Ganesh Chaturthi is one of the most important festivals. No doubt, Ganesha, is one major favorite among the audience. And now, everyone is ready to celebrate the birth of our beloved Ganesha.
According to the Hindu calendar, Ganesh Chaturthi is a ten days long festival that falls on the fourth day of the moon’s waxing phase during the month of Bhadrapada. This year, the festival will be held on August 22. Lord Ganesha is considered to be the God of prosperity, good fortune, wisdom and Vighnaharta (the destroyer of evils). As said, he is referred to as Vighnaharta, and therefore, Ganesh Chaturthi is also known as Vinayaka Chavithi or Vinayaka Chaturthi.
It is celebrated with complete zeal and fervor in the country, but in Maharashtra, it is celebrated in the best way possible.
Ganesh Chaturthi: Puja Rituals
Ganesh Chaturthi usually begins with the installation of Ganesha idols at different places. In Maharashtra, several huge mandaps are made for installing the idol, but many people prefer welcoming and celebrating the birth of Lord Ganesha in their homes.
In most of the places, life-size statues of Ganesha is installed in the pandals. Like the Durga Puja of Bengal, a grand 10-days celebration is done for Lord Ganesha too.
Fruits, flowers, and Lord Ganesha’s favorite sweet, Modak, are offered to Lord Ganesha during 10 days. People worship the idol and observe fast for 10 days. Lord Ganesha comes into our homes and brings happiness and mirth. But, in the end, he bids farewell and leaves our hearts heavy. On the 10th day, Lord Ganesha is submerged into the water. As per the Puja calendar and schedule, this year, the murti visarjan will be held on September 1.
Ganesh Chaturthi: How to observe the fast?
Lord Ganesha is brought into the houses and worshipped for 10 days by the devotees. The devotees need to carry out the Ganapati aarti both in the morning and evening.
The family members need to be dressed in traditional attires after taking a bath early in the morning on the day of Ganesh Chaturthi. A proper procedure is laid up with the house being cleaned and the altar is set up. The idol of Lord Ganesha is worshipped by offering him fruits, flowers, and favorite sweets.
Durva Grass, Modakam and Arka flowers are some of the main offerings to Lord Ganesha. After the offerings, Ganesh Mantra is chanted to promote prosperity and peace around the house. The stories of Lord Ganesha’s birth and life are narrated. For those who do not do Puja at home, they visit the Ganapati temples to seek the deity’s blessings.
This routine for Ganesh Puja is followed for 10-days. The pujas are offered at a stretch from morning to evening. The final Puja is offered on the 10th day’s morning and post that Lord Ganesha is immersed into the water body. A proper farewell is given to Lord Ganesha and the devotees pray for his return for blessing their home during the next Ganesh Chaturthi.
Ganesh Chaturthi Fasting Rules
For Ganesh Chaturthi, the people need to observe fast from dawn to dusk. The devotees do not eat or drink any liquid during fasting time. Most people also prefer conducting a partial fast, but they only have to eat Puja, prasad or milk. The fast is broken after the evening aarti.
Most devotees also observe nirjal vrat or phalahar vrat. In phalahar vrat, the devotees only eat fruits, sabudana khichadi, sweets and kheer. During the time of fasting or the entire 10 days of Ganesh Chaturthi, consumption of alcohol and non-vegetarian food is strictly prohibited.
Ganesh Visarjan needs to be conducted with the complete ritual of “Uttarpuja.” After the Uttarpuja, Lord Ganesha is immersed in the water body and devotees seek his blessings. The devotees chant slogans like Ganapati Bappa Morya, while immersing the Lord Ganesha’s idol in the sea. A lot of people also prefer conducting the visarjan on the 3rd, 5th and 7th days of Ganesh Chaturthi.
How to stay safe?
Ganesh Chaturthi is tomorrow but the pandemic is still going on. It is necessary to follow the basic guidelines for maintaining safety.
- Purchase the idols online.
- The maximum height of the idols for pandals should be 4 feet.
- No noise pollution.
- No crowd during the aarti.
- Immersion of idols to be postponed.
- No procession for welcoming the idols.
- Use the Arogya Setu app when visiting the mandala
- Carry your sanitizers and masks