Date, timing and tithi of the festival
Hindus celebrate Saraswati Puja, a significant holiday honouring the Goddess Saraswati. Saraswati is the Goddess of music and the performing arts, as well as knowledge and wisdom. According to the Hindu calendar, Vasant Panchami is observed on the fifth day of the bright half of the Magha month. According to the Gregorian calendar, this day often occurs in late January or early February. This year it is observed on January 26 . This day is also referred to as Saraswati Puja and Sri Panchami.
07:12 AM to 12:33 PM on January 26.
Punchami Tithi Starts January 25, 2023, at 12:34 PM
Punchami Tithi Ends January 26, 2023, at 10:28 AM
The day of Vasant Panchami honours Saraswati, the Goddess of learning, music, the arts, science, and technology. On Vasant Panchami, adoration is offered to the Goddess Saraswati. Shri Panchami and Saraswati Panchami are additional names for Vasant Panchami.
People worship Goddess Saraswati to become knowledgeable and free from ignorance, sluggishness, and lethargy. Schools and universities hold Pujas in the morning to ask the Goddess’ grace. This Vasant Panchami tradition of introducing education to young children is called Akshar-Abhyasam or Vidya-Arambham/Praasana.
Purvahna Kala, or the period between sunrise and lunchtime, is thought to determine the day of Vasant Panchami. When Panchami Tithi occurs during Purvahna Kala, Vasant Panchami is observed on that day. Vasant Panchami may consequently fall on Chaturthi Tithi.
Numerous astrologers regard Vasant Panchami as an auspicious day to begin any virtuous deed or Abujha. This idea states that Saraswati Puja can be performed throughout Vasant Panchami day.
The day of Saraswati Puja is highly auspicious for beginning any new endeavour. On this day, festivities like Griha Pravesh and wedding ceremonies take place. On this day, devotees worship Maa Saraswati, the Goddess of knowledge, and ask for her blessings in the form of wisdom. In addition, Holika and Holi preparations officially begin forty days after this celebration. Goddess Saraswati is thought to have been born on Vasant Panchami itself. Goddess Lakshmi (sometimes referred to as Shri) and Lord Vishnu are worshipped on Vasant Panchami’s day. Businesspeople typically perform this pooja because it is seen to be very helpful for their companies.
History Behind The Festival
Between 1000 BC and 1500 A.D., the Goddess Saraswati is mentioned in ancient and medieval Indian literature. From the Vedic era to the current era, the value and significance of the Goddess Saraswati have been recognized. The Goddess of learning is referred to as the mother of Vedas in the Shanti Parva of the Hindu epic Mahabharata. She is also recognized as the celestial entity who emerged when Lord Brahma created the universe. It is thought that she is a natural component of the Devi Mahatmya mythos. She is a crucial member of the trio of goddesses, including Mahalakshmi, Mahasaraswati, and Mahaparvati.
The universe is recycled, renewed, and maintained by the trinity of Vishnu, Shiva, and Brahma with the help of these celestial forms. The Saraswati Goddess is referred to as the mother of melodious music and fluent discourse in the book Taittiriya Brahmana. Rigveda Book 10 refers to her as the Goddess of healing, purification, and flowing rivers. The Goddess is regarded with the same reverence as the Ganges River in Hindu Vedic literature. She is praised as the “epitome of knowledge” in Book 10 of the Rigveda. The Vedas, which were written after the Rigveda, increased her importance. The deity is invoked in prayers in the Upanishads and the Dharma shastras to encourage readers to think about virtuous emoluments.
According to Hindu texts, worshippers revere Goddess Saraswati as the Goddess of knowledge, art, music, and science. By doing Saraswati Puja, reciting the Saraswati Mantra, and visiting the Goddess’ temples, devotees worship Maa Saraswati.
The Goddess Saraswati manifests creative energy, and people who adore her are said to be endowed with wisdom and originality. Students perform Saraswati Puja and recite Saraswati Stotrams to ask for her blessings and to be successful in their academic pursuits.
- Take a holy bath as soon as you awaken in the morning.
- Set up an image of the Goddess Saraswati and present her with white sweets, a dupatta, and flowers (preferably white lilies).
- White flowers, including white lilies, are particularly significant.
- Individuals should dress in yellow-colored attire.
- Place your books, dictionaries, and musical instruments in front of the Goddess Saraswati, together with sweets, fruits, roli, and moli.
- In South India, cultural events are held at night.
- Must touch the feet of the family’s spiritual teacher, guru, and senior members to receive blessings from them.
All sixteen levels of worship are included in the Puja Vidhi, known as the Shodashopachara Puja.
- Dhyana: Mata Saraswati’s meditation should be performed before the puja. Recite the appropriate mantra while focusing on Bhagawati Saraswati in meditation. Dhyana should be practiced in front of the statue of Bhagawati Saraswati, which is already in position in front of you.
- Avahana: After Bhagwati Saraswati’s Dhyanam, make the Avahana Mudra and recite the mantra in front of the Murti (Avahana Mudra is formed by joining both palms and folding both thumbs inwards)
- Asana: Place flowers in Anjali (by fusing the palms of both hands) in front of the Murti after Mata Saraswati has been invoked, and recite the mantra.
- Padya: While reciting the mantra, bathe Mata Saraswati’s feet after giving Her a flower-covered seat.
- Arghya: Chant the Mantra and present water to Mata Saraswati after the Padya offering.
- Achamaniya: Chant the Mantra and present water to Mata Saraswati for Achamana after the Arghya offering.
- Snana: Give water to Mata Saraswati for a bath after the Achamaniya offer while reciting the mantra.
- Give Mata Saraswati a Panchamrita bath after Snanam while reciting the mantra.
- Shuddhodaka Snana: Wash Mata Saraswati with pristine water while reciting the mantra after completing Panchamrita Snanam.
- Gandha Snana: Chant the Mantra and bathe Mata Saraswati in fragrance after performing Shuddhodaka Snanam. Before presenting Mata Saraswati Vastra, complete the final Suddhodana Snana following the Gandha Snana.
- Gandha: Chant the Mantra and present Chandan to Mata Saraswati after the Vastra offering.
- Saubhagyadravyam: Give Haldi, Kumkum, and Sindoor to Mata Saraswati as Saubhagya Dravya while reciting the mantra after the Gandha sacrifice.
- Alankara: Give Mata Saraswati jewellery (Alankara) after the Saubhagyadravya while reciting the mantra.
- Pushpa: After the Alankara offering, present flowers to Mata Saraswati as you recite the mantra.
- Dhupam: When singing the mantra, give Dhupa to Mata Saraswati following the Pushpa offering.
- Deepam: While reciting the mantra, give Mata Saraswati Deepa after the Dhupa offering.
- Naivedya: Give Mata Saraswati Naivedya while reciting the mantra after the Deepa sacrifice.
- Achamaniyam: While reciting the mantra, give Mata Saraswati water and Achamana after the Naivedya sacrifice.
- Tambulam: While reciting the mantra, give Mata Saraswati Tambool (betel nut paan) after the Achamaniya offering.
- Dakshina: Give Mata Saraswati a Dakshina (gift) after the Tambula offer while reciting the mantra.
- Mata Saraswati Aarti should be performed after the Dakshina offer while reciting the mantra.
- Pradakshina: Perform a symbolic Pradakshina after Aarti by circumambulating Mata Saraswati while reciting the mantra.
Pushpanjali says in verse 24 to send flowers filled with the Mantra to Mata Saraswati after Pradakshina (by connecting the palms of both hands).
- Sashtanga Pranam: After Pushpanjali recites the mantra, offer Mata Saraswati the Sashtanga Pranam (performed with eight limbs).
Traditional Foods Consumed
Both the BHOG and Saraswati Puja have long held a unique place in Bengali hearts.
The only vegetarian food that Bengalis adore is bhog. Bhog typically refers to food offered to the Goddess and then distributed to everyone participating in the puja. The foundation of every puja bhog is the Khichuri or pulao, accompanied by various fries (also known as bhajja), a dish of mixed vegetables (known as Labra), chutney, and papad. A bhog’s magic cannot be duplicated on a typical day; it can change us and unleash the inner kid within.
With the standard serving of a unique sweet concoction known as Dodhikarma, Saraswati puja can be considered complete. It is sweet curd blended with chura, batasha (gur (jaggery) batasha is preferred here as it is winter), mashed Sandesh, murki, and other nice stuff.
Dodhikorma tastes delicious; it can be a fantastic alternative if you want to try something new during Basant Panchami
A typical Indian delicacy, boondi or bundiya is created with sweetened, fried chickpea flour. Since boondi is a gods’ favorite, it is frequently offered as prasad during the spring festival.
Boondi is used to make boondi laddu, which is created by frying the ingredient. The sweet is regarded as a representation of spirit during Saraswati Puja because of its yellow colour. It has deep-fried them by adding besan to boiling oil using a perforated ladle. After being dipped into the sugar syrup, the fried besan droplets are formed into spherical ladoos. It’s straightforward to make these ladoos at home.
Another well-known traditional Bengali dessert is made with paneer, almonds, and pistachios and flavoured with saffron and cardamom powder. It is the ideal confection for this celebration because of its lovely saffron-like hue.
For so many people around the world, rice is a staple diet. A sweet rice dish called kesari chawal is made of sticky boiling rice mixed with lovely aromatic spices. Any event can be honoured with a serving of this rice recipe. Due to its hassle-free ingredients, it can be made in a concise amount of time, and the end product is delicious.
Indian rice pudding, known as kheer, is prepared by boiling milk and rice before adding sufficient amounts of dried fruits and saffron to give the meal its distinctive colour. Kheer is, without a doubt, one of the most well-liked Indian sweets frequently offered as a dessert or during a meal. Many different types of kheer are produced throughout India, and some of the more well-liked variations include meetha bhaat, payasam, dudhpak, etc.
Sheera, also known as Halwa, is a dish made from roasted grains thickened and flavorful with a lot of ghee, sugar, and dry fruits. Saffron is used in the preparation of Kesari Sheera to give it its lovely yellow colour and aroma.
- What makes Saraswati Puja unique?
Hindus celebrate Saraswati Puja. For academics and students who worship Goddess Saraswati with a devotion to learning and wisdom, as well as those involved in the music industry, this event has immense significance since, with Goddess Saraswati’s blessings, one can succeed in this area.
- What attire is permitted for Saraswati Puja?
When performing Saraswati Puja, it is considered lucky to dress in yellow or mustard-colored clothing because these hues stand for vitality, wisdom, and enlightenment. Additionally, homemade Prasad is prepared by devotees and offered to Goddess Saraswati.
- On Saraswati Puja, what do we eat?
Rajbhog. This delicacy, well-known in West Bengal, is created by stuffing paneer with dry fruits like pistachios and almonds. The spongy treat also has mouthwatering saffron, almonds, and cardamom powder flavors. It is a well-known dessert provided during the Saraswati Puja festival because of its yellow colour.
- Why does Saraswati Maa wear white?
Saraswati, the Goddess, is all white. White is a colour that stands for truth, divinity, and purity. The water that Her lotus seat is built on represents the ever-present flow of wisdom.
- What is Maa Saraswati’s favourite sweet?
In India, it is one of the most popular candies. Almost always, Boondi Ladoo is ready for the offerings. The sweet is regarded as a representation of spirit during Saraswati Puja because of its yellow colour.
- What serves as the Saraswati Puja’s principal offering?
A standard religious food offering made during Hindu rites is called prasad. Present sweets and fruits as prasad to Goddess Saraswati. You can serve Saraswati goods like mango leaves, fruits, and pastries after the puja is finished.