Vidhyarambham – 11 October 2016

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Vidhyarambham – 11 October 2016

Vidyarambham (Malayalam: വിദ്യാരംഭം) is a Hindu tradition observed onVijayadashami day mainly in Kerala andKarnataka, where children are formally introduced to music, dance, languages and other folk arts. It involves a ceremony of initiation into the characters of the syllabary.

The Vijayadashami day is the tenth and final day of the Navratri celebrations, and is considered auspicious for beginning learning in any field. The process of learning and initiation on this day is also closely related to the Ayudha Puja ritual. It is usually on Vijayadashami that the implements kept for puja are taken up again for re-use. This is also considered a day when the Goddess of learning,Saraswati, and teachers (gurus) must be revered by givingGurudakshina. This usually consists of a betel leaf,Areca nut, along with a small token of money and a new piece of clothing – a dhoti, mundu or saree.

The ceremony of Vidyarambham (Vidya means “knowledge”, arambham means “beginning’) for children is held in temples and in houses. It is common practise for thousands of people to visit temples to initiate their children into learning.

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