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Rakhi Arti

The Sanskrit word Arti on breaking gives us two holy words "Aa" and "rati". "Aa" literally means "towards" and "rati" means "the highest form of love for God". Arti is an age old Hindu Puja ritual in which the wicks soaked in ghee are put in a Diya and are then offered to the Deity. The ritual of Arti is performed in order to pay a tribute to the deity and his superior powers.

As Raksha Bandhan commemorates the loving relationship of brother and sister, the rituals of Rakhi are all about keeping each other on a higher pedestrian of love. Thus, Rakhi Arti is offered to the brother by his dear sister.
On the auspicious day of Shravana Purnima ( Full Moon Day ), the girls/women wake up early in the morning and offer puja after taking an early bath. They do not have food till the completion of all Rakhi rituals in order to cleanse their mind and body from any sort of worldly pleasure. Then they tie Rakhi on the wrist of their brothers and perform their Arti.

Rakhi Arti is customary as during it, girls invoke divine blessings for their brother's long life, sound health, prosperity and happiness. While performing the Rakhi Arti, girls very slowly chant the following mantra:

“Yena Badhdho Bali Raja
Daanavendro mahabalah
Tena twam anubadhnaami
Raksha maa chala maa chala.”

In this mantra, the girls utter their prayers to the divine Rakhi “ Aye Rakhi, I am tying you on my brother's hand like Goddess Laxmi tied on the hand of King Bali. I pray to thee, that thou protect him from all kinds of danger”. This way the girls invoke ethereal blessings for their brother.

By performing Rakhi Arti, the girls attempt to drive away the negative energies around her brother and fill his aura with all positive vibes. Thus, Rakhi Arti acts as a purifier too.

Rakhi Arti indicates the motherly affection of girls for their brother and makes them live the moments of chaste love and adoration for each other. The rituals of Raksha Bandhan also give the relationship of brother-sister a divine sanctity.

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