8 Steps for Celebrating Bhai Dooj Festival

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Bhai Dooj or Bhaiya Dooj falls on the fifth day of the 5 day long Diwali festival, and occurs two days after main Diwali night. Do you know that this festival is related to Sri Krishna ?

So let’s understand why Bhaiya Dooj is celebrated and how is it related to Sri Krishna .

Why Bhai Dooj Celebrated

Bhaidooj, also known as Bhai Dooj or Bhai Phota, is a festival celebrated in the Vaishnava traditions and other Hindu communities. Bhaidooj is a special occasion that honors the sacred and loving bond between brothers and sisters.

According to the spiritual culture and traditions rooted in the scriptures, Bhaidooj has a significant connection with the pastimes of Lord Krishna.

Scriptures reveals that after killing the demon Narakasura (also known as Bhaumasura), Lord Krishna visited His sister Subhadra, who welcomed Him with love and affection.

Subhadra performed an aarti (a ritual of waving light) for Krishna and applied tilak on His forehead as a symbol of protection.

This festival symbolises a great number of qualities to devotees.

Significance of Bhaiya Dooj festival

In the Vaishnava tradition, the festival is an opportunity for devotees to reflect on importance of

  1. Loving relationship that we have with Lord Sri Krishna

    With our day to day activities, we forget that we have a loving relation with God, so this festival and others alike again remind us that we have loving relation with God that we have to revive, which is the purpose of human form of life.

  2. Highlights how Subhadra loved her Lord of the heart, Sri Krishna.

    In similar way devotees of Krishna, should be always eager to serve the Lord, invite Him to their houses, and worship Him with all best they can do.

  3. Importance of relationships between devotees.

    This festival, Bhai Dooj highlights importance of devotee relationships and the values of love, care, and protection.

    It provides an occasion to express gratitude for the support and affection received from not only our siblings but from the devotee god brothers and the people with whom we stay and live.

    The emphasis is on fostering harmony, love, and mutual respect within the spiritual family, in alignment with the spiritual principles taught in the Bhagavad Gita and other sacred scriptures.

Ultimately, Bhaidooj is a celebration of the sacred bond between Lord Krishna and His devotees, and it offers an opportunity for devotees to infuse their relationships and association with Krishna with the values of devotion and spiritual understanding.

Let’s study how we should celebrate Bhai Dooj.

How to celebrate Bhai Dooj

Celebrating Bhai Dooj festival in the Vaishnava & Hindu tradition involves observing the occasion with devotion, love, and a focus on the sacred bond between brothers and sisters. Here's a general guide on how devotees often celebrate Bhai Dooj:

  1. Devotional Morning Practices:
    Begin the day with devotional practices such as chanting the Hare Krishna mantra, reading verses from the Bhagavad Gita, and offering prayers to Lord Krishna. This sets a spiritual tone for the day.
  2. Sibling Gathering:
    Sisters and brothers come together in a spirit of love and harmony. The sister prepares for the ritual by arranging a thali (plate) with items such as aarti (light), tilak (vermilion mark), rice grains, and sweets.
  3. Aarti and Tilak:
    The sister performs aarti for her brother, waving the light in a circular motion to symbolize divine protection. She then applies a tilak on her brother's forehead, expressing her love and offering prayers for his well-being.
  4. Exchange of Gifts:
    Brothers and sisters exchange gifts as a token of love and appreciation on this festival. The gifts need not be extravagant but should reflect the sentiment of care and affection.
  5. Family Celebration:
    Bhai Dooj festival is often celebrated in the presence of the entire family. The atmosphere is joyous, and a special meal may be prepared to share together. This fosters a sense of unity and togetherness.
  6. Remembrance of Lord Krishna's Pastime:
    During the celebration, devotees reflect on the pastime of Lord Krishna and Subhadra, recognizing the loving bond they shared. This adds a spiritual dimension to the celebration and reinforces the importance of devotee’s relationship with Sri Krishna.
  7. Gratitude and Prayer:
    The day is an opportunity for both brothers and sisters to express gratitude for each other's presence in their lives. They can pray together for the well-being and spiritual progress of their family.
  8. Temple Visit:
    Devotees should visit a temple on Bhai Dooj to offer special prayers and participate in the temple's festivities. This allows them to celebrate in a spiritually charged environment.

In essence, the celebration of Bhai Dooj festivity in the Vaishnava tradition emphasizes the spiritual significance of relationships.

It encourages devotees to express love, respect, and care for one another while keeping Lord Krishna at the center of their lives.

By infusing devotional elements into the festival celebrations, devotees aim to make the festive occasions spiritually enriching and meaningful.

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