5 Dec
2013

My Experience with World Religion: Hinduism

Malaysian Wedding Camille and Sudhagar January 2005 (3)I’ve been married three times. Yep, three times to the same man. The first ceremony was at the courthouse to get our marriage license. The second was a Catholic ceremony at Paradise Cove in Malibu because I always wanted a beach wedding. The third was a Hindu one when we visited Malaysia for the first time. PS–I’d never met my husband’s family until that trip two years after our first (courthouse) wedding.

While the Hindu wedding was much different than the Catholic ceremony, I definitely noticed similarities between the expressions of the two faiths in my first trip to Malaysia.

Malaysian Wedding Camille and Sudhagar January 2005 (2)The morning of our Hindu wedding, we went to the local temple to honor Ganesh (the elephant god in the picture), an important deity to my husband’s family.

Then we took the supplies and headed back to the house for a small, intimate ceremony. The nuptials were in Telegu, my Hindu family’s language, so I had no idea what was going on. However, I did think it was incredibly cool that the ceremony was performed by my MIL and FIL along with two other women friends of the family. Catholicism has such a strong, patriarchal tradition that it was refreshing to be honored by women during this process.

Malaysian Wedding Camille and Sudhagar January 2005 (4)Certain elements of the Hindu ritual were very familiar to me as a Catholic. They used incense (note the smoke in the picture), which is used often during Catholic rites. There were also tiny oil lamps, like the candles used in Catholic marriages. And what wedding would be complete without flowers?

Obviously, there were some VERY foreign elements. Take the picture of the two bananas in a coconut. I have no idea what that meant, so I made up my own explanation. Instead of two peas in a pod, we’d be like two bananas in a coconut. Anyway, it was a cute little memory.

My wedding sari was much more colorful than the white dress for the Christian ceremony, but I LOVED all that jewelry, wearing fresh jasmine in my hair, and getting henna on my hands and feet.

In the evening, we ate lots of delicious Indian food with my new family and friends. And that is definitely familiar to me as a Catholic, because we marry in the afternoon and party all night.

Malaysia Wedding Camille and Sudhagar  January 2005

All you need is love.

To me, all religions are beautiful. The cultural differences represented by each speaks to the infinite beauty that is God. Of course God can manifest in the mosaic of ways that shows itself across our amazing planet. To me, God is goodness and God is love. In my own life, I used both Hindu and Christian ceremonies to express that love within my own marriage.

Now may we forever be…

Two bananas in a coconut.

 

 


Camille Faye | Author of Voodoo Butterfly | Coming Fall 2014

Experience love, purpose, and the paranormal in New Orleans.

www.camillefaye.com

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7 Comments

  • Seriously awesome post, Camille. That is super cool, I never knew you were married three times! I find the overlaps between religions fascinating and common, that’s why I find it funny that people are prejudiced against those of other faiths– we all have so much in common! God is God, and we’re all his children no matter how we practice, so why can’t we get along? But awesome post, Camille, and just saying– you can totally rock a sari ;D

    • True dat, Little Lady, can’t we just all get along :) I do LOVE to rock a sari. LOL.

  • Thanks for sharing this with us. Love the photos! I also love two bananas in a coconut. I think we should get some t-shirts with that saying. We could sell them at the holiday sale. :) I also love how you are showing us how we are alike instead of how we are always so different. I wish everyone had your spirit!

    • Yes! The Lit Ladies merchandise link…we’ll start with selling “Two Bananas in a Coconut” shirts.

  • What a beautiful post (and wedding!). I love that you found the commonality and celebrated the differences– it truly is what makes our world rich, isn’t it?

  • Thanks, Julie. We live in a very cool world. I’m lucky enough to get to travel throughout it and LOVE sharing my experiences (photos, stories) whenever I can. You have some beautiful photos on your site, too.

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