Raksha Bandhan: History, Significance and Purpose and Why do women wear ring in the left hand and men in their right hand?

Raksha Bandhan: History, Significance and Purpose

1.History of Raksha Bandhan

Deity Lakshmi tied a rakhi onto the wrist of the King Bali from hell thus making him Her brother and liberated Lord Narayan i.e. Vishnu. That day as per the Hindu lunar calendar was 'Shravan Paurnima'.
"By tying this wristband (raksha) onto your wrist I am binding you just like the powerful and generous King Bali was bound by it. O wristband, do not get displaced." The Bhavishya Puran states that Raksha Bandhan was basically meant for kings. A new custom of tying rakhis began from the historical ages. The sister is supposed to tie the rakhi to the brother's wrist. The feeling behind this is that the brother should become prosperous and he should protect the sister.

1.1 A Prayer

Along with a prayer of the sister for welfare of the brother and the brother for protection of the sister, both should pray for strength to protect the nation and Dharma.

1.2 Video about Science of Raksha Bandhan (Marathi)

Description: Video covering practical information and science of celebrating Raksha Bandhan, its spiritual benefits, Spiritually proper Rakhi. Please note that this video is currently available only in Marathi language. (Courtesy: Sanatan Sanstha)

2. Significance and Purpose of Raksha Bandhan

·         The brother pledges to protect the sister in every birth. To symbolise this he allows her to tie a string on his wrist. The sister complies so that he keeps his promise. Since the historical ages this custom is prevalent to keep a brother and sister in a relationship. The rakhi is a symbol of the purity of a relationship between a sister and brother.
·         Just as the brother is bound by a promise to protect the sister after getting a string tied onto his wrist, so also the sister prays to God for his protection.
·         On this day frequencies of Lord Ganesh and deity Saraswati reach the earth in greater quantities and both the siblings benefit from the custom to a greater extent.
·         When tying the rakhi the Divine Energy principle in the woman gets manifested and is transmitted to the man through the wrist. Thus he derives 2 % benefit from it for upto 5 hours.
  • The more the spiritual emotion in the sister, the more her motivation to attain God and the more the grace of the Guru upon her the greater is the effect of her prayer unto God for her brother which results in greater spiritual progress for him.
Spiritual level of the sister (%)
Benefit to the brother (%)
25 - 35
35 - 45
45 - 55
55 - 70
70 - 90
90 – 100
(The figures in the chart are based on the sister’s spiritual level a brother benefits for upto 5 hours)

3. Give-and-take account between siblings

The give-and-take account between siblings is approximately 30%. This account is lessened through the medium of festivals like Rakhi Paurnima i.e. Raksha Bandhan, so though the siblings get entangled with each other at the gross level subtly the existing give-and-take account between them is settled.
The rakhi is tied every year to signify the reduction of give-and-take account between the siblings. In fact this is an opportunity for them to reduce the give-and-take account so both the embodied souls should take advantage of this opportunity.

4. What should Rakhis be like?

Both the sister and brother benefit from the frequencies in a rakhi. That is precisely why one must choose a rakhi, which will preserve the God principle for longer periods instead of choosing grossly attractive ones. Otherwise the three attributes from the rakhi have an effect on the embodied souls and their attitudes too become rajasik-tamasik, etc.

5. Stop denigration of deities occurring through the medium of the Rakhi!

Examples of denigrating Rakhis
Nowadays Om or pictures of deities are seen on rakhis. After use the rakhi is thrown out so in a way it is ridicule of the religious symbol and denigration of deities, which in turn induces demerit. To avoid this immerse the rakhis in water!
Also due to commercialisation of festival and lack of proper knowledge of its spiritual significance, people go far beyond in so-called creativity that compromises festival's very purpose. Picture above depicting 'Rakhi symbolising friendship between India and Pakistan' is such an example.

6. Narali Pournima

The full moon day (pournima) of the month of Shravan is also called Narali pournima. On this day, people residing in coastal regions worship the sea as a form of the deity Varun and offer coconuts. Offering coconuts on this day is both auspicious as well as symbolic of the energy of creation. A confluence of rivers is more pure than a river. But of them all the sea is the most pure. A quote says, " The sea symbolizes all the places of pilgrimage. Worship of the sea itself is worship of Lord Varun. Transportation of cargo by ship occurs smoothly only if Lord Varun is appeased.

8. Shravani

‘If on the full moon day of Shravan, the lunar asterism Shravan is present, one has to perform this Vedic ritual. Shravani is a ritual in which one resumes learning and teaching after a long vacation. It is also referred to as Upakarma, Upakaran, etc. If the Shravan lunar asterism appears on the full moon day of Shravan then those following the Rugveda should perform a ritual on that day or on Nagpanchami for the Hasta lunar asterism, those following the Yajurveda on that day itself, followers of the Samaveda on the full moon day of Bhadrapad of the Hasta lunar asterism and the Atharvaveda followers on the full moon day of Shravan or Bhadrapad. Though this custom is very ancient and appropriate for the three classes (varnas) yet it is currently followed only by the Brahmans to a certain extent. Followers of the various Vedas should celebrate Shravani according to their household norms. Usually this ritual is performed jointly, in a group.’

Why do women wear ring in the left hand and men in their right hand?

1. Ornaments of infants

In every household, family members purchase ornaments for a new born infant. The primary objective is to dote on the infant. From birth, infants are very sensitive. To curb the attacks of negative energies on the infant and so that a protective sheath of Divine Chaitanya is created around the baby, he is adorned with ornaments.
Types of ornaments of infants: Normally, on the day of the naming ceremony, the baby is adorned with various ornaments.
A. Earring: This ornament is made from a thin gold wire. When the infant becomes twelve days old, the earlobes are pierced and a gold wire is inserted. Depending on the gold wire, an appropriate small red precious stone is strung on it.
B. Jiutiya (Pendant): The Deity who protects the infant is Jivantika Devi. On the fifth day after the birth of the infant, after stamping the form of Jivantika Devi on gold or silver, She is worshipped. After that, this stamp is strung on a gold chain or a black or red thread and tied around the infant’s neck.
C. Ornament worn on the wrist: Bracelets of black beads are worn on the wrist. For this, black beads are strung on thin gold or silver wires. Due to this bracelet, the infant is protected from evil eyes. A baby girl is adorned with two other types of bracelets.
D. Ring: This is the most known ornament. As far as possible the ring is made from gold.
E. Girdle: Normally this ornament is made from silver. It is worn around the infant’s waist. If it is not possible, then a black thread can be tied instead.
F. Ornament of the feet: There is a difference in the foot ornaments worn by an infant boy and girl. If the infant is a boy, then his legs are adorned with a thick silver Kada. Three proportionate tiny bells are also strung on it. Bells generate a particular type of sound (Nada). Due to the sound, the infant is protected from negative energies. In its place, many people adorn the infant’s feet with a copper Kada. If the infant is a girl then the ornament adorning her feet is an Anklet. For protection of the infant from negative energies, tiny bells are also strung on the silver anklet.
By adorning the infant with ornaments, he also benefits from acupressure therapy which helps him to remain healthy. In ancient times, tiger nails were also tied around an infant’s neck. Tiger nails are a symbol of the Deity’s Destroyer element in the form of the Absolute Fire Element (Tej-tattva). Hence, for the protection of the infant from negative energies, tiger nails were tied around his neck
With increasing age the oversensitivity in infant boys keeps reducing. Hence, it is not necessary for them to adorn ornaments. But it is necessary for the infant girls to adorn ornaments later as well. Nowadays, on the pretext of infection due to germs and feeling the custom is not in keeping with the times, infants are not adorned with ornaments. Keeping in mind the importance of ornaments, infants could be adorned with ornaments.

2. Ornaments for men

Normally, the word ornaments is associated with women. Men are less sensitive than women. Hence, the possibility of attacks by negative energies on them is less. Therefore it is not necessary for them to wear ornaments. Moreover men are not very attracted towards ornaments as men are symbol of detachment and are the form of Shiva tattva in Maya.
Crown : In ancient times, this ornament was worn by men, especially Kings. The importance of wearing a crown are:
·         The gold in the crown attracts the Deities subtlest principles , there is also an accumulation of the Absolute Fire Element (Tej-tattva) in the body, through the Sun channel (Surya-nadi) and so it becomes possible to continually maintain alertness and activeness.
·         Frequencies of Divine Knowledge (Dnyan) are easily absorbed and the intellect becomes sattvik. Due to this they are able to gain the Divine Knowledge bestowed by Deities and take judicious decisions in all situations.
·         Vibrations of Deities are attracted towards the precious stones studded in the crown.
Kundala : This ornament is to be worn on the ears. After wearing this ornament, specific points on the earlobes get pressed resulting in the development of an attitude of detachment.
Bhikabali : This is also an important ornament worn in the top part of the earlobe. Seven to eight decades ago this ornament was very popular. This is a gold ornament. This ornament worn in the ear inculcates restraint in men.
Rudraksha necklaces : Sages are an epitome of detachment. Hence, they do not wear ornaments. In ancient times the Sages wore Rudraksha necklaces instead of ornaments. Also, they wore armlets made of Rudraksha. These armlets press specific points of the arm thereby providing energy and inspiration for the accomplishment of the mission. Even today some people wear Rudraksha necklaces to acquire good health.

3. Ornaments worn by both women and men

Some ornaments are worn by both women and men, like rings and gold chains. The ornament worn by men on their wrists is known as a Kada and an ornament worn by women is a bangle. Nowadays, men and women wear multicoloured bands on their hands.
Subtle experiment: Spirituality is a science associated with the subtle dimension. Subtle means that which is beyond the five senses, mind and intellect. One can understand the subtle dimension through subtle experiments. Look at the two pictures below and try to perceive what you feel by looking at them. Check if you feel good, distressed or nothing after looking at the pictures. Feeling good means rhythmic breathing, reduction in thoughts etc. Experiencing distress means having a headache, a burning sensation in the eyes etc.
Subtle experiment about ornaments - Wrist band and Kada worn by men: Look at picture ‘A’ and 'B', each for 15 seconds. See what you feel by looking at them and note your answer.

Answer: By looking at the wrist band worn by the man shown in picture ‘A’ distress is experienced. By looking at the Kada worn by the man shown in picture ‘B’ pleasantness is experienced.

3.1 Wrist band

Nowadays, the youth are seen wearing wrist bands. This band is made from materials like plastic, yarn or some metal. The subtle effect of wearing wrist bands is as follows:

·         Illusionary spirals portraying friendship are generated from the band.
·         Spirals of black energy revolve around the band.
·         Frequencies of black energy revolve around the band with speed.
·         Black energy is emitted from the band.
Through this, the subtle form of the band becomes clear. As per western culture, tying wrist bands on Friendship day and Valentine’s Day has become very popular. Contrary to gaining some benefit from wearing this band, there is loss from a spiritual perspective.
Loss incurred by tying a wrist band:
·         By tying a wrist band a covering of black energy frequencies is created around the wrist.
·         Black energy in the environment is attracted towards the band through the fingers.
·         Through the band, these black frequencies are transmitted throughout the entire body.
·         Due to the band, the tama-guna in the body increases and the person becomes extroverted.
·         The person is not able to absorb the sattvik frequencies and thoughts in the environment.
·         Also, through the fingers, frequencies of black energy are emitted into the environment.
Through this, the adverse effects of wearing a wrist band becomes clear. Also through this, tama predominant band pressure is created around the wrist. Consequently, the points present on the wrist get pressed unnecessarily. With the absorption of tama predominant frequencies at these points through the band, these frequencies reach the associated body parts. Due to this, the functioning of those body parts reduces.

3.2 Copper Kada

Usually the Kada worn by men on their wrist is made of copper. The subtle effect of a Kada indicates the following:
·         Spirals of Chaitanya are present around the Kada.
·         Due to copper present in the Kada, the black energy in the body is pulled out and gets discarded out of the body.
·         Particles of active Energy are emitted from the Kada
Through this, the reason for experiencing pleasantness when looking at the copper Kada during the experiment becomes clear. Women wear gold bangles or a Patli i.e. a flat gold bangle. Just as men wear a Kada on their wrist, similarly women wear gold bangles, a ‘Patli’, that is a flat gold bangle and a ‘Toda’ which is a thick gold bangle. Like gold and silver, copper is also a metal which emits sattvikta and Copper also has the capacity to absorb body heat.

3.3 Ring

A ring is an ornament that is worn on the fingers. The method of inscribing one’s name on the ring is from the times of Ramayana. In earlier times, the Kings and Emperors imprinted their insignia on the ring and used it as a stamp (Rajamudra). Hence, a ring is also called Mudrika. Nowadays rings are made of copper, brass, five-metal alloy etc. Five metal alloys mean gold, silver, copper, zinc and iron. These rings are made in various types of artistic designs and in various shapes.
Benefits of a ring:
·         Enhancement of beauty : By wearing a ring, the beauty of a woman or a man is enhanced. People make different types of rings as per their capacity.
·         Acupressure healing : Due to the ring, the delicate part of the finger is pressed and acupressure healing occurs. As a result, the black energy on that part is removed and Chaitanya flows in each finger and the functional ability of the related part increases.
·         Protection from negative energies such as pishachha etc. : There is the concept of gaining protection as well from a ring. By wearing a ring charged with mantras one is not afflicted by pishachha etc. Similarly, one is protected from other negative energies as well.
·         A ring being complementary to spiritual practice (sadhana) : The medium of a ring does not allow a person to be under the influence of Desire-Energy (Icchashakti). The person is able to control his sense organs. The severity of the impressions (sanskaras) is reduced. The capacity of the person to absorb the Chaitanya of the Deity in the atmosphere increases. Thus, a situation complementary to a person’s sadhana is created. The benefits mentioned here are acquired in a higher proportion if a gold ring is worn. The benefits from a ring made of other metals, is comparatively less. The Chaitanya available from a ring varies as per the metal of the ring.
Metal of the ring
Amount of
Chaitanya (%)
1. Gold
2. Silver
3. Copper
4. Five-metal alloy
5. Other
It is evident from the above table why it is more beneficial to make a gold ring only. The Chaitanya acquired from a ring also depends on the shape of the ring. There are rings with different designs and different shapes on them like a serpentine shape, quadrilateral, square, circular and triangular. A persons gains Chaitanya as per the shape in a specific proportion.
Shape of
the ring
Amount of
Chaitanya (%)
1. Triangular
2. Rectangular
3. Circular
4. Square
5. Serpentine
The triangular design on the ring gives maximum benefits due to its shape as a Shakti-yantra. The acquisition of Chaitanya also depends on the inscription on the ring. Instead of inscribing English words, if sattvik symbols associated with Deities like the Swastikor ‘Om’, which is a symbol of the Nirgun Principle, are inscribed, then the benefit is more. Some people inscribe their name or a sign of some sects, due to which they do not get any spiritual benefit.
Spiritual experience of a seeker after wearing a gold ring : On 27th March 2008, I wore a seeker’s ring on my finger. After that I began feeling an unusual aliveness in my hand and I had the experience of the independent existence of the hand. I felt as if, ‘My vital energy was increasing because of the ring’. When I was paying obeisance (Namaskar) I saw a white light being emitted from the hand which had the ring. - Miss Ranjana Gavas, Goa
From Ranjana’s spiritual experience, one can understand the importance of wearing a ring. Correct action from a person is the objective underlying wearing a ring on a specific finger. The proportion of benefit by wearing a ring on different fingers is as follows:
Proportion of
Chaitanya (%)
1. Ring
2. Middle
3. Index
4. Thumb
5. Little
It is clear from the table that a maximum benefit of Chaitanya is gained by wearing a ring on the ring finger.
The reason for gaining maximum benefit by wearing the ring on the ring finger : The ring finger is associated with the Absolute Water element (Aap-tattva). The Aap-tattva is nurtured in the ring finger. It is also emitted from the ring finger. Hence, the person gets the benefit of the Aap-tattva by wearing the ring on the ring finger. The person’s left channel (Nadi) is associated with the saviour (Tarak) energy, which is mainly 'action dominant' (Karmapradhan - an action that is done with a beneficial purpose like Protection of the Nation or Dharma), and this is also called the Moon Channel (Chandra-nadi). The right channel (Nadi) is associated with the destroyer energy, which means it is 'deed dominant' (Krutipradhan - any action done without any thought or purpose). This is also called as Sun Channel (Surya-nadi). Man is symbolic of the physical performance of a deed. Hence, the man wears a ring on the right hand ring finger as it represents the right channel. Women are symbolic representations of action and so they wear a ring on the left hand ring finger as it represents the left channel.
Reason underlying men wearing a chain around the neck and a ring during ritualistic worship, and women wearing ornaments on the entire body : As the worshipper is the central point of the ritual it becomes possible for him to absorb Chaitanya easily. During the ritual, due to the ring the subtle process taking place is as follows
·         Due to the ring, Divine frequencies enter the finger of the worshipper.
·         These frequencies emit Divine Energy through the entire body of the man.
·         Due to this, the worshipper gains Divine Energy in higher proportion.
However, as the actual participation of the woman in the ritual is less compared to that of the man, she is able to absorb Divine Energy in lesser proportion. For this reason, woman should wear different ornaments and imbibe the Divine Principle as per their capacity.

3.4 Chain

A chain is made of gold and silver. This is an ornament worn around the neck. Some people wear only a chain, whereas some people string one of the nine precious stones or a rudraksha onto it.
Subtle experiment about two types of chains worn around the neck: Look at the two pictures below for 15 seconds and note whether you feel good, distressed or nothing at all after looking at the pictures.

Answer to the experiment: By looking at the chain in picture ‘A’, one feels distressed. By looking at the chain in picture ‘B’, one feels good. By looking at the chain in picture ‘A’, one gets distressing spiritual experiences like a sudden increase in thoughts, getting depressed etc. and by looking at the chain in picture ‘B’ one gets good spiritual experiences like getting benevolent thoughts, visualising light, feeling that spiritual healing is occurring through the Nirgun Divine Principle etc.
The gold chain shown in picture ‘A’ has a demonic design. According to a principle of Spirituality, the word, touch, form, taste, fragrance and energy coexist. Thus due to the demonic design of the chain, that is, due to its form, negative vibrations are generated from it. Due to negative vibrations, it becomes easy for the sorcerers (mantriks) to acquire black energy through it. The proportion of black energy increases in the body of a person who adorns the chain with such a demonic design.
The reason for getting good spiritual experiences by looking at chain B is due to the sattvik design. Due to the sattvik design of the chain, sattvik vibrations are created. As a result one gets good spiritual experiences. The sattvikta of the person who wears such chains is increased. On account of the sattvikta, virtues are generated in a person and the negative energies are distressed and the distress by negative energies to the person is reduced.
From this it is evident that wearing a chain is beneficial for a person, but the chain has to be sattvik. With a sattvik chain the beauty of the neck increases.
Spiritual benefits of a sattvik chain

·         The Absolute Fire Element-dominant (Tej-tattva), Chaitanya-filled frequencies are attracted in the chain.
·         Due to the contact of the Tej-tattva, the Manipur chakra is activated.
·         The five vital energies attain momentum.
·         A protective cover in the form of Tej-tattva is generated around the person wearing the chain.
·         Due to the Tej-tattva, a warrior attitude is generated in the person wearing the chain.
·         Sattvik Tej-filled frequencies are emitted from the chain.
·         In a limited field of atmosphere the raja-tama particles are dispelled.
·         The negative energies run away from the person.
With this, the spiritual importance of wearing a chain is highlighted. Some people wear a chain after stringing onto it a pendant with a picture of the object of their faith, a Deity, photograph of Guru or an imprint made of a photograph and other sattvik signs.
Spiritual experience - Through the chain and the sign of Gurukrupayoga, gaining awareness of the generation of a protective sheath around the body: I have a golden chain around my neck and a pendant with the sign of Gurukrupayoga strung onto it. On 10th January 2009, I had worn a sari. I kept the chain outside the folds of the sari’s pallu. Then I felt as if white rays were emanating from the sign on my pendant and spiritual healing was occurring on me. Through the chain and the sign of Gurukrupayoga, I became aware of the creation of a protective sheath around the body. - Ms. Sushma Pednekar
Here one has to remember that the Deities function according to the spiritual emotion (Bhav) of a person. If an auspicious sign of a Deity or a Guru or a symbol is strung on a chain before wearing it and one does not have Bhav towards it, the person will not get the benefit as per their expectation. Hence, it is essential that not just our conduct but our thoughts too should be sattvik.

3.5 Charged talisman

Generally a talisman, that is, an amulet is made of silver, copper, brass or some other metal in a quadrilateral or round box. Some people thread the amulet onto a black string and wear it around the neck while some tie it on their arm. Generally black thread is used for protection against black energy. However if it is bought by oneself from the market then it does not protect one but if it charged by mantras then it protects one for a certain time period – thereafter spiritual purification of the thread is required. If a black thread is used, it is essential to be alert about purifying the existing black spirals of negative energy on it from time to time.
The subtle negative process which occurs by wearing the amulet strung on black thread around the neck:
·         The amulet is charged with black energy. Hence, the black energy in the amulet, through the medium of the black thread, remains activated from the neck to the chest easily.
·         Due to this, a black covering is formed around the chest.
·         The black energy present in the amulet spreads to the Anahat chakra of the person.
·         In this way by tying an amulet, the black energy present in the atmosphere is constantly attracted towards the person.
The same process occurs at the subtle level upon tying the amulet on the arm. If the amulet has the power to dissolve the spirals of raja and tama from the atmosphere attracted towards the black thread with the help of black energy, only then does the person get ten percent benefit. In short, use of a black thread or ganda tied with black thread is harmful in Kaliyuga. But, here a point to be remembered is that if the black thread is given by Saints, then do tie it. Due to the resolve (sankalp) of Saints, Chaitanya is generated in the thread. This helps in protecting one against negative energies. However considering the destroyer Energy generated, for an average person, using a red thread has more benefits as compared to a black thread.
Harm and benefits as per the metal of the amulet :: If the amulet (Ganda) is made of silver or copper, then only are there some benefits acquired from it. As copper or brass have less ability to protect, negative energies can put a layer of their energy over a copper or brass ganda. To guard against this, the metal should be polished when it tarnishes and its spiritual purification should be done by putting it in the sun for a while.


Om Tat Sat

(My humble salutations to Sanatana Sanstha and Hindu Jagruti for the collection)


Post a Comment