If you haven’t read Khalaf’s primer on the issue, definitely check it out. The new Salt Document is a pretty stunning and rare act of cultural and social reform on the ground level, specifically in adherence to the new socioeconomic realities. Some of the highlights focus mainly on wedding festivities:
– A bride’s jewelry (as part of her dowry) is not to exceed 1,000JDs.
– Typical car caravans and honking horns are banned. In fact, if the bride and groom live close by, no cars are to be used whatsoever.
– Presenting cigarettes to guests is banned.
– Usage of hotels as a venue is discouraged.
– Banning the traditional act of giving money to the newlyweds.
– Parents of the bride have to share the costs of the wedding.
– A maximum of 10 dishes of Mansaf are allowed.
Also, hospital visitations are banned, with only phone calls to check up on the patient being permitted. Meanwhile, giving gifts to a person returning from Hajj is also banned.
It’s an interesting case study and I’d be interested to see if it will be adopted more readily in these dire economic times, as opposed to the first Salt Document during the 1980’s. On the one hand, this might set the stage for rule-breakers; people who want to use the rules of the document as a way to show their grand generosity: by breaking them. On the other hand, given the economic times, we might have every city in Jordan adopting the document by the end of the year.
Of everything in that document, I think the one Jordanians will have a lot of trouble with is mansaf limitations. That’s just not right.
Other than that, it has my two thumbs up.