Frum Orthodox Jewish singles in the dating world, searching for their beshert, their soul mate, often want to know about the many customs and traditions that come before their future wedding.
MIKVEH BEFORE THE WEDDING
One beautiful and time-tested custom that the bride will to is the pre-wedding mikveh. Brides-to-be immerse themselves in a mikveh, a ritual bath, either the night before the wedding or as close as possible to the wedding day. The mikveh symbolizes spiritual rebirth and purity. It's important to realize, however, that a mikveh is not about physical cleanliness at all, but only about spiritual cleanliness and human encounters with holiness. The mikveh also symbolizes the rivers of the Garden of Eden, which, according to the Talmud, are the source of all water in existence. The Garden of Eden is the birthplace of all of us human beings, as well as the place of the first marriage, that of Adam and Chava (Eve). This powerful experience is also an essential part of the laws of taharat hamishpacha, family purity, which the bride and groom learn about during their engagement.
Many mivkehs have include a bridal suite, where the lady will get a special room specifically for brides to get ready to immerse. Use of these bridal rooms will generally require an appointment well in advance as well as a fee. It is essential that the body be completely clean before going into the waters, and it typically takes some time to prepare properly. The immersion of a bride-to-be into a mikveh is joyous occasion often followed, especially in Sephardi communities, by a party with lots of food, sweets, wine and blessings from her friends.
LAWS PERTAINING TO THE MIKVEH
The waters of the mikveh must come from a natural source, such as a lake, ocean, well water or rainwater. The mikveh itself must have certain dimensions, as well, being at least two feet square and six feet deep, and able to hold at least 191 gallons of water. Most modern mikvehs are much larger than this, however. A woman may, in a dire emergency, immerse into a lake, the sea or another natural body of water, but this generally does not confer the necessary privacy that she will need, so Jews have been building their own mikvehs for centuries.
Frum Orthodox Jewish singles will learn all these details and many more when they find their beshert and start planning their wedding. Online Jewish dating services and Jewish singles groups help many frum Orthodox Jewish singles to find their bashert, these services have had tremendous success. Whether one uses Jewish singles groups or a traditional shadchan, a matchmaker, frum Orthodox Jewish singles have many options for finding their future mate. There are many traditions and laws that pertain to immersing into the mikveh, such as the fact that in some communities, the groom immerses into a mikveh before the wedding, also. Online Jewish dating services and Jewish singles groups can be a fun and adventurous way to meet a match, as can traditional matchmaking.
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