I recently officiated a wedding for a couple whose adopted home is Hawaii. They incorporated a traditional wedding lei exchange at the beginning of our ceremony.
The leis are an artistic and fragrant representation of enduring love. Their shape recognizes the infinite nature of love; for, love freely given and received has neither a beginning nor an end. The exotic flowers used in their creation symbolize the rarity of love found between our couple. The artist who created these custom works of art had embedded 6 hidden beads in each lei,representing the years of growth in the relationship, “Chaos settling into the peacefulness of beautiful flowers.” These gorgeous objects express the essence of “Aloha,” the warmth and
hospitality of the couple’s hearts and home. By placing the lei over the head and shoulders of one’s beloved, may she know unconditional affection and support, now and forever.
Following the gifting of leis, the couple touched foreheads in the ritual of Honi, which represents two ideals: “Ha,” the breath of life and “Mana,” the Divinity within us all.