The Big Fat Indian Wedding!

There are many factors behind wasting too much money on marriage, especially in countries like India, such as society, culture, individual mentality etc.

As far as marriage is concerned, people here take it as a one time affair, parents dream of their child’s marriage from the time when he/she is a toddler, they bother so much about the society something which is carved deep inside their minds since generations that they forget about what they really want. Meaning, do we really need that big of a set to show the play or can it be done on a similar yet much more connected sense as far as the family members are concerned? Is the major question.

Unfortunately, we’ve become much more materialistic nowadays. Marriages and celebrations are all seen as status issues – the more extravagant the celebration, the more your so called status rises.

I am not against all the rituals being performed during a marriage, as it has its own scientific reasons, but the unnecessary stuff which happens which I have observed in every marriage, should be strictly avoided. Today, marriages count on money, status, societal pressures and what not, rather than the character, values, education, simplicity. It doesn’t matter how much you’re educated or what character or values you possess, in such cases, the Non Resident Indian (NRI) problem or an obsession of the foreign lands comes into the picture. It, at times, is just a matter of show off and “Char log kya kahenge”, in simple words, ‘What will ‘people’ think, who don’t even think about the marriage ceremony going on in the front’! Well we can call it the ‘marriage Irony’!

Marriages in India could be more fun if focused on getting together, celebrating the new relationship in a minimalistic and simplistic way without spending much of money or resources which could be used later in their lives like on health or say their child’s education or some other cause. I am not saying that every wedding should happen in a temple or a court and that a specific amount of money should always be saved, but every marriage should be thoughtfully done in terms of spending money and most importantly considering the wastage of resources like food and water, specifically in a country where millions of people cannot afford both.

“The groom is leprosy-afflicted and the bride is blind. Intra-disability (like this one) and inter-disability marriages are now common in Anandwan, India.”

This marriage in Anandwan is a live example for all those who ‘crave’ for that big fat wedding just under the name of happiness, enjoyment, traditions, satisfaction and the utter reasons to convince that a large gathering is the only way a marriage can be successfully carried out.

“Prakash and Mandakini Amte: Prakash Baba Amte is a social worker from Maharashtra, India. Younger son of Magsaysay awardee Baba Amte”

Isn’t the couple in the above picture happy or will they get divorced as their marriage wasn’t celebrated in the most lavish way we usually think of? The couple at Anandwan (social service center) invited every guest from both of their villages, including all the patients, did all the necessary rituals and celebrated with equal satisfaction, joy and happiness without any ‘advertisement’ fess or wastage of food and water as these people struggle daily for each and every drop of water and thus know the importance of not wasting it. It’s as simple as that.

These great social workers have worked for the Leprosy patients from many villages of the country. Their marriage story is an inspiration and conveys a message that, ‘a simple marriage always doesn’t mean getting married in a court or a temple (that too being a stubborn thought), but can be done by spreading a sense of happiness and joy, with whatever little we have and including everyone regardless of the social status and not because of the mere peer pressure of the society’. Nothing rocket science here, but just a matter of choice and a basic human understanding, to ask a few important questions to ourselves on the most important decision of our lives like marriage.

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