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Goddess Saraswati Symbol of knowledge

2 Agustus 2009

Saraswati is a sacred name to call the figure Goddess of Knowledge. The word Sarasvati is derived from two stems. namely saras and vati. Saras stands for the onging spring or something flowing endlessly. Meanwhile, the stem vati means to have. Therefore, Saraswati means something that has flowing quality continuously, namely the water and knowledge of life.

Goddess Saraswati is depicted as a fourhanded beautiful woman. This beautiful figure is used to represent something attractive. Considering that Goddess Saraswati is the Goddess of Knowledge, of course it would make human get interested in learning. Such attraction is not in terms of physico-biological, but it should be observed in the ethical-religious perspective. By nature, learning the knowledge poses one of our bhakti or devotional manifestations to Goddess Saraswati. Moreover, of course, the knowledge learned is beneficial for the self, family, community and nation.

Knowledge is an invaluable wealth because as long as human is alive, the knowledge he owns will never run out or decrease. Even, it increases pursuant to his capability of perceiving it. It is different from material wealth that can run out any time if we do not spend it wisely. Knowledge constitutes the main weapon to improve the standard of living on ths wold (i.e. may reach honorable, authoritative and sublime position it he o she has supreme knowledge.

According to Hinduism. Sang Hyang Ajii Saraswati is the Shakti/mythoIoçcaI consort of Lord Brahma. She is embodied into a fourhanded beautiful goddess along with her attributes such as veena (musical instrument), lotus, beads, and palm manuscript. Around her lies a peacock and swan.

These attributes represent the meanings as follows: genitri or string beads-conveys that knowledge never runs out and can be learned along the lifetime; palm leaf manuscript—the source of knowledge; veena—knowledge can influence human aesthetical value; lotus—the abode of Hyang Widhi or Supreme God; peacock—knowledge is sublime and authoritative; swan—represents wisdom to distinguish between good and bad. In addition, swan symbolize the authority of three worlds (loka) where it could live on aquatic, terrestrial and celestial world.

School is a formal education all institution functioning as a venue for preceptors to undertake the learning process for his student. That is why the effigy Goddess Saraswati can be encountered at schools across Bali.



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