Indian brides follow a custom of wearing toe ring on the second finger of feet. It is referred as ‘Bichiya’ in Hindi, Mettiin in Tamil, Mettelu in Telugu, and Kalungura in Kannada. Wearing of this accessory is highly practiced in India as it is considered as a symbol of matrimony. This custom holds a major social significance for married women and Hindu culture prohibits unmarried women from wearing toe rings. In south India, married women wear a heavy ring on the second finger of each foot. Hindus, as well as Muslims, are carrying this ancient tradition which also holds a scientific meaning.
- Toe rings are usually made of silver and not gold as Gold is considered auspicious and believed to be a metal of the Goddess of Wealth, Goddess Lakshmi. Hence, people do not prefer wearing it below the waist.
- Silver metal is preferred being a good conductor of electricity. It absorbs the polar energies from the earth and transmits to the body rejuvenating the complete body system.
- Brides usually wear toe rings in pairs on the second finger of both feet. They are worn in pairs as they are believed to regularize the menstrual cycle with even intervals thereby increasing the chances of conception.
- Toe rings are worn on the second finger of feet as a nerve from the second finger links the uterus and passes through the heart. This maintains an even blood pressure in the uterus and keeps it healthy.
- Hinduism states that for a healthy life, the life forces or “prana” must be balanced. Since all the paths of the life forces terminate at toes, this marital symbol proves beneficial for a healthy reproductive system.
Brides wear two sets of toe rings to signify her dual status as a wife and as a sister. The one set of the ring is for the husband while the other is for the brother. The duality states that after the death of the husband, the bride’s brother will take her responsibility.
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