Coming of Age Traditions

Coming of Age Traditions

There are so many common coming of age traditions that span over different cultures, religions, and location.  The sweet 16 tradition is a common one among the United States, however, there are many other traditions celebrated in the United States and other parts of the world that hold to be incredibly special.  The common theme among these ‘coming of age’ celebrations and traditions is that we celebrate the transition from childhood to adulthood through them.  We thought it would be fun to share some of the common coming of age traditions that are often celebrated.

Sweet 16
Of course, we have to start with the ever popular growing Sweet 16.  There isn’t a ton of tradition around the Sweet 16 celebration but it does celebrate the sweet 16-er hitting a milestone age where they’re now able to drive.  There’s a huge range in how Sweet 16’s are celebrated in the American culture while some have a casual get-together some have a full out lavish event and are given a brand new car to seal the deal.  The rise in popularity of the Sweet 16 celebration really started gaining momentum when the MTV show “Sweet 16” came on.

This is the common coming of age tradition among the Hispanic culture, often celebrated throughout Central and South America.  One common difference in this celebration is it’s celebrating young girls as they turn 15 years old.  In this celebration attendees begin with a Catholic mass, the young teen renews her vows and faith among her religion and family.  After the religious ceremony, there’s a reception/party where guests are treated to dancing, dinner, and a great time!

Bar Mitzvah

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Bat Mitzvah/ Bar Mitzvah
In the Jewish community, the Bat/ Bar Mitzvah celebrations are celebrated all around the world.  Typically these celebrations happen when a young girl or boy is 12/ 13 years old. Most often there’s a combination of a religious ceremony where the boy/ girl accepts and recognizes their responsibility and expectations to following the Jewish faith.  Following the religious ceremony, there’s often a reception type of event to continue the celebration and honor the young boy/ girl’s hard work they have put in to prepare for their religious ceremony.

Khatam Al Koran
A common tradition practiced in Malaysia among Muslim girls.  Once these young girls reach 11 years old they’re able to celebrate Khatam Al Koran.  Which is a ritual that they’re now able to take part in at their local mosque, to celebrate and honor their growth in maturity.  Many young girls spend a great deal of time preparing for this big event so that they’re able to fully recite the final chapter of the Koran in front of their loved ones.

While there are countless coming of age traditions that are celebrated throughout the world, these are just a few!  It was hard to choose just a few to share with you, but if you’re interested in learning about other cultures and how they celebrate the coming of age tradition it’s definitely interesting to discover.

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