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Home > News > India News > Article > Diwali 2023 Know the legend behind Bhai Dooj celebrations

Diwali 2023: Know the legend behind Bhai Dooj celebrations

Updated on: 11 November,2023 03:06 PM IST  |  Mumbai
mid-day online correspondent |

Diwali 2023: Diwali is a 5-day festival in India; amid Diwali people observe Bhai Dooj, which falls on the fifth day, celebrates bond between brothers & sisters.

Diwali 2023: Know the legend behind Bhai Dooj celebrations

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Diwali, or Deepavali, is one of the most widely celebrated festivals in India, marking the triumph of light over darkness and good over evil. The vibrant and joyous occasion spans five days, with families coming together to illuminate their homes, exchange gifts, and indulge in festive feasts. Diwali holds cultural, religious, and social significance, and it is a time for reflection, gratitude, and sharing love and joy with others.

Amid the Diwali festivities, the day of Bhai Dooj, which typically falls on the fifth day of the festival, is dedicated to celebrating the unique bond between brothers and sisters. It is known by various names across different regions of India, for illustration, in Maharashtra, it is called Bhau Bheej. 

Why is Bhai Dooj celebrated:

Bhai Dooj, also called Bhai Phota in West Bengal, Bhai Tika in Nepal, and other regional names, is rooted in mythology and tradition. According to Hindu mythology, on this day, Yamraj, the God of Death, visited his sister Yamuna. Overjoyed by her brother's visit, Yamuna welcomed Yamraj with an aarti (a ritual of waving light) and applied a tilak (a mark on the forehead put using vermillion powder) on his forehead. Touched by this gesture, Yamraj granted Yamuna a boon that whoever receives a tilak from their sister on this day will be blessed with long life and prosperity. Thus, the tradition of Bhai Dooj began.

Celebrating Bhai Dooj:

On Bhai Dooj, sisters perform aarti for their brothers, applying a tilak on their foreheads and offering prayers for their well-being. In return, brothers shower their sisters with blessings and often present them with gifts as a token of love. The occasion is said to strengthen the bond between siblings, fostering a sense of mutual respect, care, and support.

Cultural significance:

Beyond its mythological roots, Bhai Dooj reflects the cultural fabric of India; it emphasizes on the importance of familial relationships. It is a day when siblings set aside their differences, come together in joyous celebration, and express their love for one another. The rituals of Bhai Dooj transcend religious boundaries, and people from various backgrounds participate in this heartwarming celebration of siblinghood.

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