Ganesh Chaturthi or Vinayaka Chaturthi is a sacred Hindu festival celebrated as birth anniversary of Lord Ganesha. According to Hindu Mythology, Lord Ganesha is the elephant-headed son of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati, and Lord Ganesha is believed as the figure of wisdom, prosperity and good luck. During Shukla Paksha the chaturthi after Poornima (full moon) is celebrated as Vinayaka Chaturthi.
This year Ganesh Chaturthi will take place on 17 September 2015. Chaturthi Tithi begins at 20:01 on 16th September, and it will end at 22:20 on 17th September, 2015.
Ganesh Chaturthi is considered very auspicious for Hindus all over India and there is a strong belief that, Lord Ganesha takes away all the obstructions and difficulties from our lives.
While organizing Ganesha puja at home and observing a fast, devotee should maintain few things. Read below to know the particulars.
Devotees should observe fast from sunrise on this day, worship the sculpted figure of Ganesha, and finish the puja on the Chaturthi evening.
Fasting is observed when Chaturthi Tithi exists during midday. As fasting for Vinayaka Chaturthi depends on sunrise and sunset timings, one might has to observe fast on Tritiya Tithi, one day before Chaturthi Tithi.
Depending on Chaturthi Tithi, sighting of moon might be prohibited for two following days. According to Vedic tradition, while Chaturthi Tithi exists, moonrise or moonset should not be viewed by devotee(s).
Arrange these essential ingredients before the puja :-
Lord Ganesha idol/murti, plantain leaf (kela patta), one metallic plate, 2- 3 cups rice for enunciating lord’s turmeric vigraha (optional), ghanta (bell), haldi (turmeric), kumkum (vermilion), akshata, flowers, garlands, two full coconuts, 6 bananas, modak (jaggery filled sweet), red chandan paste (red sandalwood paste), betel leaves (paan), betel nuts (supaari), durba grass, panchaamrita (honey, milk, ghee, curds, sugar – all in one cup), clay or metallic diyas or lamps, incense sticks (agarbatti).
Devotee can do the puja himself or the puja can be done by Vedic priests. The strict rituals of this puja are meant for Vedic priests/temples. While you are performing Ganesha Puja at home, you can always be flexible. All you need to be careful is to perform the puja with a clean body and clean mind.
Here is the simple guideline and puja vidhi you can follow to perform the puja.
You can start the puja by cleansing yourself, and keep the surroundings, puja place decorated, clean & tidy.
The most significant thing about Ganesh Puja is ‘Shodashopachara Puja’. There are sixteen steps included in the whole puja process.
Before initiating the puja ‘Deep Prajawalan’ and ‘Sankalpa’ are done which are not part of core sixteen steps of Shodashopachara Puja.
The Lord Ganesha idol should be placed on a clean platform. Put a clean plate or betel leaf facing the Lord.
After placing the Lord Ganesha, pray to him by chanting mantras from Rig Veda. Offer seat and scented water to the God. Sprinkle some holy water on him.
Place kumkum on the plate, and decorate it with flowers. You can keep the coconut in front of the idol or break in two parts which is believed as a sacred factor.
Offer fresh fruits, 21 modaks as prasad, after that offer 21 blades of Durba/Durva grass, red flowers to Lord Ganesha. Apply a tilak to the God using red sandalwood paste. The number 21 indicates the five organs of perception, actions, five vital airs (pranas), five elements, and the one mind.
Fold your hands in Namashkaar form, sit comfortably, close your eyes, take a deep breath, and start chanting ‘Om’. Sign the following mantras: “Vakratunda mahaakaaya soorya koti samaprabha/ nirvighnam kuru me deva sarva kaaryeshu sarvadaa”.
In the evening, light a clay diya or lamp with ghee/coconut oil, start reciting the 108 names of Ganesha or chant slokas. Offer the coconut, banana, milk as prasad/naivedya along with flowers to the Lord Ganesha.