Celebrating Raksha Bhandan
Raksha Bandhan, also known as Rakhi/Rakhri, is a Hindu festival that celebrates the love and loyalty between siblings. The term “Raksha Bandhan” originates from Sanskrit, and translates to “bond of protection.”
Raksha Bandhan is a festival marked since ancient times and there are several mythological stories that revolve around this custom. It is said that the festival gained popularity after Rani Karnavati, the widowed queen of Chittor, sent a Rakhi to Mughal emperor Humayun when she was in need of his help.It is also believed that Draupadi tied Rakhi to Lord Krishna. In return, Lord Krishna protected Draupadi, when she was abused by the Kauravas in front of Pandavas, who had lost her in a gambling bet. Whatever the stories or myths are associated with the festival, it is celebrated with full zeal with a dash of modern trends.
Traditionally, during Raksha Bandhan, sisters (and female cousins) tie a rakhi on their brothers and male cousins. In our house, since I have two girls we have them tie rakhis on one another giving the celebration a bit of a modern twist. The rakhi signifies her bond and support of her sibling. In exchange, the sisters and/or cousins receive a token from their sibling, often cash or a check. The siblings receiving the rakhi are charged with the responsibility of protecting their sibling/cousin from life’s problems, and offering blessings. After the gift has been exchanged, a sweet is exchanged between the two.
The significance of the festival can be gauged from the fact that it strengthens the relationship between siblings. Indian history has several stories when siblings have stepped up to protect one another during times of adversity. This festival also helps siblings realize the importance and significance of growing up together.
HOW TO MAKE IT SPECIAL
This festival is only a few weeks away. In the current times of Covid-19, as we are social distancing and trying to stay safe, we are searching for ways to celebrate so why not find some creative ways to celebrate. Here are some ways to make it special:
- Dress up in traditional clothing or mix & match and create a fun fusion look. Check out our blog on "5 Fun Ways to Rock Desi Fusion Wear with Kids"
- Create a Rakhi Thali ready. A Rakhi Thali contains a diya, roli or tika, rice, sandalwood, incense sticks, rakhis and something sweet (it can even be candy).
- Have a special meal (make it or order take out).
- Do a fun photo shoot since you’re all dressed up.
- Have a Bollywood Dance party!
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