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Bhai Dooj

Date: 13th November, 2015

Diwali, the vivacious festival brings with it an opportunity to revitalize relationships. The auspicious occasion is commemorated with great cheerfulness and fervor. Theisfestivity is rejoiced in the month of October - November, two days after Diwali. Bhai Dooj strengthens siblinghood and mainly celebrated by Hindus and Sikhs all across India with full zest. Siblings eagerly wait for this pious occasion that fortifies the bond of care and love amid them by recalling all those sweet childhood memories.

Bhai Dooj is also known as ‘Bhai-Phota’ in Bengal, ‘Bhai-Teeka’ in Nepal and ‘Bhav-Bij’ in Maharashtra. Celebrated on the second day after dazzling and grandiose Diwali, Bhai Dooj is dedicated to honor the sweet and tenacious bonding shared between siblings.

Legends behind the Celebration of Bhai Dooj

Akin to other Indian festivals, Bhai Dooj is also inundated in folklores and every legend tells a different tale. As per Hindu legends, when the God of death Lord Yamraj visited his sister’s home in the month of ‘Karthik’, she gave him a hearty welcome. On the arrival, she performed Puja, beautified his brother’s neck with garland and applied holy tika on his forehead. Lord Yamraj gave her blessings and said that any person who visits his sister’s home on Bhai Dooj would never be thrown into hell and for this legend, Bhaiya Dooj is also known as ‘Yama Dwitiya’.

As per another mythological tale, Lord Krishna, after pulverizing the demon Naraksura, walked off to her sister Subhadra, who greeted him with a decorated and holy thali and applied tilak on the forehead of her brother. After that, the day is said to be rejoiced as Bhaiya Dooj.

Bhai Dooj Celebrations

Bhai Dooj is the day of gift giving, food sharing and reaching out to the inner most profundity of the hearts. On this sacred day, a square shaped place is decorated with corn powder and beautiful flowers. According to traditions, the brother has to stand inside the square area.

After this, sister with a well-decorated Puja thali that include holy items like flowers, vermillion, sweets, rice etc performs an aarti. Bhai Dooj thalis are festooned with fresh petals, colored grains, sequins, buds, and other things. A sister applies tilak on his brother’s forehead and prays for his longevity.

As a part of tradition, she also offers him sweet delights, such as laddoo, gulab jamun, kaju katli and other traditional sweets. Brother, on this day, takes pledge to protect his sister from all the malicious deeds of the world and shower her with blessings.Gifting is a momentous part of Bhai Dooj celebrations and to make this festivity memorable gifts are exchanged between brothers and sisters.