Learning Objectives • What are the traditions of an Muslim Wedding? • How does a groom propose? • What family obligations must be met for a couple to wed? • Of what does a marriage ceremony and celebration consist?
Afghan Wedding Traditions • Namzady is the first step toward the marriage. • The Groom’s father along with his family and friends deliver a bag full of sweets and gifts to the future bride and engages in a feast with her family. • A respected member of the groom’s family then reveals the original purpose for the gathering.
Family obligations. • The bride must be escorted by a Wali who is usually her uncle or father. • The Walimustbe Muslim or else the marriage is considered invalid under the law of the Qua’ran. • Walis are in place to protect the women’s rights from being violated by the Groom. (NMuzaffary D)
Family Obligations (Cont.) • Male members of the bride’s family are expected to cover part or all of the expenses stemming from the cemermony • The bride’s family allows the groom to stay with them for a set period of time. • Relatives and friends of the bride come and wait at her father’s house to escort her to the wedding. • Hodge, November 13, 2012
Marriage Ceremony • Men from both sides of the family present the “khutbanikah” which is Dari for “Marriage speech” • The next step is the “Ainamoshaf “ which is Dari for “mirror” and “Qu’aran” Both the bride and groom are then covered by a veil and after removing the veil, they look into the mirror together, signifying purity. They then recite verses from the Qua’ran that pertain to marriage. • The couple is now married and proceed to share a plethora of homemade deserts and drinks, most notably including Malida which is a desert native to Afgan.
Afghan Marriage Ceremony • Traditionally Afghan marriage customs last for three days. • The ceremonies are conducted between 6 p.m and 2 a.m. • Some conservative families will have the bride and groom entertain guests separately for most of the reception. (Muslim marriage.com)
Marriage Celebration • The bride and groom are the first to cut and taste the cake, similar to American culture. • The newly wed couple then takes part in a traditional Afghan dance • Toward the end of the wedding, an animal is sacrificed upon the bride’s arrival at the couple’s home, this indicates the new beginning into a marriage. • The bride then hammers a nail into her doorway, signifying strength and power in relations to the marriage.
Additional facts • Polygamy is accepted under Shira’s law in Afghan, however a man must buy any other wives after his 1st marriage • Many men cannot afford the additional weddings and gifts for the extra wives, thus making polygamy a signal toward wealth • It is Afghan law that married women are to be treated with respect, however, these laws are difficult to uphold and are often disregarded.
Additional facts cont. • 57% of marriages are with women under the age of 16 • The average life expectancy for Afghan women is 44, the low rates are often attributed to abusive marriages and stress. • In Afghan villages, it is considered a dishonor to date. Due to this belief, most marriages are arranged or forced.
Islam and marriage facts • According to Quaran passages, the main purpose of marriage is to populate the Earth and to satisfy sexual desires. • Marriage is a requirement to uphold the wishes of Allah and is highly encouraged within the Islamic community. • It is stressed that the couple marries because of a deeper spiritual attraction and not a physical attraction or a monetary attraction.
References. • Hodge, Christine. “Rights and Duties of Husband and Wife”. http://www.netplaces.com/understanding-islam/islamic-married-life/rights-and-duties-of-husband-and-wife.htm. Monday November 12, 2012. • Muzaffary, Faziur Rahim. “Afghan Muslim Wedding”. http://www.onislam.net/english/culture-and-entertainment/traditions/411646-afghan-muslim-wedding.html. nd. • “The Engagement, Henna and Nikah in Afghan Marriage Customs”. http://www.muslim-marriage-guide.com/afghan-marriage-customs.html. nd. • “ON MARRIAGE AND THE ISLAMIC WEDDING CEREMONY“. http://www.jerrahi.org/library/articles/marriage_islamic_wedding_ceremony • Najibullah, Farangis. “Afghanistan: Marriage Practice Victimizes Young Girls, Society. Radio Free Europe; Radio Liberty. http://www.rferl.org/content/article/1079316.html