This year, in 2021, the Rakshya Bandhan festival is on August 22 and the Naag Panchami festival was celebrated on August 13 (Naag panchami report). As we wait for the festival, let’s go back four years to remember the day when Naag Panchami and Rakshya Bandan were celebrated on the same day. They don’t usually fall on the same day because Naag Panchami falls on the Panchami (the fifth day after the full moon day or Purnima).
Technically it is impossible to have Janai Purnima and Panchami on the same day. But, July 28, 2017, Friday was a special day. On that day, two festivals Naag Panchami and Rakshya Bandan were celebrated.
That was because on the day of Rakshya Bandhan – on the Full mood day of Shrawan (Purnima) there was a lunar eclipse. Having a religious ceremony on the day of eclipse is not allowed. Because of that eclipse, the festival was moved to Naag Panchami.
What is Rakshya Bandan?
A festival in which people are offered strings to tie in their wrists and a sacred-thread to be worn on the body to save them from bad omens is called Rakshya Bandan. Locals of Kathamndu celebrate the festival as Kwati Purnima – eating delicacy made out of 9 different beans.
There are a number of stories behind the festival. Here are two stories to explain why the festival is celebrated. Some more stories will be shared in coming days:
1. Story of Bali Raja and Vaman Avatar
2. The story of Krishna and Draupati
What is Naag Panchami?
In Hindu mythology, various animals are also worshiped in different days. Naag Panchami is such a festival in which snakes are worshiped as Naag god. The people believe that worshiping Naag god saves the people from snake bites.
On Naag Panchami, a festival is held at the Naag Pokhari of Naxal, Kathmandu. There is a statue of Naag at the centre of the pond. People worship the snake statue. People also worship sanke at the source of water. They also paste drawing (or images) of Naag on the top of their entrance.
The story behind the Naag Panchami festival:
and another story of Bhaktapur Siddhapokhari. The festival is also celebrated at the pokhari :
Nepali words for the day:
रक्षा – Rakshya – means safety
बन्दन – Bandhan – means tie
नाग – Naag – Snake God
पञ्चमी – Panchami – The fifth day after the full moon
पूर्णिमा – Poornima – The full moon day
जनै – Janai – a sacred thread worn diagonally across ones chest