Raksha Bandhan

Today is Raksha Bandhan, a celebration of the bond between brothers and sisters. The brothers promise to protect their sisters from all harms and evils and the sisters promise to be devoted to their brother’s well-being. It seems like this is a day for gifts and family celebrations. Traditionally a red woven bracelet is tied around the brother’s wrist.

I thought this would be a sweet holiday to observe as I have a boy and a girl. Of course, they are a little young to really understand what’s going on. The celebrating was further diminished by the absence of my husband (he’s in Edinburgh to see a friend’s show at the Fringe Festival). But I was determined. When sister woke from her morning nap we washed hands and faces and prepared for puja. My son was especially excited about the chocolate that was set aside for offering. He kept asking Kali if he could have some. Apparently she kept saying yes and I kept having to tell him to wait. I hope Kali doesn’t get angry with me for undermining her word!

Puja prayers involved me praying for my son’s well-being and asking him to look after his sister. Then we tied a little bracelet, called a rakhi, I made for him around his wrist. We ate the chocolate. I gave a joint gift to the kids, some crayons for the bathtub. We went to the cafe for lunch. And… that was that. By mid afternoon my son wanted the bracelet off. Still, it’s a sweet idea and I’m glad I’m attempting some of these celebrations.

My son's homemade rakhi

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