Brother and sisters have a bond which is unique and full of love. They can understand each other’s language just by one look at the other’s face. Thus, in Hindu religion we have always understood the importance of this relationship and want to celebrate this bond.
Bhai Dooj is a Hindu festival to celebrate bond between brother and sister. It falls on the last day of Tihari or Diwali celebration. It is also celebrated as “Yama Dwitya” in southern parts of India.
There are few mythological stories surrounding this celebration out of which the most widely recognized is story of Yamuna.
Goddess Yamuna was the sister of Yamraj, the “god of death”. Yamuna invited her brother Yama many times to visit her home, however due to his work, Yama was never able to. Every time he was invited, he declined her offer politely. But on the day of Dwitya, the second day after the new moon, Yama surprised his sister. He visited her and granted her a wish.
Yamuna, as her wish, asked her brother to protect all the other brothers this day and make their life long. Thus, on this day sisters invite their brothers to their homes and pray for their health and longevity. They cook delicious dishes for their brothers or give them gifts. In return, brothers protect and love their sister and fulfil their wishes.