S'rî Saraswati is that aspect of God who is the bestower of Pure Knowledge. She is the S'akti of Lord Brahma and is worshipped in the beginning of any auspicious performance for blessings. Seated on a white lotus, symbolizing the Cosmic S'rî Chakra, She destroys our bottomless ignorance with the mere Grace of Her Attention. Our universe is a knowledge construct and Saraswati is the source of all Pure Knowledge which manifests first as the S'rî Chakra archetype.
Saraswati is the Goddess of leaming, knowledge, and wisdom. The Sanskrit word sara means "essence" and swa means "self." Thus Saraswati means "the essence of the self."
Saraswati is depicted with four arms, wearing a white sari and seated on a white lotus. She holds a book and a rosary in Her rear two hands, while the front two hands are engaged in the playing of a vîna.
The lotus is a symbol of the S'rî Chakra - the Supreme Reality, and a white lotus also denotes supreme knowledge. By sitting on a lotus, Saraswati signifies that all Supreme Knowledge, S'rî Vyuha, is based upon the S'rî Chakra. The white color symbolizes purity and knowledge, so the white sari that the Goddess is wearing denotes that She is the embodiment of Pure Knowledge.
The four arms denote Her omnipresence and omnipotence. The two front arms indicate Her activity in the physical world and the two back arms signify Her presence in the spiritual world. The four hands represent the four elements of the inner personality. The mind (manas) is represented by the front right hand, the intellect (buddhi) by the front left hand, the conditioned consciousness (chitta) by the rear left hand, and the ego (ahankara) by the rear right hand.
The left side of the body symbolizes the qualities of the heart and the right side symbolizes activities of the mind and intellect. A book in the rear left hand signifies that knowledge acquired must be used with love and kindness to promote prosperity of mankind. The rosary signifies concentration, meditation, and contemplation, leading to Brahman Consciousness. A rosary in the rear right hand representing ego conveys that true knowledge acquired with love and devotion melts the ego and results in liberation (moksha) of the seeker from the bondage to the physical world.
The Goddess is shown playing the vîna - a musical instrument which emits sounds from the vibration of its strings - that is held in Her front hands, which denote mind and intellect. This symbol conveys that the universe is fundamentally a virtual reality that exists as a vibratory phenonemon. The S'rî Chakra is the antennae which everyone has to connect with the transmissions of Pure Knowledge which structure our universe and are in fact "the Will of God." To attain Brahman Consciousness, the seeker must therefore "tune" his mind and intellect in order to live in perfect harmony with the Mind of Lord Brahma.
To bring our consciousness into alignment with Saraswati and obtain Her Blessings on our endeavor to attain Brahman Consciousness, we perform the S'rî Saraswati Invocation at the start of each daily session of the S'rî Chakra Maha-Videha Programme.