Ganesh Chaturthi which is also known as Vinayaka Chaturthi is a very famous religious festival celebrated by the people all around the world who belong to the Hinduism religion. This festival is celebrated on the birthday of the Hindu lord Ganesha.
It is celebrated on the fourth day of moon’s bright fortnight or period of new moon in the lunar month from Bhaadrapada. This festival is celebrated for 10 days sometimes it is celebrated for 20 days.
In Hinduism, Ganesha is known as the god of wisdom and prosperity and according to the mythology he is the son of Parvati and Shiva. In the mythology of Hinduism there are various stories and legends which are related to Ganesha.
Some of them are:
The first legend or the story associated with the birth of Ganesha is that Parvati created Ganesha from the sandal wood dough which she used to use while taking a bath for the reason of him standing guard at the door when she went to take a bath. When Parvati’s husband Shiva returned home and saw Ganesh standing guard at the door and was stopped by him he severed the boy’s head in order to enter his house.
Parvati was deeply upset when she found out that her son was dead and asked Shiva to revive him. On this Shiva cut off a head of an elephant and fixed that elephant head on the boy’s body and eventually reviving him. This was the legend or story behind lord Ganesh’s birthday and how he got the elephant
There is another story associated with him which tells us how he became the leader of gods. The legend says that one day the gods decided to choose their leader by holding a race between the two brothers Kartekiya and Ganesh. These two brothers were supposed to take three rounds of the earth and whoever finished first would become the leader. Kartekiya was given a peacock as the vehicle for the race while Ganesh was on rat. The test started but it was not an easy one.
Ganesh using his wisdom took three rounds of his parents saying that my parents are spread throughout the whole universe and going around them is more than going around any earth and by saying that he completed the test. Everyone was surprised by his wisdom and he was chosen as their leader.
A life like model of Ganesh is prepared from clay which is made 2 or 3 months before the festival and on the festival day it is placed on the platforms at homes in decorated tents outside and people pay their homage. The prayer services are performed on daily basis. The artists who make these clay models of their god also compete with each to make the bigger and better looking model than anyone else.
Ganesha is worshipped for 10 days and after these statues or models are then carried on the floats with processions which are attended by thousands of people. These floats are to be submerged into the sea in after one, three, five, seven and ten days. Drum beats, dancing and chanting are the part of these procession and immersion process marking the see-off of Ganesh taking away all the misfortune of the man. During this festival, looking at the moon is prohibited as it is considered an act of wrong doing.