Posted on Friday, February 28, 2020
The Arekaticas are a clan of Suryavanshi descent who served as fierce warriors for Chhatrapati Shivaji in the medieval ages. They are located distinctively in parts of Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Maharashtra. The word Are signifies their Marathi heritage. Their common surnames are Suryanarayana, Ashtanarayana, Dwitiyakshari, Chaturakshari and many others. Following the defeat of the Maratha clan, the Arekaticas branched out into various professions like farming, toddy-tapping and animal husbandry. They also separate the skins of sheep but do not indulge in butchery as it is prohibited in their culture.
A marriage ceremony in Arekatica community is a simple affair without any emphasis on show-offs or gaudy displays of affluence. The Arekaticas believe in the simplicity and sanctity of marriage vows and hence divorces are virtually unheard of in this community. The matchmaking proposal is arranged by the elders of the community and the opinion of the prospective bride and groom are taken into consideration before fixing the marriage dates. The engagement ceremony takes place right after the acceptance of the marriage proposal and the Purohit announces the most auspicious date for solemnising the marriage.
While the bride and the groom wear white colored clothing adorned with beautiful flowers, everybody else wears colored clothing. The ceremony begins at dawn with both families offering oblations into the fire as offerings to their chief deity, the Sun God. The other ceremonies resemble a traditional Hindu wedding with customs of Haldi, Sangeet, Baraat bhoj, Jaimala, pheres and vidaai.
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