The Deep Meaning Behind An Orthodox Jewish Wedding | World Wide Wed | Refinery29


I think Orthodox just means following the Torah, what it says. Every experience that I go through has a piece of my religion in it. It always connects back to my religion. I just live my life surrounded by God. The torah, the Jewish bible, begins with the letter Bet and ends with the letter Lamed. Together, they spell, “the heart.” This is the wedding story of Hadassa and Ze’ev, a young Jewish Orthodox couple from Baltimore. In two days, they will be married. Judaism is practiced by nearly 14.4 million people. More than two-thirds of adult Orthodox Jews are married, compared to about half of other Jewish adults. Orthodox Judaism requires adherence to the ancient laws of the Torah in every aspect of life. Tradition is important. Um… yes is the answer. It’s a concept that may seem old-fashioned to the secular world, but here it’s a way of life as fresh as homemade challah, a special Jewish bread. When you do the sugar, as you pour it in, just have a little intention. What do you think? Sweetness in life. Sweetness in life. I’m a person that really likes tradition. I think it gives a lot of clarity and it gives you connection. I think it’s very special to do what people did before you. I’m just watching you. It’s amazing. In two days, Hadassa is marrying a man she’s never held hands with, let alone kissed. We started dating this past June. Don’t freak out, guys. I’m a religious Jew, so I don’t really talk to guys until I’m ready to date. Okay Ze’ev. The big day! Two more days! Alright. As the big day quickly approaches, Ze’ev makes final preparations. How often do women get their hair cut? Every four to six weeks. Yeah? Men and women don’t really talk too much unless they’re dating. We only date when we’re ready to get married. I knew from the first date that I wanted to marry her. It was definitely love at first sight, at least for me. You know, he’s pretty cute. For most Jewish couples, they don’t see each other the week before the wedding. You write notes, you send gifts but you don’t talk. For Ze’ev and Hadassa, absence makes the heart grow fonder and serves as a final opportunity to work on themselves as individuals. The Tallit is a special prayer shawl worn by married men during morning prayer. The day before the wedding, Ze’ev’s father shows him how to tie it for the first time. Hadassa is so pure in her love for Hashem and her love for God. I see that and I want to be more, I want to do better, I want to be a better Jew. She’s so great. I hope there’s a lot of giggling in their marriage. Because that’s an important thing. (Producer) Do you giggle often together? Uh, sporadically. We made it! You got the whole suite to yourself. You want to take the card? According to the Jewish Orthodox faith, a couple’s wedding day is one of the holiest days of their lives and they are considered to be closer to God. Today is Hadassa’s own personal Yom Kippur, or day of atonement, and she is freed of all transgressions and wrongdoings— something the people in her community are here to honor. Because of her divine status on this day, she bestows and receives blessings from loved ones. It’s here that she will receive Ze’ev and see him for the first time in seven days. But first, there are a few things he must agree to. It says in the contract, “I will take care of her. I will support her.” All sorts of lovely things. But it does not say, “I will do the dishes.” Oh, okay. Under Jewish law, the ketubah solidifies the promises Ze’ev is making to his future wife. Laid to witness by more experienced generations. The bride and groom’s mothers break a plate to make it legal. Mazel tov! Ze’ev is ready to meet his bride at the bedeken, a traditional veiling ceremony. Ze’ev veils Hadassa as a sign of respect to her modesty and privacy during this holy time. He offers her a blessing and his heart. The wedding ceremony begins under the chuppah, a marriage canopy which symbolizes the home they will grow together. The bride then circles the groom seven times to break down any walls or barriers between them. I think my perspective on marriage definitely has to do with my faith. The way we see people getting married is that their spouse is the other half of their soul. A shared sip of wine and a ring join them together. A broken glass seals the deal. When I get to hold my wife’s hand for the first time, I will be jumping for joy. Surrounded by their friends, family, and God, Hadassa and Ze’ev are married at last. And finally, they can have some alone time. Behind closed doors, Hadassa and Ze’ev spend their first 15 minutes alone in the yichud, or seclusion room, an act that symbolizes their newly married state. Ladies and gentlemen, let’s welcome Mr. and Mrs. Ze’ev and Hadassa Beleck. (Cheering) Although men and women dance separately to avoid touching the opposite gender, it’s a requirement for all to bring joy to the bride and the groom, a commandment the guests take very seriously. After today, Hadassa and Ze’ev will have a special place in the community. What lies ahead is a series of firsts and they will rely on their faith to guide them. Today’s world is very topsy-turvy and morals are a little skewed. In Jewish married life, we gain from the wisdom of the past. And it doesn’t mean that we’re not innovative but it means that within the bounds of the past, we can move towards the future.

Michael Martin

100 Responses

  1. As a Muslim, I can relate a lot with my Jewish sister, Hardarsa. Marriage is so much sweeter when you keep yourself chaste until marriage, and then you kiss, hold hands, and are intimate for the first time with your husband. Having to have patience and self-control until marriage really makes you enjoy your spouse even more, as it is a new, unique experience.

  2. I'm Ásatrú, and the deep meaning behind their traditions is something I find beautiful. I hope them the best!

  3. Interesting! I eat the foods sometimes and I must say it's delicious.( I know I may be off topic about the food part. Lol)

  4. she is marrying a man she has never held hand with or kissed………In other societies, people cohabit, have sex, bear children and suddenly realize that they are incompatible before getting married officially ahaha

  5. wonder does Tavrah say 2 kill innocent Palestines children innocent Palestine people 2 ransack Palestine homes occupy there homes illegally shame on u Israelis devil child killers u will not live happily cruse of innocent beings follow u

  6. Goodness I went to a orthodox wedding this last week and it was identical ! Such a beautiful thing.

  7. I love how the mother said, “We gain wisdom from the past … in the bounds of the past we can move towards the future.” As a young Muslim woman I resonate with that deeply. Thank you for this video.

  8. Like seriously 6 weeks you are just 20 years old and i am sure you know nothing such a pity for both of you

  9. I love how this actually doesn't portray orthodox jews negatively and just as any other group of people

  10. It looks like a religious Muslim wedding right? Bc msny things comes from Judaism to Islam. Many things in His actually is NOT in Qur'an, like covering hair, praying 5 times etc. It's just a cultural thing.

  11. Play gangbang she had in college doesn't count anymore cuz she's getting married and this is Yom Kippur for her I'm just asking seriously all the crap she didn't College doesn't count anymore huh wow that must be great good luck honey

  12. So what happens when all the stuff they try to break does not break they want have a bad marriage the prate nor the glass nothing broke so what's up with their marriage now all the things just a little 5 everything didn't happen during the wedding uh oh guys find a good counselor before it's too late bad signs already

  13. I think this whole process is not backward Or something like that but makes the bride and groom realise their love for each other

  14. Wow this was unbelievable … I mean seriously are Jews like these ??
    Its not exactly what Islam teaches but it's some what same
    We don't date before nikah ….
    No music no dancing no mixing of male and female no wine no breaking of plates or glasses ….no 15 minutes alone .. but i am very happy to gain knowledge about the Jewish community marriages 🙂

  15. What flowers are traditional for Jewish brides? I just found out that myrtle garlands was traditional for Jewish grooms

  16. I am not religious by any means nor married but I enjoyed watching this and respect them so much. Beautiful

  17. It’s interesting to see how Jewish community are so closed to themselves that they don’t get married to people from other religions!

  18. ("Oral Thorah") Babylonian Talmud Sanhedrin 57a "The Gemara challenges: But wherever there is liability for capital punishment, this tanna teaches it; as it is taught in the first clause: With regard to bloodshed, if a gentile murders another gentile, or a gentile murders a Jew, he is liable. If a Jew murders a gentile, he is exempt."

    ("Oral Thorah") Babylonian Talmud Sanhedrin 57a "The Gemara asks: But is a descendant of Noah executed for robbery? But isn’t it taught in a baraita: With regard to the following types of robbery: One who steals or robs, and likewise one who engages in intercourse with a married beautiful woman who was taken as a prisoner of war, and likewise all actions similar to these, if they are done by a gentile to another gentile, or by a gentile to a Jew, the action is prohibited; but if a Jew does so to a gentile, it is permitted? The Gemara explains the question: And if it is so that a gentile is liable to be executed for robbery, and it is not merely prohibited to him, let the baraita teach that he is liable to be executed. The Gemara answers: Because the tanna wanted to teach in the latter clause that if a Jew does so to a gentile, it is permitted, he taught in the former clause that if a gentile does one of these, it is prohibited."

  19. Me and my husband also never held hands and kissed eachother before marriage. It was really pure to enter our marriage this way. We are now married for 22 years and still happy married.

  20. The Ten Commandments are
    I am the lord your god
    You should not use my name in vain
    Remember to keep sabbath day holy
    Honor your parents
    You should not kill
    You should not commit adultery
    You should not steal
    You should not bear false witness
    You should not not covet your neighbors wife
    You should not covet your neighbors good

  21. One question: is it fair/right/correct to call the Torah the 'Jewish Bible?" (I'm not Jewish I'm NOT saying I know the right answer) but I thought the Bible was only the holy text of Christians.

  22. She has known the groom for six weeks? That seems like a short time, but then again everyone is different. It is nice that they have adhered to their ancient traditions

  23. It’s interesting to watch a Jewish wedding. Just want to ask something out of curiosity: What’s the meaning of “breaking a plate and glasses?” What’s the source?

    In Chinese culture, broken things always symbolic of bad things. Like when we describe a couple get back together after breakup, we describe as a repaired broken mirror. but we also have a wisdom phrase past from generations “There are still traces on a broken mirror though joined together.”

    chinese also always metaphor NO BOWL as losing the job. I think it make sense in some way, a bowl = eating tool = job. Also in the traditional Chinese wedding, the bride will hold a vase or a mirror into her seden chair/the carriage until she arrives the husband’ house, it symbolizes stable, safe, happiness and richness.

    This video really confused me. Even in a financial perspective, damaging a property is a loss, especially in the old time. How fascinating this tradition keeps on.

    Lastly, best wishes to this couple.

  24. 4:15 : "Because of her divine status on this day…", sorry but that is not accurate at all. No human ever acquires a divine status in Judaism. Her prayers have more force but she does not become a divinity!

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