Since the time I began to understand human relationships I have seen people giving the institution of marriage utmost importance. Marriage can be defined as a union of two souls eventually culminating into one. It’s a lifetime partnership of two people. It’s an agreement bringing not just two individuals together but an alliance of two distinct families accepting the differences and getting along, sometimes easily sometimes with some difficulty.
OK, let’s not take up the difficult task of defining what marriage is. There’s an old belief that marriages are made in heaven and solemnized on earth. Whenever I listen to this a question pops up in my mind – if marriages are made in heaven then what forces separate a couple? Are divorces made in hell? Again I don’t want to dig into the heaven-hell concept.
I am going by the old belief of God arranging these matches and assigning the task of bringing two people together to their respective family members. And the route/ method/ event to materialize their dreams takes a humongous shape. And we get to see the “D-Day”s, grand in every aspect.
I have always heard of fat Greek wedding but never got a chance to witness one. But have witnessed and been a part of Indian weddings as I belong to this country. I can safely bet they are not leaner either in any respective aspect. Filled with more color and grandeur Indian weddings are no less than any festivity. Every family to whatever economic strata it belongs to saves a substantial part of their income and dreams for this big day. Everything pertaining to arrangements has to be perfect but why ? Only answer is ” you marry only once”. I wish that statement holds strong in these turbulent situations where every passing current tries to shake the base of that special bond.
Coming back to our arrangements, I mean topic, marriage is a business. Oops I goofed up, it’s not marriage but event held for solemnizing this pure bond is turning out to be commercial to the core. How? The bride and groom wants to look their best, the food served has to be the best, guests should have the best of entertainment, the decoration of the venue should be impeccable, return gifts should speak volumes about one’s stature and the list goes on. And as they say there are no free lunches in this world and everything comes with a price tag. Desire to make marriage a lifetime experience people don’t hesitate to shell out hefty cheques from their pockets. It’s not at all astonishing to know that a good percentage of personal loans are being taken to solemnize marriages. The most important reason underlining this behaviour is the thought “Log kya kahenge?” ( what would people say?). Who are these “people”? I have no idea whatsoever. More than half of the people on guest list are those that you haven’t met more than once and most probably you won’t meet again in your life. And sometimes the rule ” your friend is mine too” plays a pivotal part and the number of guests swell.
Marriage functions are no doubt important from hosts point of view but the importance of such events from guests point of view can’t be dismissed either. Not only bride/ groom and respective family members want to look their best but for guests also its an important venue to be at their presentable best. You never know when the Cupid strikes or your new necklace of rubies can make others go green with envy. And such invitations definitely give an off from kitchen. That was surely on a lighter note.
Talking about marriages and heavy investments that a family does on these occasions we can’t totally disregard their positive side. As we all know that everything from bride’s hair pin to holy chants by priest comes for a price, marriages definitely give a source of income to many. Salons, dress designers, jewellers and jewellery designers, caterers, florists, disco jockeys, venue providers, event managers and the list can be really big depending upon the budget at hand. One marriage could provide employment and a source of income to many. Its one such business which is never hit by recession. Whatever the situation of economy is people tend to marry.
This single positive point can make me support marriages to be held with great pomp but not with amendment of course. If a family feels it can not afford to organise a grand affair then it should refrain from doing so. Doing anything just to please someone they don’t even know is stupid and equal to committing suicide which is a sin. People who can afford lavishness should refrain from large-scale wastage especially food as unused food can be used to pacify hunger of needy. Of course no free distribution but in return you could get blessings which are more valuable than any materialistic commodity. I might be sounding very philosophical but it should be given a thought and a try by every one of us.