Brothers, they irritate you, they fight with you, they are mean to you always yet you love them the most. They are your savior for smallest to biggest all problems, your one point to run to whenever you are in any trouble. In India, we celebrate this eternal bond on the festive day called Raksha Bandhan by tying a thread on his hand, requesting God to take care of him always so that he can protect us and take care of us always.
There are many stories about how Rakhi/Raksha Bandhan originated? The most famous amongst them of Rajput queen Karnavati, Queen of Chittor, who was scared of Mughals taking over her empire after the death of king. To protect her people and nation, she sent a message with a Rakhi to King Humayun requesting him to protect her and the nation. On receiving the message, Humuyun gave Rani Karnavati the status of his sister and promised her to protect her and the nation forever.
Being a great story, the ritual of tying thread on brother’s wrist and in return him promising you to take care of his sister forever, Raksha Bandhan was followed seriously, but the story is still not the origin. So from where did it actually start??
The first story about the festival of Raksha Bandhan is connected with Lord Vishnu and Goddess Lakshmi. It is believed that when Raja Bali was about to complete his 110 yagya (prayers with rituals), all the God’s were scared that he will conquer on the Heaven – the Swarglok (The place where God’s resides) with his power. They rushed to lord Vishnu for help. Lord Vishnu went to King Bali disguised as a Brahmin (Priest) and asked him for favor. Since king Bali was in his prayers, he was bound to give whatever asked by the Brahmin and thus Lord Vishnu asked him for Land worth his 3 steps. When agreed on, Lord Vishnu increased the size of his foot and took entire earth in one step and entire Heaven in other. For the third step Raja offered his head. On being happy with his offering and a determination to keep his promise, Lord Vishnu granted him one wish and King asked Vishnu to protect him always, which Lord Vishnu granted. And to keep his words, he left with king to live with him so he can safeguard him always. Listening to the entire episode, Goddess Lakshmi got scared that Lord Vishnu would never return, she went to king Bali and tied him Rakhi and in return asked him to leave Lord Vishnu and brought him back with her.
Since then, Raksha Bandhan is celebrated as a festival. More than a ritual, it is a promise by all brothers to protect their sisters, love them till eternity, and grant their wishes. And in return the sisters pray for their brother’s long, healthy , and happy life always.