As promised have got you my next post on how we celebrated Ganesh Chaturthi this year. I have these fond memories from back home of Ganesh Chaturthi festival. I was born and brought up in Bengaluru, India. I stayed in India for 25 years. Memories of Ganesha Chaturthi and other festivals have been a part of me since then. Memories of accompanying dad, in getting the Clay/pop Ganesha idol home, decorating it with flowers and all the yummy sweets on the festival day, all of these are etched deep.
When I moved to Seattle, USA, these celebrations were something I knew I would miss. These festival days were difficult as you miss your home, the celebrations, friends and food. But soon had to find a way, couldn’t afford to be sad on these days.
Celebrating these festivals is my way of staying connected to my roots and in fact I enjoy, celebrating these festivals. It brings memories untold from your motherland.:) I am making a record of these, for people who wish to celebrate and stay connected with their roots.
Ganesh Chaturthi is the day when Lord Ganesha was born. Lord Ganesha is considered to be the God of Learning and Knowledge.He is also called Vigna Vinashaka, as he is considered the destructor of all obstacles.
All poojas, events, festivals are all begun by offering prayers to Lord Ganesha. This festival falls on Bhadrapada shukla Chaturthi of Hindu Calendar. This year it was on 5th September.
Observing Ganesh Chaturthi:
Clean the place where you would be placing the Clay Ganesha idol and decorate it with beautiful rangoli patterns.
On this day, Clay Ganesha idol is placed on some rice grains, spread on the pedestal. A beautiful Mantap is decorated to place the Lord.
Only men and boys of the house perform this Pooja. During the pooja Yagnopaveetham (sacred thread), vermillion powder( kumkum), turmeric (Harshina), chandra ( saffron colour powder), chandana (sandal wood paste), Gejjevastra (21 cotton thread), Garike/patre (21), fruits and flowers.
Delicious food is prepared on this day, Rice, Tavve (dal), Huli(sambhar), Payasam (sweet), Kosambri, Palya, Chitranna along with delicious sweets kadabu and modakas.
Ganesha idol is kept for 1 to 7 days. Then Viserjana/ immersing the idol ritual is performed. Usually the idols kept in home are immersed in wells or buckets by chanting mantras and ringing bells and chanting “Ganapati Bappa Moraya”. For Visarjan, Chitranna and Mosaranna is prepared as Butti for Lord Ganesha.
On this day it is considered inauspicious to see Moon or Chandra. It’s believed seeing moon would bring False charges. But if you see it accidentally, there is also a way of getting rid of the curse by listening or reading the Samantakamani story of Krishna.
Here are some pictures and video on how we celebrated Ganesh Chaturthi this year. I usually make a handmade Ganesha idol at home every year. I have also attached link to DIY Ganesha Making for beginners which you can see to make your next Ganesha idol for festival.