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This chapter informs the readers about the regional and historical significance of Bhai Dooj.
Bhai Dooj or bhaiya dooj is a very prominent and widely celebrated festival of India. The historical significance of Bhai dooj provides us with an insight as to how these festival started at first. Bhai Dooj celebrations are held in different regions of India under different names and with different rituals. Every sister prays for the well being of her brother and applies Tilak on his forehead to protect him from all kinds of evil and bad omen. The brother in turn promises to look after his sister and protect her from all evils and dangers. Also brothers and sisters exchange gifts among themselves. According to the Gregorian calendar, it falls on the 2nd day of Shukla Paksha in the month of Kartika i.e. 2 days after Diwali.
Historical Significance : According to Hindu mythology, it is considered that the God of Death, Yamraj visited his lovable sister Yami (Yamuna) on this special day. His sister welcomed him with Tilak and Aarti and offered him sweets and adorned him with a garland. In return Yamraj promised eternal love and care for his sister. From that day onwards Yamraj declared that the brother who would receive tilak and aarti by their sister, he would never be frightened. That’s why the same day is called as the Yama Dwitiya.
According to another story, Hindu Lord Krishna had returned to his sister, Subhadra, after killing the demon king Narakasur where he was welcomed by his sister with tilak, aarti, sweets and flowers.
Regional Significance : Bhai Dooj has different regional names and different ways in which the festival is solemnized. It is known as ‘bhai-dooj’ in the Hindi-speaking belt, ‘Bhav Bij’ in the Marathi speaking belts, ‘Bhai - Tika’ in Nepal and ‘Bhai Phonta’ in the Bengali speaking communities.
Uttar Pradesh : In Uttar Pradesh, the brother is gifted with an `aabf- a length of flax, knotted into a circular shape and dotted with sugar batashas. There are two aabs for each brother. After performing all the rituals that include the sister applying a tilak of roli and rice on her brother''s forehead and praying him with an aarti to shed off all the evil effects, the story of Bhai Dooj is narrated.
Punjab : In Punjab, the day following Diwali is known as tika when sisters make a paste with saffron and rice and place an auspicious mark on their brother''s foreheads as a symbolic gesture to ward off all harm.
Bengal : In Bengal this event is called ''Bhai Phonta'', which is performed by the sister who religiously fasts until she applies a ''phonta'' or mark with sandalwood paste on her brother''s forehead, offers him sweets and gifts and prays for his long and healthy life. Diyas and incense sticks are an integral part of the ceremony. An aarti is also performed.
Bihar : In Bihar, sisters repeat the behavior of the central character of the story of Bhai Dooj, where a sister saves her brother life by cursing him until he gets married. The curse is seen as a mean to ward off all the dangers and evil effects of the spirits surrounding the brother. The sisters of Bihar start this day by showering choicest of curses on their brothers. After doing so, they prick their own tongues as punishment, with a thorny, wild fruit and ask for their brothers'' forgiveness for the curses, and also for past mistakes. There is also a unique custom of brother eating grains of bajri with water, from their sisters'' hands.
Maharashtra : In Maharashtra, the brother is made to sit in a special square place on the floor. Before siting, the brother is made to eat a bitter fruit called Karith. The custom is associated with the story that Lord Krishna tasted this fruit before going to kill demon Narakasura.
Nepal : This is the second most important festival in Nepal after Vijayadashami. It is celebrated by almost everyone there.
It is customary to give gifts to your sister on Bhai Dooj. You can give your sister in India gifts with the help of this trusted online gifting portal. Also if you stay abroad and are unable to visit your sister then you can send gifts to India from USA very easily from this portal without any hassles.
Bhai Dooj or Bhratri Dwitiya ends the celebration of Diwali that continues for a period of five days. This day is a celebration of the bond of love and care that exists between a brother and a sister. The festival of Bhai Dooj is known by many different names in different parts of India like Bhau Beej and Bhai Phota. The sister applies a tika on her brother’s forehead that is made out of varied items like vermilion and sandalwood. It is a common tradition to exchange gifts on this occasion and thus sending India gifts online is a well known practice. There are many interesting stories and myths behind the celebration of Bhai Dooj which lends it a lot of historical significance.
Bhai Dooj Historical Significance
The most popular story behind the Bhai Dooj celebration is that of the siblings Yama and Yamuna. They are believed to be the children of Surya and Samjna who were separated by their evil stepmother Chhaya. Yama became the God of death in hell while Yamuna became a swift flowing river on the face of earth. When several years had passed, Yama visited Yamuna who welcomed him with a tika on his forehead. Yama then granted that being the God of death he would grant a long life to all brothers whose sisters applied a tika on their foreheads on this particular day in honour of his sister Yamuna. There is also the myth of Lord Krishna and his sister Subhadra which also gives some credence to this tradition. Krishna visited his sister Subhadra after defeating the demon Narakasura who then welcomed him with a tika on his forehead.
Being away from your siblings during the festival of Bhai Dooj can be hard but sending exclusive gifts for them may cheer them up. This reliable online gift store houses a large variety of Bhai Dooj gift ideas that are perfect for this occasion. All of these gifts can be easily sent to your brothers and sisters in India in time for this grand celebration.
Bhai Dooj Gifts
You can opt for spiritual gifts for your siblings that are very apt as this is a much revered festival. The Amazing Lord Krishna Showpiece is a spiritual idol gift that is completely white in colour with studded stones. There are several home decor gifts on this online gifting portal that your brother or sister can use to decorate their home. The Beautiful Artificial Love Tree Showpiece is an artificial potted plant that has a green colour in a heart shape.
Special gifts for brothers on this gifting site include perfumes for brother from various well known brands. The Ice Dive Edt Spray is from the house of Adidas and has a citrusy fragrance suited for casual wear. You can also get men’s personal care items for your brother having various necessary items. A Mixed Bag Of Goodies For Brother contains many skin care products from Gillette and Park Avenue.
Knowing the historical significance of a wonderful festival like Bhai Dooj will surely help you understand it better. These and also other gifting options can be sent as gifts to India from US and other countries on this occasion. You can also look into the other gift ideas here for a variety of other festivals and events like Christmas.
Bhai Dooj takes place two days after Diwali and it is considered to be the end of the festive season that started with Navratri and Durga Puja. More specifically, the Bhai Dooj celebration brings to conclusion the five day long festivities of Diwali. The festival of Bhai Dooj is similar to Raksha Bandhan as this is also a celebration of the sacred bond that exists between a brother and a sister. Among the many rituals of this occasion, sending gifts to India for siblings is also a very common tradition. Bhai Dooj is known by different names in different parts of India and the reason for this is hidden in the many customs and historical references.
Bhai Dooj in Uttar Pradesh
In the state of Uttar Pradesh, the festival is known by its popular name, Bhai Dooj, that is actually a reference to the date. Bhai Dooj is celebrated on the dwitiya or dooj of the shukla paksha in the Hindu month of Kartik. Sisters give a gift of aab or flax to their brothers that is decorated with batashas made out of sugar. After that, the sister applies a tika of roli and chawal on the brother’s forehead and performs an arti.
Tikka in Punjab
Punjab celebrates this auspicious day as Tikka that refers to the main tradition of this annual festival. The main ritual is the sister applying a tika or tikka on her brother’s forehead and the name is derived from this. Thus, a special tika is made out of kesar and chawal that are thoroughly made into a paste. However, this day is celebrated on the day after Diwali and not after two days like the rest of India.
Bhai Phota in Bengal
The Bengalees observe this day as Bhai Phota where the meaning of ‘phota’ is actually a ‘mark’. This is a reference to the tika that is placed on the forehead of the brother by the sister after fasting. The phota is made as a mixture of sandalwood paste, curd and sometimes even kohl is used. A ritualistic exchange of sweets as well gifts takes place after the sister applies the phota while reciting the traditional verses.
Bhatri Ditya in Bihar
Bhatri Ditya is the name for this festival in the state of Bihar that is a transformed form of the term Bhratri Dwitiya that refers to the date of this occasion, that is, the dwitiya of the Kartik shukla paksha. The festivities in this state includes an interesting ritual of the sisters cursing the brothers to a large extent. The sisters then prick their tongues with a prickly fruit and also ask for the forgiveness of their brothers. The brothers also partake water along with bajra grains from the hands of their sisters before the customary tika and gifts.
Bhai Dooj Gift Ideas
This online gift store focusses on a variety of exclusive gifting options for Bhai Dooj that can be sent to India. The gifts that have been showcased here include apparels, thalis, chocolates, sweets and many others. A variety of silver gifts are available on this online gifting portal that can be a wonderful gift for your brother or sister. The Big Oval Thali consists of a silver thali with meenakari designs as well as a kalash, a bowl and a container for roli and chawal made of silver. There are also wonderful Bhai Dooj hampers on this gifting site where different types of gifts are present. The Festive Sweets and Dry Fruits Hamper is a sweets hamper that contains assorted dry fruits and motichoor laddoo.
These fantastic gift ideas can make this Bhai Dooj or any of its other forms a very memorable occasion. You can easily send gifts to India from USA and other countries on Bhai Dooj through this reliable online gift store. If you are looking for gifting options for other occasions like Dhanteras or Diwali then also you can look into the collection here.