Goddess of Knowledge, Music, Arts, Speech, Wisdom, Learning and the Saraswati River
|Member of Tridevi|
Saraswati by Raja Ravi Varma
|Other names||Sharada, Savitri, Brahmi, Bharadi, Vani, Gayatri, Vagdevi|
|Affiliation||Devi, River goddess, Tridevi, Mahasaraswati|
|Mantra||ॐ ऐं महासरस्वत्यै नमः , om shree shree saraswatyai namaha.|
|Symbols||White colour, lotus, Veena , Saraswati river, books|
|Mount||Swan or peacock|
|Festivals||Vasant Panchami and seventh day of Navratri|
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Saraswati (Sanskrit : सरस्वती, IAST : Sarasvatī), also known as Sharda (Sanskrit : शारदा, IAST : Śāradā), is the Hindu goddess of knowledge, music, art, speech, wisdom, and learning. She is a part of the trinity ( Tridevi ) of Saraswati, Lakshmi, and Parvati. All the three forms help the trinity of Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva to create, maintain, and regenerate the Universe, respectively.
The earliest known mention of Saraswati as a goddess is in the Rigveda. She has remained significant as a goddess from the Vedic period through modern times of Hindu traditions.Some Hindus celebrate the festival of Vasant Panchami (the fifth day of spring, and also known as Saraswati Puja and Saraswati Jayanti in so many parts of India) in her honour, and mark the day by helping young children learn how to write the letters of the alphabet on that day. The Goddess is also revered by believers of the Jain religion of west and central India, as well as some Buddhist sects.
Saraswati, is a Sanskrit fusion word of saras (सरस्) meaning "pooling water", but also sometimes translated as "speech"; and vati (वती) meaning "she who possesses". Originally associated with the river or rivers known as Saraswati, this combination, therefore, means "she who has ponds, lakes, and pooling water" or occasionally "she who possesses speech". It is also a Sanskrit composite word of surasa-vati (सरसु+अति) which means "one with plenty of water".
The word Saraswati appears both as a reference to a river and as a significant deity in the Rigveda. In initial passages, the word refers to the Sarasvati River and is mentioned as one among several northwestern Indian rivers such as the Drishadvati. Saraswati, then, connotes a river deity. In Book 2, the Rigveda describes Saraswati as the best of mothers, of rivers, of goddesses.
अम्बितमे नदीतमे देवितमे सरस्वति
— Rigveda 2.41.16
Best of mothers, the best of rivers, best of goddesses, Sarasvatī.
Saraswati is celebrated as a feminine deity with healing and purifying powers of abundant, flowing waters in Book 10 of the Rigveda, as follows:
अपो अस्मान मातरः शुन्धयन्तु घर्तेन नो घर्तप्वः पुनन्तु |
विश्वं हि रिप्रं परवहन्ति देविरुदिदाभ्यः शुचिरापूत एमि ||
— Rigveda 10.17
May the waters, the mothers, cleanse us,
may they who purify with butter, purify us with butter,
for these goddesses bear away defilement,
I come up out of them pure and cleansed.
— translated by John Muir
In Vedic literature, Saraswati acquires the same significance for early Indians (states John Muir) as that accredited to the river Ganges by their modern descendants. In hymns of Book 10 of Rigveda, she is already declared to be the "possessor of knowledge". Her importance grows in Vedas composed after Rigveda and in Brahmanas, and the word evolves in its meaning from "waters that purify", to "that which purifies", to "vach (speech) that purifies", to "knowledge that purifies", and ultimately into a spiritual concept of a goddess that embodies knowledge, arts, music, melody, muse, language, rhetoric, eloquence, creative work and anything whose flow purifies the essence and self of a person. In Upanishads and Dharma Sastras, Saraswati is invoked to remind the reader to meditate on virtue, virtuous emoluments, the meaning and the very essence of one's activity, one's action.
Saraswati is known by many names in ancient Hindu literature. Some examples of synonyms for Saraswati include Brahmani (power of Brahma), Brahmi (goddess of sciences),Bharadi (goddess of history), Vani and Vachi (both referring to the flow of music/song, melodious speech, eloquent speaking respectively), Varnesvari (goddess of letters), Kavijihvagravasini (one who dwells on the tongue of poets). The Goddess Saraswati is also known as Vidyadatri (Goddess who provides knowledge), Veenavadini (Goddess who plays Veena, the musical instrument held by Goddess Saraswati), Pustakdharini (Goddess who carries a book), Veenapani (Goddess who carries a veena in her hands), Hansavahini (Goddess who sits on swan) and Vagdevi (Goddess of speech).
In some interpretations, "Sara" is translated as "Essence", and "Sva" is translated to "Self". Thus, the name Saraswati would translate to "She who helps realize the essence of self" or "She who reconciles the essence (of Parabrahman) with one's self".
In the Hindi language, her name is written Hindi : सरस्वती. In the Telugu, Sarasvati is also known as Chaduvula Thalli (చదువుల తల్లి) and Shārada (శారద). In Konkani, she is referred to as Shārada, Veenapani, Pustakadhārini, Vidyadāyini. In Kannada, variants of her name include Sharade, Sharadamba, Vāni, Veenapani in the famous Sringeri temple. In Tamil, she is also known as Kalaimagal (கலைமகள்), Nāmagal (நாமகள்), Kalaivāni (கலைவாணி), Vāni (வாணி) and Bharathi (பாரதி). In the Tiruvalluva Maalai, a collection of fifty-five Tamil verses praising the Kural literature and its author Valluvar, she is known as Nāmagal and is believed to have composed the second verse. She is also addressed as Sāradā (the one who offers sāra or the essence), Shāradā (the one who loves the autumn season), Veenā-pustaka-dhārini (the one holding books and a Veena), Vāgdevi, Vāgishvari (both meaning "goddess of speech"), Vāni (speech), Varadhanāyaki (the one bestowing boons), Sāvitri (consort of Brahma), and Gāyatri (mother of Vedas).[ citation needed ]
In India, she is locally spelled as সৰস্বতী in Assamese, সরস্বতী in Bengali, സരസ്വതി in Malayalam, சரஸ்வதி in Tamil, and ସରସ୍ଵତୀ in Odia. Outside Nepal and India, she is known in Burmese as Thurathadi (သူရဿတီ, pronounced [θùja̰ðədì] or [θùɹa̰ðədì] ) or Tipitaka Medaw (တိပိဋကမယ်တော်, pronounced [tḭpḭtəka̰ mɛ̀dɔ̀] ), in Chinese as Biàncáitiān (辯才天), in Japanese as Benzaiten (弁才天/弁財天) and in Thai as Suratsawadi (สุรัสวดี) or Saratsawadi (สรัสวดี).
In Hindu tradition, Sarasvati has retained her significance as a goddess from the Vedic age up to the present day. 2 of Taittiriya Brahmana, she is called “the mother of eloquent speech and melodious music”. Saraswati is the active energy and power of Brahma. She is also mentioned in many minor Sanskrit publications such as Sarada Tilaka of 8th century CE as follows,In Shanti Parva of the Hindu epic Mahabharata, Saraswati is called the mother of the Vedas, and later as the celestial creative symphony who appeared when Brahma created the universe. In Book
May the goddess of speech enable us to attain all possible eloquence,
she who wears on her locks a young moon,
who shines with exquisite lustre,
who sits reclined on a white lotus,
and from the crimson cusp of whose hands pours,
radiance on the implements of writing, and books produced by her favour.
– On Saraswati, Sarada Tilaka
Saraswati became a prominent deity in Buddhist iconography – the consort of Manjushri in 1st millennium CE. In some instances such as in the Sadhanamala of Buddhist pantheon, she has been symbolically represented similar to regional Hindu iconography, but unlike the more well-known depictions of Saraswati.
The goddess Saraswati is often depicted as a beautiful woman dressed in pure white, often seated on a white lotus, which symbolizes light, knowledge and truth.She not only embodies knowledge but also the experience of the highest reality. Her iconography is typically in white themes from dress to flowers to swan – the colour symbolizing Sattwa Guna or purity, discrimination for true knowledge, insight and wisdom.
Her dhyana mantra describes her to be as white as the moon, clad in a white dress, bedecked in white ornaments, radiating with beauty, holding a book and a pen in her hands (the book represents knowledge).
She is generally shown to have four arms, but sometimes just two. When shown with four hands, those hands symbolically mirror her husband Brahma's four heads, representing manas (mind, sense), buddhi (intellect, reasoning), citta (imagination, creativity), and ahamkāra (self consciousness, ego).Brahma represents the abstract, while she represents action and reality.
The four hands hold items with symbolic meaning — a pustaka (book or script), a mālā (rosary, garland), a water pot and a musical instrument (vīnā).The book she holds symbolizes the Vedas representing the universal, divine, eternal, and true knowledge as well as all forms of learning. A mālā of crystals, representing the power of meditation, inner reflection, and spirituality. A pot of water represents the purifying power to separate right from wrong, the clean from the unclean, and essence from the inessential. In some texts, the pot of water is symbolism for soma – the drink that liberates and leads to knowledge. The most famous feature on Saraswati is a musical instrument called a veena, represents all creative arts and sciences, and her holding it symbolizes expressing knowledge that creates harmony. Saraswati is also associated with anurāga, the love for and rhythm of music, which represents all emotions and feelings expressed in speech or music.
A hamsa or swan is often shown near her feet. In Hindu mythology, the hamsa is a sacred bird, which if offered a mixture of milk and water, is said to be able to drink the milk alone. It thus symbolizes the ability to discriminate between good and evil, essence from the outward show, and the eternal from the evanescent.Due to her association with the swan, Saraswati is also referred to as Hamsavāhini, which means “she who has a hamsa as her vehicle”. The swan is also a symbolism for spiritual perfection, transcendence and moksha.
Sometimes a citramekhala (also called mayura, peacock) is shown beside the goddess. The peacock symbolizes colorful splendor, the celebration of dance, and – as the devourer of snakes – the alchemical ability to transmute the serpent poison of self into the radiant plumage of enlightenment.
She is usually depicted near a flowing river or another body of water, which depiction may constitute a reference to her early history as a river goddess.
She is a part of the Tridevi, the triad of great Goddesses. She represents the Sattwa Guna, and Jnana Shakti.
Devi Saraswati was initially a river goddess in early texts like the Rigveda. She was the personification of the Saraswati river, which is a symbol of purity.
The story of Devi Saraswati becoming a river is mentioned in the Srishti Khanda of Padma Purana as well as in Skanda Purana. There was a terrible battle between the Bhargavas ( a group of Brahmana) and Hehayas (a group of Kshatriya), and from this an all-consuming fire called Vadavagni was born which could destroy the whole world. In some versions, a sage named Auva created it. The devas were worried and they went to Vishnu or Shiva. The supreme god suggested that they should go to Saraswati for help as she can become a river and immerse the Vadavagni in the ocean. All the devas and devis went to Saraswati and requested her to protect the universe.
She said that she would only agree if her disciple, Bramha told her to do so. Then they all went to Bramha and Bramha told Saraswati to become a river. Saraswati agreed and left Brahmaloka and arrived at sage Uttanka's ashram. There she met Shiva. He gave the Vadavagni in a pot to Saraswati and told her to originate from Plaksha tree. Saraswati merged with the tree and transformed into a river. From there she flowed towards Pushkar. Saraswati continued her journey towards the ocean. At last, she reached the end of her journey and immersed the fire in the ocean.
There are many avatars and forms of Goddess Saraswati.
She is venerated as Mahasaraswati in the Kashmir Shakti Peetha, as Vidhya Saraswati in Basara and Vargal, and as Sharadamba in sringeri. In some parts, she is known by her twin identities, Savitri and Gayatri.
She takes her Matrika (Warrior) avatar as Brahmani. Saraswati is not just the goddess of knowledge and wisdom but also she is the Brahmavidya herself, the goddess of the wisdom of ultimate truth. Her Mahavidhya forms are Matangi and Tara Mahavidya she manifests:
In some regions of India, such as Vindhya, Odisha, West Bengal and Assam, as well as east Nepal, Saraswati is part of the Devi Mahatmya mythology, in the trinity ( Tridevi ) of Mahakali, Mahalakshmi and Mahasaraswati.This is one of many different Hindu legends that attempt to explain how the Hindu trinity of gods (Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva) and goddesses (Saraswati, Lakshmi and Parvati) came into being. Various Purana texts offer alternate legends for Maha Saraswati.
Maha Saraswati is depicted as eight-armed and is often portrayed holding a Veena whilst sitting on a white lotus flower.
Her dhyāna shloka given at the beginning of the fifth chapter of Devi Mahatmya is: Wielding in her lotus-hands the bell, trident, ploughshare, conch, pestle, discus, bow, and arrow, her lustre is like that of a moon shining in the autumn sky. She is born from the body of Gauri and is the sustaining base of the three worlds. That Mahasaraswati I worship here who destroyed Sumbha and other asuras.
Mahasaraswati is also part of another legend, the Navshaktis (not to be confused with Navdurgas), or nine forms of Shakti, namely Brahmi, Vaishnavi, Maheshwari, Kaumari, Varahi, Narsimhi, Aindri, Shivdooti, and Chamunda, revered as powerful and dangerous goddesses in eastern India. They have special significance on Navaratri in these regions. All of these are seen ultimately as aspects of a single great Hindu goddess, with Maha Saraswati as one of those nine.
In Tibet and parts of India, Nilasaraswati is sometimes considered as a form of Mahavidya Tara. Nila Saraswati is not much a different deity from traditional Saraswati, who subsumes her knowledge and creative energy in tantric literature. Though the traditional form of Saraswati is of calm, compassionate, and peaceful one: Nila Sarasvati is the ugra (angry, violent, destructive) manifestation in one school of Hinduism, while the more common Saraswati is the saumya (calm, compassionate, productive) manifestation found in most others. In tantric literature of the former, Nilasaraswati has 100 names. There are separate dhyana shlokas and mantras for her worship in Tantrasara. She is worshipped in parts of India as an incarnate or incarnation of Goddess Tara but mostly outside India. She is not only worshipped but also been manifested as a form of Goddess Saraswati.[ clarification needed ][ citation needed ]
Sharada Peeth is a ruined Hindu temple and ancient centre of learning located in present-day Azad Kashmir. Between the 6th and 12th centuries CE, it was among the most prominent temple universities in the Indian subcontinent. Famed for its library, stories recount eminent scholars travelling long distances to access its texts. It played a key role in the development and popularisation of the Sharada script in North India, causing the script to be named after it, and Kashmir to acquire the moniker "Sharada Desh", meaning "country of Sharada".
As one of the Maha Shakti Peethas, Hindus believe that it represents the spiritual location of the goddess Sati's fallen right hand. Sharada Peeth is one of the three holiest sites of pilgrimage for Kashmiri Pandits, alongside the Martand Sun Temple and the Amarnath Temple. As part of INR1200 crore Morni to Kalesar tourism development plan announced in January 2019, Government of Haryana is developing the historic Sharda Mata Temple of Chotta Trilokpur, along with Kalesar Mahadev temple, Kapal Mochan Tirth, Panchmukhi Hanuman temple of Basatiyawala, Lohgarh fort capital of Banda Singh Bahadur.
Saraswati is also revered in Jainism as goddess of knowledge and regarded as source of all learning. Saraswati is depicted in standing posture with 4 hands, one holding text, other holding a rosary and two hands holding Veena. Saraswati is seated on lotus with peacock as her vehicle. Saraswati is also regarded as responsible for dissemination of tirthankars sermon.The earliest sculpture of Saraswati in any religious tradition is the Mathura Jain Saraswati from Kankali Tila dating 132 CE.
Ancient Sharada Peeth in Pakistan’s Azad Kashmir is one of the oldest surviving temples of Saraswati.
There are many temples dedicated to Saraswati around the world. Some notable temples include the Gnana Saraswati Temple in Basar on the banks of the River Godavari, the Warangal Saraswati and Shri Saraswati Kshetramu temples in Medak, Telangana. In Karnataka, one of many Saraswati/Sharada pilgrimage spots is Shringeri Sharadamba Temple. In Ernakulam district of Kerala, there is a famous Saraswati temple in North Paravur, namely Dakshina Mookambika Temple North Paravur. In Tamil Nadu, Koothanur hosts a Saraswati temple at Koothanur in Tamil Nadu about 25 kilometres from Tiruvarur. In her identity as Brahmani, additional Sarasvati temples can be found throughout Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh, Rajasthan, and Uttar Pradesh.
One of the most famous festivals associated with Goddess Saraswati is the Hindu festival of Vasant Panchami. Celebrated on the 5th day in the Hindu calendar month of Magha (month), it is also known as Saraswati Puja and Saraswati Jayanti in India.
In Assam , Odisha, West Bengal and Tripura, Goddess Saraswati is worshipped on Vasant Panchami, a Hindu festival celebrated every year on the 5th day in the Hindu calendar month of Magha (about February). Hindus celebrate this festival in temples, homes and educational institutes alike.
In Bihar and Jharkhand, Vasant Panchami is commonly known as Saraswati Puja. On this day, Goddess Saraswati is worshipped in schools, colleges, educational institutes as well as in institutes associated with music and dance. Cultural programmes are also organised in schools and institutes on this day. People especially students worship Goddess Saraswati also in pandals (a tent made up of colourful cloths, decorated with lights and other decorative items). In these states, on the occasion of Saraswati Puja, Goddess Saraswati is worshipped in the form of idol, made up of soil. On Saraswati Puja, the idol is worshipped by people and prasad is distributed among the devotees after puja. Prasad mainly consists of boondi (motichoor), pieces of carrot, peas and Indian plum (ber). On the next day or any day depending on religious condition, the idol is immersed in a pond (known as Murti Visarjan or Pratima Visarjan) after performing a Havana (immolation), with full joy and fun, playing with abir and gulal. After Pratima Visarjan, members involved in the organisation of puja ceremony eat khichdi together.
In Goa, [ citation needed ]Maharashtra and Karnataka, Saraswati Puja starts with Saraswati Avahan on Maha Saptami and ends on Vijayadashami with Saraswati Udasan or Visarjan.
In 2018, the Haryana government launched and sponsored the annual National Saraswati Mahotsav in its state named after Saraswati.
In Kerala and Tamil Nadu, the last three days of the Navaratri festival, i.e., Ashtami, Navami, and Dashami, are celebrated as Sarasvati Puja.
The celebrations start with the Puja Vypu (Placing for Worship). It consists of placing the books for puja on the Ashtami day. It may be in one's own house, in the local nursery school run by traditional teachers, or in the local temple. The books will be taken out for reading, after worship, only on the morning of the third day (Vijaya Dashami). It is called Puja Eduppu (Taking [from] Puja). Children are happy, since they are not expected to study on these days. On the Vijaya Dashami day, Kerala and Tamil Nadu celebrate the Ezhuthiniruthu or Initiation of Writing for the little children before they are admitted to nursery schools. This is also called Vidyarambham. The child is made to write for the first time on the rice spread in a plate with the index finger, guided by an elder of the family or by a teacher.
During the Navratri festivities, on the seventh day, which coincides with the Moola nakshatra (which is considered to be Devi's birth star), the Goddesses in various temples are decorated and worshipped in the form of Mahasaraswati,in honor of the Goddess of knowledge, wisdom, arts, and learning. Students throng these temples in large numbers and receive books, pencils, pens and other learning equipment as "Devi prasadam". "Aksharabhyasa", the ceremony of initiating a child into the process of learning, is held on a large scale across these temples.
In Burma, the Shwezigon Mon Inscription dated to be of 1084 AD, near Bagan, recites the name Saraswati as follows,
In Buddhist arts of Myanmar, she is called Thurathadi (or Thayéthadi). 215 Students in Myanmar pray for her blessings before their exams. :327 She is also believed to be, in Mahayana pantheon of Myanmar, the protector of Buddhist scriptures.:
The concept of Saraswati migrated from India, through China to Japan, where she appears as Benzaiten (弁財天). centuries. She is often depicted holding a biwa , a traditional Japanese lute musical instrument. She is enshrined on numerous locations throughout Japan such as the Kamakura's Zeniarai Benzaiten Ugafuku Shrine or Nagoya's Kawahara Shrine; the three biggest shrines in Japan in her honour are at the Enoshima Island in Sagami Bay, the Chikubu Island in Lake Biwa, and the Itsukushima Island in Seto Inland Sea.Worship of Benzaiten arrived in Japan during the 6th through 8th
Saraswati was honoured with invocations among Hindus of Angkorian Cambodia, suggests a tenth-century and another eleventh-century inscription.She and Brahma are referred to in Cambodian epigraphy from the 7th century onwards, and she is praised by Khmer poets for being the goddess of eloquence, writing, and music. More offerings were made to her than to her husband Brahma. She is also referred to as Vagisvari and Bharati in Yasovarman era Khmer literature.
In ancient Thai literature, Saraswati (Thai : สุรัสวดี; RTGS: Suratsawadi) is the goddess of speech and learning, and consort of Brahma. Over time, Hindu and Buddhist concepts on deities merged in Thailand. Icons of Saraswati with other deities of India are found in old Thai wats . Amulets with Saraswati and a peacock are also found in Thailand.
Watugunung, the last day of the pawukon calendar, is devoted to Saraswati, goddess of learning. Although it is devoted to books, reading is not allowed. The fourth day of the year is called Pagerwesi, meaning "iron fence". It commemorates a battle between good and evil.
Saraswati is an important goddess in Balinese Hinduism. She shares the same attributes and iconography as Saraswati in Hindu literature of India – in both places, she is the goddess of knowledge, creative arts, wisdom, language, learning and purity. In Bali, she is celebrated on Saraswati day, one of the main festivals for Hindus in Indonesia. day year in the Pawukon calendar.The day marks the close of 210
On Saraswati day, people make offerings in the form of flowers in temples and to sacred texts. The day after Saraswati day, is Banyu Pinaruh, a day of cleansing. On this day, Hindus of Bali go to the sea, sacred waterfalls or river spots, offer prayers to Saraswati, and then rinse themselves in that water in the morning. Then they prepare a feast, such as the traditional bebek betutu and nasi kuning, that they share.
The Saraswati Day festival has a long history in Bali.It has become more widespread in Hindu community of Indonesia in recent decades, and it is celebrated with theatre and dance performance.
In Tibet, she is known as the Goddess of Music (Tibetan : དབྱངས་ཅན་མ, Wylie : dbyangs can ma, THL : yang chen ma), or the Tara of Music (Tibetan : དབྱངས་ཅན་སྒྲོལ་མ, Wylie : dbyangs can sgrol ma, THL : yang chen dröl ma), considered the consort of Mañjuśri, Buddha of Wisdom, she is one of the 21 Taras.
Saraswati is the Divine Embodiment & bestower of Enlightened Eloquence & Inspiration, patroness of the arts, sciences, music, language, literature, history, poetry & philosophy, all those engaged in creative endeavours in Tibetan Buddhism. She is considered the peaceful manifestation of Palden Lhamo (Glorious Goddess). In the Gelugpa tradition, Palden Lhamo is known as Magzor Gyalmo (the Queen who Repels Armies century Tibetan monk Je Tsongkhapa. He composed a devotional poem to her. She is believed in the Tibetan tradition to have accompanied him on his travels, as well as regularly engaging in conversations with him.[ citation needed ]) and is a wrathful emanation of Saraswati while being a protector. Saraswati was the yidam (principal personal meditational deity) of 14th
The Sarasvati River is one of the rivers mentioned in the Rig Veda and later Vedic and post-Vedic texts. It plays an important role in the Vedic religion, appearing in all but the fourth book of the Rigveda.
Trimūrti is the triple deity of supreme divinity in Hinduism in which the cosmic functions of creation, maintenance, and destruction are personified as a triad of deities, typically Brahma the creator, Vishnu the preserver, and Shiva the destroyer, though individual denominations may vary from that particular line-up. The legendary yogi Dattatreya is often treated as not only one of the 24 avatars of Vishnu, but also of Shiva and Brahma as well in a single three-headed body.
Parvati, Uma or Gauri is the Hindu goddess of fertility, love, beauty, harmony, marriage, children, and devotion; as well as of divine strength and power. Known by many other names, she is the gentle and nurturing form of the Supreme Hindu goddess Adi Parashakti (Shivashakti) and one of the central deities of the Goddess-oriented Shakti sect called Shaktism. She is the Mother goddess in Hinduism, and has many attributes and aspects. Each of her aspects is expressed with a different name, giving her over 10000 names in regional Hindu stories of India. Along with Lakshmi and Saraswati, she forms the trinity of Hindu goddesses (Tridevi).
Lakshmi (; Sanskrit: लक्ष्मी, IAST: Lakṣhmī; or Lakṣmī;, also known as Sri, is one of the principle goddesses in Hinduism. She is the goddess of wealth, fortune, love, beauty, Māyā, joy and prosperity. Lakshmi is considered as prakriti and Vishnu as purusha within Vaishnavism, one of the major traditions within contemporary Hinduism. She is one of the Mother goddesses in Hinduism, and has many attributes and aspects. Along with Parvati and Saraswati, she forms the trinity of Hindu goddesses.
Durga, is identified as the principal Hindu goddess of war, strength and protection. The Mythology centres around combating evils and demonic forces that threaten peace, prosperity, and Dharma the power of good over evil. Durga is also a fierce form of the protective mother goddess, who unleashes her divine wrath against the wicked for the liberation of the oppressed, and entails destruction to empower creation.
Benzaiten is a Japanese Buddhist goddess who originated from the Hindu goddess Saraswati. Worship of Benzaiten arrived in Japan during the 6th through 8th centuries, mainly via the Chinese translations of the Sutra of Golden Light, which has a section devoted to her. She is also mentioned in the Lotus Sutra and often depicted holding a biwa, a traditional Japanese lute, just as Saraswati holds a veena. Benzaiten is a syncretic entity with both a Buddhist and a Shinto aspect. Benzaiten was worshiped as the personification of wisdom in the Tokugawa period.
Shaktism is a major sect of Hinduism, wherein the metaphysical reality is considered metaphorically a woman and Shakti is regarded as the supreme godhead. It includes many goddesses, all considered aspects of the same supreme goddess. Shaktism has different sub-traditions, ranging from those focused on gracious Parvati to that of fierce Kali.
Durga Puja, also called Durgotsava, is an annual Hindu festival originating in the Indian subcontinent which reveres and pays homage to the Hindu goddess, Durga. It is particularly popular and traditionally celebrated in the Indian states of West Bengal, Assam, Odisha, Tripura and the country of Bangladesh, and the diaspora from this region, and also in Mithilanchal regions of Bihar and Nepal. The festival is observed in the Indian calendar month of Ashwin, which corresponds to the months of September–October in the Gregorian calendar, and is a ten-day festival, of which the last five are of significance. The puja is performed in homes and in the public, the latter featuring temporary stage and structural decorations. The festival is also marked by scripture recitations, performance arts, revelry, gift giving, family visits, feasting, and public processions. Durga puja is an important festival in the Shaktism tradition of Hinduism.
The Shakti Peetha are significant shrines and pilgrimage destinations in Shaktism, the goddess-focused Hindu tradition. There are 51 Shakti peethas by various accounts, of which 18 are named as Maha (major) in medieval Hindu texts.
Chandi or Chandika is a Hindu deity. Chandika is a form of Parvati's alter ego, Durga. She represents the power of Shakti. Chandika is a powerful form of Parvati, who manifested to destroy evil.
Devi Kanya Kumari is goddess Parvati in the form of an adolescent girl child. Devi is also known as Shree Baala Bhadra or Shree Baala. She is popularly known as "Shakti" (Parvati) "Devi". The Bhagavathy Temple is located in Cape Kanya Kumari in Tamil Nadu, at the southern tip of main land India, there by located on the confluence of the Bay of Bengal, the Arabian Sea, and the Indian Ocean. She is also known by several other names, including Kanya Devi and Devi Kumari. She is also worshiped as Shree Bhadrakali by devotees. Sage Parashurama is said to have performed the consecration of the temple. The goddess is believed to be the one who removes rigidity of the mind; devotees usually feel the tears in their eyes or even inside their mind when they pray to the goddess in devotion and contemplation.
Gnana Saraswati Temple is a Hindu temple of Goddess Saraswati located on the banks of Godavari River at Basar, Telangana, India. It is one of the two famous Saraswati temples in the Indian subcontinent, the other being Sharada Peeth. Saraswati is the Hindu Goddess of knowledge and learning. Children are brought to the temple for the learning ceremony called as Akshara abyasam.
Devī is the Sanskrit word for 'goddess'; the masculine form is deva. Devi—the feminine form—and deva, the masculine form, mean 'heavenly, divine, anything of excellence', and are also gender specific terms for a deity in Hinduism.
Bhuvaneshvari is the fourth amongst the ten Mahavidya or Shivasakthi goddesses in Hinduism, and an aspect of Devi as elements of the physical cosmos in giving shape to the creation of the World.
The Tridevi is a concept in Hinduism joining a triad of eminent goddesses either as a feminine version of the Trimurti or as consorts of a masculine Trimurti, depending on the denomination. This triad is typically personified by the Hindu goddesses Saraswati, Lakshmi, and Parvati. In Shaktism, these triune goddesses are the manifestations of Mula-Prakriti or Devi.
Navaratri is a Hindu festival that spans nine nights and is celebrated every year in the autumn. It is observed for different reasons and celebrated differently in various parts of the Indian cultural sphere. Theoretically, there are four seasonal Navaratri. However, in practice, it is the post-monsoon autumn festival called Sharada Navaratri that is the most observed in the honor of the divine feminine Devi (Durga). The festival is celebrated in the bright half of the Hindu calendar month Ashvin, which typically falls in the Gregorian months of September and October.
Kali Puja, also known as Shyama Puja or Mahanisha Puja, is a festival, originating from the Indian subcontinent, dedicated to the Hindu goddess Kali, celebrated on the new moon day of the Hindu month Kartik especially in the regions of Bengal, Chittagong, Sylhet, Rangpur, Bihar(Mithila), Odisha, Assam, and the town of Titwala in Maharashtra. It coincides with the Lakshmi Puja day of Diwali. While the Hindu Bengalis, Chittagonians, Sylhetis, Rajbongshis, Odias, Assamese and Maithils worship the goddess Kali on this day, the rest of India and Nepal worships goddess Lakshmi on Diwali.
Adi Parashakti is considered the Supreme Being in the Shaktism sect of Hinduism. She is also popularly referred to as "Parama Shakti", "Adi Shakti", "Mahashakti", "Mahadevi" "Mahagauri", "Mahakali", Satyam Shakti, or even simply as "Shakti". "Parama" means absolute, "Satya" means the Truth as per many Shakta texts. In Hinduism, Shaktas believe goddess Parvati as Adi Parashakti and regard her as the supreme being.
The Sarasvati-rahasya Upanishad, meaning “the Secret Knowledge of the Wisdom Goddess”, is a late medieval era Sanskrit text and one of the minor Upanishads of Hinduism. The text is classified as one of the eight Shakta Upanishads and embedded in the Krishna Yajurveda.