10th September (Friday)
Madhyahna Ganesha Puja Time - 11:03 to 13:31
Ganesh Chaturthi or Vinayaka Chaturthi is being celebrated across the nation. This occasion is a Hindu festival that marks the birthday of Lord Ganesha – the elephant-headed God, younger son of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati, who is trusted to be the God of righteous beginnings, prosperity, wisdom, and barrier remover in Hindu mythology.
As per the Hindu calendar, there are two Chaturthi dates in each lunar month and Vinayaka Chaturthi begins on the 4th day of the waning moon period which is known as Bhadrapada Shukla Chaturthi and ends on the 14th day called Anant Chaturdashi. On this occasion, people place an idol of Lord Ganesha and end this occasion with the immersion of the idol in water.
History & Significance
There are no official records (texts) that talk about the exact origin of the Ganesh Chaturthi festival. But it is evaluated that the creator of the Maratha Empire, Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj began celebrating it during 1630 – 1680, as Lord Ganesha was the family God (Kuldevata) of the Peshwas. After the descent of the Peshwas, the celebrations became a family event in Maharashtra.
According to Myth, Goddess Parvati was going for her bath and not finding anyone to help her guard the door, she made a little boy from the turmeric paste on her body and breathed him to life in order to guard the door and She asked him to make sure no one enters the door. When Lord Shiva appeared in the place and asked for entry, Ganesha refused. Since he did not recognize Lord Shiva as his father and In anger, Shiva cut off the boy’s head.
When Goddess Parvati came to know about what happened to her son, she became heartbroken with grief, and to fulfill her, Lord Shiva sent his delegates to look for anything dead with its head facing the North. The delegates came back with the head of a strong elephant. Shiva placed the elephant's head on the boy and gave him life. Due to this incident, Ganesha came alive with an elephant head.
The freedom fighter Lokmanya Tilak brought back this festival in 1893 when the British government banned social and political assemblies in India, the celebration provoked patriotic sentiments and reunited people from all castes & communities against colonial rule. As he transformed it from an annual domestic celebration to a large public event.
Celebrations & Rituals across India
Honoring this festival begins months in further with the preparation of idols of Lord Ganesha. On this auspicious day, devotees do fasting and begin their day early by taking bath, wearing new clothes, and praying to Lord Ganesha for his blessings. On the day of the occasion, houses are all cleaned and decorated for bringing Lord Ganesha home, A position is chosen to place the idol in homes or elaborately decorated public stages (Pandals) are constructed by different societies and decorated beautifully for the next 10 days.
The idol of Lord Ganesh is brought into the house with its face covered with a saffron cloth. A ceremony called ‘Purna Kumbha Kalasha Sthapana’ is performed with a small pot ( Copper/brass Kalash) used for Hindu rituals placed in front of the idol filled with holy water (Ganga Jal). The cloth is removed from the idol’s face and the celebrations begin with ‘Prana pratishtha’ – A ritual to infuse God into the statue and the idol is decorated with beautiful fresh flowers and smeared with sweet-smelling sandalwood.
Another Ritual is known as ‘Shodashopachara’ is performed, which involves 16 different ways of paying tribute to the idol and during this ritual, people offer jaggery, modaks, red flowers, coconut, betel leaves, incense, and durva grass to God and Ganesh ‘Stotra’ are chanted in the background.
After taking Sankalp and sitting in meditation (Dhyana) for some time, devotees can pray and offer prasad to the Lord. People also keep fast on this day and vigil in the honor of Lord Ganesha. As devotees worship Lord Ganesha, people make & distribute sweets. By this fast, devotees are believed to be blessed with patience & wisdom by the Lord. One can break the fast only after seeing the moon and performing puja and chanting Ganesh Mantra.
In public stages (pandals), the idol is normally seated for all 10 days and aarti is performed twice a day (morning & evening). People come to these pandals to offer flowers, coconut, modaks and seek the Lord’s blessings. Devotees who keep Lord Ganesh idols In the homes are either kept for one and half days, 3, 5, or 7 days and Aarti is performed twice a day at homes too.
On the last day, the idol is taken to a water body for immersion along with dancing and singing. ‘Uttar Puja' (Last Ritual) is conducted at the place and final offerings are made to the Lord before Visarjan (Immersion into water). This ritual symbolizes that Lord Ganesha is going back to his home after staying as a guest and taking away with him all the obstacles that the devotee faces.
Ask our best astrologers online to learn more about the Pooja procedure and talk to astrologers online to learn more about the festival & their rituals.
This occasion is performed during the Muhurat time mentioned in the online astrology. The days and dates of Muhurat timing can differ from place-to-place depending upon sunrise and sunset time.
We wish all our readers to have a very Happy Vinayaka Chaturthi.