Celebrating Rakhi- The Bond of Love
The History OF Rakhsa Bandan – A Festival Of Love Between Brother And Sister
Raksha Bandhan is one of the most important festivals celebrated across India. This festival commemorates the beautiful bond of love between a brother and a sister and hence holds great familial value as well. The festival has deep historical significance which is evident from the fact that many legends and stories are linked with it. The various stories associated with this sacred festival are as follows starting with the one that that is most famous and largely accepted.
Story 1: It is believed that when the kingdom of Chittor was once attacked by the Sultan of Gujarat, Bahadur Shah. At that time Chittor was ruled by the widowed queen, Rani Karnavati. Upon realizing that that she would be unable to defend her kingdom against the attack of the Sultan, sent Rakhi to Mughal Emperor, Humayun, seeking his help and protection.
Upon receiving the Rakhi, Emperor Humayun became emotional and overwhelmed and immediately set out with his soldier troops to protect Chittor and its queen from the invasion. However, till the time he reached destination Chittor, Bahadur Shah had already entered the queen’s fortress. In the meantime, the queen in order to protect her honor had performed Jauhar along with her maids. When Humayun leant about this, he fought with the Sultana and evicted him from the kingdom, handing over Chittor to Vikramjeet Singh, Rani Karnavati’s Son.
Story 2: According to another legend that is not as popular and dates backs to the ancient time, Goddess Lakshmi tied a rakhi on the wrist of King Bali. The Goddess did so to liberate her husband, Lord Vishnu, from the imprisonment of King Bali by binding the latter in the bond of brotherly love and duties. The day on which the Goddess performed this act, began to be celebrated as the festival of Raksha Bandhan amongst the royal people and later was adapted as a custom by the common folks.
Story 3: Yet another legend states that during the Aaryan period, the people used to perform a yagna before the men were to depart for the battlefield. The womenfolk then used to tie a scared thread on the wrists of these men to remind them about their responsibility of upholding the power and prestige of the Aaryans in war. This ritual is believed to be the origin of the festival of Raksha Bandhan.
Story 4: According to this legend, when Alexander invaded India in 326 BC, his wife moved ahead of him to meet King Porus and tied a Rakhi on his wrist. She thus made Porus commit to ensure the protection of both Alexander and her from any opponents and thereby initiated the festival of Rakhi.
Story 5: It is believed that Lord Krishna once advised Yudhisthara to observe the festival of Raksha Bandan by telling him the story of Lord Indra. Lord Indra was once attacked by the demon king and faced almost certain defeat. At that time Lord Brihaspati, the teacher of the Gods, convinced Indra to prepare whole heartedly for the battle that should be fought on the day of Shriven Purina. Before Indra left for the war, his wife, Devi Sochi tied a sacred thread on his wrist and Lord Indira won the battle by defeating the demon king.
Story 6: It is said that during the partition of Bengal under the British rule, this festival of love and bonding was propagated by the great Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore himself to maintain a sense of harmony between the Hindus and the Muslims and prevent the partition of his homeland.
Story 7: In the modern times, the festival is celebrated more as a promise of protection offered by a brother to his sister. The brother promises to take care of his sister and safeguard her from all harms and troubles in lieu of the sacred thread of love that she ties on his wrist.
Wish All Brothers In this world- Happy Raksha Bandhan