Why break a glass at a Jewish Wedding?

What would a Jewish Wedding be without the breaking of the glass and the shouting of Mazel Tov at it's conclusion?  Many view it as the highlight of the ceremony and most certainly the cue that the party is about to begin.
Jewish Wedding Break Glass
But what does it actually mean?  Well just like everything else in Judaism, there are multiple interpretations.  Here are some:
  •  As a symbol of the destruction of the Temple in Jerusalem, the glass reminds us that even during a joyous occasion there is sadness in the world.
  • The fragility of glass is a symbol of the frailty of human relationships.   Like a marriage, this glass is a frail and beautiful thing.   If properly cared for it can last a lifetime, reflecting the permanence of marriage.   
  •  To remind us that just as a foot can shatter this glass, so too a single thoughtless act can cause irreparable harm in a marriage.
  •  The glass symbolizes the irrevocable change in the lives of the couple standing before us.
  •  The loud noise of the smashing of the glass will frighten away any demons. 
  •  Marriage is a covenant, which in Judaism is made by breaking or cutting something. At Sinai, tablets were broken; at a wedding, broken glass “cuts” the covenant.

Jewish Wedding Break Glass

Traditionally, it is the Groom who breaks the glass, but many couples today are putting a modern twist to it.  Either with both people breaking the glass together, each with one foot on it, or breaking 2 separate glasses simultaneously.  This is true at Jewish, Interfaith and same sex weddings.

You can smash any kind of glass: old, new, borrowed, or blue.  But in the last few years it has become very popular to break a beautiful glass and to keep the shards as a keepsake.  Beames Designs offers both gorgeous hand blown and elegant hand painted break glasses, plus a variety of hand made keepsake pieces (Mezuzahs, Tzedakah Boxes, Picture Frames and more) to show off the shards from this momentous day.  www.beames.com

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