Shinto style wedding ceremony

There are two types of wedding rites. One is religious and the other is secular.
The religous rites done vary according to the religion (Shinto, Buddist or Christian)


Most people think that the Shinto style wedding rite is the most traditional,
but this view is not correct.
Traditional weddings were basically secular rites decided upon
by local customes and personal preference and held at homes.

The Shinto style wedding tradition was created by the Meiji government (1868 - 1912 )
to catch up with Western culture.
Before the Meiji period Japan when had been isolated from other countries,
the wedding rites even among samurai were secular rites held before witnesses

The Meiji goverment thought that the traditional Japanese wedding rite was inferior
in elegance and solemnity to the Western one, because there were no religious elements in it.
So, when the son of the Emperor Meiji ( the then crown prince ) got married in 1900,
the Meiji government decided to incorporate the Shinto way in the rite
to soak up the essence of the Western wedding.
Because of this, it can be said that the Shinto style wedding rite was a modeled

They swear their eternal love before gods and have sansankudo ceremony.

walking to the hall looking so happy ! gagaku is played sansankudo
the gods are behind
the cartain

proceeding of the Shinto wedding rite

Buddhist style wedding
Bridegroom wears a costume which looks like a monk's.


Today, more than half couples choose the Christian style wedding rite.
It has become increasingly fashonable.
Even if the couples are not Christian,
it is possible to have the wedding done in that style
after getting one or two months of lessons on Christina ethics and traditions..
Sometimes the chapels are managed by companies.


Buddhist wedding rites are not so popular, but they still exist.
In front of the image of Buddah, the couple tell their ancestors about their marrige.
They then ask for the saving grace of Buddah, and they are given the Buddism rosaries.


Recently some couples prefer to have ceremonies
in front of their close relatives and friends
without any formal rite.