Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Engagement Celebrationis in Arab Countries

Engagement Celebrationis in Arab Countries 

Weddings in Arab countries are characterized by multiple celebrations before and after the wedding ceremony. In Arab countries, weddings are mostly regarded as women’s events. Well-orchestrated, lavish hall, with catwalk, stage and seating sections is a common feature in most wedding venues. In most parts, five different parties are thrown for the wedding. The men’s side is done in a different place or even at different times. If they are held in the same place, access between men andwomen is prohibited and this is a law enforced by ministries. 

Some of the wedding celebrations in Arab countries 

The engagement celebrationis the first; it isattended by family and friends of the bride and groom. There are exceptional traditional foodstuffs and lots of singing and dancing. A ritual of good luck is done before the wedding ceremony. In this ritual men and women who will get married, buy new clothes and throw out the old ones to show to others that this is a totally new life. 

The henna night celebration is also common in Arab countries. For instance in Old Palestine, the night is used to prepare all the required decorations for the wedding ceremony. This night was also a chance for families to celebrate before the real wedding ceremony. In most Arab countries, a henna night remains traditional in customs, but it resembles the bachelorette party. The bride’s family and friends come together in the party, traditional foods, drinks, singing and dancing. 

The Sahra celebration is also done in some areas. For example in Palestine, male and family relatives celebrate this evening party in the garden. Music and dance groups perform and the men dance with the groom. Women are not allowed to attend this celebration and can only view it through video projection. This celebration is done to allow males outside the family attend the wedding. 

Wedding reception almost crowns everything. Zaffa, a procession that loudly declares the couple’s wedding. Zaffa differs from place to place. For example in Egypt, the DumiyatiZaffa in the north while Dabkeh is common in Levant. In urban weddings, the bride and groom sit on Kosha after the Zaffa. The Kosha also known as Dais consists of two comfortable seats in front of the guests, from which they reign as king and queen. 

Belly dancer entertains the guests. It is at the reception that guests also sing and dance with the couple and groom sometime tossed in the air by friends. Urban weddings in Arab countries are also characterized by cutting of the cake done by the bride and groom. The bride then tosses her bouquet behind her back to other hopeful women and by tradition whomever catches it is perceived to be lucky, because she is predicted to be the next to marry. In stringent Muslim wedding, men are not allowed to dance with women. Only female guests and children enter the hall together with the newly wedding couple. If the DJ is male, then he will have to operate behind a closed door. Family by family visits the newlywed couples offering congratulatory messages and presenting money gifts and at the end they sing and dance together.

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