Christian Wedding: All You Need to Know
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Emirati wedding is a luxurious celebration influenced by local traditions and the enduring culture of the Arabs. The Emirati weddings follow special Islamic laws and are celebrated in the most lavishing manner. The liveliness and the extravagance during the Emirati weddings are incomparable and it varies as per the personal preference that one would like to implement.
However, they are grand affairs entwined with conventional and contemporary ritualistic practices.
It’s a Seven-Day Affair
The traditional wedding celebration in the UAE (United Arab Emirates) is a seven-day affair that combines the Arab community’s cultural traditions with the modern-day Emirati wedding ceremonies. But, some of the rituals celebrated as part of Emirati weddings have changed over the years, as per expert wedding planners.
(1) The Proposal
Emirati weddings begin with the marriage proposal ceremony, locally known as Al Khoutha KHOTBA.
The ritual dates back to the 7th century, where the love-struck groom expresses his feelings known to his mother, who then approaches the bride’s mother to request her hand in marriage.
Once the request is accepted, the families will then discuss other things like the dowry, which is to be paid to the bride.
(2) The Contract
During this ritual, a legal marriage contract is signed, which is known as Al Akhd ALAKHED. The bride and groom sign this contract in the presence of two male witnesses.
The contract includes the dowry, which the groom agrees to offer to his new wife. The couple also exchange rings after the contract is signed. The ring exchange ceremony is also known as ‘Milcha’.
Before the wedding, the bride is supposed to rest in her house for at least 40 days. This is the time when her family members pamper her.
They will serve her healthy food and drinks and smear her with traditional oils and perfumes to make her more beautiful. Besides, the groom gifts her jewels and perfumes before the wedding day, and the ritual is known as Addahbia.
(3) Bridal Shower
Before the actual wedding day, 2 to 3 days to be precise, another significant ritual is performed at the bride’s residence. Known to be the ‘bridal shower’ or ‘Henna night’, this ritual is celebrated by all the bride’s friends and relatives.
The henna artist embellishes the hands and feet of the bride with attractive designs. There will be music, dance, and mouth-watering delicacies for the guests to enjoy to the fullest.
This is also when all the guests bless the bride and present her valuable gifts, including trendy jewelry, expensive dresses, and money.
Also Read: How to build love and trust after Arranged Marriage?
In the meantime, at the groom’s residence, the female members prepare the ‘Dazza’, known as the bride’s ‘Hope Chest’. The beautiful box would be occupied with valuables like jewelry, perfumes, prayer mat, Quran, Mehr, and other extravagant bridal goods.
(5) Wedding Day
The most important ritual on the wedding day is the ‘Nikah’, where all the bride and groom’s family members take part. This is a significant religious ceremony in the Emirati wedding guided by the Maulvi or Qazi (religious figure).
The Qazi declares the marriage, followed by a grand and extended feast. During the wedding rituals in Emirati weddings, there are separate ceremonies for men and women.
The wedding day is the best occasion for the women to wear exclusive dresses and jewels.
(6) The Reception
After the wedding, a grand reception is organized at the groom’s place where the menfolk enjoy dancing and enjoyment sessions.
Usually, men wear traditional attire called Kandoura. They would be dancing and partying their level best standing in a line, carrying a thin gold cane in one hand.
(7) Grand Feast
Last but not least is the deliciousness that you can’t miss at an Emirati wedding.
Once the dance and music are over, and you get exhausted, enjoy the traditional Emirati food.
Fill your stomach and heart by having the mouth-watering cuisines. Enjoy a coffee variety alongside dates and a wide variety of other delicious sweets. Ouzi – a whole lamb, biryani, Salona, and other forms the rest of the recipe you can’t ever miss.
Next time, if you get a chance to join an Emirati wedding, never miss it as the ceremony is sure to offer a once in a lifetime experience for you.
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