Bhai Duj (also Bhai Dooj, Bhai Tika, Bhai Phota, Bhaiya Duj, Bhau Beej, Yama Dwitiya) is mainly celebrated by the Hindus on the last day of Diwali festival. It falls on the 2nd day of Shukla Paksha of Kartik month in Hinduism.
The word “Duj” means “second day after new moon” and “Bhai” means “Brother”.
There is several myths behind the celebration of the Bhai Duj festival.
On this day, Lord Yamraj, Lord of Death and also the Custodian of Hell, visit Yami, Yamraj’s sister, who perform the Tilak ceremony by putting Tilak on his brother’s forehead and praying for his long life. That’s why; Bhai Duj is also called Yama Dwitiya.
There is another myth behind the celebration of Bhai Duj. On this day, Lord Krishna visited his sister Subhadra, after killing King Narakasur, the king of Asura. Subhadra performed the Tilak ceremony by applying Tilak on Lord Krishna’s forehead in a more traditional way.
Celebration of Bhai Duj
Bhai Duj is celebrated in the same way as Raksha Bandhan festival is celebrated. On this day, Tika ceremony is done by the sisters to their brothers for their long life and gifts are exchanged.
It means that Hindus celebrate the love and affection of the sisters and brothers twice a year, i.e., in Raksha Bandhan and Bhai Duj.
In Bengal, this festival is celebrated with more religiously and love. In Bengal, Bhai Duj is called Bhai Phota in which sisters fast for the day until the Phota or Tialk ceremony gets over and prays for their brother’s long life.
This day is a very auspicious day for everybody. This festival is eagerly awaited by brothers and sisters both to glorify the love and affection between them. Both brothers and sisters wear new clothes and celebrate the festival.
The main significance behind the Tilak ceremony is that the forehead with Tilak will never be hurled into hell and also be protected from all the obstacles and evils. This is also a festival of family re-union where all the families come together for celebration.
Also read, Bhau Beej in Wikipedia.