Thursday, November 11, 2010

Bhagini Hastha Bhojanam, Bhai Dooj

During the last day of Diwali, which was November 07th; Harshi Bhayya handed me a bag and said that today is 'Bhai Dooj' so please take this bag. I had no clue what he was saying. I simply took the bag and went about my Satya Narayana Swami Poja. He came back to me in a little while and said, keep a 'tika' on my forehead and tie a 'rakhi' or any sacred thread you have on my hand. I did what he said making a mental note to ask my Mother In Law about this.

With My Brother Harshi Bhayya.

Later that evening when I asked my Mother In Law, she said that she did not know about the 'North Version' but in South India we celebrate what is known as 'Bhagini Hastha Bhojanam' more popularly known as 'Yama Dwitiya.' The story goes like this:  Yama and his twin sister Yamini also known as Yami had to be separated due to a curse on Yama. He had been declared the 'Lord of Death' and had to leave his home and part from his sister. His sister could not bear the separation and her tears caused the river Yamuna. She became 'night,' bringing sunlight and hope following the darkness. One day, a weary Yamaraj went to meet his sister Yami. She was overjoyed to meet him and welcomed him home. She did an aarathi to him to him and placed kumkum on his forehead praying for his safety. She took pains to prepare a special meal for her brother which they enjoyed together. Yama was very touched and became nostalgic. Both the sibllings remembered their childhood and simply felt blessed for the sacred relationship they shared.

On googling the internet, I found that Lord Krishna went to his sister Subhadra's house after killing the demon Narakasura. Subhadra recieved her tired and worn out brother with a lot of warmth and love that only a mother can provide her son. She did an aarthi for him and applied the sacred 'tilak.' She celebrated him and fed him a grand dinner.
My Brother Harsh Bhayya

In today's world, we still celebrate all these rituals with a lot of fanfare. Brothers and sisters take out the time to be with each other and recollect their past together. The bond becomes stronger and both feel very happy for this blessed day together. It is usually the role of a mother to make sure that the bond between a brother and sister always be strong. Once the children become old enough to realize the value of thier relationship, they start celebrating it by themselves.
           Dress, Chocolates, Bangles, Pearl Set, Gift Pouch with a Gift Card to Burlington Coat Factory.

Living abroad gets very lonely. We women miss our homeland. We come here to create our family and be totally responsible for the children, in laws, taking care of husband and so on. In this process we become very wary and keep looking forward to go to our 'maika' and be ourselves for a change. We love to see our children being celebrated and we ourselves love being pampered a lot. Those of us who have brothers have a lot more expectations. If the father is no more, then the brother takes on even more responsibility. The mother cherishes the moment her daughter and grand children get pampered. If the brother is married, then we sisters like to boss them around and our brothers simply stand back and enjoy the sight of his sister excercising her rights.

The brother showers the sister with a lot of gifts. He takes her to all the relatives' homes and shows her off. He takes her to his work place and talks highly of her. In return, the brother gets a sister who loves him unconditionally. Women are naturally attached to their birth homes and very supportive and sentimental about their brothers.

Living here in the states and not knowing anything about this festival, I was deeply touched by Harshi Bhayya's blessings toward me. The gifts he gave me are very precious and I will cherish them for a lifetime. I have a tendency of saving up all items given to me in love by others. I have every letter, every gift given to my children, and every email ever sent.  My prayers and blessings to all those brothers who are a pillar of strength to their sisters. One of my favorite movies of all time is 'Arjun' starring Mahesh Babu. It must be the dream of every girl to have brother who loves and protects her like that.

Here is another touching story that I really liked:

There is never a day that passes by where I miss having a daughter. I have been blessed with two wonderful boys, but my heart always searches for the little girl who will love my sons just as much as I do and will protect them. I want my sons to love, cherish, pamer, and protect their beloved sister. I beleive that dreams do come true.

No comments:

Post a Comment