Goddess Saraswati and Basant Pachami celebration 2023.

India, on 26th January 2023, is celebrating its 74th Republic Day, and is also celebrating the festival of “Basant Panchami”.

“Basant Panchami” is a festival that marks the arrival of spring and the end of winter. It is celebrated on the fifth day of the Hindu month of Magha, which mostly falls in the month of January or February, as per the Hindu calendar.

The starting point of the Saraswati River.

“Basant Panchami” festival is associated with the “Goddess Saraswati”, who is the goddess of knowledge, wisdom, and the arts.

One of the most prominent ways in which people celebrate Basant Panchami is by visiting temples and offering prayers to Saraswati.

This is a time when people seek blessings for knowledge and wisdom, and also seek guidance in their studies and professional pursuits.

In schools, students perform special puja or rituals, like worshipping their books in front of Goddess Saraswati, to seek the blessings of the goddess.

Basant Panchami is also associated with the colour “Yellow”. People often wear yellow clothes on this day, and flowers and sweets are also offered to the goddess in this colour – yellow coloured laddoos.
Yellow is believed to symbolize the arrival of spring and the end of winter.

Mustard Seed Fields and Basant Panchami

Basant Panchami is celebrated in many parts of India and Nepal and is particularly associated with the cultivation of mustard crops.

Mustard seeds are sown during the winter months, and by the time of Basant Panchami, the mustard plants have grown tall and are ready for harvesting.

The festival is seen as a celebration of the end of the winter and the start of the spring, and the mustard fields are often used as a symbol of new beginnings and the renewal of life.
As mustard fields are yellow in colour, Yellow, became the colour of Basant Panchami.

The festival also has a religious significance and it is an important day for the worship of the Hindu goddess of learning, music, and the arts, Goddess Saraswati.

It’s believed that it is a good omen to sow mustard seeds on this day and it is believed to bring good harvest and prosperity.

In rural areas, people visit the mustard fields and offer prayers to the goddess for a good harvest. The festival is also celebrated with kite flying, which is believed to symbolize the cutting away of negative thoughts and the embracing of positive energy.

For farmers, Basant Panchami marks the end of cold weather and the beginning of the crop sowing season. They seek blessings from gods for good crop yield, and it is considered an auspicious day for starting new projects or ventures.

Goddess Saraswati and Vishudhi Chakra

Vishuddhi Chakra, also known as the Throat Chakra, is the fifth primary chakra in the human body according to the traditional Indian system of chakras.

Vishuddhi Chakra is located at the base of the throat and is associated with the colour blue. The Vishuddhi Chakra is associated with communication, self-expression and the ability to speak one’s truth.

A balanced Vishuddhi Chakra is said to lead to clear communication, the ability to listen and to speak one’s truth with confidence. When the Vishuddhi Chakra is blocked, it can lead to communication difficulties, shyness, and a fear of speaking in public.

The Vishuddhi Chakra is associated with the element of “Ether” and the sense of hearing. Its corresponding endocrine gland is the thyroid, which controls metabolism and physical growth.

Vishuddhi chakra can be balanced by practising yoga poses that stretch and stimulate the throat area, such as Camel pose or Lion pose, and by practising chanting or singing, which helps to open the throat and stimulate the chakra.

Goddess Saraswati, the Hindu goddess of learning, music, and the arts are often associated with the Vishuddhi Chakra.

The goddess is often depicted holding a Veena, which is a stringed musical instrument and is often shown sitting on a lotus, which is a symbol of spiritual awakening.

Saraswati is considered the goddess of knowledge, creativity and expression, and is said to reside in the throat chakra, also called the Vishudhi Chakra.

The goddess is said to help one to find their voice and to express themselves authentically and with confidence.

By connecting with the energy of Goddess Saraswati and activating the Vishuddhi chakra, one can develop the ability to express oneself clearly and effectively and to find the courage to speak one’s truth.

Practising chanting, singing, or playing a musical instrument can help to stimulate the Vishuddhi chakra and connect with the energy of the goddess.

In Hindu tradition, the worship of Saraswati is particularly important for students, musicians, and artists, who invoke her blessings to enhance their learning, creativity and expression.

Saraswati Vandana/Prayer

The following vandana or prayer is the most famous prayer/stuti dedicated to Goddess Saraswati. It is part of the famous Saraswati Stotram. Reciting it during Saraswati Puja on the eve of Basant Panchami is very beneficial.

या कुन्देन्दुतुषारहारधवला या शुभ्रवस्त्रावृता।

या वीणावरदण्डमण्डितकरा या श्वेतपद्मासना॥

या ब्रह्माच्युत शंकरप्रभृतिभिर्देवैः सदा वन्दिता।

सा मां पातु सरस्वती भगवती निःशेषजाड्यापहा॥१॥

शुक्लां ब्रह्मविचार सार परमामाद्यां जगद्व्यापिनीं।

वीणा-पुस्तक-धारिणीमभयदां जाड्यान्धकारापहाम्॥

हस्ते स्फटिकमालिकां विदधतीं पद्मासने संस्थिताम्।

वन्दे तां परमेश्वरीं भगवतीं बुद्धिप्रदां शारदाम्॥२॥

Mantra in English.

Ya Kundendu Tusharahara Dhavala Ya Shubhra Vastravrita

Ya Veena Varadanda Manditakara Ya Shveta Padmasana

Ya Brahmachyuta Shankara Prabhritibihi Devaih Sada Pujita

Sa Mam Pattu Saravatee Bhagavatee Nihshesha Jadyapaha {{1}}

Shuklam Brahmavichara Sara, Parmamadyam Jagadvyapineem

Veena Pustaka Dharineema Bhayadam Jadyandhakarapaham

Haste Sphatikamalikam Vidadhateem Padmasane Samsthitam

Vande Tam Parmeshvareem Bhagwateem Buddhipradam Sharadam {{2}}

In conclusion, Basant Panchami is a festival that is celebrated with great enthusiasm and is significant for various reasons.

It marks the arrival of spring, and the end of winter, and is an important festival for students and farmers.
It is a day to seek the blessings of Goddess Saraswati for knowledge, wisdom, good crop yield and for new beginnings.

May Goddess Saraswati Bless You with

Wisdom and Knowledge and keep your Vishudhi Chakra Activated.

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