Friday, September 6, 2013

The sevens of marriage

Hindu marriage vows are taken in the saat phere - the seven circum-ambulations of the Holy fire. They are more prayers than vows. The first phera is with a prayer is for availability of nourishing food through their lives, the second is for health, the third is for Wealth, the fourth is for mutual love and respect, the fifth is for good progeny, the sixth is for a long life of peace and the seventh is for togetherness, companionship, loyalty and mutual understanding.

I searched and searched and could not find this '... and obey' being required from the wife in this process. Alas! That put me off marriage - lacking nimbleness of brains, that 'obey' was about the only way I could come anywhere close to holding my own in a marital relationship - not that it has been any help to any of the others who had tacitly assumed that it was a part of the marriage vows.

There is, however, a different seven that comes into operation these days in love marriages. I make no claim that this is universal but it certainly seems wide-spread.

1. At First Sight - "Ek ladki ko dekha tho aisa lagaa"
2. At first meeting - "Tum aa gaye ho, noor aa gaya hai"
3. After being accepted - "Hum donon do premi duniya chor chale"
4. After a period of love - "Shayad meri shaadi ka kayal"
5. Post wedding - "Suhaag raat hai, Ghunghat uta raha hoon main"
6. Five years after marriage - "Kya apna tamanna thi, Kya saamne aaya hai"
7. Ten years after - "Kasme vaade pyaar wafa sab baaton hai baaton ka kya"

I plead indulgence from the ladies. Hindi cinema has been male-centric and I am unable to find good equivalents for the women. (And my apologies too to those of you who do not know these Hindi songs)

Marriage is also supposed to be a saat-janam ka rishta (A relationship lasting seven births). The above love story starts with being indignant about having only seven births with the loved one, goes through to feeling that the relationship is just about good enough for seven births and ends with hoping that the current one IS the seventh birth for which the marriage was supposed to last.

I am sure that YOUR marriage is not like this one and you want life with the same partner to last till you get off the wheel of existence totally. But I cannot keep worrying about you. I need to figure out whether this seven births business applies for bachelors as well and, if it does, do I want this to be the first of seven or the last.

I am taking part in The Write Tribe Festival of Words 1st - 7th September 2013

100 comments:

  1. REALLY ENJOYED READING IT .... IT IS THE BEST I HAVE READ SO FAR.....

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    1. Thanks Anonymous. would hv loved it better with a name :)

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    2. name is goutom banerjee

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    3. See! I told you I would love it all the more when i know the name :) I DO :)

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  2. Nice post, the various sevens of marriage, huh...

    When one thinks of marriages, one only thinks of the saat pheras and probably the saath janam ka rishta, but the seven songs, masterpiece, including your selection for the various phases as well...

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    1. Thanks Mahabore! Having already seen a few posts on this by stalwarts I thought this would pale in comparison.

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  3. Ha ha ha. Great post. Marriage could turn out a bliss or make you completely lose hope in that institution.

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  4. The greatest advantage for you is that you can write on this topic without any fear haha :)
    I simply loved the 7 stages of love...
    Instability in love and marriage is a serious issue these days but your humorous take on this topic is really refreshing...great!

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    1. Belan hai ghar mein par uska sadupayog karnewali nahin hai - so, yes, I can be fearless :)

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  5. There are only two possibilities in a marriage - Either the man is dominated by the woman or the woman is dominated by the man. Its high time we discredit this stupid institution.

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    1. Really? You do live in a black-and-white world, don't you? :)

      Best to see what alternatives you have to ensure a Society which can take care of the human young, which unfortunately cannot fend for itself for quite a long time unlike animals.

      You may care a damn and in that case you have the option to opt out but when you start prescribing solutions for Society you have to suggest viable alternatives.

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  6. Very informative. My question is, why wouldn't it apply to bachelors?

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    1. It is supposed to be a 'relationship spanning seven births', Penny and Bachelorhood is no relationship - but, wait, can Narcissism be considered a relationship? Hmmmm

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    2. Thanks, Suresh. I imagine Narcissism could technically be considered a relationship! I am reminded of the character Samantha of the hit series "Sex in the City"...she refused marriage because she could only love herself. She broke up with a man who stood by her side while she endured breast cancer only to tell him in the end that she loved herself more and couldn't commit to him.

      On another note, I created a poster based on a comment you left on my blog. I wanted to share it with you. I posted it on my facebook page to inspire others about gratitude on www.facebook.com/wordsofwisdomandadvice.
      Penny

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    3. I sort of think that it may be difficult to love myself for seven births. :) Finding it a bit of a drag even for this lifetime :)

      That was wonderful of you, Penny! I am overwhelmed.

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  7. Suresh you added humour to the seven vows,which makes an interesting reading. In my case I can say that 6th and 7th vows are
    6th. Sau saal pehle mujhe tumse pyar tha,aaj bhi hai aur kal bhi rahega.
    7th Janam janam kaa saath he.

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    1. In that case may you both be singing "Sou baar janam lenge..." forever :)

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  8. A post on marriage from you had me all curious :). It feels so serious when you actually hear the pandit say the meaning of each phera to you and then you do your own circle around the fire hand in hand to seal that commitment. To me that was the first time the seriousness of marriage vows struck me. 13 years later, I am still singing, "Tumse milke aisa laga tumse milke!" interspersed with "Chain se humko kabhi aapne jeene na diya."

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    1. Hahaha! May I offer you the same wishes I offered Usha - that you keep singing "Sou baar janam lenge.." forever interspersed with "chain nahin bahar chain nahin ghar mein" :)

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  9. Ah, enjoyed reading this esp the seven stages and seven songs to describe the mood. Lovely write-up that seems funny at the outset but probes deeper.

    Joy always,
    Susan

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    1. I AM becoming too obvious nowadays, Susan! :) Someone always manages to see behind the humor.

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  10. Nailed it in your seven steps. Marriage for me was HIS-STORY+ HER-STORY = HORROR STORY. I totally jumped off the bandwagon, never been happier. Your 7 steps was quite the way it went.

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    1. So I CAN write fiction then :) Since I can imagine this without ever having experienced it :)

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  11. Ha ha. Brilliant. Kasme Vade Pyaar Wafa....was the best.

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    1. Thanks Alka! Great to see that you still come around here :)

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  12. Ha ha ha! That 10 year later part cracked me up. Funny.

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    1. Et tu, Shilpa? Like Alka, you too like "Kasme vaade pyaar wafa.."? :)

      Thanks!

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  13. Nice, Interesting and an eyeopener for bachelors...Good humor linked to a speechless feeling...

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    1. Thank God you let your words flow in the comments. Loved it.

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  14. Quite humoruos but genuine take on marriage.

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  15. This from a person who is not married! Just wonderful. It is as good as you are married.

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    1. Now WHY do you think I did not get married? :)

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  16. Good one :)Even though you are a bachelor you do have the "inside" knowledge of marriage :-)

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    1. Hmm! you people will convince me that I do :)

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  17. A true bollywood aficionado u r huh :)

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  18. interesting read..enjoyed it..specially the description through songs!!

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  19. Suresh, like Susan, I see through your humour and that's not a bad thing, believe me. :)
    I love the seven pheras and what they represent. Too bad my ancestors converted and we lost out on this meaningful ceremony. I remember being almost jealous of a cousin who married a Sindhi girl, and had this ceremony.
    Not sure that you know but my husband was 51 when we got married, so you might get into the seven pheras yet! ;) Just kidding.
    I must say you're rocking this Festival. I see your meaningful comments on almost every single blog I visit. I hope you're having fun.

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    1. If I did not want that to happen, Corinne, I would not put in the message at all in the humor :) So, yes, it makes me happy actually to tget found out like this :)

      Yeah - who knows? There could be one woman in the world unlucky enough :)

      Thanks for that 'rocking' comment. I AM having fun.

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  20. Lol!!! Loved your take on the saath pheras!

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  21. "Five years after marriage - "Kya apna tamanna thi, Kya saamne aaya hai" - Im going to confirm this soon as he returns from office! :D Wonderful post, and I only blame the male-centric Hindi cinema for bits about the post that made the wife in me frown! :)

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    1. Sakshi! I really tried you know! Problem was I could not find one single song for the very first phase - there seem to be no songs describing men :)

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  22. My husband and I will have been married 16 years September 12 and we have all those things on your list. It was love at first sight for us. It was a blind date. We met through a dating service. The first time we talked was on the phone and were shocked to discover we had so much to say the conversation lasted all night long. We met shortly after that call and the rest is history! In 3 short months we were engaged.

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    1. Wow! And I am sure you guys are still going strong!

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  23. I believe that a marriage stand for equality between both spouses and need to further their individual traits. I beg to differ and refuse to give up to patriarchy. I know that as a man, it's a bit odd and adore the points you raised.
    I am a bachelor and have no intention to tie the knot for the time being:)

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    1. Vishal if you insist on taking a humorous statement as a representation of my thought process then it is tough to answer you :)

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  24. Suresh ji,
    I think I seem to have done something to the previous comment!!
    Nevertheless, an apt list about the 7 vows, albeit spread over the life cycle of a marriage.. :) as against the original ones which are done and over with just at the start.

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    1. True - the vows are said and forgotten by most. This lives on :)

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  25. Replies
    1. I do too - don't know about how it applies for bachelors though :)

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  26. Nice post...poor we women, bollywood as well as blogwood...all love to pick on us...

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    1. And you say that after all those "You men are all rapists" posts that I have been reading all along? :)

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  27. Well, you tell us! How would you want it to be like...the first or the last?

    For me, I'd like it to be the seventh :P :D

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    1. The jury is still out in my mind :) And, who knows, like Corinne says I may get hitched up at 60 or something and get down to the more normal worries of all married men :)

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  28. Back wid ur style of writing suresh. Wen I read ur post on music, was wondering if u had become too serious wid life. not now. am reminded of one statement after reading ur post. it goes so - while a bachelor envies the married person on weekdays (home food, care, concern et al), the married man envies a bachelor during weekends :)

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    1. Oh! I started with my previous posts Vexing Colors :)

      There is another quote that strikes me generally - "Married men live longer than bachelors but married men are a lot more willing to die" :)

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  29. I've always enjoyed your humor and am still grinning at the last sentence and like Corrine says it snever late ain't it ? :) :)

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  30. I am quite sure it is the seventh life for the duo, because according to the same religion, it takes a lot of good deeds to get a 'janm' in the 'manav yoni' and I am pretty sure that there would be barely a few humans who manage to pull off this feat of back to back births as humans, just like a triple century in a one day international cricket match.

    Nice post there!

    Blasphemous Aesthete

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    1. Seventh life for the duo as a wedded couple? That means that this is the seventh time that both have been born human or were they a couple as planktons, fishes, frogs, snakes and cows in their previous six Janms? :) If not the latter, it would seem that back-to-back human births are not all that uncommon seeing the number of people wedded to each other :) Me - I could have been anything :)

      It may well be that to reach the Manav Yoni may be tough but sustaining it may not be as tough as to require saintly behavior. Who knows? :)

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  31. Scary Being married for seven years, I think i already reached on the "kasme vade pyar vafa sab" :( but if you want to make your matrimony successful, follow one mantra "Obey your wife".:)

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    1. No intention of getting married but I always knew that when they said "The Boss i always Right" what they meant by Boss was the wife :)

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  32. haha...highly creative and loved it Suresh!

    Fortunately I have heard of all the songs so could relate well

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    1. Thanks Ruchira! Great that you knew all the songs and could relate in full to the piece

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  33. All the rest seven finished I was wondering when you would pick this one up :D :D and well even I knew all the songs and also enjoyed the banter you created with them :P :P

    Richa

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    1. Thanks Richa! How could I miss writing on this one? :)

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  34. I remember this 7 stages song parody during one of our many sessions and I had the advantage of hearing you sing them all :) Fun read.

    It will be 15 years this December and I have no complaints (my wife may, but I have none :) )

    Things seem (at least to me) to be the same as 17 yrs back when I proposed. Of course it does help when you wife's expectations from a life partner are at a nadir when you propose :) No promises, no expectations lead to a very peaceful married life :)

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    1. In some cases, it is only one of the two who goes through these stages and hits the last stage :) You know now who it is in your case :)

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    2. Ha ha ha ha :)

      In my defense, I gave her no reason to go through the first 5 stages ;)

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  35. Nice post sir! Enjoyed reading it. And yes the choice of songs is amazing! They are so appropriate :)

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  36. Hilarious post Suresh. I just reaqd ur today's post and then thought let me see what you wrote y'day and glad that I did so :)

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    1. Thanks Bhagyashree! Good that your curiosity did not lead to disappointment :)

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  37. What about the 7 seven year itch that lasts a lifetime!

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    1. Ah! Then I should have included that song, "Kya hai barosa aashiq dil ka aur kisi pe yeh aa jaye" as an alternative for the 7th - and changed the period to the 7th year :)

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  38. That's funny and hilarious. :D
    While one of the spouse may want the saat janamo ka saath. But what if the other one has other plans! :)

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    1. Good question! One singing "Sou baar janam lenge ..... Ae jaane wafa phir bhi; hum tum na jhudha honge" and the other singing, "Yeh joh mohabbat hai...rehne do chode bi jaane do yaar, hum na karenge pyaar" :)

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  39. Lol! That was hilarious!
    Been a bachelor you don't have to fear anyone for writing this, na? ;)

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    1. Of course not! That's why I can write all this :)

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  40. The seventh feeling of ten years later is the best! On a second note, I would advise that you take your bachelor's life to be the first one. Who enjoys such freedom, anyway? Making it the last would surely be a bane!

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  41. We believe you O! Suresh! Pearls Of Wisdom from your detached stature :D I find myself hovering between the the last two stages!

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    1. Hahaha! Well - the observer sees more than the participant :)

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  42. These days you seem to have donned the mantle of a tutor. I am all ears, sir! Incidentally, there is a linguistic catch in your song number 3. ;)

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    1. The 'duniya chod chale' instead of '..chalein"? :) Or the very fact that they are talking of leaving the world? :)

      ME and tutor? :) Now that is a mantle that ill fits me :)

      Thanks Uma!

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    2. Relax, Suresh. 'Duniya chor chale' is safer!

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    3. I am in your safe hands, Uma! My Hindi is shaky aur aap tho shayar bhi ho :)

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  43. Hilarious. Too bad that you couldn't find the 'obey' requirement for the wife. :P

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    1. Thanks Shail! Great for whoever was slated to be my wife though - if there were any such :)

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  44. Good One Suresh. ( I did read the whole post, just not sure what else to put in my comment :D ) . Oh yeah, may be this is the 8th one past the 7 births where you get to have fun sans strings for being a good man in all previous 7?

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    1. Good one that too :) Btw, I still want to know if the rewards last for only one birth or do I get them for 7 :)

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  45. Here’s the female version, Suresh:

    1. At First Sight - "Unse mili nazar ki mere hosh ud gaye"
    2. At first meeting - "Kaun aaya ki nigahon mein chamak jag uthi"
    3. After being accepted - "Tera saath hai to mujhe kya kami hai"
    4. After a period of love - "Bharo maang meri bharo"
    5. Post wedding - "Ek anari jungli janwar badtameez deewana"
    6. Five years after marriage - "Teri meri yaari badi puraani – toone mujhe pehchaana?"
    7. Ten years after - "Main ka karoon Ram mujhe buddha mil gaya"

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    1. Wow! Mimmy! You warm my heart :) So NOW I know 'donon taraf lagi hai aag barabar ka' :)

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