How is your family?

Many said to me before I left, “If you get invited to an Indian wedding you have to go.” Only four days in India and there I was … at an Indian wedding … I was wrapped in layers and layers of yards and yards of fabric with a sparkling necklace and matching bangles on each wrist, all acquired on the first day of my arrival for about 900 rupees (that’s about $20 USD.)

The wedding was held at the largest Arcot Lutheran Church in town. The bride was the daughter of the senior pastor of the church. There were about 800 – 1000 people present. It was a pretty big deal, as I understand all Indian weddings are … lots of ritual, lots of food, lots of glitz.

One of the ladies here at Quo Vadis Vimala, explained to me that you need a crowd at weddings because the size of the crowd has something to say about your relationship to others. Those present are offering support and blessing to the couple and the family just by being present. It’s a very communal concept, not at all individual, just the way everything else Indian is here. (There are many westerners here, in later posts I’ll comment on that reality and their approach to Tiruvannamalai.)

The idea of individuality is quite literally a foreign concept. Where in the west one might greet another with the question, “how are you doing today?” Here in India the question would not be asked, and if you did you the person being asked the question might not even know what to say. Instead the question of greeting is, “how is your family?” It’s not about me, it’s about the family of which I am a part.

So, how is your family?


8 thoughts on “How is your family?

  1. Kirsten – No particular reply – only to let you know that the Bakers in Clear Lake are tuned in for whatever “fireside chats” you may be offering up. We are all well – sounds like you are, too! We had a lady from India working in my office for a few years and she, too, said that Indian weddings are a spectacle. She said they can go on for days! Our best as you start your new adventure – and we will be following the goings on!
    Mike & Mary (and Lainey, too!)

  2. You look beautiful, as usual. Right now our “family” is preparing for Hurricane Irene to pass by New Jersey. Keep us in your prayers!

    • Thanks Lydia. I can’t believe this Hurricane is so far north. Where I stayed in New York City just 2 weeks ago, near Union Square is under mandatory evacuation. Wow. Stay safe! And many prayers to you!

  3. I should have given you my sari before you left!! Never thought of that. It was used once, for an Indian Wedding of course. Awesome post!

  4. Kirsten, you look stunning in your sari! And I am so glad to read that you had a good experience at Quo Vadis. I think it is a very special place.

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