We Indians are fan of celebrating festival with immense joy and devotion throughout the year, Purnima or full moon day of Shravan month – Raksha Bandhan is believed to be starting point of festival season. Raksha Bandhan is the very special occasion to celebrate the ultimate unconditional emotional bond between brother and sister which unites the families. Raksha Bandhan or Rakhi as name suggest the bond of protection, sister ties sacred thread – Rakhi on the wrist of her brother on this pious and holy festival. Gathering of Family members bring great joy, houses are decorated, sweets are fed and gifts are exchanged thus no one wants to miss this auspicious moments. The unmatchable bond of love between brother and sister is one of the deepest of human emotions and relation.

Rituals and Celebration of Rakshabandhan

Each of our festival starts with special kind rituals, decorated rakhi thali with Kumkum, Chawal,Diya, Rakhi and sweet is the central point of the Raksha Bandhan. Sister prepares this thali for her brother with true love and devotion. Sister performs an aarti of her brother followed by the tilak with chawal on the forehead of her brother with chanting of Vedic mantra and then ties the rakhi on her brother's hand.

All Brahmin changes their Janeu on this Pavitra Day of Raksha Bandhan.

On this fortunate day, brother promises to his sister to protect her from all harms and hurdles and sister pray to God to protect, long life and wellbeing of her brother. The festival is celebrated mainly in Hinduism, Jainism, and Sikhism across the world and primarily in India, Nepal, Srilanka. The festival is widely accepted across the world now as its nature of representing a universal bond between brothers and sisters.

The different variety of Rakhis are used on this day like sandalwood, musical, floral, zari, Reshami, rakhi with symbols of Hindu Dharma, Rudraksha, stones, beads, gold, silver, diamond, metal chain, Bracelet, cartoon characters for kids etc.

History, Various Tales, Significance of Raksha Bandhan

Various stories are attached with Raksha Bandhan since Vedic time, few key tales are mentioned here.

Once, Lord Indra was almost defeated in a long-drawn battle against demons then Indrani and Yamuna sought sage Brihaspati's help. Dev Rhishi suggested the auspicious day of Shravan Purnima for tying a thread of protection on the wrist of Indra and Yam. After this Lord Indra and Lord Yam attacked the demon with renewed force and defeated them.

The demon king Mahabali the great devotee of Vishnu was protected by Lord Vishnu and Goddess Lakshmi tied a rakhi on King Bali's wrist.

Draupadi tore a strip of cloth from her sari and tied it to stop the bleeding from Lord Krishna’s finger while Lord Shree Krishna killed Sishupala with Sudarshan Chakra. After this event Lord Krishna declared himself bound by her sisterly love and promised her to protect for entire life.

Alexander had attacked on Indian subcontinent with a huge army but unsuccessful in defeating king Puru, the ruler of western India. Alexander’s wife sends Rakhi to Puru and requested to be accepted as his sister as per Hindu rituals. Puru accepted this gesture and in return agreed not to harm Alexander.

Hindu Rajput and Maratha queens sent rakhi to Mughal king Humayu and get the assurance about not attacking their husband.

Rabindranath Tagore uses rakhi to unite all human in Bengal when British Empire decided to divide Bengal on the basis of caste and religion.

Raksha Bandhan is called Avani Avittam in south India and much important for Brahmins. They first take a holy bath and then change their Janeyu. The ceremony is called Shravani or Rishi Tarpan as well.

In north India Raksha Bandha is famous as Kajari Purnima, Goddess Bhagwati is worshipped and farmers seek her blessings for a good crop.

In Scriptures, Raksha Bandhan or Shrvan month Purnima is described as Punya Pradayak and destroyer of sins.

Thus Raksha Bandhan is festival that protects, nurtures and raises the loving relationship of dedication, care, love, strength. Celebration of each festival changes with time but the significance and core idea of the festival is still unchanged.

Dates of Raksha Bandhan, Purnima of Shravan Month

Year Date
2019 Thursday, 15th of August
2020 Monday, 3rd of August
2021 Sunday, 22nd of August
2022 Thursday, 11th of August
2023 Wednesday, 30th of August
2024 Monday, 19th of August