Australian Wedding Traditions That You Should Know22 February 2023
In every culture, getting married is a long-standing practice. Australians still practise several traditions and rituals passed down through the years. Due to the influx of a diverse and ethnic population over the past fifty years, Australian rituals are cloaked in symbolism. With marriages and love crossing racial and cultural barriers, Australia has managed to integrate wedding traditions from around the world to make them distinctively “Aussie.” The original Aboriginal practices are still present in many Australian weddings. Let’s discuss some of the traditions and customs surrounding Australian weddings.
Return to the Land
In times of instability, Australians see their country as the holiest. Their land has witnessed every conflict that has ever been fought. Modern Australians hold a brief ceremony to thank and honour the Earth and those who came before them on happy occasions like weddings. This lovely custom is supposed to bring the couple luck and help them begin their new life together with a wealth of blessings from the past.
The stone ritual is another indigenous tradition that dates back to the earliest Australian aborigines. The newlyweds would toss a stone into a moving river because early settlers to the land could not afford to spend a lot of money on their wedding and jewellery. This custom would symbolise a married couple sticking together through life’s ups and downs. Even though many modern couples choose to forgo this ritual at their weddings, many more do so because of the meaningful symbolism.
Unity Bowl Ceremony
Another long-standing custom in Australian weddings is the unity bowl ceremony. During the ceremony, guests on the bride and groom’s side fill a bowl with tiny, vibrant natural stones. The rocks should be a variety of colours and sizes to symbolise the numerous characteristics of the bride and groom, their attributes, and themselves. The stones are given to the newlyweds as a present following the wedding ceremony to symbolise the love and support of friends and family.
The Family Bible
Australians also pass the Bible to the following generation, as do people from many other cultures and traditions around the world. The bride and groom’s family traditionally give the newlyweds a special bible that has been handed down through the centuries during weddings. The newlyweds are tasked with taking care of, reading from, and giving this bible to a family member. That particular Bible will continue to be used until it is transferred to another pair of newlywed couples in the family.
At wedding ceremonies, native Australians once had a ceremonial fire. Nowadays, many couples still favour having this kind of ceremony. It entails gently smoking the newlywed couple while burning fertility and healing plants or bundling them together and igniting them on fire as smudge sticks. If the bride and groom breathe in the smoke from these plants, they will live long lives and have a large family of healthy offspring. A priest surrounds the pair with plant smoke, waving it around them until it fully envelops them.
No matter a country’s customs or traditions, there is always joy and love at weddings. Australians are a friendly, outgoing nation that appreciates fine dining and music. Weddings and customs are a part of our innate happiness and joy, and our passion for what we do is evident in all our actions. To help you plan a traditional wedding, know that Dwayne Nichols from Marriage Celebrant Melbourne is more than happy to assist you in making your dream traditional wedding a reality. Please contact us at 0400 831 402 to help you put together your special wedding ceremony.