Bhai Duj or Bhaiya Dhuj-The Bond Of Love Between A Brother And A Sister
October 24, 2007
Bhai Duj is celebrated across India right after Diwali. This festival is the celebration of love between brothers and sisters.
It is similar to Raksha Bandhan but the difference is that, here the sister puts a tilak or tika rather than tying anything on her brother’s wrist. It is celebrated as Bhai-Phota among the Bengali community hailing from the eastern parts of India. The tika is called Phota in Bangla. The Maharashtrians call this festival as Bhao-Bij or Bhav-Bij. In Nepal, it is popular as Bhai-Tika.
The ritual is very simple. The sister puts a tilak or tika of vermilion or white sandalwood paste (depending on the community’s traditions) along with few grains of rice. Then Aarti is done and the brother is fed a delicious sweetmeat. The brother touches the sister’s feet and she blesses him with prosperity and good health through eternity. Some communities also put a black tika along with sandalwood paste of kajal, (kohl) as a sign to keep bad omen and evil eye away. The brother gives the sister a gift and the day is spent in celebration with good food and sweets.
This celebration originated with Lord Yama or Yamraj and his twin sister Yami or Yamuna. He is the Lord of death and Goddess Yamuna is the river who is very dear to Lord Krishna. She came down on earth to purify it and with it all the people who bathe in her waters to wash away their sins.
In the month of Kartik or Kartika, Lord Yamraj visited his sister. She welcomed her brother with a lot of love and put a tilak on his forehead, performed Aarti, gave him a gift and offered him a variety of delicacies. Thus this festival was initiated and Lord Yamraj said that all the brothers who visit their sisters on this day will be blessed as the sisters sincerely pray for their well-being.
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