Spring-time Celebration: Vasant or Basant means Spring season. In Hindu Scriptures Basant season is called Rituraj or the king of all seasons. Basant Panchmi marks the begining of spring season. It is a symbol of joy and properity as new crops get ready and new leaves starts blossoming in the trees. Fields bear a glorious look with the crop of safforn giving a peculiar yellow color.
Yellow Color: Yellow color plays an important part in this festival. On this day people wear yellow clothes and consume yellow colored sweets. Women wear gold jewellery as well. Spiritually, the yellow colour is a sign of prosperity; it is the colour of love.
Vishnu Pujan: Hindu scriptures prescribe worshipping Lord Vishnu, the preserver of the universe, on this day. One should bathe using Ubatan & Oil and wear new clothes of yellow color and then do puja according to the vedic rituals. It is also considered auspicious to feed Brahmins on this day.
Saraswati Pujan: Basant Panchami is regarded as the birthday of Goddess Saraswati (Goddess of knowledge & performing arts) and is celebrated with Saraswati Puja. For Saraswati puja, dress the idol Goddess Saraswati in yellow garments & jewellery and establish a Kalash. After this one should first pray to God Ganesha, the Sun God, Vishnu and Shankara and then do the Saraswati pujan according to the vedic rituals.
Scripture strictly prescribe to only consume vegetarian food on this day of Saraswati Pooja. Young Kids in the family are asked to write for the first time in life, the alphabets by the priest / family elder.
Other Festivities & Rituals:
- Basant Panchami also announces the arrival of Holi, the festival of colors. In the eastern parts of UP people celebrate by singing Phag or Holi songs.
- Basant Panchami is a festival of farmers too. In many parts of India, farmers consume food made from the new crop along with the Gur (A form of raw lump sugar, generally honey-brown in color) but only after presenting them to the Agni (Fire), Dharti (Land) and ancestors. This is a way of thanking the nature for providing the food we eat. Hindus are ever mindful of the debt they owe to the mother nature and don’t forget to thank mother nature for all of this.
- The day also worships Kamadeva & Rati (God & Goddess of Love).
- Pitri-Tarpan (ancestor worship) is done on this day