The festival of Ganesh Chaturthi is just around the corner, and surely amidst the enthusiasm and excitement to bring Lord Ganesha home. Ganesh Chaturthi, which is celebrated for a period of 10 days, starts on the fourth day of the Hindu lunisolar calendar month Bhadrapada. It will begin on September 10 this year and conclude on September 21.
With decorations and exquisite pandals taking the front seat, it is the scrumptious food that you cannot miss out on.
History of the festival
The history of the festival goes back to the independence movement when Lokmanya Tilak turned private celebration to a community festival.
Ganesh Utsav assumed the nature of a public celebration when the Maratha ruler Shivaji Maharaj used it to encourage nationalist sentiment among his subjects, who were fighting the Mughals. In 1893, when the British banned political assemblies, the festival was revived by the Indian nationalist leader Bal Gangadhar Tilak. Over 100 years ago in 1892, he appealed people to celebrate the festival as a public event.
Significance of 10 days and duration of installation
As per the panchang, the traditional moon calendar followed in India for celebrating festivals, Ganesh Chaturthi falls on September 10 this year. It marks the beginning of the 10-day celebration that ends on September 21, which is known as Anant Chaturdashi.
Ganesh Chaturthi is also known as Vinayaka Chaturti and celebrates the arrival of Lord Ganesha to earth from Kailash Parvat with his mother Goddess Parvati/Gauri.
It is believed that in these 10 days Lord Ganesha graces the earth and brings happiness, wisdom and prosperity for his devotees. The 10-day celebration generally occurs in the month of Bhadrapada and the dates are usually set in the August-September period as per the moon calendar.
The festivities of Ganeshotsav comes to an end on Anant Chaturdashi. The streets of the city are occupied with people dancing to the beats of the drums. Chants of ‘Ganpati bappa morya, pudcha varshi luvkar ya!’’ is filled in the air. It is believed that after immersion, Lord Ganesha return to Mount Kailasha to his parents Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati.
However, family traditions differ about when to end the celebration. Domestic celebrations end after 1+1⁄2, 3, 5, 7 or 11 days.