Bhai Dooj 2020: Know all about the history, significance and celebrations of Yama Dwitiya here
The bond between siblings is one that deserves to be celebrated all year round. According to Hindu customs, Bhai Dooj, also known as Yama Dwitiya or Bhai Tika, celebrates this very bond of love and protection. Bhai Dooj is celebrated on the second lunar day of ‘Shukla Paksha’ (bright fortnight) in the Hindu calendar month of Kartika, which is 2 days after the Diwali celebration. This year, Bhai Dooj is being celebrated on November 16 and the ‘shubh muhrat’ has been designated from 1:10 PM to 3:18 PM.
History and significance
As is common with most Hindu festivals, there are many legends associated with the celebration of this auspicious festival, the most popular one being about Yamraj, the god of death. As per this legend, Yamraj’s sister Yamuna tried to get her brother to visit her on many occasions but Yamraj was unable to do so for a long time. When he finally met her, he was greeted with a grand ceremony, offered sweets and had the ceremonial tika placed on his forehead.
Being immensely pleased with the love and respect he was showered with, Yamraj gave Yamuna a boon and she in turn asked him to dedicate a day on which he would visit her house each year. Hence, the ritual of siblings visiting each other on this day began to honour the kinship between them.
Another legend suggests that on this day, Lord Krishna went to visit his sister Subhadra after defeating the demon, Naraksura. Subhadra welcomed him with a garland of flowers, placed the tika on his forehead and performed an aarti, which gave rise to the festival of Bhai Dooj.
In its essence and sentiment, Bhai Dooj is quite similar to Raksha Bandhan but on this occasion the ceremonial Rakhi is not tied on the wrist. On this day, elder siblings give gifts and money to their younger siblings who in turn apply the tika to their foreheads and pray for their wellbeing and protection. The entire family gets together to celebrate this auspicious festival and to indulge in the various delicacies leftover from Diwali.