India is the country of festivals! May it be Holi, Eid, Rakshabandahn, Diwali or Bhair Dooj… in India, every festivity is celebrated with a lot of energy, excitement and all the taam jhaam, as we usually call it. Bhai dooj is one such festival that is celebrated on the last day of Diwali celebration where traditionally, the sister fasts for the brother, does tilak and sprinkles rice over his head, praying for her brother’s long life. And in return, the brother pledges to take care of his sister for life. But today, in the New India the meaning of Bhai dooj has changed to some extent or so, I think. Now, it’s more about spending time together and exchanging gifts. No pledges of protecting the relation or whatsoever.
Bhai Dooj and the Internet
With families now living in different parts of the world, celebrating the festival is not quite possible for all. Instead, you will see siblings communicating with each other through internet and sending gifts online.
Click your favorite search engine about bhai dooj, and you will be flooded with millions of websites, offering gift ideas for your brother and sister. A few more clicks, and you will see a list of restaurants who can offer you good bhai dooj meal packages for your dinners and lunches that you can gift your sister or brother staying miles away from you. Just like our lives, the festival has also become completely about business and a reason to come together and make best of the lost time.
Vacation time or Bhai dooj – Which sounds better?
Another reason why I this festival has lost its value is the vacation mood that almost everyone gets into. With the entire country celebrating 5 days of holidays and schools closed for almost 2 weeks, most people plan long vacations and simply pack their baggage for a trip to their favorite holiday destinations. Go Goa, Kerala, Rajasthan or the mountains, anywhere you can think of, it is all packed by people who work their ass off the entire year and crave for a relaxing holiday with their family in some secluded location. And what better time can it be than the long Diwali vacations? So, all over again the celebration of Bhai dooj fades away somewhere in our vacation moods.
However, I don’t say the festival is no longer celebrated in the country. It still is celebrated by people in various parts of the country who believe in it and follow it with the same spirit and enthusiasm as earlier years.
So, for all those who celebrate Bhai dooj with their loving brothers and sisters, Happy Bhai dooj!!!
Image Courtesy: rishidarshan.org