Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Raksha Bandhan Special: Does the Hindu trinity celebrate this festival?

Raksha Bandhan, the sister’s day for Hindus, is celebrated on the full moon of the lunar month Shravana and involves a small ceremony in which a sister ties a sacred thread (rakhi) on her brother’s wrist to symbolize her affection and obtain good wishes in return. Do the unborn members of the Hindu trinity have sisters to send them rakhis? According to the Durga Saptashati, they do. The scripture specifies that Goddess Saraswati, Lakshmi, and Parvati (Kali) are the sisters of Shiva, Brahma, and Vishnu, respectively.

Hindu spiritual tales and symbology tell us how these three pairs of divine siblings, all forms of the same Brahman, share some common tendencies. Both Lord Shiva and Saraswati (Brahma’s spouse) reflect pure consciousness. While Shiva can engage in meditation forever, Saraswati can remain immersed in Nada-Brahman (music) ceaselessly. Playing musical instruments, lecturing, teaching, meditating, and distributing jnana (spiritual knowledge) is what they like the most.

Similarly, Goddess Lakshmi (Vishnu’s consort), like her brother Brahma, is seated on a lotus. Both fully devote their time serving Lord Vishnu; while Brahma creates the universe for him, Lakshmi controls it for him.

Finally, Devi Parvati (Shiva’s spouse) and Vishnu like to regularly appear on earth for their devotees. While Parvati’s appearances include the Navadurga (nine forms), who are worshipped during Navaratri, and the ten Mahavidyas, Vishnu takes ten major incarnations in every cycle of the four yugas. Nurturing the universe is their favorite pastime. Moreover, they both adore Lord Shiva and are his top devotees. And it probably takes more than realization to understand their divine plays.

Happy Raksha Bandhan!

1 comment:

My Window said...

Bhaiya, this piece of information is new to me and is very interesting to know!

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