Popular Prayers of Goddess Sarasvathi

Goddess Saraswathi

Sarasvathee namasthubhyam veena pusthaka dharinee


maanikya veena mupalaalayantheem
madalasaam manjula vaagvilaasaaam
mahendraneeladyuthi komalaangeem
maathanga kanyaam manasaa smaraami.

Maha Saraswathi, the Goddess of Learning

Sarasvathi (also spelled as Saraswathi) is the goddess of speech, knowledge, learning, and intelligence. Sarasvathi means the flowing one. She is the goddess of waters (consciousness). She is the force behind the creative power of Brahma, the creator god. The Vedas are her abode. As speech (vac) she represents the expaansive power of Brahman, which propels the sounds of the Vedic hymns to the heavens and facilitates the communication between the mind and the body, gods and humans, and the heaven and the earth. She has many names such as Vani, Bhaarathi, Vidayadevi, Shyamala, Vidyaadhari, Braahmi, etc. As the goddess of knowledge, speech and learning, Sarasvathi also represents eloquence, brilliance, grace, refinement of human character, poetic and artistic ability, and civilized behavior (samskrithi). The name Sarasvathi is associated with the legendary river of the same name which is mentioned in the Rigveda more than any other sacred river. The river is now extinct, but satellite images do show that the river once flowed in the now arid desert region of Rajasthan. The following are a few important popular Hindu prayers addressed to Saraswathi, the goddess of learning. For pronunciation help, please check the footnote in each page.

Suggestions for Further Reading

Guidelines to pronunciation: Sanskrit is essentially a language of sounds and sound vibrations. The efficacy of Sanskrit prayers depends upon the vibrations that are produced during chanting. It is difficult to transliterate Sanskrit words into English with full justification to the original sounds. In the above stated transliteration we followed a simple approach to make it easier even for those who are not familiar with English or Sanskrit. Wherever you find repeat vowels (aa, uu, ee) please stretch the vowel sound (for ex., aa as in vast or path, uu as in cool or root, ee as in eel or feel). Similarly, "ai" should be pronounced as in gait, fight, or tight. Th should be pronounced as in think or thick, but when t alone is used, it should be pronounced as in two, top or tip.

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