Most of us recognize Judaism as a foreign religion, and think of it as an exotic community that lives far away from our country. Despite the secular, multicultural nature of India, Hindu religion has the majority, and other minority communities like the Muslims, Christians, Sikhs, Buddhists and Jain remain next in line, when it comes to thinking about the communities in India. But, it is a little known fact, that there does in fact, exist, a small Jewish community in India too. They may be less in number and lack general representation, but when talking about different wedding traditions, it would be interesting to know what Jewish Indian Weddings are like.
Before we go into the traditions amongst the Jewish Indians, let's first talk about the community itself.
India makes up a total of 7 Jewish groups which comprise the Cochin Jews, the Chennai Jews, the Nagercoil Jews, the Jews of Goa,the Baghdadi Jews,the Bene Israel Jews, the Bene Menashe Jews, and the Bene Ephram or the Telugu Jews.
Depending on the location these Jews have different traditions as per their location, which means that being a Jew in India is not a homogenous affair, but in fact we have the Jews which are Keralites, we have Jews who are Madrasi/ Tamilians, we have Mahrashtrian Jews, Goan Jews, Jews living in Gujarat and West Bengal, we have Jews residing in Mizoram and Manipur, Jews residing in Andhra Pradesh and we also have a small group of Jews residing in Delhi.
With so many varieties in the same religious community, as per their geography, it would be wrong to say that there is one typical Indian Jewish Wedding, where in fact there are so many variations, as having lived in India for so many years, will have exposed the Indian jews to their local traditions.