Starting September 10 and lasting 10 days every year during the month of Bhadra according to the Hindu calendar, Ganesh Chaturthi celebrates Lord Ganesh's arrival on Earth from Kailash Parvat along with his mother, the goddess Parvati/Gauri. People celebrate Ganesh Chaturthi by throwing away their sins and being open to knowledge and wisdom.
This holiday is also known as Vinayaka Chaviti and is considered to be the birthday of Lord Ganesh. India's elephant-headed god, Lord Ganesh (or Ganesha) represents wealth, science, knowledge, wisdom, prosperity, writing, and travel. Among Lord Ganesh's 108 alternate names are Gajanana, Vinayaka, and Vighnaharta.
That's why many people honor Lord Ganesh before starting new projects as well as buying jewelry and sending it as gifts to their loved ones.
Legend of Ganesh Chaturthi
Lord Ganesh is supposed to have been the younger son of Lord Shiva and the goddess Parvati. In one of the many stories about his birth, he was said to have been created by the goddess Parvati out of sandalwood paste in order to protect her when Lord Shiva wasn't around.
One day she asked him to guard the door of the room in which she bathed, and he stopped Lord Shiva from entering because Lord Ganesh didn't know him. Angry, Lord Shiva severed Lord Ganesh's head.
However, when Lord Ganesh's mother, Parvati, found out, she was so angry that she vowed to destroy the entire Earth. To prevent that, Lord Shiva promised to bring Lord Ganesh back to life.
In another version of the legend, the supernatural beings called Devas were sent to search for the head of the first creature facing the north, but they only found elephant heads. In a different version, the Devas requested that the goddess Parvati create Lord Ganesh to be the creator of obstacles for demons in order to help the Devas.
In yet another rendition of the legend, Lord Ganesh and his elder brother, Kartikeya, were told to go around the world, with the winner being whoever came back first. Realizing that he wouldn't be able to win, Lord Ganesh went to his parents to tell them he loved them, and, in return, they blessed him with the gifts of immortality and knowledge.
History of Ganesh Chaturthi
Ganesh Chaturthi was first known to have been celebrated in the 1600s when Shivaji (1630-1680), founder of the Maratha Empire, used its celebration to encourage nationalism among his subjects who were fighting the Mughals at that time.
During the colonial British period, celebrating this festival was banned as part of laws that disallowed public assemblies. However, Indian freedom fighter and social reformer Lokmanya Tilak (1856-1920) championed Ganesh Chaturthi in order to circumvent the ban on Hindu gatherings. He's credited with its transformation from a private to a grand public festival.
Celebration Practices of Ganesh Chaturthi
Organized by various local youth groups, merchants, business people, and neighborhood associations, Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations involve feasting, singing, athletic competitions, theater and music performances, and light fireworks. People also contribute to charitable activities like blood donations, free medical checkups, and donations to poor people.
Devotees install Ganesh idols and related statues in temporary shelters known as mandapas or pandals. At the start of the festival, people create clay models of Lord Ganesh and decorate them with flowers and lights. They place these clay idols on platforms in their homes as well as in public area, chanting Vedic hymns and Hindu texts, and give offerings to the community, especially sweets.
At the end of the festival, people carry the idol in a public procession accompanied by music and group chanting, after which it's put into a river or sea. At that point, the clay idol dissolves, releasing Lord Ganesh to take away various obstacles and destroy evil and then return to his parents, the goddess Parvati and Lord Shiva, on Mount Kailash.
Romikas is honored to assist you in celebrating Ganesh Chaturthi by offering a wide selection of beautiful, eye-catching South Asian jewelry.
This Ganesh Chaturthi may Lord Ganesh bless you
with success and happiness.
Ganpati bappa morya!
About Romikas Jewelry
At Romikas, we pride ourselves on the craftsmanship and high quality of our South Asian jewelry, designed to enhance your natural beauty. Please contact us with any questions.