Buddhist Matrimony

Buddhist Marriage Tradition
Buddhism originated in India, yet Hinduism and Islam continue to dominate the subcontinent as Buddhists constitute a small minority. Buddhism in India received significant support as large groups of lower caste Hindus converted from Buddhism to Hinduism in the mid-1950s.

Outside India, Buddhism has taken root in Japan, Southeast Asian countries such as Myanmar, Thailand, and South Asian territories such as Bhutan, Tibet, and Sri Lanka.

Buddhist wedding traditions are therefore a unique combination of traditional Buddhist customs along with local limits determined by geography and culture.

Marriage in Buddhism is not considered a religious affair as it is the case with other religions such as Hinduism, Christianity or Islam.

Gautam Buddha has called out the need to maintain a single lifestyle and the need to avoid adultery. Buddhist monks have also avoided marriage because they believe marriage brings with it the baggage of commitments and sufferings that may prevent them from serving the world.

Buddhist marriage in India is devoid of the extensive religious rituals of civil affairs in India that we find in other marriage ceremonies across India. A Buddhist wedding can be presided over by a Buddhist monk, they are very simple and usually are in front of a portrait of Lord Gautam Buddha and Dr. Bhimrao Babasaheb Ambedkar.

Traditional Buddhist marriages in other parts of the world, such as in Thailand, Burma, Sri Lanka, where there is a large Buddhist population, involve a combination of religious rituals mixed with local traditions. Basically, Buddhist weddings in Southeast Asia are divided into Buddhist ceremonies and no Buddhist ceremonies!

Buddhist wedding vows

The bride and groom are made to recite Vandana, Tisarana and Pancasila which is a series of hymns in the Pali language. They then recite the sacred vows for marriage from the Sigilovda Sutta.

“Towards my wife, I love and respect her, begin to be kind and considerate, be loyal, the household management representative, give gifts to make her happy.”

“Towards my husband, I undertake to efficiently perform my household duties, be hospitable to my in-laws and friends of my husband, be faithful, to protect and invest our earnings, lovingly and sincerely of my responsibility. discharge.”

Local language versions of wedding vows can be based on geography and culture. Rings and garlands can also be exchanged after the wedding vows are recited.

Buddhist Wedding Dresses

Wedding dresses in a Buddhist wedding are dictated more by cultural influences associated with geography than by religion itself.

Traditional Buddhist weddings in countries like Sri Lanka involve the bride wearing osariya (sari) which is usually a shade of white with nalalpata which is an ornament for the head (much similar to the cap worn by South Indian brides) and pendants, karma bands Style Jewellery, Bangles, and Works.

The Sri Lankan Buddhist groom wears a traditional wedding dress called Nilame. It consists of a jacket with an elaborately embroidered cap and a vest with a sari or South Indian dhoti tied in a unique way.

Wedding dresses in Marathi Buddhist marriage are simple. The bride usually wears a white saree with some ornaments and the bride wears a white shirt.