Ganesh Chaturthi: When to bring the Lord home, what to offer him?
India will celebrate Ganesha Chaturthi on August 25. It is one of the most colourful and exciting celebrations. Ganesh Utsav or Vinayaka Chaturthi is celebrated all over India with a lot of enthusiasm in order to commemorate Lord Ganesha's birthday.
Ganesh Chaturthi is observed by installing Lord Ganesha's idol at home for a period of 10 days or for one day at least in several parts of India after which it is immersed in the river or water.
Ganesha is believed to have been born during the Madhyana Kala, the third of the five kaals that a day is divided into - Pratahkala, Sangava, Madhyahna, Aparahna and Sayankl. This is equivalent to mid-day roughly and all prayers and offering will be made during this period to the idol of Ganesha. The Chaturthi will begin at 8:27 PM on August 24 and end at 8:31 PM the next day, while the Madhyahna puja time is set between 11:25 PM and 1:55 PM, for a total duration of 2 hours and 29 minutes.
Bringing home Ganesha
If you intend to bring Ganpati ji one day before, i.e. on August 24, 2017, the Shubh time is between 06:25 AM to 07:59 AM and the Labh time is 12:41 to 14:14.
Ganpati can also be brought home during the Amrit time which is between 14:14 to 15:48. The Muhurut for evening time would be the Amrit time which is between 18:56 to 20:22.
When not to sight the moon
When it comes to this festival of Ganesha Chaturthi, most of us know that we are not supposed to look at the moon in the sky on this special day. Why is it so?
Here is an interesting mythology behind not sighting the moon on Ganesha festival.
One day, when Lord Ganesha was walking, Moon (God according to Hindu beliefs) tried to make fun of him by making sarcastic remarks. He commented upon the belly and the elephant head of Lord Ganesha.
Lord Ganesha punished Moon in order to make him level headed, humble and polite. So, Ganesha looked at the arrogant moon and cursed him saying that nobody will look at him or praise him from that day. Not expecting such a serious reaction, Moon's arrogance and rudeness vanished in a jiffy.
Ganesha was pleased and relieved Moon God from the curse but with a clause. Human beings can look at the moon on any day in the year but not on the day of 'Bhadrapada Chaturthi' which is the day of Ganesha Chaturthi. If anyone sees Moon on that day, they may face false allegations and may lose peace.
Is there a solution if you look at the Moon by mistake on that day? Well, according to popular belief, there is a remedial measure. Worship Lord Ganesha and fulfill the holy rituals and listen to the story of Ganesha Chaturthi and be relieved from the curse.
On 24th August, Time to avoid Moon sighting- 20:27 pm to 21:02 pm
On 25th August, Time to avoid Moon sighting- 09:29 am to 21:41 pm
Ganesha Visarjan on Ganesha Chaturthi Day
- Night Muhurta: 21:38 - 23:04
- Ganesha Visarjan on 3rd Day
- Evening Muhurta:18:45 - 23:03
- Morning Muhurta 09:20 - 13:58
- Afternoon Muhurta 15:31 - 17:04
- Evening Muhurta 20:04 - 21:31
- Night Muhurta: 22:58
Ganesha Visarjan on Anant Chaturdashi Day (10 day-Sept 5)
What Ganesha loves to eat!
Sweets and savories like modak, Karkadabu, (deep fried dumplings with jaggery coconut sweet-popular in South Karnataka) are offered to the deity. The plate containing 21 pieces of modak or karkadabu is supposed to be filled while offering it to the idol as prasad.
His immense love for modaks has also earned him the title of 'Modapriya'. But do you know why Lord Ganesha loves modaks? It is believed that once the demi-gods came to visit Lord Shiva and Goddess Pravati and presented them a special modak. Goddess Parvati wanted to divide the modak among her sons - Lord Ganesha and Lord Karthik but both of them were not willing to share it. Therefore, Goddess presented a challenge to them where the one that encircles the entire world three times first would get the modak.
Lord Karthik immediately took off on his peacock to do so but Lord Ganesha instead went around his parents three times signifying that they meant the world to him. Impressed with his devotion and sincerity, Goddess Parvati offered Lord Ganesha the modak and since then it became his favourite sweet.
Mythology behind Ganesh Chaturthi
The festival starts on the fourth day of the Hindu lunar-solar calendar month Bhadrapada, which is typically August or September in the English calendar. The auspicious festival of Ganesha Chaturthi is celebrated with much fervor and joy in the states of Maharashtra, Goa, Kerala, Karnataka, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu.
Out of all the stories that are linked with the history of this festival, the most relevant one is associated with his parents Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati. It is believed that Goddess Parvati created little Ganesha using the dirt off her body while having a bath and sent him to guard the door while she was bathing. Lord Shiva, who had gone out, returned at that time.
Unknowingly, little Ganesha stopped him from entering. An enraged Lord Shiva severed the head of the little child after a heated argument.
Looking at an angered and vexed Goddess Parvati, Lord Shiva promised her to give Ganesha a new life.
The followers were sent to search for a head; however all they could bring was a head of an elephant. Lord Shiva fixed the elephant's head on the child and brought him back to life. That's how he was named Gajanan.