Feel the spirit of Raksha Bandhan festival with these beautiful essays on
Rakhi contributed by our visitors! You may also exhibit love for your
sibling by sending your reflections on Raksha Bandhan festival or a short
paragraph on Rakhi. Your Raksha Bandhan essay will be posted on this website
with due acknowledgment to you.
Rakhi is a sacred thread embellished with sister's love and affection for
her brother. On the day of Raksha Bandhan, sisters tie rakhi on the wrists
of their brothers and express their love to them. After receiving the rakhi
from a sister, a brother sincerely takes the responsibility of protecting
her sister. In Indian tradition, the frangible thread of rakhi is considered
even stronger than an iron chain as it strongly binds a brothers and a
sisters in the circumference of mutual love and trust.
Any Indian festival seems to be incomplete without the traditional Indian
festivities, such as gathering, celebrations, exchange of sweets and gifts,
lots of noise, singing and dancing. Festivals are the celebration of
togetherness as being as a united family and the festival "Raksha
Bandhan" is not an exception of this.
The love and self actuation towards a novel cause between a brother and his
sister is the theme of this great festivals. It is a festival that is mainly
celebrated by the people of Northern and Western part of India, but people
from other parts also celebrate this festival with same alacrity. Although,
the mode of celebration may differ from region to region, but the central
theme of this great festival remain same.
As far as the traditions and rituals are concerned, sisters prepare the "pooja
thali" with diyas, roli, chawal and rakhis. They worship the goddesses,
ties rakhis on the wrists of their brother(s), and wishes for their well
being. On the other hand, the brothers acknowledge their love with a promise
that they will remain by their sisters' side and protect them from every
fall and down throughout the life. Brothers also give token gifts to their
From ancient period of time, this festivals has been celebrated in the same
manner and tradition. As the lifestyle of people has been changing with
passing time, therefore, today, this festival is being celebrated
elaborately. This day fosters a undying and divine relationship among the
siblings. Far off physical location may sometime bring an abstract feeling
among the siblings, and this auspicious day provides a link to bring them
together. The joyous meeting, the rare family get- together, the erstwhile
feeling of brotherhood and sisterhood call for a massive celebration.
The sisters tie a sacred thread of love to their brothers amongst chanting
of mantras, put roli and rice on their forehead and pray for their well
being. Sisters bestow their brothers with gifts and blessings. Brother also
wish them a good life and pledge to take care of them. Brothers give their
sisters return gifts. The gift is the acknowledgment of his love for his
sister, reminder of their togetherness and a symbol of his pledge. There are
several historical evidences, which remind us about the significance of this
festival and every time, this festival emphasizes the same values which have
been mingled along with the festival.
Well that is a kind of an end to the rituals but the celebrations begin
after that. For the parents, Raksha bandhan festival is a mean of family
reunion. Tasty dishes, wonderful sweets etc, are cooked on this day. Family
members exchange gifts with other well wishers and relatives and share their
individual experiences of life with one another.
For those who are unable to visit one another, rakhi cards, e-rakhis and
rakhis through mails become the modes of their communication and sharing of
their love. Hand made rakhis and self-made rakhi cards are just a
representation of the personal feelings of the siblings.
The trivia of Raksha Bandhan is to bring people together just like the true
spirit of all other Indian festivals.
This is all about RAKSHA BANDHAN...
Raksha Bandhan is a popular festival in India, especially North India. The
festival depicts the love of brothers and sisters. On this day sisters tie a
thread called 'Rakhi' around her brother's wrist. She prays to God for the
safety of her brother and to lead him to good path.The brother in return
gives her sweets and blesses her with good wishes. The festival should not
be celebrated as a formality but should be celebrated whole heartedly.
By: Linta Titty John
Raksha Bandhan is not only for meant for siblings, but for protection for
any loved one. 'Raksha' means protection and 'bandhan' means bond. Hence the
festival does not signify bond between a brother and sister only.
Once Indra, the God of Heaven was about to go into battle and was feeling a
little apprehensive. When his wife tied a sacred thread to his arm for his
protection and assurance all his fears vanished and he was successful in all
his endeavors. From then on began the tradition of celebrating Raksha
Bandhan. A festival of protection for loved ones. I think people are being
led away from the true meanings of some happenings because they follow
traditions, instead of finding the true meaning and stems of these
Raksha Bandhan In Mythology And
History And What It Is Today
The roots of most of the Hindu festivals can be traced to Hindu Mythology.
We do hear about why is Holi celebrated or what is the significance of
Diwali but hardly anyone knows why Raksha Bandhan is celebrated. All one
knows about it is that it is the festival for the brothers and the sisters
when they wish good life to each other and the sister ties rakhi to her
Raksha Bandhan is mentioned in our epics as a festival of Gods. It is said
that Yamuna, the sister of Yama, the lord of Death used to tie rakhi to his
brother on every Shravan Purnima. Indrani tied Rakhi to his brother Lord
Indra. Yama was so impressed by the occasion that he declared that who ever
got a Rakhi tied from his sister would become immortal. From that day
onwards girls tie rakhi to their brothers wishing them a long life and
brothers bestow their blessings by promising to take care of the sisters
through thick and thin.
While tying the rakhi, the girls chant
"Yena baddho Balee raajaa daanavendro
tena twaam anubadhnaami rakshe maa chala maa chala"
meaning "I am tying a Rakhi on you, like the one on mighty demon
king Bali. Be firm, O Rakhi, do not falter."
The legend relates that the mighty Demon king Raja Bali was a great devotee
of Lord Vishnu. When lord Indra could not counter Bali, he went to Lord
Vishnu for help. Vishnu overthrew Bali to the nether world. Lord Vishnu
promised King Bali immortality till he would be crowned as Indra and also
that he would guard the kingdom of Patala leaving his own abode in Vaikunth.
Godess Laxmi, the consort of Lord Vishnu, wished the Lord to be back at
Vaikunth. Disguised as a Brahmin woman she went to Bali to seek refuge till
her husband returned home after finishing some important task. King Bali
obliged. With her came the happiness and wealth. All auspicious things
On the Shravan Purnima Goddess tied the sacred thread to Bali and prayed
for his well being. Bali was touched by the gesture. He accepted her as her
sister and requested her to make a wish. At this She revealed herself and
told that it war Narayan himself guarding hid Kindom. King Bali immediately
requested the Lord to return to his abode.
From that day on, girls tie rakhi to their brothers and seek blessings.
Today we relate more to the historical events rather than the mythological
tales. The once we heard as parts of our history in schools are the base of
the festivities today.
The most ancient incident refers to the invasion of Alexander the Great. It
is said that Puru was a mighty king. Alexander had to face a great
resistance from him. Worried about her husbands safety, Alexanders
wife seeked audience with King Puru. She requested him to accept her as his
sister. Puru obliged her and promised not to harm Alexander. The Rakhi on
Purus hand is said to be the savior of Alexander.
In the medieval times, rakhi meant a call for help. The Rajput kingdoms
were being attacked by the Muslim rulers. The Royal ladies solicited help
from the fellow Rajput rulers sending them Rakhi. The Rajputs considered it
their responsibility to respond to the request and help them.
A famous incident relates how the widowed queen of Chittor, Rani Karnawati
sent rakhi to Emperor Humayun to help her save the honor of the dependent
Ladies. Humayun immediately followed the request and reached there with his
troops. He despite allhis efforts reached there late and the royal ladies
had already performed the Jauhar.
All this signifies that Rakhi was not always an only brother sister
festival. It was to fulfill the basic need of protection. It was an un-
maligned prayer for good will and protection. It is said that at one time
the Sages tied the sacred thread for protection to themselves and their
Rabindranath Tagore started Rakhi Utsavas, a congregation signifying the
harmonious relationship amongst the community. It was a vow for peaceful
existence and commitment to all the members of society. This was Raksha
Bandhans universal outlook.
Rakhi in todays scenario though celebrated, as a siblings
festival, if taken in true sense has a much broader perspective. The
festival encompasses true sense of peace and brotherhood. The values
propagated by the occasion if inculcated by all human beings can bring the
much-needed relief from the ongoing violence and mistrust.
is Rakhi Purnima Important?
Rakhi falls in the month of Shravana, the month when the rains are
receding, sea is calming down and weather is pleasant. The month is
important to the farmers, to the fishermen and to the voyagers and
businessmen. And in India all such days and months are a matter of
celebration. These celebrations are in other words a kind of thanks giving
to the Gods.
Full moon day is considered to be an auspicious day and an auspicious day
of this holy month is of great importance. The Shravana Purnima is
celebrated all over the country in one form or the other. Most commonly it
is celebrated as the Rakhi Purnima or Raksha Bandhan, the festival
signifying sisterly love and brotherly affection. The day has significance
beyond this, not known to all.
The day is called Naryali Purnima in the coastal regions of India. The day
is devoted to the Rain God Indra and the Sea God Varuna. The nariyal i.e.
coconuts are offered to the Gods to please them and seek their blessings.
The offering is made by throwing the coconut in the sea or any other near by
water body. It is said that Lord Rama started for Lanka to rescue Sita on
this day. He crossed the sea from the bridge made by the Vanar Sena by
throwing stones in water. Coconut is considered to be a symbol of three-eyed
God Lord Shiva.
For the fishermen the fishing season starts now people begin their voyages
on this day, assured that the seas have calmed down and it is an auspicious
day. For the farmers it is Kajri Purnima. The farmers start the sowing of
Wheat on this day and pray for a good crop.
The day is very important for the Brahmins. This is called Rishi Tarpan or
the Shravani Ceremony. On this day they change their holy thread called the
Janeyu or the Yajnopavit amidst the chanting of mantras. The Janeyu
represents adherence to vedic culture, observance of Hindu traditions and
service to humanity. After the ceremony sweets made of coconut are served.
The day is all about raksha or protection, not just for self but for the
dear ones, for peaceful existence of the human race. Each ritual that is
followed has a significance. The sisters seek love from their brothers, the
brothers seek courage and endurance. People worship the Gods of water, the
basis of life.
Rakhi has been promoted as a way of harmonious life by many a social
workers and philoophers. It is a festival that dictates the values of
brotherhood and self-perseverance.
Copyright © Society for the Confluence
of Festivals in India (SCFI). All Rights Reserved