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The Unity Sand Ceremony – A New Twist On An Old Tradition

A wedding is the symbolic melting of two lives into one. The traditional way has been for a bride and a groom to be married in front of a man of God and vow to love one another for the rest of their lives.

Some couples choose to use symbols to show their lives uniting together into one bond. One example of this is the unity candle ceremony where the bride and groom light a candle together after the vows are read. This shows their unity as one couple instead of two separate people. A more recent variation of this tradition is the unity sand ceremony.

What is a Unity Sand Ceremony?

A unity sand ceremony has become a new alternative to the unity candle ceremony. In a unity sand ceremony, the bride and groom combine their individual vases of sand to symbolize the combining of their individual lives.

How Does it Work?

The unity sand ceremony works by having three vases: one for the bride and one for the groom. Each container holds a specific color of sand, like black for the groom and white for the wife. There is also a center vase that is empty.

The groom starts by pouring part of his sand into the center vase. This symbolizes the “foundation” of the marriage. Like the foundation of a house, it’s purpose is to show how the man builds a strong base to the relationship.

The bride then pours her sand on top of her husband. This is to symbolize the support she gives her husband. It is also to show how the two colors of sand can mix together in harmony.

Then both the bride and the groom pour the remainder into the center vase at the same time. This is to symbolize equality in the marriage and the total combining of two lives into one. Some couples choose to leave a small amount of sand in each vase. The purpose of this gesture is to show that even though they are combining their lives, they still are individuals.

The vases, along with the sand, can be kept forever as an important memory of the special day.

The History and Future of the Unity Sand Ceremony

Though this unity sand ceremony is a relatively new trend, it has been around for thousands of years in one form or another. No one is quite sure where it began: some say it was started by Native Americans, others argue that native Hawaiians were the first.

No matter who started the trend, one thing is for certain. It’s quickly becoming a popular portion of the modern wedding ceremony. Many couples are choosing to write their own vows and personalize their weddings outside of the traditional church wedding and the unity sand ceremony is one way to do that.

A growing trend in the unity sand ceremony is to have a family unity sand ceremony where the couple’s children can also pour sand into the vase along with the bride and groom. This shows a total mixture of the family into one, forever.

Submitted by:

Faye Kelsy

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