Ganesh Chaturthi 
        

Navigation Bar

   
Vakratunda Mahaakaaya
Suryakotisamaprabha.
Nirvighnam Kuru Me Deva
Sarvakaaryeshu Sarvadaa.

Meaning:
         
"O, Lord Ganesha of the curved trunk and massive body, the one whose splendour is equal to millions of Suns, please bless me so that I do not face any obstacles in my endeavours."     
Lord Ganesha, the elephant-headed Hindu deity, is the God of wisdom, the remover of obstacles and the most auspicious God, a bringer of good luck for embarking on new endeavours.  He is worshipped before any venture is started.  Meetings, gatherings, weddings, functions and celebrations begin with a prayer of Lord Ganesh and no new venture-be it a new company, a new house, a new shop is inaugurated without reciting a 'mantra' of  Lord Ganesh.
Ganesh Chaturthi is celebrated to mark the birth anniversary of Lord Ganesh, son of Lord Shankar and Goddess Parvati. This festival is celebrated for 10 days throughout India. This festival comes on the 4th day of Bhadarva Shukla-paksh of Hindu calender.

It is that time of the year when people come together to celebrate one of the most eagerly awaited festivals - Chauti. the atmosphere of gaiety is intermingled with a kaleidoscope of vibrant colours and replendent lights. The surroundings of Mangalore is filled with the shout of happy children and young people. There are various stories attached to the cause of celebration of Chaturthi. Legend has it that the day Gowri returned from here parental home with her son Ganapathi upon the request of Lord Shiva is celebrated as Chaturthi. In Dakshina Kannada the festival is referred to as Gowri Ganesha for this reason. On the eve of Charturthi, married women wear black bangles and worship Gowri to symbolize the day.

Ladoos are distributed on the day-by tradition ladoos were placed in different corners of the house and eaten before the meal. Milk is offered to idols of lord Ganesh at home and at temples, and Ganesh puja is performed at all temples and hi-house prayer rooms. Fasting, feasting and distribution of sweets offered to Lord Ganesh are important aspects of Ganesh chaturthi rituals in India.


Sanganiketana Ganapathi

On the first day, images of Lord Ganesh, some huge and dripping with fairy lights, are erected in homes and public places, decorated with flowers and food, and worshipped.  Over the next ten days or so events include arts and crafts displays, a village fair, sports competitions and a food festival, as well as Indian classical music and dance performances, usually featuring the most illustrious names in the country.  On the last day the Ganesh images are taken in a procession and immersed in water, the streets teeming with singing and dancing devotees.

The Hindus pray to images of Lord Ganesha, large and small, many of them made specially for the occasion by cottage industries and street side artisans, and those that do not wish to keep the idols alive by daily prayers, offerings and lighting oil lamps, and then the 'Ganesh Visarjan' is performed, whereby the idols are immersed in sea waters or in the nearest water body (all rivers, lakes and the sea which are sacred to Hindus).

On the day of immersion which is either 3rd, 5th, 7th or 10th day after performing "Puja" the idol is taken out in a procession by the people who dance and sing. On the 10th day - the Anantchaturdashi day the sea fronts are packed with surging mass of humanity as the idols of Ganesh are carried towards their watery rest among shouts of "Ganapati Bappa Moriya", Pudhachya varshi lavkar ya" (Return early next year, oh Victorious Lord Ganesh).

In the late nineteenth century the freedom fighter Bal Gangadhar Tilak who proclaimed "Swarajya is my birth-right and I'll have it", turned this once domestic ritual into a public rallying point in 1893 and brought to the cause of independence a fire of religious revivalism.  He called it 'Sarvajanik Ganeshotsav' (public festival).
 
 
 

LINKS:
Ganesh Charturthi -  Swami Sivananda explains the significance of Ganesh Chaturthi.
Sharavu Ganapathi - Sharavu Ganapathi temple in hampankatta.

Home || Places to Visit || Feedback