HOW TO CELEBRATE VASANT PANCHAMI THE RIGHT WAY!

This is our very first blog post and I am so excited, simply because I am writing on my passion- which is about Hindu religion or Sanatan Dharam. Born to Bengali family and seeing my dad perform rituals, I automatically got interested and started reading religious books and Veda scriptures, needless to say I also perform Hindu Puja rituals for people who seek.

When I became active in this profession (although my main job is that of Chartered Accountant) I found that there are many people who want to know more about Sanatan Dharm, astrology, Vastu, Black magic, exorcism, Religious scriptures, etc. This inturn gave birth to an idea to start a website and blog where I can offer services to people by giving them valuable content with references so that it impacts the lives of people in some way. Wishing you all a Happy New Year 2017

So coming to this particular topic of Vasant Panchami, this festival has many names: Basant Panchami, Vasant Panchami, Saraswati Puja, Shree Panchami.

Vasant Panchami has a specific meaning: Vasant means “spring,”and Panchami means “the fifth day.” Vasant Panchami falls on the fifth day of spring. This year it falls on 1st February, 2017 the Puja muhurat being 07:13 am – 12:34pm.

About Goddess Saraswati

Goddess Saraswati is the goddess of learning, wisdom, knowledge, fine arts, refinement, science and technology. Vasant Panchami is treated by celebrants as Saraswati’s birthday. People worship Goddess Saraswati to attain enlightenment through knowledge and to rid themselves of lethargy, sluggishness and ignorance.

You will find her holding lotus in one hand this signifies true knowledge. She also holds the vedas in one hand and carries a veena (musical instrument).  It is said that with the veena she plays the music of love and life. The goddess is seen rising a big white swan. This swan signifies purity.

Saraswati is the supreme repository of all learning. She is the Goddess of speech, also called Vak in Sanskrit, meaning the flowing one.

She represents the union of power and intelligence from which the entire creation arises. She is the Goddess of the Vedas, scriptures, dancing, musical power and poetry.

Mention in Ancient Scripture

The earliest known mention of Saraswati as a goddess is in the Rigveda. She has remained significant as a goddess from the Vedic period through modern times of Hinduism.

अम्बितमेनदीतमेदेवितमे सरस्वति |
– Rigveda 2.41.16

Best Mother, best of Rivers, best of Goddesses, Sarasvatī

अपोअस्मानमातरःशुन्धयन्तुघर्तेननोघर्तप्वःपुनन्तु |
विश्वंहिरिप्रंपरवहन्तिदेविरुदिदाभ्यःशुचिरापूतएमि ||
– Rigveda 10.17

May the waters, the mothers, cleanse us,
may they who purify with butter, purify us with butter,
for these goddesses bear away defilement,
I come up out of them pure and cleansed

In Shanti Parva of the Hindu epic Mahabharata, Saraswati is called the mother of the Vedas, and later as the celestial creative symphony who appeared when Brahma created the universe.[16] In Book 2 of Taittiriya Brahmana, she is called the mother of eloquent speech and melodious music. Saraswati is the active energy and power of Brahma.

Auspicious color: Yellow

The color yellow holds a special meaning for this celebration as it signifies the brilliance of nature and the vibrancy of life. The whole place bursts with yellow during the festival. People dress in yellow and they offer yellow flowers to others and to the gods and goddesses. They also prepare and feast on a special pastry called kesar halwa or kesar halva, which is made from flour, sugar, nuts, and cardamom powder.

Significance of Saraswati puja

Saraswati Pooja is performed to invoke the blessings of Saraswati, the Goddess of learning, and the presiding deity of the spoken word.

The story of Saraswati Puja is related to the Brahma Vaivarta Purana. Sri Krishna granted Saraswati a boon that she too will be worshipped on Vasant Panchami. After performing morning ablutions and bathing, a Kalasha is established. After worshipping Ganesh, the Sun, Vishnu and Shiva, Saraswati is worshipped.

The Saraswati Puja is a big festival celebrated in West Bengal, Rajasthan, Punjab, Gujarat, Bihar, other northern & eastern parts of the country, Nepal, etc. The Saraswati Puja is celebrated in almost all the houses and educational institutes. In Bengal there is a tradition that is called hatey khori (writing for the first time).

Small kids who are yet to learn how to write are a part of this tradition. On the day of Saraswati Puja many small kids sit infront of the goddess Saraswati, write one or two alphabets in a slate. The elders hold the tiny hands of the child and make them write these letters as it is considered an auspicious day to start writing. It is said that if a child writes his or her first alphabets in the presence of Goddess Saraswati they will always be blessed and will do well in their academics.

The great poet and philosopher Kalidas was blessed by goddess Saraswati. It is said that he was a very foolish man and was married to a princess. When the princess realised that how foolish Kalidas actually was she left him. Kalidas was very upset and wanted to kill himself. Goddess Saraswati appeared to him and blessed him with immense knowledge. After that he became one of the most talented poets India had ever produced. This shows how powerful the blessing of goddess Saraswati can actually be.

Puja Samagri needed to Perform the Ritual:

  • Pooja Chowki
  • Aasan Made by Wool
  • Yellow Colored Saree
  • Dhoti
  • Angavastra
  • Pancha ratna
  • Til, Dhaan, Hortoki (Triphala), reeds(Symbol of pen), Ink pot
  • 3 Gamcha (Towel)
  • Agarbatti/ Incense Sticks
  • Akshata (Chawal)/ Rice
  • Attar/ Scent
  • Chandan/ Sandal
  • Deepak/ Lamps
  • Dhoop
  • Diye Ki Batti/ Cotton Wicks/ Cotton Wicks
  • Ganga Jal
  • Ghanta/ Bell
  • Ghee
  • Haldi/ Turmeric Roots
  • Kalash
  • Karpoor/ Camphor
  • Kumkum/ Red Holy Powder
  • Sarswati Murti/ Idol of goddess Saraswati
  • Panchamrit
  • Saaf Kapda Laal/ Saaf Kapda Laal
  • Sankha/ Conch
  • Sindoor/ Vermilion/ Cinnabar
  • Supari/ Betel Nuts
  • Thaali/ Plate
  • Havan Lakdi (If required)
  • Aam ke Patte/Mango Leaves
  • Fal/ Fruits 5 Types ; specially yellow fruits like Papaya, Mango or Bananas
  • Kamal/Lotus

Mithayi/ Sweets; specially Kesar Halwa/Yellow Mithayi

  • Phool/ Flowers; specially yellow flowers like Marigold
  • Phool Mala/ Garland of Marigold Flowers
  • Coconut
  • Bowl
  • Tambulam/ Betel Leaf/ Paan

You can buy the best quality Puja Samagri online at great prices here Sarawati Puja KIt

Puja Vidhi:

1. Place the idol on a chowki covered by a piece of cloth (chunri) in east direction.
2. Do Kalash Sthapana
3. Sit on a Asan facing towards the idol (east) then do Achman, Swastivaachan.
4. Before any religious work Guru pooja is must therefore chant Guru pranam mantra.
5. Do Asan Suddhi, Puspa Suddhi, Jal suddhi, Surya Arghyam, Sankalp using Pure Gangajal
6. After Sankalp chant Gaytri Mantra touching kalash with your right hand.
7. Pranprathista of the Idol.
8. Pancha Devta Puja Should by done (Ganesh, Vishnu, Shiva, Surya, Durga)
9. Chant Saraswati Dhyaan Mantra then do a Shodasprachar puja (Offering 16 stuffs to goddess: Flower, Maala, Dhoop, Deep, Naivaidya, Sweets, Jal, Vastra, fruits, Arghyam, Netranjan, Chandan,panchamrit, Reed & books, Tambulam Achmaniya Jal.)
10. Seek blessings of Devi by chanting Pranam mantra.
11. Offer flower, naivaidya, Jal to Hansa vaahan.
12. Shama Prarthana.
13. Puspanjali.
14. Aarti
15. Visarjan of kalash

Ways to accrue Merit

  • Feed poor Brahmins.
  • Help poor students by giving away in charity- books, money to pay their fees or donating schoolbags, pencils and other items relating to education.
  • One should pray to all the holy Gurus and masters for their spiritual knowledge and compassionate service to mankind.
  • One can donate money to educational organizations, spiritual institutions, orphanages.

Noticeable Benefits of Saraswati Puja

  • Saraswati Puja ensures showering of blessings of Ma Saraswati in channelization of knowledge and wisdom in individual’s life.
  • Saraswati Puja showers strength and positivity that provides empowerment in life against negativity due to lack of knowledge as it helps you in having better power to understand and execute your goals.
  • Saraswati Puja guides towards a path of understanding, knowledge and enlightenment.

Mantras With meaning:

Pranam mantra:

Sarasvati Mahaa-Bhaage Vidye Kamala-Locane |
Vidyaa-Ruupe Vishaal-Aakssi Vidyaam Dehi Namostute ||

Jaya Jaya Devi, Charachara Sharey, Kuchayuga Shobhita, Mukta Haarey |
Vina Ranjita, Pustaka Hastey, Bhagavati Bharati Devi Namohastutey ||

The beautiful human form of Saraswati comes to the fore in this English translation of the Saraswati hymn:

O Devi Saraswati, the most Auspicious Goddess of Knowledge with Lotus-like Eyes,
An Embodiment of Knowledge with Large Eyes, Kindly Bless me with Knowledge. I salute you.

“May Goddess Saraswati,
who is fair like the jasmine-colored moon,
and whose pure white garland is like frosty dew drops;
who is adorned in radiant white attire,
on whose beautiful arm rests the veena,
and whose throne is a white lotus;
who is surrounded and respected by the Gods, protect me.
May you fully remove my lethargy, sluggishness, and ignorance.”

Beej Mantra: ॐऎं

Mool Mantra: ॐऎंसरस्वत्यैनमः ll

Pushpanjli Mantra:

OM- SARASWATYAI- NAMAH-NITYANG

BHADRA-KAALLOI NAMO-NAMA-H

VEDA-VEDANGA-VEDANTA
VIDYA-STHANEVYAH-EBACHA-SA-HA|
ESHA-SHA-CHANDANA-PUSHPA-BILWA-PATRANJALI|
OM-OYING-SHREE-SARASWATYAI-NAMA-H||

Hope you find this information useful as I have tried to be as comprehensive as possible.

Do like the post and comment if you have any queries and share immensely which will give me the motivation to write many such articles in the future.

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