For all the posts in this Holidays & Observances series, go here.
Prologue: I have been meaning to write a series about Holidays and Observances that we (my family and friends) follow in both India (my birth country) and USA (my adopted country). This series is dedicated to those. On a side note, perhaps I might witness some of the celebrations from other countries as well that may get their way into this series. 🙂
January 26th 2023 marked the 74th Republic Day for India, the day when the Indian Constitution was finalized. However, this year the day coincides with Vasantha Panchami. According to Hindu calendar on this day, various poojas and offerings are performed in honor of Goddess Saraswati – the Hindu Goddess of knowledge, learning, art, speech, wisdom and music.
The festival also marks the beginning of Spring in India. People usually wear clothing in either White or Yellow, favorite colors of Goddess Saraswati. Typically we do a ceremony called Aksharaabhyasam if you have a child who is 2 or more years older in your household, to initiate the kid into education.
Here is the Goddess Saraswati that I have at home – albeit it’s a Tibetan version rather than Indian.