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Monday, August 27, 2018

The Sacred Thread

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The pious festival of 'Raksha-Bandhan' is celebrated across India as a day when sisters tie sacred threads on the wrists of their brothers as a symbol of respect and in turn brothers promise to protect them at all costs. The respect for this piece of thread has been so much even in historical times that when an invader was planning to capture an Indian kingdom, the queen of the estate in danger sent him this thread also called a 'Rakhi' with the message to protect her; as a consequence, the looter completely dropped the plan to conquer the empire and returned. I had heard this story long ago from my grandfather and I remember it till date.

As we celebrated this occasion yesterday with much enthusiasm and happiness, somehow, I started jotting down this piece inadvertently. Thinking about the joyous day spent with family, my mind started drifting back to the day when I had heard our school Principal say that we must always try to find out the significance of an occasion or a historically important day.

So, pondering over the importance of 'Raksha-Bandhan' that celebrates the bonding between brothers and sisters, I questioned myself - is it only a brother's duty to protect his sister? Does the sister not have any due toward her brother? Further, should a sister not be responsible enough to guide and protect her sisters? Moreover, does this bonding limit its vitality only to blood relations? Do we not have any responsibility toward the elderly, our neighbours or any stranger in distress? And last but not the least, if one can lay his/her life to protect one's real sister, then why trouble a woman, who is somebody else's sister? Even before seeing her as someone's daughter or sister, why not see her as a human?

In our scriptures, it is said
यत्र नार्यस्तु पूज्यन्ते रमन्ते तत्र देवताः || 

If you cannot respect a woman, the society cannot be in bliss and can never attain heights of success.

Thus, I summarise by saying, it is high time to realise that a woman need not necessarily be your sister, mother or daughter to feel secure in your presence. 'Raksha-Bandhan' is a day celebrated to show respect to women. Take a step ahead, respect humanity and take this world to the pinnacle of prosperity before it gets late.