Spring is in the Air, Fresh Blossoms Everywhere.
I know we’re currently consumed by political upheaval, but if we could set aside our differences for a moment, we’d be more cognizant of how India blends beauty with the concept of diversity. It doesn’t take much more than a stroll through your neighborhood, to spot the potpourri of food flavors, attires, dialects, and customs our nation is celebrated for. All these activities lead to the celebration of a major event in Hinduism ‘Vasant Panchami.’
Vasant Panchami, the Festival of Kites, falls on Panchami of the waxing moon towards the close of winter in the month of January-February. The weather circle seems to be changing as it brings a message of softness in the weather in place of the hard cold season. Vasant is the time when mustard fields are yellow with it the spring is ushered in. The spiritual significance is that the festival symbolizes the end of the days of ignorance and awakening into Spiritual Enlightenment.
With the diverse parts of the country, the celebrations of Vasant Panchami also vary. Many Hindus, especially Bengalis, celebrate the festival by worshipping Goddess Sarasvati, wearing yellow, adorning their houses with yellow flowers, and eating special sweets. In the states of Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh, people traditionally go for an early-morning bath, followed by worshipping Shiva and Parvati wherein mango flowers and ears of wheat are offered to the deities. In several parts of Rajasthan, it is customary to wear garlands made of Jasmine flowers, while in Punjab the occasion is celebrated as ‘Vasant Festival of Kites’ replete with children as well as adults participating in the sport of kite-flying.
A festival is a tool to bring life to a state of exuberance and enthusiasm. During Vasant Panchami, when we wear yellow clothes, hold feasts, and organize kite flying activities, it makes life a celebration and gives us a deeper meaning of our Indian culture. It introduces the rich and vibrant culture and heritage of our country to Gen Z which is an utmost priority.