What Is A Pagan Wedding
Modern Paganism is one of the world’s fastest-growing religious bodies. In its simplest definition, Paganism is a modernised recreation of the indigenous spiritual traditions of Europe it’s a revival of the old pre-Christian beliefs and practices. However, this is the 21st century. Modern Paganism has been heavily influenced by current values and ethics, such as feminism and environmentalism.
We’ve also been chatting to Jacqui and Emma over at Pagan Wedding Planners in the beautiful town of Glastonbury. Between them, they have 60 years of experience working both magically and ceremonially, priding themselves on giving their clients confidence in their company and their ability as Priestesses lookout for Jacqui’s comments along the way!
Ceremonies are special occasions, and most are regarded as sacred to those who believe in them. Those who share in a Celtic, Wiccan or Pagan belief acknowledge and generally respect the beauty of life and powers – the forces or elements of nature. Celtic, Wiccan and Pagan Ceremonies are steeped in tradition – ancient tradition and ritual, dating back thousands of years.
Pagan wedding ceremonies are steeped in history and date back thousands of years. With their strong spiritual connections and meaningful beliefs, they offer couples the opportunity to commit to each other in unique ways.
Fact 16 The Simplicity Is Intentional
Initially wedding rings were given during betrothal or engagement. The only appeared in wedding ceremonies around 860AD. And because these earlier wedding rings were elaborately carved and engraved, the more kosher wedding band was designed to be plain, simple, and unadorned, the yellow gold band of today. But few people settle for that boring old style.
Fact 19 Modern Rings Are Healthier
Todays couples are putting more thought into their wedding rings. So they might choose gemstones that are sustainably mined to be kinder to the environment. Or they may opt for synthetic gemstones that use renewable fuel sources. Even when they buy metal rings, they buy platinum, tungsten, titanium. These are hypoallergenic metals with fewer health implications.
Some couples never remove their wedding rings. Others take them off to wash dishes or shake hands. Either way, if your wedding ring has a stone or engravings, clean it at home once a week and have it professionally cleaned using ultrasonic tools at a jewelry store once or twice a year.
Do you and your spouse wear wedding bands? Show us your rings in the comments!
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Fact 15 Wedding Rings Arent Christian
While many modern weddings take place in a church even for couples that arent religious the wedding ring was initially a pagan symbol that got co-opted into the church. Brides in other religions may wear their ring elsewhere. Jewish brides often wear it on their right index finger, for example. But most modern coupled wear rings the usual way left ring finger for both.
Covering Your Mouth To Yawn
Covering your mouth to yawn is just a common courtesy, right? No one wants your warm breath on them! Turns out, thats not entirely true–even covering your mouth to yawn has pagan origins.
In pagan Rome, doctors had a clever theory about yawning and infant mortality. They noticed that lots of children died young, and they also noticed that babies were unable to cover their mouth when they yawned. Their diagnosis? Yawning allowed a persons vital life essence to escape their body. And apparently covering your piehole with your hand was the only way to stop an untimely death.
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So What About The Ring
It’s true that a wedding ring is a token of possession, but rather than symbolising a man possessing a woman, it is the woman’s possession of something valuable given by the man. Hence the current practice of using a precious metal, such as gold, platinum or titanium.
And it’s quite often a ring rather than any other token because a ring is nicely round and smooth, and that has a profoundly natural appeal.
Typhoons, convection currents, the arc of a rainbow… circles appear over and over again in nature. Roundness is a very natural shape and appears much more frequently than straight lines.
Perhaps because of this, we find roundness has aesthetic appeal just for being round.
“Glory is like a circle in the water,Which never ceaseth to enlarge itselfTill by broad spreading it disperse to naught.”
How Did Diamond Engagement Rings Become A Tradition
Up until the 1940s, diamonds were just one among numerous gems used as engagement ring stones. Their wild popularity is mainly due to De Beers, the diamond giant that controlled the majority of the worlds diamonds at the time. When people stopped buying diamonds during the economic downturn of 1930s, De Beers launched an epic marketing campaign.
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That Was A Significant Thing In Making Me Doubt The Org
Approximately 3,000 bc, egyptians originated the phrase without beginning, without end in describing the significance of the wedding ring. As we just read, the wedding rings were originally designed as a call upon the pagan belief in luck, which is a concept of devils by which nothing is ordained of god, and instead, they believe things all happen by random chance The pagan origin of the wedding ring raise questions about its adoption by christians to represent the marriage union.
Fact 5 Its Not Just The Wedding Day
When youre budgeting for wedding rings, you often include the cost of an engagement rings as well its considered part of the package. But for modern marriages, you might have to factor in the cost of other trinkets as well. Her push present is likely to be a diamond ring. You may have to reset her wedding or engagement rings at some point, and dont forget key anniversaries
Fact 2 The Wedding Ring Wasnt Part Of The Exchange
In this sense, because the dowry and/or bride price were about basic needs and livelihood, the wedding ring was never part of the bargain. Instead, the couple and their families may swap food items, clothing, dried grain, beddings, and the like. Some families would even exchange servants and female siblings. But the ring was a separate gift intended for the bride.
Symbolism Of Wedding Rings
Wedding rings symbolized many things in the different cultures that have used them throughout the history of man.
Initially, traditions indicate that a man placed a ring on the finger of a woman simply as proof that he possessed her. The ring was placed on the left hand, considered the weaker side of the body, to indicate the submission of the woman to the man.
More romantic notions were added with the thought that the ring finger contained a vein that ran directly to the heart. Also added at some point was the thought that this circular design implied an eternal bond .
Egyptians even attached significance to the circle within the ring, using it to symbolize the unknown. Truly, no newly married couple knows with certainty what the future will bring.
Interestingly, it seems the history of wedding rings for men didnt begin until World War II, when men began to wear a ring as a reminder of their wife back home.
Do these facts make it wrong to wear wedding rings? No. Lets see why.
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The Move To Lab Grown Diamonds
Throughout the centuries, different cultures have paired precious stones with precious metals to create stunning wedding and engagement rings. And easily the most popular wedding ring stone is the diamond.
Diamonds are widely regarded as the hardest substance in the world the perfect metaphor for the promise represented by the marriage union.
At the same time, diamonds are brilliantly eye-catching. The best examples are clear and colorless but manage to capture and redirect light in dazzling displays.
Unfortunately, the processes used to mine diamonds from the ground simply are not sustainable.
Extracting a single-carat rough diamond can create thousands of pounds of mineral waste and displace tons of earth, leading to ecologically disastrous deforestation and soil erosion.
The good news is that modern couples are evolving right along with changing traditions, and many are choosing lab grown diamonds over mined diamonds.
Lab Grown Alternative
Lab grown diamonds are chemically identical to diamonds that are extracted from the ground.
These are real diamonds in every sense of the word the only difference between lab created diamonds, and mined diamonds is their origin.
Lab grown diamonds are created in controlled environments that replicate natural processes but eliminate the need for harmful mining.
What Were The First Wedding Ringsegyptian Greek And Roman Wedding Rings
It was the Egyptian pharaohs who first used rings to represent eternity. Thats because a circle has no beginning and no end, and reflects the shape of the sun and the moon, which the Egyptians worshipped. The Egyptians also thought that the open space in the middle of a ring represented a gateway to the unknown. The Egyptian ouroboros rings portrayed a serpent swallowing its tail, representing the eternal cycle of things. The ouroboros is one of the oldest symbols in the world, and its name means tail devourer in Greek.
This modern ouroboros ring features a snake with sapphire eyes and diamonds set in its tail. Courtesy: 1stDibs.
When Alexander the Great conquered the Egyptians, the Greeks adopted the tradition of giving rings to their lovers to represent devotion. Many of these rings depicted Eros or Cupid, the god of love. When the Romans conquered Greece, they picked up on this tradition and began using iron and copper rings in marriage ceremonies. The iron rings sometimes had key motifs to symbolize that the wife now had control of the household goods. By 2nd century CE, however, most rings were gold.
This gold key ring from ancient Rome dates back to the 4th century. The Greek inscription , which means beautys ring, praises the recipient as the most beautiful of women. Photo: Richard P. Goodbody Inc.
Gold Roman fede ring from the 3rd century. Courtesy: The Metropolitan Museum of Art
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Fact 6 The Former Left Hand Was Egyptian
In Ancient Egyptian tradition, wedding rings were worn by the bride. The ring was placed on her left ring finger because of her Vena Amoris. This lovers vein was believed to lead straight to her heart, so it seemed like a logical symbol for marriage. Its presence was later disproved but the tradition stuck around for many more years.
Should Christians Wear Wedding Rings
Some have advanced the idea that Christians should not wear wedding rings, as this custom is allegedly pagan, and some have even gone so far as to claim that it was adopted from occult practices. We understand that the Bible prohibits us to worship the true God with pagan symbolism or activities which were adopted from the way in which pagans worshipped their gods. But we must be careful that we do not carry this injunction too far and prohibit everything, whether it is used in worship services or otherwise, only because pagans might have engaged in it.
We addressed this issue in a recent Q& A, which answered the question as to whether Christians should use symbols which are used by pagans. Among other symbols, we discussed the symbol of the heart, certain symbols which are being used in sign language, the Star of David and the symbols of stars in general. We also pointed out that the mere fact that pagans and occultists attach a particular meaning and human interpretation to certain symbols should not compel a Christian to refrain from using these symbols.
The website of gotquestions.org published the following article about wedding rings:
The signet ring is the earliest type of ring mentioned in the Bible Jeremiah informs us that the Israelites wore the signet ring on the right hand Pharaoh gave his signet ring to Joseph as a symbol of authority Upon his return, the prodigal son received a ring from his father as a symbol of dignity and restored position
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What Do Wedding And Engagement Rings Represent Now
Engagement and weddings rings, in the past as now, symbolize commitment, love and devotion. In the past, wedding rings signified a promise or contract between a couple and their two families. They were also tokens or even security deposits that showed a mans promise was good as gold.
This diamond engagement ring features a radiant cut center stone set in platinum. Courtesy: Ritani
In recent decades, weddings rings have evolved into statements of individuality and partnership that are worn by both genders. Both wedding rings and engagement rings are now wedding staples, not just in Western countries, but in any country where couples want an outward token of their loveand some more sparkle in their wardrobe.
What Would God Forbid Today
How can we properly discern what God would forbid today?
Consider exactly what Deuteronomy 12 says: You shall not worship the LORD your God in that way. The law has to do with direct acts of worship, not with life in general. Many actions in life are not worshipping a deity, even if some culture attached religious significance to those actions.
Consider the example of having hedgerows of trees or orchards on your property. The old English word for a small group of trees was grove, and it appears in the King James Version of the Bible. A grove simply means any small group of trees, including a fruit orchard.
There is nothing wrong with having a hedgerow around a home or having a fruit orchard. Yet the word grove appears in the King James Version many times in association with pagan worship.
A grove became a place to avoid when it was used as part of worship, not when it was a place to go during everyday living. It would be sinful for a Christian to have a grove of trees only if he or she tried to incorporate the trees into worshipping God.
The question is whether an object or custom used in worship of pagan deities is then incorporated into the worship of God, not whether someone ever attached inaccurate religious significance to the object or custom!
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Some Myths And Truths Revealed
What is the real meaning of a wedding ring? There are countless ideas of the origin and significance of the wedding ring, and this page introduces a few.
But please don’t take anything on this page too seriously, except this paragraph of course. Whatever caused rings to evolve into such a central part of wedding ceremonies in most cultures, is not important. What is important, is your reason for wearing a wedding ring.
Fact 14 Modern Marriages Are Unconventional
Whether youre a same-sex couple or you prefer to be committed partners without a government document, many modern life partnerships have a twist. And their rings express these changes in the couples lifestyle. So some couples may opt for a commitment ring. Or a two-bride / two-groom couple may want something less princess-y like a Maleficient Ring or Snow Queen Ring.
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Origins Of The Wedding Ring
This site was built to search out and explain the history of the wedding ring. You will find information on the evolution of the wedding ring and its history through the Christian faith.
Wedding and betrothal rings the pledges of love have always appealed to our imaginations, emotions and yearnings. Long ago, our ancestors accepted the ring as an emblem of eternity and a symbol indicative of steadfast devotion an interpretation quite contrary to Samuel Johnsons brusque definition of a circular instrument placed upon the noses of hogs and the fingers of women to restrain them and bring them into subjection.
It was the ancient Egyptian who established the custom of placing a ring on the finger of his wife, as a sign that he had confidence in her ability to care for his house. The Greek and Roman bridegroom often gave a ring to the brides father-a practice that was probably a survival of primitive bride purchase. In the second century B. C., the Roman bride was presented with a gold ring. But this she wore only in public. Such a ring was much too precious to wear while tending to household duties and so the groom gave the bride a second ring for use in the home which was usually made of iron and had little knobs in the form of a key. Of course, these key rings were weak and could open only those locks requiring very little force to turn, but their significance, in that the wearer had the right to seal up the givers possessions, was strong.
Are Pagan Weddings Legal Is Handfasting A Real Marriage Or Not
A Pagan handfasting can be several things, depending on the couple’s wishes. It can be a legal marriage. It can be a commitment ceremony for common law or civil union. It can be a kind of trial marriage for a couple who wish to ease into married life. It can be a formal wedding.
The ceremony can be led by an officiant, Pagan clergy, a friend, or be a self uniting ritual. Sometimes, due to our religious body’s small size, it can be difficult to find a clergy member who is also a legal officiant.
As such, Pagans who wish to become legally married will often “get legally” before or after the wedding. They will have the legal paperwork and requirements taken care of at the local clerk’s office or another government-specified office.
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