This marriage is between a rich bride family and a moderate or poor brahmin. It is applied when, for one reason or the other, the girl is unable to get married (attributed astrologically to kuja doṣa – the Mars flaw) and the parents of the bride to be, having waited for a reasonable period (normally 28 years) do not wish to defer this indefinitely. Manu[ref]yajñe tu vitate samyagh ṛtvije karma kurvate |
alaìkṛtya sutādānaṁ daivaṁ dharmaṁ pracakśate || MS iii.28[/ref]suggests that the girl is to be decked with costly ornaments and clothes and is married to a priest (ṛtvik or agni hotri) officiating at a yajña or other religious celebration.
This is considered inferior to the Brāhma marriage and is comparatively degrading for womanhood as the bride value has to be increased with dowry due to whatever blemish that she may have that has resulted in absence of marriage proposals for her and her delayed marriage. The dowry given is normally only gold ornaments that the lady can wear. Instead if a lot of wealth is given much beyond the ornaments that the lady can wear, the marriage will get degraded into Āsura vivāha.
When this marriage is maintained with meritorious deeds, it brings the blessings of emancipation of seven generations of ancestors, seven generations of descendants and the couple themselves as the fifteenth[ref]daivauḍhājaḥ sutaścaiva sapta sapta parāvarānh | MS iii.38 ½[/ref].
Vedic remedies in India use this type of marriage in a modified form to get over the blemish attached to Kuja doṣa (Mars flaw caused by its placement in the 1st, 2nd, 4th, 7th, 8th or 12th houses) or other similar or related negative factors in the chart. The Daiva marriage of a male is done with a plant called the sveta-arka (white fig-like plant) or the Tulsi[ref]Tulsi: Botanical Name – Ocimum Sanctum; English name – Holy Basil. Tulsi is highly revered due to a blessing from Vishnu that wherever she shall be Vishnu shall always be there. It has many medicinal values including being an antidote for snake and scorpion bites, controlling fevers like malaria and dengue fever as well as soothing agitated nerves, relieving tension and sharpening memory. Composition: It contains eugenol 70% nerol, engenol methyl, ether, caryophyliene, camphor and carvacrol[/ref] depending on the remedy being associated with the Sun family or Vishnu respectively. After the marriage is completed the native passes through a day of remorse at the death of the wife (plant!) which is taken away and either transplanted in another house or placed in water. Thereafter the blemish of Kuja doṣa leaves the native due to the Daiva marriage condition fulfilment and he can marry and lie happily. In the case of a female having Kuja doṣa or similar problems, the marriage is done with a pot of water called Kumbha (symbolized by Aquarius) representing the devatā and just as in the previous case the marriage breaks after a day when the pot is placed in flowing water. This works wonders and we have found that many people get married after finding a good bride after this ceremony.