Shubha Raksha Bandhan (Rakhi Purnima - Full moon)
Festivals are the celebrations of mankind. In India, we celebrate with many festivals. Holi, Eid-Ul-Fitr, Christmas, Diwali, Rakhshabandhan are some of them. Rakshabandhan or Rakhi is a celebration of affection, fraternity and sentiments among people.
Every era in the Indian history is replete with instances describing the brother - sister bonding. In antiquity, the bonding between Lord Krishna and Draupadi was highly celebrated. Lord Krishna saved Draupadi from being disrobed in the court of Duryodhana, which he repaid as a token of love for his sister who had tied a strip of cloth from her sari to prevent blood from his wrist. In the medieval era, Rani Karnavati of Chittor sent a Rakhi to the Mughal monarch Humayun to save her kingdom from the invasion of a Gujarat king. Humayun kept his word and immediately came to her rescue.
In Modern Day
It was started as a community festival by none other then Rabindranath Tagore. He started this festival as a common festival of all Indians. Tagore as a great visionary had some uncommon views for Rakhi. According to him "Rakhi is not only a festival of the siblings but it's a celebration of mankind and of humanity". He promoted the concept of unity and harmony among all members of the society. He believed that it is the responsibility of all the members of the society to help and protect each other and encourage a harmonious social life. For him Rakshabandhan festival is the celebration of fellow feeling and concern. The modern history behind this festival dates back to the year 1905 when the British empire decided to divide Bengal, a state of British India on the basis of caste and religion. That time Rabindra Nath Tagore arranged a ceremony to celebrate Raksha Bandhan to strengthen the bond of love and togetherness between the Hindus and the Muslims of Bengal and together fight against the British empire. He used the platform of Raksha Bandhan to spread the feeling of brotherhood. It was his vision to spread the nationalist spirit among people from different ethnic groups.
Rabindranath Tagore in Shantiniketan started congregations like Rakhi Mahotsavas using a yellow thread ("Halud Sutar Rakhi" in Bengali). This invoked trust and feeling of peaceful coexistence. The tradition continues as people tie rakhis to the neighbors and close friends. It is a festival denoting National sentiments of harmony. The auspicious day of Raksha Bandhan can be used as a potent tool for social change, which could ultimately envelop everyone in a permanent bond of love and friendship.
Rakhi is a celebration of unity and peace. Lets celebrate this Rakhi with all our neighbours, friends, relatives and everyone around to spread the words of humanity. Lets celebrate Rakhi to protect, to care, to spread the message of human integration ("Manab Bandhan" - as defined by Rabindranath).