The power of the Goddess is of love. Whatever She does with the whole world is through her compassion and love. The whole body, the whole being of the Goddess is made of compassion and love and nothing else. This power gives full understanding of the reality and also this enlightenment inside and outside.
For example, if you love somebody, you know everything about that person. It has nothing to do with money. It’s the highest, most valuable, very important power that you have. Even when you think about something noble, something benevolent, this power is filled into that thought and then this thought fills in, into the universe, into your country, into individuals.
The aim of this compassion and love is only one: to see everyone joyous – that’s all, joyous in the real sense of the word. This power cares for the collective as well as for the individual. It cares for the whole world as well as a particular nation. All the time this power works – especially in modern times – to better the lives of the people of the whole world …. So it’s like an ocean of love and compassion that wants to touch every shore. It wants to touch every heart but some are just like stones….
Thus, this love is the power of the Goddess. It is very subtle, silent, but it manifests…. It is this Goddess who is ruling this universe, who is in your centre heart, who looks after you and looks after the whole universe. It is nothing but the pure desire of love. It knows how to express. It knows how to act. You don’t have to do anything. It is spontaneous. What goes against it is your mental activity because the mental activity will say, “Oh my, how can you love somebody like this? It’s no use.” It’s a mental activity which gives you funny ideas. The mental activity is limited and linear. Everybody has different fixed ideas. That’s why they are fighting. That’s why they are having wars. But this power, which is of love, gives you the absolute truth. Then how can you fight? So what we need is this power because our power is very limited.
Shri Mataji, 1995
This “Panchami” is also known as Saraswati Day, because it is believed that on this day the Goddess was born. As Diwali is to Shri Lakshmi and Navaratri is to Shri Durga, Vasant Panchami is to Shri Saraswati, the Goddess of art, creativity, knowledge and learning. She represents the free flow of wisdom and consciousness. She is the Mother of the Vedas, and chants to Her often begin and end Vedic lessons.
Saraswati literally means “the flowing one”. In the Rigveda it is said She represents a river and the deity presiding over it. In later mythology, Shri Saraswati was identified with Vach or Speech. The “flowing one” in an allegorical sense may mean speech also – perfect speech which denotes intelligence.
On this Vasant Panchami day, Lord Brahma is said to have created His consort Goddess Saraswati, infused speech into Her and bestowed the Veena in Her hands. She was thus named as Veena Vandini (veena player) and Vani Dayyani (recipient of speech). As the spouse of Brahma and the Goddess of wisdom and eloquence, She is known by various names such as Veenapani (holding the veena), Sharada (giver of essence), Vagisvari (mistress of speech), Brahmi (wife of Brahma) and Mahavidya (knowledge supreme).
The colour yellow is given special importance on Vasant Panchami. On this day, Shri Saraswati is dressed in yellow garments and worshipped. Books, articles, instruments of music and arts are placed before Her. In the evening after the Puja is over, the idol is immersed in the sea with serenity.
In all educational institutions of music, arts and science in India, Saraswati Puja is observed with great reverence. Saraswati Puja is also performed during the Navaratri or Dusshera. In India, Hindus prefer to wear yellow clothes on this holy day. Sweets of yellowish hues are distributed among relatives and friends.
Children are taught their first words on this day, for it is considered an auspicious day to begin to learn how to read and write.
Vasant means “spring”, and Vasant Panchami heralds springtime in India, a time of renewal and creativity of life in nature.