Never mind the traditional Raksha Bandhan – wherein a girl ties a rakhi to her brother and he pledges to protect her. Why not encourage girls and boys to tie rakhis to their siblings irrespective of gender? We bring you three instances where this bond is being strengthened differently
Eternal Love Bond betwee siblings
By Jyoti Bajaj
I have two angelic daughters called Yasna and Naisha. Until some years ago, they used to tie a Rakhi to their cousin brothers. But two years back, a day before the festival I got an idea. I thought it would be a good idea for both the sisters to tie rakhis to each other. This way, the festival can be celebrated and enjoyed between both of them too.
And we started this ritual in 2019. The first time Yasna and Naisha tied rakhis to each other, all of us were so overwhelmed and overcome with emotion. They shared sweets, chocolates and even gave gifts to each other, just as they had been doing with their cousins earlier. I feel, the bonding between a brother and a sister is beyond words. But this bonding between sistersis not only unique, but priceless and indescribable too.
When I posted their pictures on social media later, many of my friends who are also parents and have same sex children got inspired. As a matter of fact, they started following this tradition with their sons too. My small initiative inspired and encouraged a lot of other parents and now they are also celebrating this as a ‘sibling festival’.
Since then, I have started celebrating Raksha Bandhan as not just a bond between brothers and sisters but an eternal love bond between siblings.
A lesson straight from the Ramayan
By Pankaj Khanna
This bond was born much before the famed Bond 007 was even conceived! Raksha Bandhan has always been celebrated as a festival of brothers and sisters. Lay the credit at the doors of our teachers, parents and family friends. It isn’t their fault – after all, they were gifted this tradition by their parents and relatives!
But now with families turning nuclear, having a daughter in the family is purely a matter of chance or luck, whichever way you want to see it! And it just may be that you have a son or sons instead. And on Raksha Bandhan rather than seeing your little lads sitting in their corners, innocently staring at you, their hungry eyes pleading, ‘Pls get us a sis!’, shake them, wake them and tell them to celebrate life with what they have. That’s exactly what we did!
Our progenies Stvya and Saanidhya are two naughty boys, whom we taught to celebrate every festival with pep and vigour and to make the best of whatever we all have. Raksha Bandhan is one such! We’ve taught them to tie rakhis to each other from day one. As parents we’ve taught them, ‘This isn’t just about sisters. Its about standing next to each other through thick and thin, irrespective of your relations!’ Now not only do our boys tie rakhis to each other, my wife too ties a rakhi to her father and so on. Frankly, words are not able to express the truck-load of fun they have.
As these children aged 13 and 11, run their YouTube Channel by the name Stvya-Saanidhya Vines, they went on to make a fun-packed Special on Raksha Bandhan – sharing how two brothers can have an amazing celebration too on the day! It’s worth a watch.
Be there for each other, selflessly
By Nidhi Tandon
Raksha Bandhan was always my favourite festival as I was the youngest girl in the family. It meant a lot of gifts, money sometimes and new clothes and lots of sweets. Still while we had a good time and I always looked forward to it, at the same time I yearned for a sister. So, when I got married and had my first daughter Aslesha, I yearned to gift her with a sister too – as having a sister is a blessing! We soon welcomed our younger daughter Atiksha into the family.
I looked forward to introducing my daughters to this sacred festival of Raksha Bandhan and tried to fill the same amount of enthusiasm and joy in them as I have for it. The only thought that bothered me was, ‘Will they not celebrate Raksha Bandhan just because they don’t have a brother?’ I decided to take things forward a little differently. Being a non-conformist, I always try to adopt what’s best for my family and not go by tradition necessarily.
So I decided to introduce them to the festival by teaching them to recognize each other’s presence in their lives. I want them to stay deeply connected throughout their lives and support each other selflessly should there be any need. That is what Raksha Bandhan motivates us to do.
Sisters are forever! Their companionship and compassion is beyond any other bond. So, to all those sisters out there, celebrate this Raksha Bandhan with each other to show how much you mean to each other.