Vasant Panchami is a festival which is celebrated to worship Goddess Saraswati. It is also called as ‘Sri panchami’ or ‘Saraswati Panchami’. Saraswati is the Goddess of learning, wisdom, knowledge, music etc. The term Vasant in Sanskrit means ‘Spring’ and Panchami means ‘fifth day’. It falls on fifth day of Shukla Paksha (Bright fortnight) in Magha Masa (Month) as per Hindu calendar. Generally it falls between Jan-Feb months in Gregorian calendar. It represents the starting of spring season. The festival marks with welcoming spring season.
Significance of Vasant Panchami
Vasant Panchami or Basant Panchami is associated with Saraswati, who gives wisdom, knowledge and innovation. People celebrate the festival by worshipping Devi Saraswati (Saraswati Puja) with faith and devotion. They seek her blessings and protection and also to get knowledge and wisdom. The festival represents the commencement of education and knowledge initiatives. So the festival holds significance to students as well. Some people also worship mother Earth on this occasion. They also worship their crops or agricultural products.
The day can be used in meditating and invoking Devi Saraswati. The day will be used to cleanse the mind and thoughts. There is no specific timings to perform the puja as such. The full day can be used in worshipping the Goddess and process of learning. However, morning time will be best to perform the rituals.
Devotees wear new clothes and worship with lot of devotion and enthusiasm. Yellow clothes are more preferred on this day. Yellow colour often signify optimism, prosperity, expansiveness and gentleness. Even white colour dress also acceptable. Yellow colour flowers are offered to Goddess Saraswati on this day. Special sweet dishes will be prepared and offered.
Vasant Panchami is also auspicious to perform the ‘Aksharabhyasam’ or initiation of education to the child. Also during Saraswati Puja, students will keep books, pens, music instruments etc. Special musical performance or cultural activities will be performed. In schools and educational institutions, special prayer to Goddess Saraswati will be performed. In temples special pujas will be performed to seek the blessings for entire community and the country.