Handfasting: why you absolutely don’t want to tie your hands together

This was always my original position and it still makes more sense to me in a handfasting ceremony: Don’t have someone tie your hands together.

Let your hands fasten on one another in a free-willed clasp, right hand to right hand and left to left. This is such a strong visual. Your arms and bodies form an infinity circle that is fluid and adjusts easily. That’s what you want from a wedding. That’s what you want for a marriage.

In this way you aren’t tied together, you’re joined in love and by love. At any point you could let go hands – but you don’t.

The ropes are the wrong image anyway. It seems that originally, as the woman became a member of the family, she was brought “under the plaid” or under the protection of the man’s family. The plaid was clothing and bed covering. All over the world there are ceremonies that celebrate the couple’s joining in the marriage bed by enfolding them in a blanket. (previous cultures were a little lustier than ours and a little clearer about the marriage’s relationship to establishing a lineage!)

Tip: So you decide which way you want to go in your wedding ceremony. But whether you join hands or not, this is a lovely ceremony that will, if you let it, evoke memories of your dreams for marriage, how much you loved each other as you stood, bound in love, promising one another tomorrow, on the day that you married. That image will live with you for years!

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