The name 'Dooj' means the second day after the new moon, the day of the festival, and 'Bhai' means brother. Every brother eagerly awaits this occasion that reinforces the bond between brothers and sisters and their affectionate relationship. It's an opportunity for a good feast at the sister's place, coupled with an enthusiastic exchange of gifts, and merriment amid the resounding of conch shells.
Legend says Yamaraj, the Lord of Death and the Custodian of Heaven and Hell, visits his sister Yami, who puts the auspicious mark on his forehead and prays for his well being. So it's held that anyone who receives a tilak from his sister on this day would never be hurled into hell.
According to another legend, on this day, Lord Krishna, after slaying the Narakasura demon, goes to his sister Subhadra who welcomes him with aarti, flowers and sweets, and puts the holy protective spot on her brother's forehead.
Yet another story behind the origin of Bhai Dooj says that when Mahavir, the founder of Jainism, attained nirvana, his brother King Nandivardhan was distressed because he missed him and was comforted by his sister Sudarshana. Since then, women have been revered during Bhai Dooj.
Like all other Hindu festivals, Bhai Dooj too has got a lot to do with family ties and social attachments. It serves as a good time, especially for a married girl, to get together with her own family, and share the post-Diwali glee.
Today being Bhai Dooj, my brothers came over and after the ceremonies was over, I cooked for them. Post lunch, we just chatted with each other, reliving the times of our childhood, mercilessly taking sides and generally having a good time.Yet again I found that such bonds can never be broken, no matter what.
Tuesday, 24 October 2006
Bhai dooj....bonding between brothers and sisters