Are you thinking of why do we celebrate Basant Panchami? What is the significance of this Basant Panchami 2022 in India? If yes, there here is the complete guide for you to help you get your answers for Basant Panchami.
Basant Panchami, also known as Saraswati Puja, Sri Panchami, or Basant Kite Festival, is a Sikh and Hindu festival held on the fifth day of the traditional Hindu calendar month (usually early February). It is a seasonal spring festival that is observed in many regions of the country. It is also the time when spring begins in India and mustard flowers bloom.
So, let’s discuss the significance of this festival.
The word ‘Basant or Vasant’ means ‘spring’ and ‘Panchami’ means the ‘fifth day’, in the Hindi language.
The festival is particularly observed by the Hindus in the Indian sub-continent notably India and Nepal.
Basant Panchami in Punjab also has been a historical tradition of Sikhs as well.
In the southern states of India such as Andhra Pradesh, the festival is called Sri Panchami.
In Odisha, the festival is called Basanta Panchami / Sri Panchami / Saraswati Puja.
On the island of Bali and among the Hindus of Indonesia, Basant Panchami is called Hari Raya Saraswati, meaning, the great day of Goddess Saraswati.
The festival marks the preparation for the coming of spring or the Basant season and the people worship Goddess Saraswati who is considered the goddess of knowledge, art, and music during the day. According to Hindu Mythology, the Goddess of knowledge, music, and wisdom Saraswati was born on this day. The festival commences the 210-day long Balinese Pawukon Calendar.
Basant Panchami 2022 in India is an important Indian holiday celebrated every year in the month of Magha in the Hindu calendar i.e. on the fifth day of the bright fortnight of the Hindu lunisolar month of Magha, which usually falls at the end of January or February.
We can say that the Vasant Utsava in Panchami is celebrated forty days before spring because any transition period of the seasons is 40 days, after which the season comes into full bloom.
Yellow is very important to Basant Panchami because on this day people wear yellow clothes, worship goddesses with yellow flowers, and decorate houses with yellow.
The colour Yellow is considered a good sign and is greatly valued on this day. Many people honour Goddess Saraswati by getting up early and wearing yellow (which is considered to be her favourite colour), eating and sharing yellow sweets and snacks, and performing pujas on her deities. Some people add saffron to their rice and then as a part of the elaborate feast, they eat yellow cooked rice.
All in all, it is the predominant colour associated with the festival, the origins of which are supposed to be the mustard fields seen in Punjab and Haryana during this period.
The season and festival also mark the ripening of agricultural fields with mustard yellow flowers, which Hindus associate with Saraswati's favourite colour and the arrival of spring.
In northern India, goddess Saraswati is offered yellow flowers on the auspicious day of Vasanta Panchami due to the abundance of flowering mustard and marigold flowers (Genda Phul) at that time of year.
Like Durga Puja, Saraswati Puja is also celebrated as a communal festival where people gather at their place to build pandals and to set up an idol of Goddess Saraswati.
In the Malwa region, the Basant Panchami 2022 festival is celebrated by wearing yellow dresses and flying kites. In Rajasthan, wearing a jasmine garland to mark the festival is part of the ritual.
Many families mark this day by sitting with babies and young children encouraging them to write their first words with their fingers and some study or create music together. This ritual of initiating education in children is known as ‘Akshara Abhaysam’ (or Vidya Arambham).
One day before Basant Panchami, the Saraswati temples are filled with food so that they can enjoy the celebration at the traditional feast the next morning.
The statues of Maa Saraswati are dressed in yellow coloured clothes and then worshipped, in temples and educational institutions. Many educational institutions arrange special prayers or Pujas in the morning to seek the blessings of the goddess.
On this day, some communities held poetic and musical gatherings in reverence for the goddess Saraswati.
Celebrating the preparation for the coming of spring, Basant Panchami 2022 or Vasant Panchami is an auspicious Hindu festival celebrated with great pomp and spectacle across India on the fifth day (that is called Panchami Tithi) of the Hindus Magha month in Shukla Paksha.
There are several ways to celebrate this important day, from holding a Saraswati Puja to please the Goddess of Knowledge for her blessings to big Basant Panchami festivals and fairs in some places. On this day, the goddess of wisdom, music, knowledge, art, and culture, Saraswati Devi is worshipped by the Hindus.
This day is celebrated by the worship of Goddess Saraswati after sunrise and before noon, i.e. it is considered to be the birthday of Saraswati and therefore this day is sometimes called Saraswati Jayanti when people worship her to get her blessings for giving them wisdom.
Therefore, students, professionals, musicians, scientists, and artists worship Devi Saraswati for receiving scientific skills, wisdom, knowledge, and works of art.
In Nepal, Bihar, and eastern states of India such as West Bengal and Odisha including northeastern states like Tripura and Assam, people visit goddess Saraswati’s temple and worship her.
In Maharashtra, on the first Basant Panchami of the newly married couples, they visit a temple to offer prayers to the goddess.
On the occasion of Basant Panchami in Punjab, the Sikhs and Hindus wear yellow turbans on headdresses.
In addition to Saraswati Puja, the people in Uttarakhand worship Shiva, Parvati-the mother earth and the crops or agriculture.
Along with worshipping the Goddess, people also fly kites and enjoy the festivity.
Basant Panchami 2022 in India is a famous festival that worships Saraswati, the goddess of intellect, learning, and wisdom. On this day, people get up early, bathe and pray worship Maa Saraswati, and offer food. In many regions, Saraswati temples hold elaborate feasts the night before so that the next morning the Goddess can take part in the celebrations and festivities of Vasant Panchami with her devotees.
Some celebrate it in honour of Goddess Saraswati, while others celebrate the harvest and the beginning of spring. It's essentially a one-day festival; spring begins after a cold winter. After the cold winter, the holiday is considered the first day of spring, the harvest season.