What is the Importance of Raksha Bandhan ( Rakhi ) ?
Raksha Bandhan, also called Rakhi, is the holy Hindu festival that celebrates the love between a brother and sister. It is offered immense importance in Hinduism, and the value of Raksha Bandhan as a festival is enormous in India. As per the lunar calendar it is being celebrated on the full moon in the month of Sravana.
The word Raksha means protection, whereas Bandhan means to tie. By tradition, on this festival day sister’s tie a Rakhi, which is a bracelet made of interwoven red and golden threads, around their brothers' wrists to celebrate their lovely relationship. The brother takes an oath to protect his sister, and the brother gives gifts to her beloved sister.
The true meaning of a Rakhi
The Rakhi is a symbol of attachment between a brother and sister, meant to make stronger their bond of love. It is held that when a woman ties a Rakhi to a man it becomes binding for him to honour his religious duties, protect and care for her.
The time-honoured stories state that Rakhis are sacred with blessed verses and are covered by them. Even Rakhis are sacred in rice and grass sooner than they are given, and people recognizable with the Vedas customarily tie them.
As per religious customs, the Rakhi is thought to remove sin from one hand and offer safety to the other side. The shield provided by a Rakhi is alleged to remain for one year.
The religious practices
In our country, Raksha Bandhan has been celebrated since ancient times. As the Rakhi is tied, a prayer is offered as a request for contentment and prosperity. These days the Rakhis are well decorated and come with different coloured gold as well as silk threads, and often ornamented with valuable stones and beads.
Since a long time, when a sister ties the Rakhi to her brother a mantra is chanted in Sanskrit. At the closing stages of the ritual, the sister places a sweet in the mouth of his brother and vice versa. Following this, her brother gives her a gift of thanks.
This festival has progressed over the years to take in the significance of many people in Hindu society, yet primarily it continues to uphold the lovely relationship amid a sister and the brother.
Preparations for Raksha Bandhan
In Hindu households, the preparations of Rakhi begin way ahead to the festival month. Picking and purchasing selective ‘Rakhi’ for her brother, we observe every sister filled with joy on this festive occasion. Sweets are prepared and bought before the celebration.
All the family members rise early for the holy rituals that start in the morning. A special pooja thali is prepared for the ceremony and is wonderfully decorated with ‘roli’, rice grains, ‘diya’, sweets and all sorts of Rakhis for different members.
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