How do you explain Raksha Bandhan to Children? The Value, the Origin of it??
"Raksha" means to protect and "Bandhan" means to tie. Hence the word Raksha Bandhan means Protection on tying! This is a Hindu festival celebrated across the globe essentially by Hindus on a full moon day in the month of August. On this day the sisters will tie Rakhi (a thread with beads in any color- generally red and gold) on their brother’s wrist, in return of which they pledge to protect their pride and honor.
The true meaning of Raksha Bandhan is soo very relevant to the current social situation. Where building sensitivity in boys/men to respect, protect and be sensitive to the feelings of girls /sisters around them. And for Girls its festival of reassuring "Yes, my brothers are always there to protect me in all circumstances". Hive parenting truly feels this festival should be celebrated at each house and each school to teach the gender sensitivity in children. And set the expectation in each one of boys and girls we should leave in harmony and mutual respect.
But talking about the origin, how the whole episode of Raksha Bandhan came into existence there is a beautiful story behind it! It takes us to our school days when the chapter of Raksha Bandhan was taught in Social Studies!!
Son: - How is it celebrated?
Mom: -Both the siblings will get up early in the morning, take bath and visit the temple. After which the sister will decorate the Thali (plate having Rakhi, Sweets, Tilik- “Kumkum powder mixed with rice and drops of water”, and Aarti – “a plate with two diyas set a light for ritual”).
The sister will then put tilak on his forehead. Tie a Rakhi on his wrist, wishing the best of the world to him. Sweets are mutually exchanged followed by Aarti.
The brother in return amuses his sister by giving gift. Hence Rakhi is traditionally given to a brother from his sister. It represents the sister's promise to pray for her brother and the brother's vow to protect his sister.
Son: - How and when did this tradition start?
Mom: - There are many stories related to Raksha Bandhan but the most popular one is about Maharani Karnavati and Emperor Humayun.
This started many years ago around 1500 AC when Maharani Karnavati, the queen of Chittor in Rajasthan sent a Rakhi to Humayun, the Mughal Emperor of Delhi, and called him for help when Chittor was threatened to be attacked by Bahadur Shah of Mewar, Gujrat.Humayun accepted her request to protect her and fought to give their kingdom back.
Son: - What is Rakhi made up of?
Mom: - It’s a combination of colored threads with beads on the top or sides. It can be made at home using various craft and decorative materials either using glue or stitching it up.
Son: - What kind of gift does the brother give?
Mom: - The brother usually gifts money to sister and the sister prays for his well-being, prosperity, health and wealth.
Amongst so many other festivals celebrated around the world, this one strengthens the bond between a brother and a sister and truly glorifies the shared memories of childhood, laughter, fun and frolic times of yesteryears.
There have been numerous songs, movies, plays and dramas made in Bollywood and other industries inspired by this festival. This is a holy festival which involves personal bondage led by common threads of parentage. Hence the value increases by many folds.
Hence to sum it up I will quote Raksha Bandhan as a beautiful festival celebrating relationship between a brother and a sister. It celebrates the holiness, love, bonding, trust and all the memories nurtured in the past and promises to foster the same in the future.