Why Do We Celebrate Rakhi or Raksha Bandhan
Significance of Rakhi in Indian Culture
Rakhi holds a special place in the heart of siblings as it is dedicated to siblinghood. This eve is notably celebrated across the country including mainly Hindus, jains and sikhs. It is also renowned by other names such as rakhi purnima, rakshabandhan or simply rakhi.
Rakshabandhan is formed with two words namely Raksha and bandhan. In Sanskrit, it means “the tie or knot of protection”. This is mainly a Hindu festival which celebrates the love and bond between siblings. On this particular day, a sister ties rakhi thread on the wrist of brothers as a way to wish him all success and happiness in life. As its name implies, auspicious rakhi thread also protect brothers against bad eye.
In return, a brother also promises to protect his loving and caring sisters forever, no matter what is the situation. This festival is also celebrated with cousins as well as other distant family members. This auspicious and delightful eve is observed in the month of sravana. And it falls every year in the month of august.
As it is mentioned earlier that raksha bandhan is celebrated across various religions but the main intention remains to be same which is celebrating the love between siblings.
In some east indian cultures this day is also known as Janopunyu. All rituals are performed by sisters and brothers as well as men also change their janeu which is the sacred thread.
In Bengali cultures, the festival is known as Jhulan Purnima. People worship Lord Krishna and Radha. Rakhi is notably celebrated in this state by tying rakhi on the wrist of brothers.
In Nepalese culture its called Janaeu Purnima. Senior family members and relatives tie rakhi thread on family members and friends. "Kwati" is a well-known delicacy enjoyed on this day.
Marathis celebrate this day as Nariyali Poornima. Kolis which are the fishermen community of the coastal state of Maharashtra, worship lord Varuna on this day. Coconuts are thrown into the sea in the form offering to lord Varuna. As well as, people also apply sindoor or vermillion on foreheads of each other as a symbol of prosperity.
RakshaBandhan is celebrated as Pavitropana by Gujaratis. Lord Shiva is worshipped by the people of Gujarat to wash off their committed sins. The grand Puja is performed using cotton filaments and kasa grass entwined together soaked in cow products or Panchgaivya i.e. cow's ghee, milk, curd, urine and excreta. This thread is finally tied around the Shivalinga.
South Indian states like Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Andhra Pradesh, and Orissa. The festival of rakhi is known as AvaniAvittam or Upakarmam in the southern states of India. This day is celebrated by the Brahmin community of these places on which they change their sacred threads. A Janeyu ceremony is performed and people offer prayer to their ancestors and Gurus to whom they indebted for the Vedas and spiritual knowledge
Though this festival has different names but it is celebrated all over the country by rakhi delivery across UK with a same feeling that is to nurture as well as strengthen the sister-brother bond. People also send rakhi to their brothers along with exclusive rakhi gifts to be part of this thoughtful celebration.