(Image: Luna Photo. From one of our weddings at the Darlington House! See more here. It was featured on Style Me Pretty as well ) So you’re trying to plan a Jewish Persian wedding, and you don’t know where to begin. You’d be surprised at how similar both cultures can Read more →
So you’re trying to plan a Jewish Persian wedding, and you don’t know where to begin. You’d be surprised at how similar both cultures can be when it comes to the wedding traditions. We are going to break the process down so it doesn’t seem so complicated (or scary!).
Both celebrate a formal engagement process involving both the bride and groom’s families. You can practice and incorporate both sides, or you can “pick and choose” based on how traditional you and your groom want to be. As a Persian Jewish or Jewish Persian bride, you really can get the best of both worlds!
The Formal Engagement/Proposal
Before getting the “on-bended-knee proposal” your groom will probably be going through your family first.
The Persian traditions:
It’s a two-step process, “khastegari” and the “second khastegari.” The first khastegari ceremony is where one or more of the groom’s family members visits the bride-to-be’s family to introduce themselves for the first time. This meeting comes with no obligations or commitments to a marriage–it’s just a meet and greet; sometimes you can have more than one khastegari/meet-and-greet if the man and his family feel it is required.
For the second khastegari, a marriage proposal is made by the intended-groom and his family! Traditionally, the bride’s family will welcome the suitor and his family into their home. The bride’s family will discuss what makes her an attractive wife, and the groom’s family will do the same. Then, the bride’s father will announce that tea will be served, and the bride will serve it for her guests. Afterwards, the newly engaged couple will have some alone time to discuss their future (and wedding plans!).
Since most couples usually meet on their own now, as opposed to their families fixing them up, the first and second khastegaris can be done in one day.
Now… for the “engagement fun!”
Bale Boroun: the ceremony publicly announcing your engagement! Here is where the groom’s parents will give a gift to the bride, traditionally a cloth to be made into your wedding dress and a ring.
Majless: Takes place at the bride’s home, it is when the couple (with the help of their family) decides what the “gift of love” will be, also known as mehriye, and the wedding date.
Namzadi (THE ENGAGEMENT CEREMONY!!!!): This is where you and your groom will exchange rings, and then proceed to party & celebrate!
Shirini Khordan: Don’t party too hard because you still need to do “Shirini Khordan” a.k.a. the sharing of refreshments. This can be done during the namzadi as well, but you’re basically eating sweets (cookies, chocolates, fruits/nuts, tea, desserts) with your guests to symbolize the sweetness in your marriage.
The Jewish traditions:
Choose a date… with the help of your Rabbi! Your Rabbi will be well-versed on which dates in the Jewish calendar are not available for your wedding. For example, you can’t really plan your wedding on a Saturday because of the Holy Sabbath, but you can if you wait until sunset to begin the ceremony and festivities.
Now it’s time to get engaged officially! To put it simply, a contract, Te’naim, containing your wedding date and financial obligations between both families, is read aloud by your Rabbi or close friend. Then, the mothers of the bride and groom break a China plate to seal the agreement. Then a party is thrown immediately afterwards! Yay!
According to Jewish law, the Te’naim is a mutual agreement between the bride and groom’s parents of the couple’s intention to marry, and it carries a lot of weight! (Note: this is an Orthodox Judaism practice.)
Eirusin, Kiddushin, and Nissuin (this 3-step process has gone from a year-long period to happening within minutes under the chuppah [bridal canopy representing the couple's future home]. So we will share this information here, but for the most part, the Eirusin, Kiddushin, and Nissuin will happen on your actual wedding day.)
Put a ring on her! This symbolizes that the groom wants to take the bride off the market.
You (the bride) accept the ring! (Note: this is VERY similar to when you exchange vows and rings during a traditional Western ceremony)
Share the home (the chuppah) and make that marriage official… with a kiss!
The next step of the wedding process is coming soon! Keep an eye out for that on our blog!
The experience of being a newlywed is always an exciting one for couples, especially in the first few weeks right after the wedding but before the structure and habits of daily life set in. The honeymoon period is usually spent away from home, often at an exotic destination. For many couples, however, the usual exotic locales in the Caribbean, Mexico or Hawaii have been set aside and newer, more unusual destinations have moved to the top of the list.
Top unusual honeymoon destinations
For a little slice of Europe in North America, newlyweds could purchase Disney tickets or visit Williamsburg in Virginia. Or they could explore a bit of the French Alps just across the Canadian border. The province of Quebec in Eastern Canada offers plenty of beautiful countryside and powdery ski slopes. Montreal is the quintessential Old World city with beautiful architecture, luxurious casinos and plenty of French-speaking locals.
If a chilly honeymoon destination is to taste, Finland may be an excellent and unusual direction to go. Filled with natural beauty, picturesque lakes and unspoiled wilderness, Finland also offers plenty of history and culture (the Olavinlinna Castle is located in the lake area). Turku is a lovely city located west of Helsinki and Rauma is noteworthy for being constructed of wood, the largest such town among the Nordic countries. For the truly unusual, couples can choose to stay in an igloo hotel, sleeping on beds made from ice and bedding of reindeer pelts and fur, all with the Northern Lights dancing above.
Intriguing, breath-taking India has a variety of locales and activities to offer eager honeymooners. Climbing enthusiasts will find the Himalayas cool and inviting, while romantics will enjoy Rakasthan and, of course, Agra, home of the Taj Mahal. From the busy and crowded Mumbai to the peace and grandeur (and tigers!) of Rajanpur, India has it all. Late fall is also a good time to visit India; the days are hot but bearable and the monsoon season has ended.
Combining nature and culture, Oman guarantees a sunny honeymoon, even during the winter months. This jewel of the Arabian Peninsula has rugged mountains, miles of desert and sand dunes, crystal blue waters and pristine coastal beaches. The capital of Muscat offers plenty of city life and culture, from fascinating museums and exotic architecture to adrenalin-rich water sports and even guided safaris. Sail on a dhow, one of Oman’s traditional boats, in the company of dolphins or watch giant sea turtles come ashore to lay their eggs under the moonlight.
Exotic and fascinating, Vietnam has increased in popularity as a honeymoon destination because it has the beautiful weather and stretches of beaches carpeted with warm, soft sand, all without the touristy feel and attractions of similar exotic locales. Here are coral reefs ready to be explored, ancient cities and relics of bygone empires; and plenty of jungles to trek through and wildlife to see. Even large cities such as Hanoi and Saigon have avoided the tourist influx so far and offer serious shopping and streets begging to be strolled.
Seaside Wedding Inspiration perfect details for a gift table or well wish table.
Courtesy Laura Hooper Calligraphy, www.lhcalligraphy.com
Great signage to end the night, on your dream wedding day.
Signage courtesy of Sweet Wedding Details www.etsy.com/shop/SweetWeddingDetails on Etsy.com
Display your menu, drinks/wine list on a large chalk board with Calligraphy. Calligraphy courtesy of Wendy Ware Designer, www.wendywaredesigner.com; Chalk board rental by Flowers Annette Gomez, www.flowersannettegomez.com; Wedding Planner and Creative Designer Nahid Farhound, www.weddingelegancesd.com
Before The Jewish Wedding
|“Tena’im” is the actual Yiddish name for an engagement.In the culture, it carries a great deal of weight, and even more so than the American culture. It binds you in the realm of a legal Jewish status. There is a signing that takes place at what the Jewish people refer to as “the groom’s table”. The reading of the “Tena’im” is given either by a dear friend of the groom’s or a Rabbi.
Te’naim is a contract between the parents of the bride and groom.
It reverts back to the third century C.E.; It is predominantly done through the orthodox custom.
Eirusin refers to the ring being given. In essence, the bride cannot wed anyone else.
Kiddushin means the ring is now accepted.
Nissuin refers to the couple sharing a home together.
It ends with a festive party with the bride, groom, and their parents, as they celebrate the wonders of this new chapter. More often than less, it is kept private with direct family.
In a Jewish wedding, many traditions take place, which have been implemented for centuries, since biblical times. One in particular, is a well known custom in their ceremonies.
After the official signing of husband and wife, also known as the “ketuba”, the bride and groom follow their fathers and the rabbi into a separate room, referred to as the “bride’s chamber”. This is for the veiling of the bride, also known as “badekan”.
This tradition reverts back to many centuries ago, in the bible, when the apostle, Jacob, who put all his effort to marry Rachel, was left to discover that her father just so happened to do a switch on them, and offered up Leah, his other blind daughter to be his wife.
So, this of course breaks the American tradition of avoiding to see the bride before the ceremony. The Jewish people beg to differ, and many might agree, that centuries of tradition, would justify their desire to be sure ,that in fact, that their bride-to-be is not the sister, or the neighbor, for that matter.