Days We Celebrate By Mrs. Navneeta Talukdar
In Sanskrit, Raksha means “protection” and Bandhan means “bond”. Raksha Bandhan or Rakhi, celebrates the pure bond of love and trust between brothers and sisters. Originally, it is an ancient Hindu festival that celebrates the bond of the siblings, but, over a period of time, has also come to denote any relationship of goodwill and friendship.
Raksha Bandhan is celebrated in the month of Shravan, on a full moon day. It mostly falls in the month of August during the monsoon season.Being the most celebrated festival for siblings, its preparations like making sweets and shopping for dresses and gifts begin wellin advance.
Sisters tie a Rakhi, a thread which may be simple or be woven with amulets, around their brothers’ wrists which is symbolic of the sisters’ well wishes, prayers for good health and long life for their brothers. This is accompanied by an Arti and a red tilak (mark) on the brothers’ foreheads. The brothers also vow to take care of their sisters.
Then comes the sweet episode of feeding each other delicious desserts such as barfis, rasgullas, gulab jamuns, etc. After that the siblings are given gifts by each other and the families bond over good food and celebrations for the day. Sisters who stay away from their brothers and cannot meet them physically on this day send rakhis with their good wishes to the lucky brothers.
People also tie rakhis and celebrate the festival to commemorate their intent to promote ties of friendship, respect, and mutual respect. It is thought of not only as a festival of sibling love, but also friendships and association of support. This is what makes Raksha Bandhan a significant and much-loved festival of India.