I wrote a post on the Lao Traditional Wedding that I didn’t have the opportunity to publish yet, which starts out as,
“Courting, Love, Marriage. If you are Laotian what better way to assure a lifetime of love and marriage than a Lao traditional wedding ceremony. It’s considered to be one of the most honorable duties for Lao girls, and most joyful for her parents to see their daughter honoring and respecting them by choosing Lao traditional wedding as a median in transition of starting a family. It might not legally be recognized as a marriage but more so of a tradition. This is to value the Lao ways, respect Lao culture, and respect our elders. The couple can make it official at a city hall prior or after the Lao traditional wedding. Some might also have a Christian ceremony in conjunction with Lao traditional wedding, which is also acceptable and at the same time, legally recognized.” (read full post here)
Of course this tradition is also shared by the Thais as well, might vary slightly in certain area but not by much. As for Lao people, it is a normal traditional wedding, but for the westerners, this might be somewhat strange to witness, below are photos from B-Vong website of a Lao Traditional Wedding.
But what I discover is that traditional wedding ceremony is not always the case anymore, as most people agreed that the ultimate goal of love is marriage, and that day is supposed to be the happiest day that two people join hands to start the beginning of their lives together; therefore every cultures and religions would try to make this appealing, and most sacred event, as some cultures or tribes would celebrate 7 days, 7 nights or even to the extreme of 1 month, mainly to prove a point of the importance of their traditional marriage ceremony.
Then I saw this video in you tube of a strange wedding ceremony in Thailand, this you have to see for yourself.
Couples tied the knot on Valentine’s day. Sounds romantic right? Well guess again, they tied the knot at an odd and spooky wedding ceremony where seven couples put on their wedding outfits and added Halloween make up to participate in a wedding they hoped would exorcise jinxes and help them to live in harmony, as one of the grooms said, “The wedding today represented the happy marriage like if we died we will die together,”.
As much as I like writing and translating ghost story, this was a bit creepy for me to watch and to imagine the guests that were there, as the Thais are very tradition, rich with cultural heritage, especially in their wedding ceremony, and to witness this can be somewhat traumatic in my opinion.
Most of us have heard this wedding vow, “…to love and to cherish ‘till death do us part…’”, as some would take it literally. I read about a bungee jump wedding, which to me was somewhat odd, but I guess not anymore, as this is now a choice of wedding ceremony for some couples, mostly the adventurous, risking life and death type of situation. I’m not sure as to why bungee jumping, but I’m sure every couple have their own reasoning as to why this is their choice, and it might be that they feel that if they died, then they are not soul mate, but if survived, then they are. This is not just a game of love anymore, but also the game of life and death, a high price to pay just for that adrenaline rush, to prove their love to one another, as some might say …It is definitely worth it.
Really? The question is, does the couple know that it is risky? The answer is yes, and this could mean a wedding and a funeral, as one of many couples that had proved their love, as for me I think they are tantalizing with the devil, as most Laotians believe that you shouldn’t do anything risky on the day of your wedding, even to the extreme of not allowing the bride and groom to drive a vehicle for fear of bad luck because it is believed that bad luck piggy back rides with good luck. The photos below were a bungee wedding that gone wrong, sad situation indeed; the photos were from Koosang Koosom magazine…one wedding, two funerals.
·Billy Idol – White Wedding
I guess I am old fashion. I got this weird idea that wedding was a celebration of life. Not dressing up like something out of Rocky Horror Picture Show.
Hi Dallas, everyone wants to be unique, but I think there’s a fine line between being unique and being strange or weird. I thought wedding is a celebration of Love, but I guess life also.
Although, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, those ladies in the video are pretty nice. The only thing to fear is fear itself. One shouldn’t fear the differences we see in wedding practices.
Palestinian weddings, for instance, can resemble a minor riot during their parade down the local avenue, as they clang the pots and pan, dancing with joy. For the nine year old, this is an awesome experience, but for an introvert this could be embarrassing.
The risk of dying from a bungee jump is worth it if it means creating an everlasting bond. There should be no fear – the margin of safety on today’s bungee rope bond has far improved.
>>>The risk of dying from a bungee jump is worth it if it means creating an everlasting bond. There should be no fear – the margin of safety on today’s bungee rope bond has far improved.
Hi theQuipster, you must be one that worship love as for some people think with their heads, and others with their hearts, I’ll keep that in mind. I do see your point of view, as for me, ‘No Guts, No Glory,’ and bungee jumping might be something that I need to try at least once, but I like to do it by myself because if I were to die, I don’t want to feel guilty for taking someone else with me.
I agree that the margin of safety on today’s bungee rope is a lot safer, but the risk is higher for couples on their wedding day mainly because some couples are nervous, and inexperienced, and this increases a lot of pressure for the person who is doing the calculation that operates the bungee event, for human error is likely, and this does not include the reliability of the equipment.
It’s true that beauty is in the eyes of the beholder, and I do respect traditions, no matter how odd they are, I’m not embarrassed to be a part of them. But changing the old tradition that has been around for a long, long time, and twisting it into something else, as if mocking the old tradition is not acceptable to me, as in this case, the old Thai traditional wedding ceremony was still there and for the elders to watch, I can’t say that they would be proud that the younger generations are carrying on their ancient tradition with a modern twist. If you want to start a new tradition, then fine but not modify the old tradition to your liking, it is just a matter of showing respect IMO.
OMG that is very strange! Ginger did you happen to hear the groom say that the ceremony was to strenghten their lives/make it stronger and if they die they do it together. As I was watching the video, I asked myself, ” Why would they dress like they are corpses? What’s their point?” Of course the answer came immediately and I thought maybe they wanted to show how they feel about the marriage… which is that it is forever and nothing will seperate them even death. However, I have to agree with you that they are taking it too far. It was like watching a Michael Jackson video, “Thriller.” Okay, maybe they wanted to have a memorable wedding, but that’s ridiculous. I’m speechless!
I guess you feel they are making Thai wedding traditions trivial here. But I think traditions are good (to an extent), and sometimes people want to be able to have choices in their life. It makes life more “exciting” for them.
And weddings are no different, some people may be obsess with vampires or Hello Kitty and would want a “vampire” or “Hello Kitty” theme. As long as they are not hurting anyone, I say they can do what they want.
As for the video, I can agree with you that the 7 couples look very creepy. Actually reminded me of the movie Corpse Bride. From Wikipedia – “Tim Burton’s Corpse Bride is a 2005 Academy Award-nominated stop-motion-animation film based loosely on a 19th century Russian-Jewish folktale version of an older Jewish story and set in a fictional Victorian era village.”
Oh, but the movie Corpse Bride is very cute and romantic! Not creepy at all.
Hi Karmadiva, I think the video is strange, but somewhat fun to watch, an eye opening experience for me and I’m sure for most readers because I never thought anyone would come up with such thing as if we were watching a music video or something, like you said…it was like watching a Michael Jackson video, “Thriller.”; might be more suitable if it were on Halloween, instead of Valentine’s day.
Hi Salat, thanks for commenting on this, as I would imagine that you would like Hello Kitty theme much better than this. I do have to admit that I have a very conservative view on this matter, and don’t like any traditions being mocked, but to look at it again, the intention of mocking might not be there at all. I believed that the professional wedding planner organized this event, and the main goal was cool and hip, which no doubt was the talk of the town. I didn’t get to see the Corpse Bride; I need to check it out.
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Salat, I love Corpse Bride and yes I thought of that movie as welll, but at least that movie cute! Nightmare before Christmas is great also. Yes, everybody has a right to do whatever they want on their wedding, but those people made me realize how normal I am. I used to think I was strange but not anymore!:)
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Thanks for sharing this. Great post on Lao traditional wedding. Will definitely revisit your site again.
Lao Music, glad that you like and thanks for stopping by.
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