding and post-wedding rituals.
Malayalee Pre-Wedding Rituals
The Malayalees start the preparation of wedding, well before the ceremony. Few weeks (or even months) prior to the marriage, the date and muhurtham are finalized for both the engagement and wedding ceremonies. Thereafter, the families of the prospective bride and the groom await for the wedding day, with a lot of expectations and anxiety.
Malayalee Wedding Rituals
Malayalee wedding is a very short and crisp ceremony, which is held in the morning. The most preferred location to conduct a typical Malayalee wedding is the maternal house of the bride. However, with the passing time, people are opting for a more convenient venue for both the families of the bride and the groom, say, the auditorium of a nearby temple or the temple itself.
Malayalee Post-Wedding Rituals
Malayalee post-wedding rituals are limited to grihapravesham and traditional feasting, which makes the entire ceremony a very brief one. The one-day-long wedding is also followed by feasting at the bride and thereafter, at the relatives' places. Brief though, it is very touching to see the bride enters her 'new home', prosper the groom and his family's life.