Bhai Dooj: Significance, Pujan Vidhi and All you Need to Know!

The festival of Bhai Dooj depicts the adorable bond which exists between siblings. It is a symbol of love and affection. As per the beliefs pertaining to this day, brothers go to their married sisters’ house on this day where they serve their brothers with food after applying the Tilak and wish for their long life.

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It is said that if siblings take food at the banks of river Yamuna, it may prove to be highly auspicious and beneficial. This festival of Bhai Dooj is celebrated 2 days after the festival of Diwali. This day is also known by the name of Yama Dwitiya at certain places. Read further and know about this festival. Lord Yamaraj, the god of death, is venerated on this day. 

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When will Bhai Dooj be Celebrated?

Bhai Dooj – November 16, 2020 

Bhai Dooj Tithi – November 16, 2020 i.e. Monday

Bhai Dooj Tilak Muhurat – From 13:10 till 15:17 (November 16, 2020)

Dwitiya Tithi Begins – November 16, 2020 at 07:05 hours

Dwitiya Tithi Ends – 03:56 AM on Nov 17, 2020

The above mentioned Muhurat is applicable for Delhi only. Click here to know about the Shubh Muhurat of your city.

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Significance of Bhai Dooj

In Hinduism, the festival of Bhai Dooj holds special significance. It is as important as the festival of Rakhi. At some places, this festival is known by the name of Yama Dwitiya while at some other places, the same is known as Bhrata Dwitiya. On Raksha Bandhan, brothers promise their sisters to stand by them, similarly sisters pray for the long life of their brothers on Yama Dwitiya too.

This festival is celebrated differently in different parts of the country. At certain places, sisters apply Tilak, worship and then serve their brothers with food whereas, on the other, they apply oil and then, bath is given to them.   

Taking a bath in the Yamuna river holds immeasurable significance on this very day. However, if you are unable to take a bath in the river, take a bath at home and invite your brother and serve him with food as per your financial capability. Serving rice is considered to be auspicious on this very day.   

It is not important that this festival is celebrated only between real siblings. The same can also be celebrated among cousins. 

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This festival is known by different names in different parts of the country.

West Bengal Phuto Parv/Bhai Phota: This day, the sisters hold fast and apply Tilak on their brothers and they i.e. brothers give gifts to their sisters.
MaharashtraBhau Beej: The sisters apply Tilak on brothers and wish for their bright future.
Uttar PradeshBhai Dooj: On this day, sisters give Batashe, water and dry coconut etc. to their brothers. 
BiharBhai Dooj: On this day, the sisters scold their brothers, quarrel with them and ask for forgiveness. After this, they apply Tilak and worship.
NepalBhai Tihar: On this day, sisters apply Tilak made up of seven colours on brothers and wish for their long life and prosperity.

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Rituals to be Performed on Bhai Dooj 

  • Wear clean clothes after taking a bath. If possible, new clothes must be worn.
  • Then, make eight petalled lotus from Akshat, Kumkum and Rolly. 
  • After this, sisters wish for the long life and well being of their brothers and resolve to fast.
  • Then, perform Yama Puja with due rituals. Further, there is a tradition of worshipping Yamuna, Chitragupta and Yamdoot(s). 
  • Perform Aarti after applying Tilak on your brother. 
  • On this day, brothers give gifts to their sisters as per their financial ability. It is considered to be auspicious.
  • Both brothers and sisters have to hold fast till they complete the Puja ceremony.
  • After the worship, they eat food together.

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Things must not be Done on Bhai Dooj

  • On this day, brothers too should not eat food. It is believed that having food before worship is considered to be inauspicious. In addition to this, if a brother is unable to visit his sister’s place, he can have food at the banks of the river considering a cow as sister.

Legend Pertaining to Bhai Dooj

As per the prevailing legend pertaining to this festival, the name of Lord Sun’s wife was Chaaya. They had two children i.e. Yamraj and Yamuna. Yamuna loved her brother  immeasurably. Yamuna requested her brother again and again to come to her house and have food.

Yamraj could not go to her place as he always remained busy in his work. Once again,  Yamuna invited her brother on the day of Kartik during Shukla Paksha. Then, Yamraj thought that he is known to take lives and in this pretext, nobody would desire to call him at his/her place but he is being invited by his sister with respect and faith and therefore, it is his duty to visit her please. 

Yamraj freed all the creatures living in the hell while coming to his sister’s house. Yamraj felt extremely happy after reaching over there. Seeing his brother in her house, she worshipped him and prepared different dishes.

Yamraj felt highly pleased with all the arrangements and asked her to wish for a boon. Then, she asked her brother to visit her every year and also said that whosoever sister visits her brother, applies Tilak and serves Bhojan(food), should remain free from his fear i.e. the fear of Yamraj. Then, he said goodbye and left his house.

It is believed that the tradition of Bhai Dooj started since then. In this pretext, whosoever brother celebrates this festival, remains free from the fear of Yamraj. Therefore, the worship of Yamraj along with Yamuna holds high significance owing to this very reason.

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