Vasant Panchami (vasant meaning “spring” and panchami meaning “fifth”), is a festival that falls on the fifth day of the Hindu month of Magha, when it is celebrated as Saraswati Puja in many North and Eastern parts of India. In southern states, the same day is celebrated as Sri Panchami and in Bali, it is known as “Hari Raya Saraswati” (great day of Saraswati).
Vasant Panchami marks the beginning of winter’s end and the coming of spring. also marks the start of preparation for Holika and Holi, which take place forty days later.
Deities to be worshipped on Vasant Panchami
* Saraswati Maa
* Bhagawan Surya
* Shri Rama
* Kama deva
Hindus celebrate Vasant Panchami by worshiping Goddess Saraswati – the deity of knowledge and wisdom. Worshipping this divine form will vanish the darkness from one’s life and one can get enlightened by praying to this deity. One who is seeking Goddess Saraswati’s grace must keep himself/herself away from the desires of the materialistic world. This propitious day is considered to be favourable to initiate new work or perform ceremonies like house warming, inauguration and so on. Also, on this day people start their kids’ education by performing Aksharabhyasam (in few states it is called as ‘Khadi-Chuan’ or ‘Vidya-Arambha’) ritual that includes Saraswati Puja.
In Eastern India, primarily in the states of West Bengal, Bihar, Tripura and Assam, as well as in Nepal, people visit Saraswati temples and also worship Goddess Saraswati at home (Saraswati Puja). In West Bengal, it’s one of the major festivals for Bengali Hindus and observed by many households; most schools arrange Saraswati puja for their students on their premises and this is known as “Haate-Khori” among Bengali Hindus. In southern states such as Andhra Pradesh & Telangana, the same day is called Sri Panchami where “Sri” refers to her as another aspect of the one goddess Devi.
Worship Bhagawan Surya
The Prime deity of Deo Surya Mandir is Bhagawan Surya dev. The temple is located in Deo Town, Aurangabad in the Indian State of Bihar. The Temple is unique as it faces west, the setting sun, not the usual rising sun. According to religious beilefs, this shrine was established on Vasant Panchami. People in Bihar, therefore, celebrate and honor the Sun God through songs and dance. They also clean the vigraha murtis at the Deo-Sun Temple.
Worship Shri Rama
Few devotees worship Shri Ram as bhagawan Rama visited Mata Sabari and ate the half-eaten fruit offered to him on the day of Basant Panchami. Mata Sabari was the pupil of Sage Matunga and is considered the greatest devotee of Lord Rama. When Rama ate the fruit offered by Mata Sabari, she was blessed and was granted moksha.
Madana Panchami : Worship of Kamdev and Rati
On the auspicious day of Vasant Panchami, devotees also worship the God of love called Kamadev. Thus Vasant Panchami is also known as “Madana Panchami”. According to Matsya Purana, Shiva incinerates Kama, the Madana-bhasma (Kama Dahana). Rati, the consort of Kamadeva, had to undergo strict penace to appease Bhagawan Shiva. It was on the auspicious occasion of Vasant Panchami that Maha Shiva finally granted her wish and brought Kamadeva to life as Ananga.
The colour yellow holds great significance during Vasant Panchami as it is associated with the colour of mustard flowers that bloom during this season, so wearing yellow is also encouraged.