The festival of Raksha Bandhan (Rakhi)
The festival of Raksha Bandhan (Rakhi) lasts just a day but the spirit of the Rakhi is present everyday at Deepalaya Gram…………is what the children have to say.
The festival of Raksha Bandhan portrays the pure and innocent bond of love shared by a brother and sister. On the day of Rakhi, a series of rituals are performed, some with historical significance while others have more religious connotations.
The Childrens Home at village Gusbethi did not remain devoid of the festivities on the 2nd Aug. Out came the best clothes: the air was merry and full of anticipation. The absence of their families and their biological brothers or sisters did not dampen the enthusiasm…. Genes had nothing to do with the special feelings of affiliation and protection the children had for each other. An ‘invisible’ bond has always been there, strengthened by common experiences, similar pains, shared acts of care and love, and even dreams.
The children followed the Rakhi ritual diligently. The ‘sister’ placed a fragrant sandalwood yellow mark (tika) on the forehead of her ‘brother’ and tied a silk string with colorful designs on the wrist of his right hand. On the table was a tray with a small lamp and sweet-smelling conical incense burning with a bowl full of colorful petals. The ‘sister’ spoke a silent prayer for the long life, good health and prosperity of the ‘brother’, and the brother made an unspoken vow to protect the sister till eternity. After tying the silk string, the brother and sister feed each other with sweets. Sugar is ‘sticky’ so it is said that sweets further strengthens or glues the bond of love between the brother and the sister. At the end of the ceremony, the ‘brother’ offered the sister a gift to show that she is precious to him.
The day ended on a note of high energies as the children dramatically stated that their best Raksha Bandhan gift is being cared for by Deepalaya….:as long as we are here we know we have the best of security and care in our lives: