Tuesday, September 22, 2009

The Sand Ceremony

A very popular addition to wedding services is the Sand Ceremony. It’s usually performed by the bride and groom, each having a vial of sand of their chosen color, and pouring it at the same time into some sort of a container. You may have heard about it or seen it performed. It’s very symbolic in that each person, represented by their color of sand, is willing to pour themselves forth to be joined by the other person, represented by their color of sand, to create a new color, a new item, a new family.

At least that’s the basic idea of the ceremony.

Whenever someone mentions Sand Ceremony, I immediately think of this one particular couple. If you asked their names, I would have to say Barbie and Ken. (You remember Barbie & Ken!?) She was thin, lithe, blond and beautiful. He was gorgeous, so handsome in his perfectly fitted tux. Standing together, they were radiant; fairly glowing in their love for each other.

Fast forward to the “sand” time in the ceremony. They gracefully process to the small, draped, table that holds her vial of blue sand to represent peace and his vial of red sand to represent love, or passion. Together they pick up their vials, together they start pouring and mingling their sand. And then I notice that his hand is still poised but no longer tipping. She keeps pouring, then realizes he isn’t, looks up at him and down again at the vial. He returns her look and smiles, letting a few grains of sand fall. She continues to pour. He holds his own, so to speak.

Again, she lovingly looks up at him and down at the vial. Again he lets a few more grains of sand fall. A few more desperate darts of her eyes back and forth, forth and back. Now she is out of sand.

Dump, goes his sand. The last half vial of bright red sand squarely sits on top of hers. Exactly what is he trying to tell her? Maybe he feels that his passion is enough to overcome any obstacle. Maybe the sand was damp and wouldn’t pour. I don’t know. I didn’t ask.

The Sand Ceremony usually works out very nicely and the couple has a new, beautiful container filled with a symbol of their union which they put in a place of honor in their new home.

This ceremony may also be written to include the parents. But I’ll leave that story for another blog, another time.