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Anju Bhargava

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Spring Hindu Holy Day Vasant Panchami

Posted: 02/08/11 11:19 AM ET

Hindus know how to celebrate the changing season while bringing to life the spirituality through the festivals. The spiritual aspect is based on the basic human instincts of joy and happiness. An, festivals joyously bring people together.

Vasant Panchami is celebrated every year on the 5th day or 'Panchami' of the bright fortnight of the lunar month of Magha, which falls during January-February. "Vasant" heralds the beginning of spring.

Symbolism plays a major role for Hindus in bringing spirituality to life. The Hindu feminine Trinity expresses the divine qualities. During autumn, at harvest time, we celebrate Navaratri (nine nights) through the quality of Durga (power and valor), at Diwali (festival of light) through the quality of Lakshmi (wealth and prosperity) and at the beginning of spring Vasant Panchami it is the quality of Saraswati (knowledge and arts).

Saraswati means one who embodies the knowledge of one's own Self and Universe. She represents the personification of all knowledge -- arts, sciences, crafts and other skills. The four hands represent divine is in all directions. She is clad in a white sari representing purity and brilliance. The sacred scriptures (Vedas) in one hand represents knowledge and the other blessing. With the other two hands she plays the veena, music of life. She is on a swan (which can separate water from milk), indicating that we should develop ourselves to remove that which is bad in our life, leaving only the good.

Knowledge is sacred and is revered. This day becomes a focal point to start major educational initiatives such as opening an educational institute or starting a new educational program

Our traditions encourage service, kalyanseva through commitment to the welfare of all beings. Spiritual knowledge is integrated within (Saraswati) by cultivating values and understanding religious disciplines. Ultimately a seeker discovers all knowledge is within.

 

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