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Hinduism and Marriage - Research Paper Example

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Marriage in Hinduism: Hinduism considers the marriage or vivah as a sacred relationship between two individuals. This relationship does not end with life. The relationship sustains for seven lives an individual gains. In each of these lives, the couple makes spiritual progress with each other’s help…
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Hinduism and Marriage
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Download file to see previous pages It is essentially the way in which souls of the life partners are related. In a Hindu marriage, the two partners may exchange their respective roles as per the demand of the situation i.e. a husband may play the role of a wife and vice versa. Occasionally, the two partners part ways for some time until they are reunited after a life or two. The three fundamental objectives of a Hindu marriage in the right order are “dharma, praja (progeny) and rati (pleasure)” (Sociology Guide, 2011). Marriage in Hinduism is not only a dharma i.e. an obligation but is also the samskara i.e. sacrament. Every Hindu should marry unless he/she has adopted the lifestyle of a sanyasi. “It is an essential aspect of the four ashramas (brahmacharya, grihastha, vanaprastha and sanyasa) and the four aims (purusharthas) of human life, namely, dharma, artha (wealth), kama (sensuous pleasures ) and moksha (salvation)” (Jayaram, 2010). Her life as a maiden terminates as a Hindu woman enters into a marital relationship. After marriage, the girl has to live with her in-laws in their home and leave the parents’ home. The relationship with parents after marriage becomes minimal and quite formal. Accordingly, many Hindu women become mentally disturbed until they completely accept and are completely accepted by the husband as well as his family. In its early stages, the marriage can both make and break. The early days in the husband’s home hold a special significance to the bride because the impression she casts upon the in-laws in these days remains associated with her throughout the life. Marriage in Hinduism can be classified into five types ranging from the traditional arranged marriages to forced marriages. In a vast majority of cases, marriage takes place with due consent of the bride, the groom and their relatives. Factors that are of primary importance in case of the arranged marriages in Hinduism include but are not limited to the natal charts, caste, gotra i.e. kinship, financial status, looks, and character. Marriages between cousins may or may not be a norm depending upon the region. In Southern India, it is normal for an individual to marry a cousin. In ancient times, a widowed Hindu woman was allowed to marry the brother of the deceased husband because of progeny. In olden days, polygamy was common in Hindus but it is almost non-existent in the contemporary Hindu society. There has been an increase in love marriages among Hindus over the passage of time, though their acceptability depends upon the caste, financial status and several other factors discussed before. Couples that break the norms and marry without due consideration to caste have to bear social pressure both within and outside the family. However, as more and more people are getting education in the urban setting, they have started to become liberal which is the fundamental cause of increase in the love marriages among Hindus. The dowry system is a potential evil of the Hindu marriage. Quite often, the bridegroom and his relatives demand dowry worth millions of dollars irrespective of the financial status of the bride’s parents. In a male dominated society, such people take marriage for an event in which they can cash the fact that they parent a man. If the bride’s family can not come up to their expectations regarding dowry, the mother-in-law and the husband subject the bride to numerous hardships and may even burn her to death. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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