Hindu marriage is not only the wedding between man and woman, but it also stands for  understanding, love and affection, companionship and commitment by both of them. It makes two families closer than ever before. Each and every ritual associated with the marriage has a good meaning.

Hindu wedding ceremony has three common  rituals viz., Kanyadana, Panigrahana and Sapthapadi. The ritual of Kanyadanam is highly valued and is a significant part of any Indian wedding. The literal meaning of the word derives from two words i.e. ‘Kanya’ which means a girl or an unmarried woman  and ‘Daan‘  means donation. So it connotes the donation of  an unmarried  girl.

Kanyadaan has much  significance in Hindu marriages  which has been passed from generations to generations and the practice is followed since the time immemorial.  It is a strong belief existing  in Hindus  that by performing the ritual of Kanyadana, all the sins  of the bride's parents and their fore fathers  gets suspended  and their souls will be purified. 

As per the Hindu traditions and norms, the bride represents a form of the goddess Laxmi and the groom that of Lord Vishnu. The parents assist in the union of the two Gods while every one who attended the auspicious ritual  bares witness.  This Kanyadana ( Hindu wedding ritual) is performed as a means of providing consent from the parents of the Bride before commencement of the ceremony of Panigrahana. Generally the Kanyadana raitual is performed by the bride's parents. Any other couple related to the bride's family  also can conduct the rituals in the absence of the girl's parents.

In south India, the father  takes  the right hand of his daughter and places it in the groom's  right hand and says:  

            Kanyaam, kanaka sampannaam, kanakaabharana bhushithaam,

Daasyami Vishnave Thubhyam Brahmaloka jigeeshaya

 Viswarambara:, sarvabootha: Saakshina: sarvadevathaa:

Imam Kanyaam pradaasyami pitrunam tharanaya cha.

I give my daughter( kanya) along with gold and jewellery to you, Oh Vishnu to fulfil my desire  to attain Brahmaloka and for the solvation of pitrudevatas(forefathers) i.e., spirits of the departed ancestors. After this, the mother of the bride pours sacred water on the palm of the daughter and let it flow through the fingers of the bride and ultimately to the hand of the groom. Other  mantras are chanted during the whole process and ritual of Kanyadana marking it an auspicious and religious ritual. 

In our great Indian  Epic Ramayana, Dasaratha the king of Ayodhya went to the palace of Janaka, the king of Mithila during the marriage procession of his four sons viz., Rama, Bharath, Lakshmana and Satrughna.  Janaka, the   father of Sita, Urmila  and other two  daughters of his brother and their followers welcomed them.

Then unexpectedly  Dasaradha touched the feet of king Janaka.  Janaka astonished and lifted Dasaratha, hugged him and asked "why he touched his feet though he is elder to him in age and that too he is the father of bride grooms".

Then Dasarath gave a wonderful and beautiful reply  that "you are the donor of your virgin daughters viz., Sita and her sisters and  I came here for asking your daughters hands for  my sons Rama and his brothers . Now tell me who is great Donars  or Donees".

After hearing this king Janaka's eyes filled with tears of joy and told him that in which house the parents have daughter(s) they are fortunate and blessed ones. In every daughter's luck there is a father, but in every father's luck there may not be a daughter.

This is our Indian Culture which shows the greatness of a father who has daughter(s) like Goddess Lakshmi in their houses. Fathers play  a big role in turning their daughters into great  women. Daughters also need great fathers.  They certainly  achieve name and fame in the society in all fields when they have fathers who are  honest and pious in nature.   They make better relationship choices when they get married and live with all  the family members and relatives of  their husbands.     They believe they can achieve their goals and they under stand the importance  of working hard and brought up their children in a decent manner.  


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