With the spring season knocking on the door, you have probably started preparing for Basant Panchami. Indians celebrate numerous festivals all year round. Basant Panchami is one festival that is celebrated in almost every state of this country.
Do you know why we celebrate it? What is its significance and how should you celebrate it by following all the rituals? We will take a look at all of these and much more in detail.
Basant Panchami 2021 falls on Tuesday, 16th February. Goddess Saraswati is worshipped on this day. This festival also goes by the name of Shree Panchami.
So, why do we celebrate Basant Panchami? Because it marks the beginning of spring and the end of winter. Saraswati puja is done on the fifth day of the month of Magh. Basant means spring, and Panchami means the fifth day.
Spring is a beautiful season when there are neither cold and depressing winds nor scorching heat and dodgy rains. There is nothing better than seeing trees full of leaves and colourful flowers. The festival celebrates the brilliance of nature and its vibrancy. It celebrates the start of the harvest season.
It celebrates the birth of Saraswati, the goddess of knowledge, culture, art, music, and education. The festival is considered to be very auspicious for children. It is known to usher new beginnings. Traditionally, this was the day when a child was taught to write their first words.
Saraswati Puja is a big festival for the residents of West Bengal and Odisha. It is even bigger for the children there as they get just one day when they are not asked to study. Students have to keep their books and notebooks at the feet of the goddess and take them back, only after the puja is done. They spend the time worshipping Goddess Saraswati either at home, school, or a local puja mandap.
Yellow is considered to be auspicious for this festival. Yellow is the colour associated with mustard flower, and this is the time when it blooms. It is also the colour of the mustard seed.
Yellow or Basanti colour, as it is known in a few Indian languages, symbolises peace, prosperity, energy, light, and optimism.
People celebrate the festival of Basant Panchami by wearing yellow clothes and eating sweets in the hues of the same colour. It will seem as if the whole country is bursting with the colour yellow.
In west India, this festival is celebrated by flying colourful kites. It is associated with a lot of fun and enthusiasm. People of all ages and varied levels of kite flying skills challenge each other. It is all about cutting the opponent’s kite and running after it to catch it. In some places, swings are made by hanging ropes from trees, women apply henna on their hair, and folk songs are sung to welcome the goddess and the spring season.
One of the best things about Basant Panchami is its delicious prasad or offering to God. A lot of things are offered to Goddess Saraswati, and some are simply made to celebrate the arrival of spring and enjoy with family.