Weddings in different cultures have their own traditions and regulations. Quite often, it can become difficult for anyone outside that culture to attend this special occasion with the necessary sensitivity. If you are invited as a guest to a Muslim marriage or nikah, then you need to behave in a certain way during the wedding.
Now you might be wondering if there is a correct way to behave at a Muslim wedding. The answer is yes. A Muslim marriage ceremony is a spiritual event for the bride and groom with their families. There are age-old traditions and customs involved. Sometimes, if the family is a conservative one, they might not invite a non-muslim to ensure that all their customs are being followed. So, you have to follow the traditions and be respectful to the bride and groom’s family.
A wedding invitation to your first ever Muslim marriage can be quite confusing. It will definitely have you wondering what you can or cannot do as a guest of the couple. As a general rule, the key is to be modest and respectful towards both the couple as well as their families. To be well educated as a guest for a Muslim marriage, we have penned down some basic dos and don’ts that will help you in being a good wedding guest.
12 Do’s and Don’ts in a Muslim Marriage – Nikah
If you get an invitation to a Muslim marriage, you must remember that the hosts will expect you do some things while staying away from others. So keep reading to know what you can and cannot do at a nikah.
6 Do’s in a Muslim Marriage
- Read the invitation thoroughly
The first step to being a good wedding guest is to read the invitation thoroughly. Most Muslim wedding invitations have included key information for their guests. They tell you about the parts of the wedding you are invited to, the policy on gifts and the level of religiousness. To avoid embarrassment by doing something the couple asked you not to do, do read the invitation.
- Reply promptly
Planning a wedding is tough enough already without guests giving late replies. So be nice and confirm your presence at the couple’s wedding as soon as possible.
- Wear a modest and respectful dress
If you have been invited to Muslim marriage, ensure that you are dressed in a modest and respectful manner. If you are a woman, your outfit includes a long, floor-length dress with full sleeves and a hijab or scarf covering your hair. If you are a man, your formal suit includes at the very least long pants and a long-sleeved shirt.
What to wear at a Muslim Wedding
- Honour the couple’s wishes in a Muslim marriage
Make sure you respect the couple’s wishes. If they ask you to be present at all events, then make sure you attend all events and not just the reception.
- Remove your shoes before entering the mosque
The most common rule of the Islamic tradition is removing your shoes before entering the mosque. If the couple is having their wedding at a mosque then you must remove your footwear before accessing entering it. If the wedding ceremony is at a different location, then you can keep your shoes on the entire time.
- Sit on the correct side
Depending on how religious the couple is, they might segregate the guests according to their gender. If they are conservative, then the celebrations might take place with the men and women in two different rooms. So make sure you are sitting in the correct room or side according to your gender.
6 Don’ts in a Muslim marriage
- Don’t touch the Quran
The Quran is the holy book of Islam, so people restrict who can or cannot touch it. If you are a non-muslim guest, then you should not touch the Quran at any time without explicit permission from a Muslim guest.
- Don’t socialize with people of the opposite sex
The gender-based segregation that happens in Muslim marriages is to reduce the amount of socialization that happens between the two sexes. So, as a general rule, do not socialize with members of the opposite gender during or after the ceremony.
- Don’t touch people of the opposite sex
Related to the segregation of wedding guests, you should not touch a person of the opposite gender either. Everything, including handshakes, are forbidden, no matter how respectful they might be in any other culture. Even if there is so segregation, do not engage in any physical contact with people from the opposite sex.
- Don’t wear black to a Muslim marriage
In the Islamic tradition, black and white are often thought of as colours of mourning. So do not wear these two to a Muslim marriage. They are colours that are considered particularly inauspicious if you are a woman. Apart from these two, you are free to wear any colour you want, with bright green and pink being popular choices.
- Do not give boxed gifts
Most Muslims do not have a gift registry. Some couples instruct their guests to bring cash instead of gifts. If you are unsure about getting something for the couple, give them money. Definitely do not give them an ordinary gift unless it is sentimental.
For the cash, put it in an envelope and hand it to the couple after the wedding reception or send it directly to their home.
- No alcohol at a Muslim marriage ceremony
Alcoholic beverages are not allowed in the Muslim community. Alcohol is not served at any time to celebrate the events. So, to be a respectful guest at a Muslim wedding, do not bring any alcohol.
We hope that this article helped you understand the dos and don’ts for wedding guests at a Muslim marriage – nikah. For any assistance in wedding styling or consultations, contact us at Styl-Inc and our team of expert stylists will get in touch with you.
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