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Asian Wedding Traditions

China

India

Japan

Korea

Philippines

 

Asian Wedding Outfits

Wedding Bouquets

Wedding Creed

 

Asian Wedding Traditions

(China, India, Japan, Korea, Philippines)

Wedding in Asian people are one of the most special occasions in their life, involving a great deal of planning, coordination and shopping prior to the actual day. They make sure that every element in the said ceremony will not be forgotten, even the entire actual day may suffer. The best solution is to do the POP, plan in advance, be organized and prepare everything . But how you can plan if you do not know the traditions that a certain asian country had if it happens that your special someone is an asian . Then here's the web site that will give a glimps about asian culture.

1. Chinese Wedding Customs

The Proposal

This began with an elaborate marriage proposal and acceptance. This process was placed in the hands of a go-between, who acted as a buffer between the two parties – a role similar to that of a real estate agent today. The important parties in proposal and betrothal negotiations were the parents of the prospective bride and groom, rather than the bride and groom themselves.

The family of the guy would place this document on the ancestral altar for three days. If no inauspicious omens happens like quarrels between the parents or a loss of property, took place within that time, the parents would give the information to a astrological expert to confirm that the young woman and their son would make a good match. If the family of the groom found out that everything is okay according to his horoscope, they gave the boy’s birth date and hour to the go-between to bring to the girl’s family, who would go through the same process.

The engagement will only follow if parents of groom and bride found out that everything is favorable.

The Engagement

In ancient times, 12 gifts were exchanged by the two families to seal the marriage contract. Some, such as the gift of chopsticks, were symbolic. The word for chopsticks, kuai zi, sounds like the word for "fast boy," a wish for sons. The gift of a whole roast pig from the groom's family to the bride's family was also a popular engagement gift, one that is continued among many Chinese Americans today. In olden times, the bride's family would send back the pig's head and hind portion, thus showing that everything has a beginning and an end. To announce a marriage in China, the groom's family would provide special cakes for the bride's family to send to family and friends. Today, many Chinese American bakeries can make these cakes by special order.

The Betrothal

First both sets of parents exchanged family credentials as tokens of intention. Then, after extensive bargaining, the two families would arrive at the amount of money and goods that would make up the gift to the girl’s family. After presenting engagement tokens, the go-between would ask the bride’s family to chose among severalauspicious wedding dates suggested by the boy’s family and also set a date for presenting betrothal gifts.

The Wedding Outfits

Most of the Chinese wedding dresses are red because they believe that it will bring luck to the couple. Generally, brides from northern China wore a one-piece dress such as the qi pao; brides from the south wore a two-piece outfit, or hong qua. Both were elaborately adorned with golden phoenixes, the symbol for the bride, along with chrysanthemums and peonies, symbols of wealth and good fortune. On her head, the bride wore a phoenix crown, a headdress of kingfisher feathers and pearls, along with a red veil to shield her from the heavens until she reached her husband's home. The bride would change many times during the wedding day, perhaps an indicator of the wealth of the bride's family. And today, orchids are the flower of choice for the stylish bride. The groom's costume is less elaborate. A black silk coat is worn over an embroidered dragon robe of dark blue. The headgear is a black hat with red tassels. Traditional costumes can be rented from dress stores in Chinatowns around the country. Prices begin around $600.

The Wedding

If you think that wedding ceremony is extravagant just like the long term preparation, no, the wedding ceremony itself was so simple. The bride and groom were conducted to the family altar, where they paid homage to Heaven and Earth, the family ancestors and the Kitchen God, Tsao-Chün. Tea, generally with two lotus seeds or two red dates in the cup, was offered to the groom’s parents.

Then the bride and groom bowed to each other. This completed the marriage ceremony, except in some regions, where both also drank wine from the same goblet, ate sugar molded in the form of a rooster, and partook of the wedding dinner together.

The Food

But even the wedding ceremony is simple yet the chinese show their appreciation on the said ceremony in the food they prepare for the visitors. The wedding banquet is a way to show off the riches of the host. Dish after dish of succulent meats, seafoods, noodles and rice dishes emerge from the kitchen. Extravagant delicacies such as bird's nest soup, shark's fin soup and abalone attest to the host's generosity. Foods are also served for their symbolism. Whole fish is almost always served: The word for fish, yu, sounds like the word for "abundance." Noodles, their length signifying long life, are also often served. Desserts that contain lotus seeds are served as a wish for the couple to have many children

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2. Hindu Wedding Customs

Pre-Wedding Ceremonies

Days before the wedding ceremony, the priest visits the bride's home to recite prayers and readings, blessing the wedding ceremony. On the evening before the wedding, the bride's parents welcome the groom's family with another small ceremony. Oftentimes, the bride's mother will give a special gift to the groom's mother. During this time, the bride and groom are not allowed to see each other. If they do, they will bring bad luck into the marriage.

The Wedding Outfits

Though the color and costume differ depending on the village or state, the bride most often wears white(signify purity) and red sari (symbolizes abundance and fertility), embroidered in gold (signify wealth and jewelry). In the northern part of India, she may wear a headdress of flowers; in the southern region, her head is usually bare. The groom also generally wears white. The loose, long-sleeved shirt is untucked and embroidered with golden threads. Depending again on the village, grooms may wear loose pants or a sarong-like skirt. In northern India, elaborate headdresses with strings of flowers almost covering the face adorn their heads. In the South, the groom's head is generally bare. Around the necks of the bride and groom are placed flower garlands of roses and marigolds that hang almost to their knees.

The Ceremony

While the other country do they wedding ceremony on their respective churches, Hindu wedding ceremony is held under a four-pole canopy called a mandap. The bride is escorted to the canopy by her maternal uncle; the groom is accompanied by the best man and a young girl, usually a sister, niece or cousin, whose job is to keep the groom alert by shaking a metal pot filled with coins. The ceremony consists of three parts: In the first, called kanyadaan, the bride's parents wash the couple's feet with milk and water to purify them for a new life. In the second, called hastamelap, or the "joining of hands," the bride's right hand is placed on the groom's right hand. After verses from the holy scripture are chanted by the priest, a loop of white, raw cotton wound 24 times is placed around the shoulders of the bride and groom, symbolizing their bond. Then, a small open fire is lit in the center. A white cloth is tied to the bride's sari and placed around the groom's shoulders. The bride's brothers--and sometimes her male cousins--are called up to lead the bride and groom around the fire a number of times. (How many times the couple walks around the fire depends on the village where you come from. And in the southern state of Kerala, there is no fire. Instead the couple walks around coconut blossoms.) In the couple's hands are grains of rice, oats and leaves, signifying the four blessings of wealth, good health, prosperity and happiness. At the end, the groom's brothers may sprinkle rose petals over the couple to ward off evil. When the ceremony is over, the bride feeds her groom five mouthfuls of Indian sweets, showing that it is her duty to cook and care for him and their family. The groom then reciprocates, signifying that it is his duty to provide for her and their family. Then relatives are invited under the canopy to place a red dot on the couple's foreheads and sprinkle some rice grains, wishes for a long, happy and prosperous life together.

The Food

The Hindu wedding feast is also an elaborate event. No foods are favored over the others, but all must be well-fed. When dinner is over, the departure of the wedding party begins. Called viday, this is one of the emotional highlights of the wedding, as the bride, with tears of joy and sorrow, leaves her family for her new life.

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3. Japanese Wedding Customs

The Betrothal
Yuino, the Japanese betrothal ceremony, is an exchange of symbolic gifts between the groom's and bride's families. One of the popular gift in this ceremony are konbu a long white piece of hemp, representing a wish that the couple will grow old and gray together; and a folding fan, which spreads to show future wealth and growth. The main gift is money (about $5,000), tucked in a special envelope called a shugi-bukuro, which has gold and silver strings that are impossible to unknot. The other gifts are given in ornate rice-paper envelopes.

Sake Sharing Ceremony
The traditional Japanese ceremony is a Shinto ceremony, though many Japanese in America celebrate weddings with a Buddhist ceremony. Regardless of religious rituals, most Japanese also include a cultural sake-sharing tradition at the wedding, popularly called san-san-kudo -- san means "three," ku means "to deliver," and do means "nine." This ritual dates back to a time when sharing sake created a formal bond as strongly as a handshake did in Victorian times. Using three flat sake cups stacked atop one another, the bride and groom take three sips each from the cups. Then their parents also take sips (for a total of nine sips), cementing the bond between the families.

Honoring The Parents
Japanese weddings usually take some time to acknowledge the parents of the bride and groom. In some weddings, the couple offers bouquets of flowers, a toast, or a personal letter of love and thanks. Any of these gestures is a beautiful way to honor your parents at the wedding.


Gifts For The Guest
In Japan, brides spend $30 to $50 on "favors" for their guests. In America, favors are more likely to be small tokens -- a few folded origami cranes (the bird that symbolizes a long, contented married life) or a lace bag of sweet almonds.

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4. Korean Wedding Customs

Betrothal
Korean betrothal gifts were brought to the bride's home by a band of the groom's closest friends. The gifts were placed in a box called a hahm. The group, dressed in costume with blackened faces, would arrive singing at the bride's family home. They would stop just outside the house, chanting, "Hahm for sale, hahm for sale!" The bride's family would rush out and offer money to the group. Through fun negotiation and laughter, the bearers would be bribed until at last the hahm was delivered.

Engagement
Most Korean-American engagement parties are now held in restaurants. Gifts are exchanged -- sometimes worth $30,000 to $40,000! -- and family members are formally introduced. The bride may wear the traditional hanbok (a special engagement dress). Entertainment is expected, but can range from classical Korean music to family members singing along with a karaoke machine.

A Live Wild Goose
Before the wedding, a beautiful tradition takes place: The groom gives the bride's mother a wild goose (traditionally, a live goose was used; today it is often a wooden goose). Wild geese mate for life, so his gift is a promise that he will care for her daughter for life.

Dates And Chestnuts
A few days after the ceremony, the couple visit the groom's family for another wedding ceremony, the p'ye-baek. Here the bride offers dates and chestnuts -- symbols of children -- to the groom's parents, while sitting at a low table filled with other symbolic offerings. The parents offer sake in return, and as a final gesture they throw the dates and chestnuts at the bride, who tries to catch them in her large wedding skirt.

In the United States, the p'ye-baek is most often held at the reception, with the bride and groom in full Korean costume. It is usually a family-only affair, hosted by the groom's side. The throwing of dates and chestnuts is the highlight. Family members also offer gifts of money in white envelopes to the bride.

Wedding Banquet
Korean wedding banquets can be very simple: Noodle soup is the only required dish. In fact, the wedding banquet is called kook soo sang, which means "noodle banquet." Long noodles -- symbolizing a wish for a long and happy life -- are boiled in beef broth and garnished with vegetables. Dok, a sticky rice cake, is served at most Korean events, especially weddings.

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5. Filipino Wedding Customs

The Engagement

After the couple has decided to marry, the first order of business is the pamanhikan, where the groom and his parents visit the bride's family to ask for her hand in marriage. Wedding plans are often made at this time, including a discussion of the budget and guest list. Don't be surprised if the groom-to-be is expected to run some errands or help out around the bride's house. This tradition is called paninilbihan, where the suitor renders service to his future wife's family to gain their approval.

The Wedding Outfits

The white wedding dress has become popular in the last hundred years or so with America's influence in the Philippines. Before that, brides wore their best dress, in a festive color or even stylish black, to celebrate a wedding. Orange blossom bouquets and adornments were a must during the turn of the last century. For men, the barong tagalog is the traditional Filipino formal wear. It is a cool, almost transparent, embroidered shirt, made from silky pina or jusi, two native ecru fabrics. It is worn untucked, over black pants, with a white t-shirt underneath. These days, a Filipino American groom might wear the conventional black tux, but Filipino male wedding guests will usually show up in their finest barongs.

The Ceremony

In pre-colonial days, a wedding ceremony lasted three days. On the first day, the bride and groom were brought to the house of a priest or babaylan, who joined their hands over a plate of raw rice and blessed the couple. On the third day, the priest pricked the chests of both bride and groom and drew a little blood. Joining their hands, they declared their love for each other three times. The priest then fed them cooked rice from the same plate and gave them a drink of some of their blood mixed with water. Binding their hands and necks with a cord, he declared them married. The majority of Filipino weddings are now Catholic weddings, but some native traditions remain. Most have special "sponsors" who act as witnesses to the marriage. The principal sponsors could be godparents, counselors, a favorite uncle and aunt, even a parent. Secondary sponsors handle special parts of the ceremony, such as the candle, cord and veil ceremonies. Candle sponsors light two candles, which the bride and groom use to light a single candle to symbolize the joining of the two families and to invoke the light of Christ in their married life. Veil sponsors place a white veil over the bride's head and the groom's shoulders, a symbol of two people clothed as one. Cord sponsors drape the yugal (a decorative silk cord) in a figure-eight shape--to symbolize everlasting fidelity--over the shoulders of the bride and groom. The groom gives the bride 13 coins, or arrhae, blessed by the priest, as a sign of his dedication to his wife's well-being and the welfare of their future children.

The Food

First was served cold vermicelli soup. The soup was followed by meats of unlimited quantity--stewed goat, chicken minced with garlic, boiled ham, stuffed capon, roast pork and several kinds of fish. There were no salads, but plenty of relishes, including red peppers, olives, green mango pickles and crystallized fruits. For dessert, there were meringues, baked custard flan, coconut macaroons and sweetened seeds of the nipa plant.

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Wedding Outfits

China

India

Japan

Korea

Philippines

 

Wedding Bouquet

 

Wedding Creed

Love One Another

Comfort Each Other

Caress As You Would Be Caressed

Be A Friend and Partner

Be Open With Each Other

Listen To Each Other

Respect Each Other's Rights

Allow The Other to Be an Individual

 

Photo Wedding Gallery

Filipina Lady wearing traditional Philippine wedding outfit

 

Wedding Ceremony (Phillipines)

Wedding Ceremony (Phillipines)

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