Goddess Saraswathi is the first goddess of the three great Hindu goddesses. She is the wife of lord Brahma the creator of the universe. Goddess Saraswathi is the goddess of learning, virtue and wisdom. People pray to her to get good knowledge and to succeed in any work they begin. Saraswati is said to possess the powers of speech, wisdom and learning. Saraswati is regarded as the dispeller of chaos and confusion.
Birth of goddess saraswathi
When lord Brahma started creating the world there was total chaos and he did not know how to correct it. He thought there was no way. At that time he heard a voice saying,” Why there is no way everything can be set right with knowledge”. When lord Brahma was wondering who was giving him that instruction Goddess Saraswathi came out from his mouth dresed in white in a white swan with the veena in one hand and the vedas in the other hand. In her third hand she had the sacred mala and with the fourth hand she was playing the veena.
The music of the veena was so soothing and gave Brahma the mind to set thing right and everything started taking shape. Chaos changed into creation; the sun, the moon, and the stars were born. The oceans filled and seasons changed. The joyous Brahma then named Saraswati, Vagdevi, the goddess of speech and sound. Thus Brahma became the creator of the world with Saraswati as his source of wisdom.
The sound of mantras filled the universe with vital energy, or prana. The cosmos acquired a structure: the sky dotted with stars rose to form the heavens; the sea sank into the abyss below, the earth stood in between.
Gods became lords of the celestial spheres; demons ruled the nether regions, humans walked on earth. The sun rose and set, the moon waxed and waned, the tide flowed and ebbed. Seasons changed, seeds germinated, plants bloomed and withered, animals migrated and reproduced as randomness gave way to the rhythm of life.
Thus goddess Saraswathi was the first of the creations of lord Brahma.
Goddess Saraswathi’s marriage with lord Brahma
Lord Brahma then started looking at goddess Saraswathi and was stunned by her beauty. He continued gazing at her. Goddess asked him not to look like that and flew to his right. To see her he created a head on his right side simlarly he made heads in all directions to continue looking at the beautiful goddess.
Then the goddess turned into a cow and tried running away from lord Brahma but he took the shape of a bull. Likewise the goddess asumed the form of many beasts and birds to escape form the gaze of lord Brahma but each time the lord took the shape of the male counterpart and started chasing her. But in no form could he catch up with the goddess for she was so swift. Thus she got the name of Satharupa which means many forms.
Angered by his display of unbridled passion Saraswati cursed Brahma, “You have filled the world with longing that is the seed of unhappiness. You have fettered the soul in the flesh. You are not worthy of reverence. May there be hardly any temple or festival in your name.”
So it came to pass that there are only two temples of Brahma in India; one at Pushkar, Rajistan and the other in Kumbhakonam, Tamil Nadu.
Undaunted by the curse, Brahma continued to cast his lustful looks upon Saraswati. He gave himself a fifth head to enhance his gaze.
Finally the goddess went to lord Shiva for help and angered by Brahma’s action Shiva severed off his fifth head.
Brahma, sobered by his encounter with the Lord of terror sought an escape from the maze of his own desire. Saraswati revealed to him the doctrine for his own liberation.
Brahma sought to conduct a yagna, fire sacrifice, to cleanse himself and start anew. In order to conduct a yagna ritual the assistance of a wife is needed. Brahma chose Saraswati to be his wife and thus they were reconciled.
The image of Goddess Saraswathi
Goddess Saraswathi is usally depicted as a yellow skinned beautiful maiden wearing a white or yellow saree. She usally sits on a white swan or a stone of knowledge or a white lotus. This symbolizes that she is grounded in absolute truth and has pure knowledge.She has four hands and in each hand she has different items. Saraswati wears neither jewels or paints herself with bright colors. Her four arms represent mind, intellect, intelligence, and ego. They also represent the 4 Vedas, the most sacred books of Hindus.
Meaning of the things in her hand
- white lotus – the supreme reality and it suggests that the goddess herself is rooted in the supreme reality.
- white saree – white represents purity and her rejection of everything that is base and materialistic.
- white swan – symbolizing Sattwa Guna or purity and discrimination.
- veena – represents her perfection in all arts in sciences.
- sacred pearl mala – the power of spirituality.
- vedas – signifies the eternal and universal knowledge as well her perfection of the scriptures.
- peacock by her side – represents arrogance and pride over its beauty. The Goddess teaches that physical appearance could be deceptive, by not taking peacock as the vehicle.
Why people pray to goddess Saraswathi
Saraswati is believed to be the provider of knowledge that dispels ignorance and unhappiness. Saraswati is worshipped by seekers of knowledge especially students, scholars and scientists.
Students worship the goddess to perform well in exam. Telling the mantra of goddess Saraswathy before the exams actually makes them remember whatever they have learnt.
SIDDHIR BHAVATHUME SADHA
Goddess Saraswati is said to possess the powers of speech, wisdom and learning. Saraswati is regarded as the dispeller of chaos and confusion.
She is the mother of the Vedas, and chants to her, called the ‘Saraswati Vandana’ often begin and end Vedic lessons.
Festivals for Goddess Saraswati
Read about them in detail in our related posts
Temples of goddess Saraswathi
There is not many temples for lord Brahma and his consort Goddess Saraswati. This is because of a curse given to them by the sage Dhurvasar. Once the sage came to meet the lord and his wife to their abord satyalok. The goddess was playing the veena and the lord was listening to it. They both we so much involved in the music that they failed to notice the sage calling to them. This angered the sage and he cursed both of them that they would never have any temples in earth. But recent days there are few temple for the goddess more than the lord.
Here is a list of the saraswathi temples
- Saraswati Temple at Basar at Andhra
- Aksharabhyasam at Basara Temple
- Panachikkad Saraswathi Temple in kerala
- Shri Saraswati Temple at Pushkar, Rajasthan
- Saraswati temple at BITS Pilani campus
- Maha Saraswathi in Kaleswaram
- Shri Vidya Saraswathi in Wargal
- Saraswati in Kuthanur Tamilnadu
- Shri Saraswathi Kshetramu in Andhra
Prouda Saraswathi in Kashmir (POK)
Sarada Devi in Sringeri
- Saraswathy temple in Thiruvarur Tamilnadu
- Saraswathi temple in Kumbakonam Tamilnadu
- Saraswathy temple in Mugaliwakkam Chennai Tamilnadu
108 names of goddess Saraswathi
|1||Om Sarasvatyai Namaha|
|2||Om Mahabhadrayai Namaha|
|3||Om Mahamayayai Namaha|
|4||Om Varapradayai Namaha|
|5||Om Shripradaayai Namaha|
|6||Om Padmanilayayai Namaha|
|7||Om Padmaakshyai Namaha|
|8||Om Padmavaktrakayai Namaha|
|9||Om Shivanujaayai Namaha|
|10||Om Pustakabhrite Namaha|
|11||Om Gyanamudrayai Namaha|
|12||Om Ramayai Namaha|
|13||Om Parayai Namaha|
|14||Om Kamarupayai Namaha|
|15||Om Mahavidyayai Namaha|
|16||Om Mahapataka nashinyai Namaha|
|17||Om Mahashrayayai Namaha|
|18||Om Malinyai Namaha|
|19||Om Mahabhogayai Namaha|
|20||Om Mahabhujayai Namaha|
|21||Om Mahabhagayai Namaha|
|22||Om Mahotsahayai Namaha|
|23||Om Divyangayai Namaha|
|24||Om Suravanditayai Namaha|
|25||Om Mahakalyai Namaha|
|26||Om Mahapashayai Namaha|
|27||Om Mahakarayai Namaha|
|28||Om Mahankushayai Namaha|
|29||Om Pitayai Namaha|
|30||Om Vimalayai Namaha|
|31||Om Vishvayai Namaha|
|32||Om Vidyunmalayai Namaha|
|33||Om Vaishnavyai Namaha|
|34||Om Chandrikayai Namaha|
|35||Om Chandravadanayai Namaha|
|36||Om Chandralekhavibhushitayai Namaha|
|37||Om Savityai Namaha|
|38||Om Surasayai Namaha|
|39||Om Devyai Namaha|
|40||Om Divyalankarabhushitayai Namaha|
|41||Om Vagdevyai Namaha|
|42||Om Vasudayai Namaha|
|43||Om Tivrayai Namaha|
|44||Om Mahabhadrayai Namaha|
|45||Om Mahabalayai Namaha|
|46||Om Bhogadayai Namaha|
|47||Om Bharatyai Namaha|
|48||Om Bhamayai Namaha|
|49||Om Govindayai Namaha|
|50||Om Gomatyai Namaha|
|51||Om Shivayai Namaha|
|52||Om Jatilayai Namaha|
|53||Om Vindhyavasayai Namaha|
|54||Om Vindhyachalavirajitayai Namaha|
|55||Om Chandikayai Namaha|
|56||Om Vaishnavyai Namaha|
|57||Om Brahmayai Namaha|
|58||Om Brahmagyanaikasadhanayai Namaha|
|59||Om Saudamanyai Namaha|
|60||Om Sudhamurtyai Namaha|
|61||Om Subhadrayai Namaha|
|62||Om Surapujitayai Namaha|
|63||Om Suvasinyai Namaha|
|64||Om Sunasayai Namaha|
|65||Om Vinidrayai Namaha|
|66||Om Padmalochanayai Namaha|
|67||Om Vidyarupayai Namaha|
|68||Om Vishalakshyai Namaha|
|69||Om Brahmajayayai Namaha|
|70||Om Mahaphalayai Namaha|
|71||Om Trayimurtaye Namaha|
|72||Om Trikalagyayai Namaha|
|73||Om Trigunayai Namaha|
|74||Om Shastrarupinyai Namaha|
|75||Om Shambhasurapramathinyai Namaha|
|76||Om Shubhadayai Namaha|
|77||Om Svaratmikayai Namaha|
|78||Om Raktabijanihantryai Namaha|
|79||Om Chaamundayai Namaha|
|80||Om Ambikayai Namaha|
|81||Om Mundakayapraharanaayai Namaha|
|82||Om Dhumralochanamadanayai Namaha|
|83||Om Sarvadevastutayai Namaha|
|84||Om Saumyayai Namaha|
|85||Om Surasura namaskritayai Namaha|
|86||Om Kalaratryai Namaha|
|87||Om Kaladharayai Namaha|
|88||Om Rupasaubhagyadayinyai Namaha|
|89||Om Vagdevyai Namaha|
|90||Om Vararohayai Namaha|
|91||Om Varahyai Namaha|
|92||Om Varijasanayai Namaha|
|93||Om Chitrambarayai Namaha|
|94||Om Chitragandhayai Namaha|
|95||Om Chitramalyavibhushitayai Namaha|
|96||Om Kantayai Namaha|
|97||Om Kamapradayai Namaha|
|98||Om Vandyayai Namaha|
|99||Om Vidyadharasupujitayai Namaha|
|100||Om Shvetananayai Namaha|
|101||Om Nilabhujayai Namaha|
|102||Om Chaturvargaphalapradayai Namaha|
|103||Om Chaturanana samrajyayai Namaha|
|104||Om Raktamadhyayai Namaha|
|105||Om Niranjanayai Namaha|
|106||Om Hansasanayai Namaha|
|Om Nilajanghayai Namaha
Om Brahmavishnushivatmikayai Namaha
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