Celebrating Firsts This Ganesh Chaturthi
A Tusked Almighty
The beautiful rounded image of Ganesha with a lustrous crown, an elephant head, and a chubby body is a ubiquitous, endearing sight in every Hindu threshold – be it a humble home, a luxury vehicle, a corporate office, or a lush garden. Ganesha is a powerhouse of absolute energy from which one can draw infinitely, says the Vedas and Puranas. Every auspicious occasion starts with an invocation of Ganesha’s grace and blessings So it is natural that Ganesha Chaturthi is one of the most important festivals in India, celebrated with great pomp and splendour in every village, town, and city.
The Lord of FIrsts
Interestingly Ganesha is associated with a lot of firsts. “Gan” in Sanskrit means group and “Ganesha” stands to suggest that he is the lord of all groups; groups of quarks, ions, atoms, and molecules that form the building blocks of this physical universe, which is ever pulsating with infinite energy; The first colour in the VIBGYOR spectrum red (Sindhoora) is associated with Ganesha, so is the first chakra – the root chakra or Mooladhara (which signifies the Earth Tatva, around which our consciousness revolves, dissolves, and evolves). In short, Ganesha is the vibrant energy behind all good beginnings and the smooth conduct of events.
Getting It All Ready
Preparations for Ganesh Chaturthi are afoot at least a month ahead of the festival. Ganesha statues of all sizes are made by artists and craftsmen – from giant plaster of Paris idols to mini eco-friendly earthen idols, to suit every budget. Massive pandals are erected, sound systems installed, decorations with multi-hued flower garlands and festoons kept ready, and culinary delights prepared for Prasad distribution. The whole atmosphere is abuzz with the devotion of the bhaktas and there is a palpable divine frenzy in every nook and corner. Women get ready for the Pujas in their radiant, silken sarees, kumkum on their foreheads, and flower strings adorning their hair.
The Procedure and The Legend
In every home, the “Sthapan” of Ganesha Moorthy (statue) is done with a great deal of care and fervour. The statue is kept on a decorated pedestal and shimmering lamps are lit. Women in beautiful Kanchipuram, Banarasi, Gadwal, or other silk sarees chant mantras, sing melodious bhajans, perform Aarthi (the waving of lamps), and offer delicious Neivedya to the Lord. (Modakas are a must because they are his favourite). After a day or a week of celebrations, the idol is carried out in a magnificent procession and then immersed in a water body (well, pond, lake, river, sea). And this “Visarjan” completes the grand festival.
Puranic stories say that Ganesha was created from Mata Parvatis turmeric bathing powder as an idol, breathing life into the same and bestowing him with immense power. His birth is celebrated as Ganesh Chaturthi.
Saree-ing Up For The Day
It is Ganesh Chaturthi season and what is a religious festival without silken sarees and Shringar? Rasvriti has assembled together an enchanting collection of exquisite silk and cotton sarees to get your wardrobe ready for this year’s fest. Choose your pick from luscious linens, boast-worthy Banarasis, tantalising Tussars, kindly Kanchipurams, and many more sarees that will certainly sweep you off your feet.