Written by Paula Jones Last updated: June 6, 2006
Buddhist wedding traditions include a blessing for the happy couple. Here’s what you need to know…
There is no set wedding service in the Buddhist faith, as the Buddha (founder of the religion) did not consider marriage to be a sacred ceremony. Instead, marriage is considered a social rather than religious occasion.
The Buddha stated only that marriage should be based on deep mutual respect between partners and that it should be a partnership of equals (a remarkably progressive standpoint, bearing in mind the low status of women in India at the time). Buddhists can marry anyone from any religion and their union should be a harmonious blend of the differing strengths and abilities of the man and woman.
A Buddhist marriage ceremony is secular in nature and takes place in a register office or one of the few Buddhist temples licensed as a legal marriage venue. The London Buddhist Vihara is one of them. Call 020 8995 9493, email firstname.lastname@example.org or take a look at their website www.londonbuddhistvihara.org for more details or other venues.
People of all religions are welcome to attend a Buddhist blessing service, as long as each guest respects the traditions of the Buddhist faith.
The bride, groom and guests are free to wear whatever they like, as long as it is not too revealing. The bride usually wears a dress and the groom a suit.
Guests should be aware that they must behave respectfully towards the Buddhist monks in the temple and should remove their shoes before entering the shrine room.
The blessing ceremony takes place in the shrine room of the Buddhist temple.
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