03 Oct Dussehra in the IPad age
In Kerala, the last three days of Navratri is devoted to Saraswati – the Goddess of learning. The celebration starts with placing books for pooja on Astami day and taken for reading only on the third morning [on Vijayadashami].
This day is also believed to be the most auspicious day for initiation of writing, where kids between two and three years of age are formally initiated into the world of letters before they could begin formal education. Elders, priests or any learned person will hold the index finger of the toddler to write the first letters on a plate of raw rice or even sand. They write ‘Hari Shri Ganapataye Namah’ and recite the same.
During my childhood, I looked forward to Vijayadashami, because once the books are kept before the Goddess, we are not allowed to read or write. It was total entertainment. I continue the ritual diligently with my daughter now.
But being a woman of letters, I staunchly believe in offering my diaries and notes as well to the Goddess. However, this Astami day when I placed my diaries I realised the last words written in them were a decade back. So I copied all my work and e-journals on to an USB and sought the blessings of Goddess Saraswati.
|USB stick on my diary|
Don’t be surprised folks, if in the very near future you’ll find iPads kept for pooja and gurus guiding the index fingers of toddlers on Tablets instead of rice platters!
So much for keeping tradition alive in a high-tech era!