Written by Branka Kurtz
ME TUT VOLI – I love you
Otherwise, this word is overused and undervalued.
Because, why can’t you love for a moment,
A shade, a tree, person, sunset,
And then begin to love something other…
Open yourself, quickly run over and tell to someone, to me, to everyone:
ME TUT VOLI BUT – I love you, so much.
With the wedding are related many customs that partly coming from our national traditions, and partly from the civilization and culture in which we live now. National customs arise as a meaning of transmitting certain values that are very important for community and individual, therefore each wedding takes a place under one of them. Wedding traditions are full of symbolic actions that need to fit the individual into the community. In addition to traditional customs in our country are slowly coming a new customs too, so here are some universal characteristic of weddings around the world.
White wedding dress symbolized innocence, purity before marriage. Besides that white color symbolized good also. But the wedding dress is no longer traditional. Now we have beige, red, and so many other wedding dresses. Before, the rule was, that wedding dress need to be a long dress that covers all. But, today it’s not like that. We even have wedding dresses that reveal almost everything. There’s no more difference in Bosnia between Croatian, Serbian or Muslim wedding. The only difference is by the religious wedding. Some go to the church, others to the mosque.
Exchanging of the rings
Wedding ceremonies are unthinkable without a formal act of exchanging the rings. For Croats customary is giving the ring as a symbol of love and loyalty. Even in ancient times in written documents wedding rings are mentioned as a clear and visible proof of marital vows. Closed circle is a symbol of eternal love, a symbol of perfection, the beginning and end.
The veil was once used as a cover for the bride. So people were not able to see her. Or to protect the bride of being enchanted by someone. Today, it is a part of the fashion choreography. The symbol of modesty, or one more addition.
Kissing the bride after the wedding
Often, after marriage, though not always, the groom kisses the bride. This custom also comes from the Anglo-Saxon tradition which emphasizes the right of the groom to the bride’s body.
Historically, flowers and ornamental vegetation had significant role in attracting “good” or eliminating the “evil”. There is a belief that flowers with its fragrance chase away evil spirits that might harm the young couple’s love. The ancient Greeks used ivy as a symbol of eternal love. Today, wedding bouquet carries a message of wealth, and eternal romantic love.
In the middle Ages, rosemary attributed the power to break the evil spirits that threaten man in critical moments of his life such as birth, marriage and death. Therefore, the bride was wearing a wreath of rosemary, and the custom of decorating wedding with rosemary kept up till today.
The wedding cake is a symbol of happiness and wealth, sharing cake shows loyalty to one another. Cake also means a sweet start.
Decorating a wedding is the way in which the bride and groom are giving thanks to the guests that have come to share the happiness with them. The custom for the Croats wedding is: After they came for the bride and went to bridal shop, be blessed and sprinkling of holy water. This custom is to drive out evil spirits and to happy wedding guests arrive at their destination, and return safely.
Transmission of the bride over the threshold
There was a belief that evil spirits are circling around the threshold of the house where should enter the newlyweds, so raising the bride prevents their entry.
For 15 million Roma are scattered throughout the world. Their history is, the grief and the pain, but their history is a victory of human spirit over the blows of fate. Today Roma people revive their culture and seek their identity. On the other hand, they integrate into the society in which they live. If they find an understanding of citizens in their new homelands, their culture will be a wealth of society and will color the atmosphere of charm and spontaneity.
An old Roma legend story tells how and why the Roma people left India:
Some magician has warned the Indian king’s that enemies will attack his kingdom and destroy his family. However, the attacker will be powerless if he attacks the Roma people. The king called the Roma leader and secretly confided his one and only daughter of Gang. She was supposed to be educated by the Roma leader, and he needs to take care of her, like she was his own child. Gang grew up in the same tent with king’s son Chen. One day king dies, and Roma tribe forced Chen to get married immediately. Chen has refused all the girls that were offered to him and threatened to kill himself, because he loves only his “sister”.
Them mother has announced to Chan, that Gang is not his sister, but that he needs to keep the secret, otherwise, winner would kill Gang as a kings daughter. The tribe was divided into two camps. In the first tribe were those who supported the new leader in everything and in the second tribe were those who condemned and not recognized the new leader because of the marriage with his sister. The second tribe drove Chen and his followers from the Indian country. Since then, Chen and his followers wander the earth’s patterns, because the great magician cursed them to never spend the night in the same place, not to drink water twice from the same source, and to never overrun the same river twice in the same year. Lack of culture, is not uncivilized.
That is why the culture is so beautiful and precious. The attack on the culture is uncivilized. Rome, Southerner, Slovenes or Icelanders can not be viewed as uncultured people, just because they don’t have culture identical to ours. Culture should be viewed from the standpoint of civilized development, progress of social mechanisms that protect people and the culture that protects itself. Culture is one of the most important, characteristics of man and human society in general. Precisely because of that I talk about Roma culture. The tradition of entering into early marriage among Roma is held in almost all areas where Roma people are living. Mostly, these are illegal marriages, since the newlyweds are still minor. However, it was found that in recent year’s frequency of the marriage becoming legalized (The wedding at the registrar). Earlier, Roma people where married only for people from their tribes. The practice of endogamy (marriage within the tribe), which is still widespread, is a part of the Roma tradition. In order to marry someone who is not from the Roma tribe, used to mean the exclusion from the Roma community. This cruel custom, however, was the way of self-preservation.
– We love dancing and music, proudly says every Roma, and our national anthem is “Ðelem, Ðelem”, that talks about the endless journey of man and the eventual unification.
“Love is the only passion that does not acknowledge any past or future”.