Ganesh Chaturthi 2023 Ganesh Chaturthi is one of the most popular and widely celebrated festivals in India, dedicated to Lord Ganesha, the elephant-headed god of wisdom, prosperity, and good fortune. It is also known as Vinayaka Chaturthi or Ganeshotsav, and it marks the birthday of Lord Ganesha, who is the son of Lord Shiva and Parvati, the goddess of fertility. This year, Ganesh Chaturthi falls on September 19, 2023. In this blog post, we will explore the date, significance, rituals, and celebrations of this auspicious festival.
Date of Ganesh Chaturthi 2023
According to the Hindu calendar, Ganesh Chaturthi is celebrated on the fourth day (chaturthi) of the bright fortnight (shukla paksha) of the lunar month of Bhadrapada, which usually corresponds to August or September in the Gregorian calendar. The festival lasts for 10 days, ending on the fourteenth day (anant chaturdashi) of the same fortnight. The date of Ganesh Chaturthi varies every year depending on the lunar cycle.
In 2023, Ganesh Chaturthi falls on Monday, September 19. The auspicious time (muhurat) to perform the puja (worship) of Lord Ganesha on this day is from 11:01 AM to 01:28 PM as per Indian Standard Time (IST). The chaturthi tithi begins at 12:39 PM on September 18 and ends at 01:43 PM on September 19. On September 18 from 12:39 to 07:46 PM, and on September 19 from 09:45 to 08:44 AM, are the times to avoid moon seeing (chandrayan).
Significance of Ganesh Chaturthi
- Ganesh Chaturthi is a festival that celebrates the birth and presence of Lord Ganesha in our lives. Lord Ganesha is revered as the god of new beginnings and the remover of obstacles (vighnaharta) as well as the god of wisdom and intelligence (buddhi). He is worshipped first among all Hindu gods and goddesses before starting any new venture or activity. He is also associated with arts, sciences, education, and culture.
- There are many legends and stories that explain the origin and significance of Ganesh Chaturthi. One of them is that Lord Ganesha was created by Parvati from the dirt of her body while Shiva was away. She asked him to guard the door while she was bathing. When Shiva returned, he was not allowed to enter by Ganesha, who did not recognize him as his father. Shiva became angry and beheaded Ganesha with his trident. Parvati was devastated and demanded that Shiva bring him back to life. Shiva then sent his attendants to find a head of any creature that was facing north. They found an elephant and brought its head to Shiva, who placed it on Ganesha’s body and revived him. He further said that Ganesha would be worshipped before all other deities and that he would command his army (gana) as their leader (pati).
Ganesh Chaturthi is one of the most popular and widely celebrated festivals in India
- Another legend is that Lord Ganesha once ate too many modaks (sweet dumplings), which are his favorite food. He then decided to take a ride on his mouse (mushak), which was his vehicle (vahana). On his way, he encountered a snake that scared his mouse and made him fall off. His stomach burst open and all the modaks came out. He quickly gathered them and stuffed them back into his belly. He then tied the snake around his waist as a belt to prevent his stomach from opening again. The moon (chandra) saw this and laughed at him. Ganesha felt insulted and cursed the moon to lose its brightness. The moon then apologized and begged for mercy. Ganesha relented and said that the moon would regain its brightness gradually but would also wane periodically. Additionally, he warned against gazing at the moon on Ganesh Chaturthi since it will bring negative karma or unjust accusations.
Rituals of Ganesh Chaturthi
Ganesh Chaturthi involves various rituals that are performed with devotion and joy by the devotees of Lord Ganesha. Some of the main rituals are:
- Pranapratishtha: This is the ritual of installing or consecrating the idol or image of Lord Ganesha in the home or in a public pandal (temporary stage). The idol is usually made of clay or eco-friendly materials and is decorated with flowers, clothes, jewelry, and other accessories. The idol is then invoked with life and energy by chanting mantras and offering prayers.
- Shodashopachara: This is the ritual of offering 16 types of services or items to Lord Ganesha. These include bathing, clothing, adorning, applying sandalwood paste, offering flowers, incense, lamps, modaks, fruits, coconut, betel leaves, durva grass, and other delicacies. The devotees also sing hymns, recite stories, and perform arti (waving of lamps) in his honor.Ganesh Chaturthi 2023: Date and why the Hindu festival is celebrated
- Uttarpuja: This is the ritual of bidding farewell to Lord Ganesha before immersing his idol in water. The devotees express their gratitude and seek his blessings for their well-being and prosperity. They also request him to return next year with more joy and grace.
Ganesh Chaturthi 2023: Date and why the Hindu festival is celebrated
- Ganesh Visarjan: This is the ritual of immersing the idol of Lord Ganesha in a nearby water body such as a river, lake, sea, or pond. The devotees carry the idol in a procession with music, dancing, and chanting of “Ganpati Bappa Morya, Pudhchya Varshi Lavkar Ya” (Hail Lord Ganesha, come back soon next year). The immersion symbolizes the return of Lord Ganesha to his abode in Mount Kailash and his dissolution into the universal consciousness.
Celebrations of Ganesh Chaturthi
Ganesh Chaturthi is a festival that brings happiness and unity among people of different backgrounds and cultures. It is celebrated with great enthusiasm and fervor across India, especially in Maharashtra, Karnataka, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Goa, Gujarat, and Rajasthan. Additionally, it is observed in Nepal and by the Hindu diaspora in various nations, including South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Singapore, Malaysia, Trinidad & Tobago, Guyana, Suriname, Fiji, Mauritius, and the United States and Europe.
The celebrations of Ganesh Chaturthi include various cultural and social activities such as:
- Making or buying idols of Lord Ganesha and decorating them with creativity and love.
- Inviting friends and relatives to join the puja and share the prasad (sacred food) of modaks and other sweets.
- Visiting different pandals or public places where large and elaborate idols of Lord Ganesha are displayed and worshipped.
- Participating in competitions or events such as drawing, painting, sculpting, singing, dancing, or reciting related to Lord Ganesha or his stories.
- Donating or volunteering for social causes such as education, health care, environment protection, animal welfare, or women empowerment in the name of Lord Ganesha.
- Enjoying the festive atmosphere with music, colors, lights, fireworks, and fun.
Ganesh Chaturthi is a festival that brings happiness and unity among people of different backgrounds and cultures
- Ganesh Chaturthi is a festival that celebrates the birth and presence of Lord Ganesha in our lives. He is the god of new beginnings and the remover of obstacles as well as the god of wisdom and intelligence. He is worshipped first among all Hindu gods and goddesses before starting any new venture or activity. He is also associated with arts, sciences, education, and culture.
- Ganesh Chaturthi falls on September 19 in 2023. The festival lasts for 10 days and involves various rituals such as pranapratishtha (installation), shodashopachara (offering), uttarpuja (farewell), and ganesh visarjan (immersion). The festival also involves various celebrations such as making or buying idols of Lord Ganesha; inviting friends and relatives to join the puja; visiting different pandals; participating in competitions or events; donating or volunteering for social causes; and enjoying the festive atmosphere.
- Ganesh Chaturthi is a festival that spreads joy and unites people all over. It is a time to seek the blessings of Lord Ganesha for our well-being and prosperity. It is also a time to express our gratitude and love for him. It is a time to celebrate his virtues and learn from his stories. It is a time to honor his presence in our lives.
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