Families celebrate the link between brothers and sisters on the holy day that coincides with a full moon.
Sibling relationships may be challenging even when things are going well, but this revered Hindu custom creates room for enhancing family ties.
One of the oldest holidays in the Hindu calendar is Rakhi, also known as Raksha Bandhan, which is observed by millions of people worldwide.
Raksha Bandhan, which means “the bond of protection, obligation, and care” in Sanskrit, is an annual holiday that began as a celebration between brothers and sisters. It renews the familial vow of protection.
When is Rakhi 2023?
The celebration always falls on the full moon and is observed in the Hindu month of Shravana, which runs from July to August.
The celebration time for 2023 is between August 30 and August 31, and it was observed on August 11 of the previous year.
The Hindu calendar is lunar-based, hence the Gregorian date varies annually.
What is the meaning behind the tradition?
The story of Lord Krishna and his companion Draupadi is told in the Hindu epic Mahabharata.
The two stood as a role model for male-female friendship.
In this mythical tale, Lord Krishna injured his finger on a holy discus, and Draupadi used the length of her sari to bind the wound.
In gratitude for her generosity, he pledged to protect her forever, and in subsequent stories, he kept his word.
with keeping with this origin tale, sisters continue the custom by wrapping their brothers’ wrists with holy thread, or rakhis.
How is Raksha Bandhan celebrated?
While it is usual to fast on this day, it is not required for those who are celebrating.
A long and healthy life is wished for the person’s sibling as a result of the fast.
The puja thali, a devotional dish decked with roli, diya, sweets, rice, and the necessary rakhis, is the focal point of the ceremony.
The holy thread is wrapped around the wrists of the brothers and tikkas are applied to their foreheads by the sisters.
They receive presents and promises of defense in exchange.
Modern rakhi traditions
The event has recently expanded to accommodate those without siblings and has taken on broader themes including family devotion and love, as well as friendship.
Rakhi designs have grown in that way, and there are now many alternatives.
The “sustainability sisters” Jaanvi and Paavani make the Eco Rakhi (starting at £5.25 on Etsy) using hemp-fibre string and Rudraksh seed. A wildflower seed paper note that may be planted is included in every non-profit shipment, and the earnings will be split between WWF and other organizations.
Among the rakhis available from NOTHS are a knitted cotton sunflower bracelet (£9) and a gold-plated evil eye bracelet (£8).
How can I get involved with Raksha Bandhan?
It is widely observed in India, but is mostly observed inside families as a sign of love and respect between sisters and brothers, therefore there aren’t many open celebrations.
The event often kicks out with a prayer ritual in which sisters wrap a rakhi, or holy thread, around their brother’s wrists, draw a tikka (mark) with henna powder on his forehead, and then exchange well wishes and blessings.
Raksha Bandhan blessings
Siblings or friends wish each other happiness and luck in the future.
Typical messages often used include:
- May you always be secure and unharmed. My beloved brother, you are loved. Greetings on Raksha Bandhan! I hope and pray that our love will only deepen.
- May our affection for one another always be strong. A very merry Raksha Bandhan to you!
- I hope your Raksha Bandhan is filled with pleasure and success in everything that you undertake. Happy Raksha Bandhan, brother, or bhaiya.
- I want you to know that you are the finest brother in the entire world and that I adore you on this Raksha Bandhan. Dear, happy Raksha Bandhan.