Raksha Bandhan – A celebration of brotherhood


Broaden your vision to the entire earth as one family under the Fatherhood of God.
The festival of Raksha Bandhan, celebrated annually in August, is a memorial of a time when humanity was united by a loving relationship with God that protected and uplifted them and created a heavenly world. The present era has modernized and limited this festival to a relationship within the family. Sisters lovingly tie the thread of rakhi around the wrist of their brothers, to honour, protect, and pray for their well-being. The brother, in turn, promises to protect the dignity and honour of his sister and family. To date the customs and lessons demonstrated in this special celebration have kept the family strong, functional and united. Family members remain close-knit as it strengthens the bonding, respect, caring, trust, and love among them.
Raksha Bandhan is being celebrated this year on August 30, the day of the full moon. It shows us what relationships should be like – characterized by love, respect, kindness, and empathy. When I am tied with this sacred thread of protection, the rakhi, I promise to stay in my original nature of peace, love, purity, wisdom, mercy. I remember to see myself as a soul with a body, rather than a body with a brain! Now, with soul conscious knowledge, I see others as being a child of God and part of my spiritual family. This unlimited vision of universal brotherhood breaks all barriers of caste, creed, age, gender, religion, socioeconomic status, colour and personality traits. Our vision is broadened to the entire earth as one family under the Fatherhood of God. Currently, this festival is celebrated by people of all religions, in over 100 countries.
Raksha Bandhan encourages respect for both genders, particularly women, to protect and ensure their equality and safety. Their protection and honour rests not only on brothers within their family, but on every member of society. No single individual can protect another person all the time, especially now with the decline in moral values. Lust and anger start in the mind and are the root causes of this decline, but positive change can happen with spiritual training and empowerment. The antidote is to create pure feelings within, through the daily practice of meditation. This practice enables us to channel our thoughts in a positive direction and put a full stop to wasteful and negative body conscious thoughts. It creates purity of mind and brings happiness, wisdom and the power to keep on giving. My every thought, word and action become full of good wishes, which work as my protection and stay with me forever.
In these times of potential and possibly destructive changes, the Supreme Father is bound to look after us. A connection with God, through meditation, enables the soul to experience the bond of love. With meditation, the soul can feel an accumulation of this love, and our thoughts become purer so our actions bring benefit. In this way, spreading good wishes and performing benevolent actions creates bonds of love and goodwill with all souls, brothers, in one global family. This becomes the ultimate protection as the wave of good wishes goes around and comes around, back to the soul.
Chirya Risely is a Rajyoga meditation teacher based at the Brahma Kumaris Peace Village Retreat Center, USA.