Saraswati Mata Images:- Goddess Saraswati also known as goddess of knowledge as well as the goddess of arts. She is the collection of mindfulness which brightens up the creation; she is the dawn-goddess whose rays dispel the darkness of ignorance.
Without her there is only chaos and confusion. To understand her one should go beyond the pleasures of the senses and rejoice in the serenity of the spirit. Goddess Saraswati doesn’t wear jewels and she doesn’t paint herself by the optimistic colors.
The white sari that goddess Saraswati wears symbolizes her general purity. She cheers in the powers of the mind as the supporter of pure wisdom.
In the images, she is generally depicted as a beautiful and graceful goddess clad in spotless white apparel and seated on a white Nelumbo nucifera lotus seat, which symbolizes light, knowledge and truth). She holds in her four hands a mala and Pustak, Pasa (noose),
Ailkusa (goad), Padma (lotus), Trisula (trident), Sailkha (conch), Cakra (discus) and so on. She is generally represented in the background of rivers, streams or water. It shows her relation and association with the river.
She keeps a peacock always standing nearby her. Sometimes, she is represented with five faces as well as with eight hands sometime. Also, three eyes and blue neck are not uncommon too. In this case she is the Maha Saraswati aspect of Durga or Parvati.
Though no separate carrier vehicle is mentioned, swan, the vehicle of Brahma, her spouse, is usually associated with her also. In some widely accepted and studied mythological literature and in pictures, a beautiful peacock is also exposed as her carrier vehicle.
All the four kind of Vedas as well as books of universal information, were her offspring. Her swan, personalizes pure facts and her carrier i.e. the peacock, is a representation of the arts.
Places like schools as well as libraries where knowledge is provided and books are stored are her main temples; materials like copy, books, pens, all gears of the artist as well as musical instruments are the items used in puja to the enlightening goddess of wisdom.
A book in her left hand represents all areas of secular sciences. she holds a Sitar on which she truly plays, to display the necessity for the development of fine-arts. She holds rosary in her right hand.
This symbolizes all spiritual sciences or Yoga including Tapas (austerities), meditation and Jap i.e. repetition of the divine name. By carrying the book in the left hand along with the rosary in the right hand, she is clearly teaching us that spiritual sciences are more important than secular sciences.
In the beginning there was chaos. Everything existed in a formless, fluid state. “How do I bring order to this disorder?” wondered Brahma, the creator. “With Knowledge”, said Devi. Heralded by a peacock, sacred books in one hand and a veena in the other dressed in white Devi emerged from Brahma’s mouth riding a swan as the goddess Saraswati.
“Knowledge supports human beings to find potentials where once he or she saw difficulties.” Said the goddess. Underneath her guidance, God Brahma developed the ability to think, communicate, sense and comprehend. Brahma found the melody of mantras. In his joy, he named it as Saraswati, Vagdevi, goddess of speech and sound.
The melody of mantras filled the whole universe with the positive and vital energy. Things began to take shape and 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 the lords of the celestial spheres. The demons governed the regions, humans marched on the earth. The sun rose and set, the moon waxed and waned, the tide flowed and ebbed.
Periods changed, seeds sprouted, plants blossomed, animals wandered as well as started to reproduce as it provided chance to the rhythm of life.
Brahma gave himself four heads facing every direction so that he could always be able to feast his eyes on Saraswathi’s beauty. Saraswati at first moved away from Brahma by taking the general form of a cow. Then Brahma tracked her as a bull.
Saraswati then reformed herself into a mare; Brahma gave chase by taking a form of horse. Every time when Saraswati turned into something, Brahma followed her by reforming himself as matching male correspondent. Brahma tried hard but he could not catch Saraswati. The goddess with numerous forms came to be known as Shatarupa.
Saraswati, Lakshmi and Brahma
Brahma created the universe with the help of Saraswati. Brahma was the guardian of the cosmos. He too needed Saraswathi’s support to sustain the cosmos.
By using her information, brahma started and preserved dharma also known as holy laws that safeguard stability as well as growth in the society. Brahma also desired the help of goddess Lakshmi also known as goddess of wealth.
Now the question arised that who did Brahma want more? Either Lakshmi or Saraswati? Wealth or knowledge? To defend herself, goddesses Laxmi argued that, “Knowledge does not fill an empty stomach.” In return Saraswati said that “Wealth keeps man alive but gives no meaning to life.” Thus, both Lakshmi and Saraswati are needed to live a full life.
Once Shiva got disturbed from his meditation then he opened his eyes, sensed Saraswathi’s discomfort and in a fit of rage turned into Bhairava, lord of terror. His eyes were red, his growl menacing. He dived in the direction of Brahma and wretched off Brahma’s fifth head with his sharp claws.
Brahma’s cut head scorched through Bhairava’s flesh and clung to his hand sapping him of all his strength and driving him mad. The lord of fear raged and thundered losing control over his senses. Saraswati, pleased with Bhairava’s timely action, rushed to his rescue. With her gentle touch she nursed him like a child.
The image of Saraswati represents a migration from a world of ignorance or bondage to a shore that represents enlightenment and freedom.