Yes, you heard me correctly I need to be committed!
Please don’t let that exclamation confuse you. I am not suffering from some mental disorder, although I do think there is some mental ordering going on, I simply discovered a new depth to the word commitment.
I recently attended my friend’s wedding and as it was my first Hindu wedding I had no idea what to expect. I did, however, imagine it would be colourful (I had seen the dresses) and long. I will definitely not be getting married at 9.30 in the morning, that is long before I am looking my best lol!
I must admit a lot of the wedding went over my head as the ceremony was conducted mainly in Sanskrit and even when it was translated into English I didn’t understand that either. We sat watching the wedding story unfold with a printed break down of the different segments, so we could at least guess (often incorrectly) know where we were in the proceedings.
You might now be thinking this was not a great wedding experience. I can understand how you arrived at that point BUT the truth is not only did I love every minute of the day, I also learnt a lot about love, life and myself which is why I say I want to be committed.
I have been to my share of weddings over the years so I am no stranger to the concept and the feelings (both positive and negative) a wedding evokes, BUT there was something decidedly different about this one.
Unfamiliar with the proceedings and unable to understand the language, I found myself paying closer attention to details and this is what I learned from it all:
The power of family and you can define family in whatever way you choose. The wedding was not just about two individuals. It was about two families coming together and finding a way to make it work. The father and the grandmother of the bride washed the groom’s feet, how about that for a welcome!
Love really does make a difference. I could feel the presence of love as a mighty force in the room as it circled the happy couple. I have to admit to feeling a little jealous as I sat in the room without a significant other, but the great thing about the love I felt that day was that it didn’t leave me out. I felt as much part of it all as if I was part of the actual family.
Tradition has a place. The ceremony was a lot about tradition and some might question its validity in the modern world but the tradition had a meaning and was far more symbolic of a life together than I have experience in western marriage ceremonies.
God is central in everything you do (or should be). Ok Hindus do not believe in the same God I believe in but they pay reverence to the gods that serve them and it got me thinking about my faith and how I acknowledge the God I serve. To be honest I think I have some work to do.
It’s the journey that counts. Whilst you could describe the Hindu wedding process as a lavish and expensive one but everything they do is symbolic of the life ahead and the wedding day is not just a great day unlike many times in the west, it is actually the beginning of a new life where two people come together as one.
Commitment is a big deal and many of us walk through life simply playing lip service to the word. I started thinking about what I am committed to and I realised that I have a little work to do. in the immortal words of Goethe “until there is commitment there is hesitancy, a chance to draw back..”
My first Hindu wedding was all about commitment. The bride and groom had to be committed to each other as this was not a quick go down to the registry office kind of wedding. There were two big events, a host of individual smaller religious events, countless dress changes, a trip to another continent, a large horse (did I forget to mention the groom arrived on a horse?) and a lot of money spent. When the couple looked into each other’s eyes they knew that they had committed to each other to make their marriage work or at the very least give it a damn good go!
Now I’m left to work out how to combine the commitment of a Hindu wedding with the flavour of a western affair but the good news is Commitment is my one word for the year!