Kid’s Org : Goddess of Supreme Intellect
Children we celebrate,Valentines Day, Fathers Day, Mothers Day, Friendship Day, Rose Day, etc while aping the western ideology, but have we ever tried to remember the festivals related to the Bharateeya traditions. Why have we become so indifferent to our great cultural heritage? Our attitude to the age long customs and values is quite lukewarm. Sometimes we openly defy and make mockery of traditions, old ideas and ideals. I am quite sure that many of us won’t be knowing about Saraswati Puja which is performed on the fifth day of the ‘Spring’. It is believed that on this day Goddess Saraswati was born. Saraswati is said to be the Goddess of learning and the creator of Sanskrit, the mother of all languages.
Saraswati Dhyan Mantra
Regular chanting of Saraswati mantra improves speech, memory and concentration in studies. Saraswati mantra has the power to dispel ignorance and confusion and bestow intelligence to the chanter. Saraswati mantra makes learning easy and memory long lasting.
Om Saraswati Mayaa Drishtwa,
There are many stories related to Saraswati Puja. According to a popular belief, the origin of this festival lie in Aryan period. Aryans came and settled in Bharat through Khyber Pass, crossing the Saraswati River among many others. Being a primitive civilisation, most of their development took place along the banks of the River Saraswati. Thus, River Saraswati began to be associated with fertility and knowledge and people living on the banks of the river started doing Saraswati Puja. In fact in the Vedas, Saraswati has been considered a water deity revered for purifying, fertilising and enriching powers.
In temples and educational institutions, statues of Saraswati are dressed in white. Poetic and musical gatherings are held and children are initiated to learn the alphabet and are often taught to write their first words. This ritual of initiating education to children is known as Akshar-Abhyasam or Vidya-Arambham, one of the famous rituals of Saraswati Puja. Students clean their pens , inkwells and books and put them in front of the ideal of Maa Saraswati to take her blessings.
This day is also said to be connected with poet Kalidas. After he was married off to a beautiful princess through trickery, the princess kicked him out of her bed as she learned that he was foolish. Following this, Kalidas went to commit suicide, upon which Saraswati emerged from the waters and asked him to take a dip there. After taking a dip in the holy waters, Kalidas became knowledgeable and began writing poetry. Thus, Saraswati Puja is celebrated to venerate Goddess Saraswati, the Goddess of education and learning.
According to another story, Lord Brahma was very happy with the creation of the whole world. As a result, he wanted to see the whole world with his own eyes. Therefore, he set out on a journey. When he saw the world, he was disappointed. Everyone on planet Earth appeared very lonely. Lord Brahma gave a lot of thought to what he had created. He took some water from his Kamandal and sprinkled it in the air. A Goddess appeared holding a Veena in her hand. Lord Brahmarequested her to play something so that everything on Earth becomes lively. The Goddess started playing the Veena. The Goddess blessed the people of the Earth with the sound of Veena. She also filled this planet with music. Since then, that Goddess came to be known as Goddess Saraswati, Goddess of speech and knowledge. According to the Matsya Purana, Saraswati evolved from the mouth of Brahma. She was the most unique creation of Brahma. The moon and the lotus associated with Saraswati are both symbols of eternal womanhood. It is also believed that it was Saraswati who discovered soma or amrit when the Gods and the demons were churning the Ocean for the amrit or elixir of life. In some areas she is believed to be the daughter of the Sun or Surya Kanya. In Western Bharat, Saraswati is seen with the lion or peacock. She is married to Kartikeya. In Eastern Bharat, particularly Odisha and Bengal, she has been given the mantle of daughter of Parvati and is treated as a daughter.
Saraswati is recognised as a Goddess not only in Bharat but also in countries such as Japan, Cambodia, Thailand and Indonesia, etc. Saraswati’s favourite colour white assumes special significance on this day. The eyes of the Goddess are full of compassion. Her four hands denote four facets of human personality namely mind, intellect, alertness and ego.