According to the religious literature, Avahan means invocation. The invocation of Goddess Saraswati is known as Saraswati Avahan. The last three days of Navratri is largely dedicated to goddess Saraswati. It is celebrated in the Hindu month of Ashwin (on the seventh day of waxing moon) on Mahasaptami.
The Hindu scriptures have precisely mentioned about the time for the Saraswati puja. The Saraswati Avahan should be observed during Mul Nakshatra, Saraswati Puja should be done during Purva Ashadha Nakshatra, Balidan Puja should be done during Uttara Ashadha Nakshatra and Saraswati Visarjan should be done during Shravana Nakshatra.
In Maharashtra and South India, Saraswati pooja commences with Saraswati Avahan on Maha Saptami and ends on Vijayadashami with Saraswati Visarjan. - Saraswati Puja starts with Saraswati Avahan on Maha Saptami and ends on Vijayadashami with Saraswati Udasan or Visarjan. Generally Saraswati Awahan is observed on mahasaptami, Saraswati main Puja on Durgashtami and Uttara Puja & Balidaan for Goddess Saraswati on Mahanavami and finally Saraswati Visarjanam on Vijaya Dashmi.
Saraswati Puja calendar:
Saraswati Puja Avahan – Maha Saptami – Triratna vratam starts in Andhra Pradesh.
Saraswati Puja (main puja) – Durga Ashtami
Saraswati Uttara Puja & Balidaan – Mahanavami
Saraswati Visarjan or Udasan – Vijaya Dashami
Saraswati Kartik Purnima on (Sristhal) siddhpur of Gujaratis ancient festival since Solanki ruling of Patan state.
According to the Hindu religion, Goddess Saraswati is the deity of wisdom, music, arts and science. The mantra related to goddess Saraswati is - Om Aim Sarasvatyai Svaha. The Goddess is also revered as Tridevi and her abode is Brahmapura. Her vahana or mount is a swan, hansa and peacock. Lord Brahma is the consort of Goddess Saraswati and he created the universe with her knowledge. She is worshipped by students, scholars, artists and by those who seek intellect, creativity and communication skills.
She is part of a trinity- Goddess Kali, Goddess Lakshmi, Goddess Saraswati. All the three forms help the trinity of Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh in the creation, sustenance and annihilation of the universe. The goddess is respected by followers of the Jain religion in India. She is also known as the guardian deity in Buddhism, who shields the teachings of Gautama Buddha by offering protection to the devotees.
Saraswati is found in almost every major ancient and medieval Indian literature from 1000 BC to 1500 AD. She has remained significant as a goddess from the Vedic age through modern times of Hindu traditions. In Shanti Parva of the Hindu epic Mahabharata, Saraswati is called the mother of the Vedas, and later as the celestial creative symphony who appeared when Brahma created the universe. In Book 2 of Taittiriya Brahmana, she is called the mother of eloquent speech and melodious music. Saraswati is the active energy and power of Brahma.
How to Celebrate
The Avahan of Goddess Saraswati is done by performing a special Puja ceremony known as Saraswati Awahan. Different prayers used for the invocation of Goddess saraswati are chanted during this ceremony.