Bhai Dooj 2018- Time, Date, History, Rituals

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By: Manmeet Kaur Tura

Bhai Dooj or Bhaiya Dooj is a festival that celebrates the bond between a brother and a sister. It is a renowned Hindu festival that is celebrated on the very last day of the 5 days long Diwali festival. As per the Hindu calendar, it is the second day of the Shukla Paksha in the Hindu month of Kartik.

According to the mythological stories, it was on this day that Lord Krishna paid a visit to his sister Subhadra after killing the evil demon Narakasura. His sister greeted him with respect and warmth by applying tilak on Krishna's forehead and offering him sweets and this marked the beginning of this festival.

There is another legend that on this particular day, Yama, the God of Death visited his sister, Yami and she greeted him with immense love and affection and applied tilak on his forehead and they both ate food together. They also exchanged gifts and blessings and Yama proclaimed that whoever received tilak from his sister on this auspicious day will live a long and prosperous life. Therefore Bhai Dooj is also known as Yama Dwitiya.

 

Rituals-

On this day both brother and sister wear new clothes and the sisters prepare food for her brother and as per the customs the sister applies tilak on the brother’s forehead and prays for his long and happy life. Some sisters also offer coconut to the brothers along with applying tilak. An aarti is performed before the tilak is applied to the brother; to tell him how special he is to her sister. The brother offers gifts and blessings to her sister as a token of love from his side. Women apply mehandi and celebrate the festival with great fervor across the Northern parts of the country.


Bhai Dooj 2018- 9th November, 2018, Friday.

Bhai Dooj Tika Muhurat = 13:09 to 15:17

Duration = 2 Hours 8 Mins

Dwitiya Tithi Begins = 21:07 on 8/Nov/2018
Dwitiya Tithi Ends = 21:20 on 9/Nov/2018

Bhai Dooj in West Bengal

In West Bengal, Bhai Dooj is commonly called Phota festival. This is a day when sisters observe fast for their brothers. After the tilak the sisters treat their brothers with lunch and the brother offers a token of love to his sister in the form of a gift.

Bhai Dooj in Maharashtra

In Maharashtra and Goa, Bhai Dooj is called Bhao Beej. In Marathi Bhao means brother. The rituals are similar it’s just the name that changes.

Bhai Dooj in Uttar Pradesh

In UP, the sister, after applying tilak on her brother’s forehead, offers him crystallized sugar and water. It is also a ritual to offer the brother water and dried coconut.

Bhai Dooj in Bihar

 In Bihar Bhai Dooj is celebrated in a very different way. On the eve of Bhai Dooj, the sister scolds her brother and some sisters take the leverage of even abusing him and later apologize to him. This ritual is practiced to absolve the brother from his past sins. After this custom, the sister applies tilak and offers sweets to the brother.

Bhai Dooj in Nepal

In Nepal, Bhai Dooj is traditionally called Bhai Tihar or Bhai Teeka. The meaning of tihar is tilak and the sister applies a tilak on his brother’s forehead which comprises of seven colors and they wish for the long and prosperous life for their brothers.