Image used with permission.
Basic Description: The
Hindu Goddess Sarasvati is the wife (consort) of Brahma. She possesses the power
of learning and wisdom. These powers represent themselves through all arts:
music, painting, sculpture, dance, and writing. She is credited with presenting
the gift of writing to mankind so that her songs could be written down and preserved.
She is also considered the Goddess of eloquence and speech and words pour from
her like a sweetly flowing river. She is the mother of the Vedas and the
chants dedicated to her, called the Sarasvati Vandana, often begin and end
Alternate Names: Saraswati
She was originally the guardian
deity of the Sarasvati River, but when an as-yet-unexplained ecological tragedy
overtook that body of water and it dried up in prehistoric times, the civilization
that honored her was absorbed by those of neighboring regions and she became
instead a goddess of music and song. As was the case with most of the regional
Indian goddesses, Sarasvati was paired off with an appropriate god, and in her
case, the deity with whom she is associated is Brahma, the Creator.
Sarasvati is usually
depicted sitting on a lotus. In Hindi culture the lotus is a symbol of true
knowledge. She has four hands representing four aspects of human personality
in learning; mind, intellect, alertness and ego. In one hand she holds a book,
which represents sciences and learning in general. This book also associates
her with both instrumental and vocal music. In another hand she holds a pearl
necklace. With her two other hands she holds an instrument called a Veena (Vina).
She is commonly dressed in white as a sign of purity.
is a jealous rival of the goddess of wealth, Lakshmi, and so anyone pursuing
wealth alone will not be helped by Saravati. Sarasvatiís Origin: Some
myths say that Sarasvati was born from the god Brahma. Brahma, desiring to create
the world, goes into meditation, whereupon his body divides in two, half male
and half female.
Riding Animal: Sarasvatiís
riding animal is a swan (another symbol of purity). However, she can occasionally
be seen with a peacock.
is the consort of Brahma.
Other References on the Karma-to-Grace website: Ready
for Death by E.M.S.
The Hindu Pantheon. Los Angeles: Philosophical research society,
Thomas, P. Epics, Myths
and Legends of India. Bombay, India: D. B. Taraporevala Sons &
Co. Private Ltd, 1961.
Return to Table of Contents