Vasant Panchami Puja Timings: 06:53 am to 12:27 pm
Duration = 5 Hours 34 Mins
Vasant Panchami on Saraswati Puja:
In India Vidya meaning knowledge/education is of utmost importance. The Goddess of Vidya, Maa Saraswati is worshipped with wholehearted dedication. Goddess Saraswati symbolizes knowledge, wisdom, creativity in the form of performing arts such as music, and sciences. Also known by the names of Vasant Panchami, Shri Panchami, Saraswati Panchami, and Magh Shukla Panchami, it is marked as first day of the upcoming spring season and on the fifth day of the Shukla Paksha in Lunar month. If following the Gregorian Calendar, then end January or month of February marks this day.
Initiation to Education – Vidya Arambham:
Devotees pray fervently to this Goddess on this day for bestowing them with proper knowledge. It is an important day for kids and children who are either already students or are going to become one. Beginners get initiated to the learning system of vidya on this specific day by teaching them to write the first word. This ritualistic initiation to education by worship to Goddess Saraswati is referred to as Vidya Arambham. Hindu-religious based educational institutions sometimes arrange pujas to the deity of this Goddess for seeking blessing to students. Accessories for knowledge such as books, pens, pencils, etc. are known to be placed at the diety’s feet for seeking blessings.
For Vasant Panchami, yellow color holds great significance. Dressing in yellow attire, making of yellow colored sweets as prasadam are commonly done. East Indian states such as West Bengal, Assam, Orissa etc. are well known for celebration of Vasant Panchami while Hindus residing in Bangladesh and Nepal also celebrate with equal fervor.
Timing for Vasant Panchami is the Purvahna Kala, the period occurring between dawn and noon. While Panchami Tithi is on during Purvahna Kala, people celebrate and worship Goddess Saraswati. Hence possibility of the time occurring on Chaturthi Tithi also exists.
As the day is considered auspicious in all respects, it is also referred to as Abujha Day, a reason why many astrologers advise to undertake and initiate good projects and works on this day. As mentioned the puja can be conducted while Panchami Tithi prevails hence need not stick to specific timing for Puja. Ideally, the time between rising of sun and the noon is considered as the Purvahna kala to perform the Puja and worship of Goddess Saraswati on Vasant Panchami.
Recitation and prayers in praise of Goddess Saraswati is done in the form of a famous Hindu mantra, the Saraswati Vandana. In Hindu religion this mantra is a stuti and makes a part of the well-known Saraswati Stotram. Devotees pray and seek blessings on the eve of Vasant Panchami at the time of Saraswati Puja by chanting the Saraswati Vandana, Saraswati Ya Kundendu.
या कुन्देन्दुतुषारहारधवला या शुभ्रवस्त्रावृता
या वीणावरदण्डमण्डितकरा या श्वेतपद्मासना।
या ब्रह्माच्युत शंकरप्रभृतिभिर्देवैः सदा वन्दिता
सा मां पातु सरस्वती भगवती निःशेषजाड्यापहा॥
शुक्लां ब्रह्मविचार सार परमामाद्यां जगद्व्यापिनीं
हस्ते स्फटिकमालिकां विदधतीं पद्मासने संस्थिताम्
वन्दे तां परमेश्वरीं भगवतीं बुद्धिप्रदां शारदाम्॥२॥