Muslims see marriage as a very important and natural part of life. It is the means through which a family is created and a couple can establish a relationship.
The rituals of marriage are quite simple. Both bride and groom should freely consent, at least two witnesses need to attend the wedding ceremony (nikahThe Arabic word for marriage contract. It is literally trans... or aqdMarriage contract in Arabic) which is often conducted by an ImamLeader, usually one who leads prayer; also religious teacher... or community leader. At the ceremony the bride and groom sign a marriage contract and the groom should give a gift (mahrA gift given to the bride by the groom as part of the Muslim...) to the bride.
In addition to the nikah which will often happen in a home, mosqueThe place of prayer for Muslims or community centre and is traditionally organised by the bride’s side, there is also a celebration called the walimahA feast offered by the groom and his family usually the foll..., usually organised by the groom’s side when the bride has joined her new family.
In many cultures the bride and groom may also have a henna party (mehndi) before the actual wedding. This is a party where relatives and close friends can party, sing, have fun and often decorate their hands with henna paste in preparation for the wedding itself.