Throughout the entire world, cultures are defined through arts, the achievement of a particular nation, social institution, the people, and some other social groups. In this paper I’m going to talk about five marriage rituals that have meaning and tells a story in different cultures and how the rituals means to the cultures, those rituals are: Breaking Glass, Foot Washing, Jumping the Broom, Drinking Wine, and my African marriage ritual that I’ve known since I was a kid. Wars throughout the world to me I think is based on religion, religion plays a big role in culturism and socialization because the way society act in different tradition, leaving situation, such as baptisms and most importantly weddings; knowing the idea of different cultures is very important because we get close to one another even if they’re leaving miles away.
The first marriage rituals I going to talk about is called ‘breaking glass.’ This tradition or ritual was invented by Jewish, this tradition came when Mar bar Rabina made a wedding for his son, he observed that the rabbis were very gay. So he used this goblet that was worth 400 zuzim (Jewish money) and break the glass before anyone, and made them sober. (MJL) This idea of breaking a glass was generally created for human relationship, even love can be disintegration sometimes but when a glass is broken it’s just like an incantation: as if the glass shatters, may the marriage never break or any problem may never come along. According to Anita Diamant ‘Marriage is a covenant, which in Judaism is made by breaking or cutting something. At Sinai, tables were broken; at a wedding, broken glass cuts the covenant.’ Meaning this agreement will never going to be broken no matter the situation that comes along the way. Another reason for breaking glass is the meaning of sexual connotations that release a sexual union that is required of them permanently. For centuries breaking glass is symbolized as the hymen. At the wedding you can break any type of glass as new, old, borrowed, or even blue doesn’t matter, just make sure its a glass and is cover by a heavy cloth of napkin.
This ceremony or ritual ‘Foot Washing’ is based on the opportunities for the couple to connect to their heritage, family, history, and values. The idea of these rituals started when Jesus did the same thing to his disciples as a symbol of humble and his devotion as a leader and serve his followers. According to wedding tradition ‘The Bible actually tells us that we are the bride and Jesus is the bridegroom. If that’s true, then this marriage thing is a lot less like a counseling session and a lot more like a road trip with your best friend.’ As a Christian we believe that in marriageㅡthe destination and goal is being together on the journey, this ritual is about two broken people coming together not just there in love and trying to fix one another but its about their present and commitment to one another while God the father and Jesus Christ the son do the fixing for human beings. Christina the author of this article told a story of Morgan the groom and Nicole the bride of how they grew up together as little kids and how God brought them together till this day. Foot washing is a Christian ceremony that I didn’t know about and its a symbol of two people coming together and washing every bad, miserable, depressed, and downcast situation they have faced in the past and at the end of the ceremony it says that after washing every situation, your going to face another situation that is going to be blessed by God the Father and Jesus Christ the Son and they’re not going to face that situation alone instead as a beloved couples.
Jumping the broom is an ethical and timed-honored wedding tradition that the groom and the bride jump over a bloom during the ceremony. The idea of jumping a bloom is an act that symbolizes a new beginning for the two couple, and the broom well sweeps the past and make a new beautiful one and also this is a sign of two families coming together and a respectful nod to the families ancestors. The history of jumping the broom tells a story about the ancestral roots that began in the heart of Africa, the meaning and the significance of the tradition has been lost over years and years due to slavery. Jumping the broom usually represents two families joining together, and it shows respect to the love one, people who came before them and the ones who have died along the way. Therefore this tradition should be practiced with honor and the beauty of the rich heritage. According to Veronica Braddy ‘During the slave ‘transitions’ we were not allowed to practice many of the traditional rituals of our past, therefore, much of our heritage was lost during this time.’ Today this tradition of jumping the broom is going to be handed down from generation to generation so that way it can remind people of the past where Africans didn’t have the right to practice their traditions and rituals.
Drinking wine has been part of the wedding tradition throughout the centuries in many countries and cultures, also it’s a symbol of life prosperity. This ceremony or rituals also goes back in the Bible when Jesus Christ did another miracle of changing water into wine during the gathering of people in Bethlehem. At the beginning of wine, ceremony means two families coming together as one a simple understanding before the wedding ceremony starts both of the parents bring the wine of their flavor to the wedding. Wine ceremony is symbolized as the blending of two lives into one. According to the wedding in paradise ‘By blending sweet and dry wines together, it can be used to symbolize the marriage bond that persists in times and joy and in sorrow.’ It doesn’t matter how the couples choose to use the wine, they just have to drink it and share it, also they can add a little touch to the wine to make it romantic. The common of using a glass of wine is to have two small carafes of wines, one red and one white. After the couples exchange rings and putting them on their fingers they poured them together in one of the carafes and mix the wine and create a blend, they both drink the wine that represents their individual lives that become as one.
As my own African wedding or marriage ceremony is very simple, there’s nothing special to it that I can call as a ritual. The wedding starts by people sitting down and eating food with the love ones, as the bridesmaid and the groom best man dancing on the floor in the same rhythm to the song together. After everything, the bride and the groom walk to the stage when the pastor tells everyone to sit down and pray for the two couples for a beautiful, amazing, adventurous, honest that awaits the two couples and honor them and continue praying for them every night and day as their marriage goes by. Therefore the groom and the bride exchange their vows and everybody claps after they’ve kissed, at the end of the wedding the groom and the bride steps on the dance floor and start dancing slow while the music picks up the pace and the bridesmaid and the groom best mans join the bride and the groom on the floor and dance together in rhythm and making sure all of them are in sync to the music. After that, anybody can join them dancing and stalking talking while eating and having a great time.
In conclusion, the world is full of different marriage rituals, death rituals, and more. As anthropology knowing different rituals in different countries or tribes is very important because you’re getting to know the people around you better and getting to their personality and what they do, also know what people celebrate is very important for anthropology. Having a beautiful community where everybody knows one another is a beautiful, amazing thing and makes the world that was leaving better and save place for one another in different ways that people cannot explain.