Basant Panchami is a Hindu festival celebrated at the advent of spring. This festival is devoted to goddess Saraswati, who is the deity of knowledge, music and art. Also known as Shree Panchami, it marks the end of the winter season and beginning of spring. According to Hindu mythology, goddess Saraswati is the consort of Lord Brahma, the creator of the world. It is believed that the goddess was evoked by him during the construction of the world. Basant Panchami is celebrated as the day of the birth of goddess Saraswati. She represents all kinds of knowledge including science, arts and other skills. She is generally depicted as a picture of serenity and calmness, with her eyes reflecting compassion. One of her hand is shown holding sacred scriptures and the other one holding a lotus, which symbolizes true knowledge. There is a veena held by the other two hands, with which she is believed to play the music of love and life.
Hindus all over the world celebrate Basant Panchami with a lot of enthusiasm. It is the day where various kinds of religious activities take place. People wear yellow clothes and visit temples to offer prayers to the deities. They prepare yellow sweets and distribute them among family members and friends. On this auspicious occasion, also known as Pitr-Tarpan, they feed Brahmans and perform rituals for the liberation of their deceased ancestors. This day also witnesses some people worshipping Kamadeva, the God of Love. People choose this day to teach their children the first words of education, to mark the beginning of a glorious period of learning. Schools and colleges organize special worships for goddess Saraswati, where students pray for their bright future.
Students place their books and stationeries in front of the picture/idol of goddess Saraswati so that they get her blessings to perform well academically. After worshipping Ganesha and the nine planets, goddess Saraswati is worshipped. Yellow flowers, garlands and vermilions are offered to the deity and gulaal is applied to the feet of the goddess. Apart from seasonal fruits and boondiyas, Malpua and Kheer are also offered to the deity. Basant Panchami marks the end of the winter season and the advent of spring, which brings new life to the trees and flowers. Nature brings fresh new lives with new shoots and new blossoms. The yellow fields of mustards add to the fervor of the festival. On this special day, all the Saraswati temples are adorned with attractive decorations and observe various religious activities. According to the Hindu calendar, Basant Panchami falls on the fifth day of the month of Magh. In the year 2018, Basant Panchami will be celebrated on Monday Jan 22.
Basant Panchami 2018: Monday Jan 22