Raksha Bandhan

Raksha Bandhan , Rakhi

Raksha means protection and Bandhan is something that is tied or bounded.

Hence Raksha Bandhan is nothing but a thread that is tied and which promises a protection to the one to whom it is tied and to the one who ties it.

This falls on the purnima or the full moon day of the Shravan Month of the telugu calendar. It is celebrated as a big festival in India. This is considered to be the festival that symbolizes the relationship of brother and sister.

Raksha Bandhan

Raksha Bandhan

On this day  sister ties a thread or a  Rakhi to her brother for his well being and in return brother promises sister her well being and protection of any kind. The process starts with the sister preparing the Rakhi and the Aarati Plate.  The Arati plate consists of a Rakhi, Diya(Deepam), Akshita(rice grains mixed with Turmeric powder), KumKum, sweet. Sisters decorate brother with Kumkum, which is adorned as Tilak on his fore head and put some rice grains on it and then give Aarati to the brother. Then they tie the Rakhi to brother after which the sister first feeds the brother a sweet and the brother in return also feeds the sister with the sweet. She then seeks the blessings of the brother if he is elder. It is a normal tradition that brother grants the sister a wish and fulfills the same. In present days it is normally money or some gift that a brother gives to his sister.

There are few legends that are associated with Rakhi or Raksha Bandhan.

In Mahabharat there is a story of Raksha Bandhan. Draupadi wife of Pandavas once tied a piece of silk cloth on the wrist of Lord Krishna to stop the blood that was a result of the injury in a battle. It was on Shravan Purnima and Krishna said that from this day on wards he would protect her as the cloth that she tied to him had the significance of Brother protecting the sister. On the day when Pandavas were defeated in an unfair or the magic gamble (Maya Juudam) and Draupadi was also betted and lost. Duryodhana, had Draupadi dragged to the court by Dussasana. He then asked to strip Draupadi in front of everyone and Dussasana pulled the saree of Draupadi and as he was pulling the saree never ended and he was never able to strip Draupadi. The never ending saree was a result of Draupadi tied the cloth to Krishna. Krishna as a Brother protected Draupadi from getting humiliated in front of everyone by granting her a saree for each of the thread that formed the piece of cloth that was tied to him. Those sarees were the one that made the saree of Draupadi endless. Thus this shows how great is the thread that is tied and how a brother has to protect the sister at all times.

Another legend is of King Bali.

King Bali was a demon and he offered all that he earned as well as himself to Lord Vishnu.  Lord Vishnu had forced Bali to Patalk Lok and moved by the way in which Bali knowingly had offered himself to the Lord Vishnu, Lord Vishnu offered a boon to Bali. Bali asked Vishnu to come  and protect him  in the Patala Loka. Vishnu readily agreed and was in Patal Lok protecting Bali. In Vaikuntam, the abode of Lord Vishnu, Goddess Lakshmi was worried as Lord Vishnu had not returned for a long time. Finally she learns that Lord Vishnu is in Patal Lok protecting King Bali. She then visits Bali and asks for his protection, to which king Bali readily agrees and allows her to stay in his kingdom. On the Shravan Purnima day Goddess Lakshmi ties Rakhi or Raksha Bandhan and Bali offers her a boon. Goddess Lakshmi tells her that she is here for her husband and asks Bali to giver her back her husband Lord Vishnu. Bali moved by Lakshmi agrees and prays to Lord Vishnu to return to Vaikuntam along with his wife.

This day is celebrated as Rakhi Purnima or Raksha Bandhan.

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