Why do Hindus (North Indians) marry at night?

The religion of Hinduism is a religion of beliefs also called Manyatta. They are prone and firm about their customs and beliefs and each culture and person has varied beliefs for different situations. The performance of marriage at night is similarly laid down with a number of beliefs and customs that are followed.

Hindu Marriage at Night

Here are some Manyattas of the Hindu religion for conducting the wedding/marriage ceremonies in the late-night hour.

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The Sun, Moon and the Stars

The marriages of North Indian Hindus are commonly conducted at night for all the castes and sectors. The Mughal Invaders had a powerful influence over the North Indian society. And so in order to keep this ceremony private and secretive and to also avoid the clashes with any anti-Hindu forces these marriages were performed during the late-night hours.

Marriage Stars lighting

In the Hindu religion and according to its scriptures the Sun represents fire, immoral world and power of Lord Brahma. However, the moon signifies calmness and peace in its time indication well-being and goodness.

And this, to maintain a calm and peaceful relationship in the marriage the wedding should be conducted during the night.

The eyes are kept on the North Pole star – Dhruva which means to be stable and firm. For south Indians it is Arundati and Vasista, two stars circle around each other. While the wedding is conducted the groom shows the North Pole Star to his bride. And during the chant, the groom greets the bride to prosper in her ways and be firm just like the Seven Rishis starry wives. The stars can be seen only during the night and so the wedding is conducted in the night hour.

The Season and Time

The conduction of marriages at night has only begun lately after the invention of the electric equipment in society. It is believed that earlier the marriages in the Hindus would be conducted in the day time only.

Marriage Shy bride

It is also said that the marriages would be conducted in the summer season because some rural areas could not afford the expenses of arranging stays for their relatives on a winter night. So it would preferably be summer and day time to cut short the expenses.

The wealthy categories of the community began to conduct marriages in nights after the birth of electricity and generators that also gave them the right to display their wealth and well being amongst the society. However, the night time is more preferable to have functions of dance and music as it is soothing and a calm and lovely atmosphere. Early in those days, the upper caste Hindus used to conduct their marriages during the evenings called Godhuli Bela which is the time when the milking cows would return after feeding in the field. That time was considered to be sacred and hopeful for the performance of the Seven Vows. Now the customs have changed to completely sifting the marriages at nights and late evenings or the Belas.

The Aryans and the Dravidians

This is the theory that has a different set of beliefs according to the North Indians and the South Indians. The difference in the time selections of their weddings reason is considered to be related to the difference in the poles but it’s not so.

The North Indians are of the Aryan race and the South Indians are of the Dravidian race. According to the Dravidian tribe traditions of marriage, the time instantly after sunrise was supposed to be reassuring because the earth cleanses itself in the first ray of the Sun. They are considered to be the Suryavanshis who are the descendants of the Sun God. Therefore, marriages in the Dravidian race also called as Kalyanaman were conducted only after the morning time.

On the other hand, according to the Aryan traditions the hour between the twilight and the morning is supposed to be holy. The Aryan tribe believes in seeking blessings from the Moon at their weddings and are the descendants of the Moon Gods that is the Chandravanshis and so their marriages were performed at night and late evenings.

Being precise the culture who examine them belonging to the Suryavanshis conduct weddings after morning whereas people who deem themselves belonging to Chandravanshis conduct their weddings after twilight irrespective of which area they belong to may it be North, South, East or West parts of the country.

To maintain Peace and Security

Hindu marriage

The reason for the marriages to be conducted in some parts of India at night is also said to be related to a history angle in it. When there was Islam ruling there were times when the country people used to be raided in order to fulfil the needs of the rulers. And in order to avoid such situations, the Hindus preferred to get married during the nighttime. And now with time, it is also being followed as a tradition. It is said that according to the Hindu scriptures marriages are to be conducted in the day hours only.

However, this theory is simply an assumption and has neither been proven nor questioned by other theories yet. But it is believed that some other role has played a significant part in following this type of marriage system. Yep theories stating that Hindus would get married because of the oppression of the Muslim religion does not hold a lot of evidence in it. As, if at all the Muslims were looking forward to disturbing the ceremony they could do it at any time and not just in the day. Because as a fact the night hours are more considerable to perform such activities and for violence and chaos as compared to the daytime.

Although the theory does hold some truth in it because the Islamic rule was cruel and has also put suffering to many of the North Indian Hindus. Nevertheless, marriage in the night was no reason for this though. The Indian history does portray cruelty and struggle of the Islamic rule but there were also customs and traditions which lead to marriages at night and this was not the sole reason for it.

To maintain Simplicity

The northern region of India is known for its big fat weddings. In comparison to the southern part is more simple and does not believe in overspending for marriage ceremonies. Earlier the north Indians would travel to the brides’ place with the help of bullock carts and by walking their way down there. And after the long tiring journey with occasional breaks, the groom would reach the bride’s house eventually when it was late evening or the night time.

Long procedures were to be followed regarding the reception and the dinner for the people. After this, the pandit would commence with the mantras and chants to bless the couple so that the marriage ceremony could begin. As the ceremony started late it would go on till late morning or night. Alongside the baarat also got gifts and could enjoy the treatment they got from the bride’s house for 2 days. Due to the delayed procedure, the marriages consumed a lot of time and hence were at night. Also, there were reasons for robbery and theft that worried the two families.

The Convenience of Time

In the busy schedules and lifestyle, it was difficult to take out time for everybody. So keeping in mind the hour which could be preferred by everyone the marriages were conducted at night. The day hours were the time to toil and earn for a living. From the farmers to the merchant’s everybody would work hard and nobody really had the time or some hours to be put away in marriage ceremonies. The sunrise time allowed them to attend the wedding and also get back to work the next day. Though the eve and the night would be appreciated because they could also relax and take rest before getting back to their daily work. Also, there were certain people who consider the Muharat the holy time to do good deeds or perform important activities. Not everyone follows this but the Upper castes look forward to following this as they have utmost belief in it.

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