The tilak ceremony is an important ceremony in the Hindu wedding rituals. This is a groom centric ritual and the bride is not supposed to attend this function, conventionally. However, these days to allow a greater flexibility to the ceremonies and to make them more fun, the tilak ceremony can be combined with some other ritual in the same mahurat.
The tilak thali has various components which could vary depending on the culture and the region of the occasion. However, there are some essential items which are in every tilak ceremony- kumkum, kesar, diya, sandalwood and oil.
The tilak ceremony is preceded by a small puja or havan to seek God’s blessings and to wish for a happy, successful life for the couple. Post this, the father of the bride applies the tilak on the groom’s forehead to officially welcome him.
After this, mithai, dry fruits and gifts are exchanged between both the families. The groom’s family gives sugar, coconut, rice, clothes, jewelry and henna to the bride.
And then to finally officialise the ceremony and the rishta, a nariyal (coconut) and paan (betel leaf) is exchanged between the families of the bride and the groom.
Weddings and Tilalk Ceremony
Tilak ceremony was traditionally an only male member function but these days it has become a very important function of any full-fledged wedding ceremony and is organised on a large scale with the ladies of both the families in attendance too.
A function usually performed at the groom’s residence, tilak ceremony these days can be performed at a banquet or venue keeping the convenience of both the families in view. Usually followed by lunch or dinner, tilak ceremony is basically a bonding event for the families of the bride and the groom.
The Tilak ceremony is also known as Teep in the Eastern parts of India and Pottu or Chenkai in South India. In some customs, the mother of the bride is not allowed to attend the tilak ceremony. Only the male members are present- this variation goes by the name Chenki in many cultures of India.
The tilak ceremony is the official acceptance of groom in the bride’s family and is also a symbol of trust that the groom would be a loving husband and a responsible father in the future.
The tilak ceremony is a very important custom in Indian wedding that formalises the rishta. This is more like an ice-breaking ceremony between the families of the bride and groom.