Bhai Dooj is a special festival celebrated in the Hindu religion. It is celebrated in India every year on the fifth day of Diwali.
This festival signifies the bond between two siblings – one brother and one sister.
It is the day when a sister puts tikka on her brother’s forehead and feeds him with sweets, while the brother in turn showers gifts upon his sister.
There is also a tradition of exchanging gifts between a brother and sister.
Bhai Dooj symbolizes the love shared between siblings and is all about appreciating and celebrating the special bond between a brother and sister. It is the occasion when a brother pledges to protect his sister and a sister prays for her brother’s well-being.
Through this festival, the brother and the sister renew their pledges and recall their childhood memories.
The legend behind Bhai Dooj is based on the story of Yama, the God of death and his sister ‘Yami’, who performed a Puja on the fifth day of Diwali.
Yami then asked Yama for a boon that whosoever who visits her on this day, should be freed from all sins.
This later evolved into the festival of Bhai Dooj and is celebrated with much enthusiasm and joy.
The rituals of Bhai Dooj usually commence with the brother and sister having a bath and dressing up for the occasion.
Then aarti of the brother is done by the sister and a tikka is applied on his forehead.
As part of the tradition, a coconut filled with sweets is kept on the threshold of the house. Sister removes the coconut placed at the entrance to welcome the brothers.
She then offers vermillion and applies it to her brothers forehead. Brothers take a vow to protect their sisters always from all the ills of life.
Bhai Dooj is a day to thank each other and to appreciate the special relationship shared between a brother and sister.