• top frame 
  • Painting from a manuscript showing Vishnu reclining  on Garuda, the Serpent of Eternity, while his consort Lakshmi rubs his foot. A lotus flower grows from Vishnu's navel and Brahma is being born from the bud.
  • Magnifying Glass

Vishnu and Lakshmi on Garuda, the serpent of Eternity, Kangra School, c. 1870
Painting from a manuscript showing Vishnu reclining on Garuda, the Serpent of Eternity, while his consort Lakshmi rubs his foot. A lotus flower grows from Vishnu's navel and Brahma is being born from the bud.
Victoria & Albert Museum, London/Art Resource, NY

India

Welcoming the Groom

In India, the groom is likened to the deity Vishnu and is treated with great respect as the new guardian of the bride. On the day of his wedding, he dons his wedding garments and begins his journey to married life by travelling to his bride’s house. In many parts of India, upon arrival the groom is greeted by the mother of the bride. She offers him two small pottery vessels, tied together and containing foods that symbolize fertility. The groom crushes these underfoot, and in doing so initiates the start of the marriage ceremonies. After this, he sets his shoes aside and the parents of the bride wash his feet with milk, curd, ghee, sugar and honey. Their gesture symbolizes respect for the man who will now take care of their daughter.