Siddhi Vinayaka Temple, Maharashtra, India.
Lord Ganesha, the most loved deity in Hindu mythology has many shrines devoted to him. The most popular among all these is Siddhi Vinayaka Temple, which is in Mumbai, Maharashtra. The temple dates its origin to 19th November, 1801 or, according to the Indian calendar, Kartik Shuddha Chaturdashi, Shaka 1723 in “Durmukh Samwatsar”. Originally, built in the area of 3.60 X 3.60 meters square, it had a 450mm thick wall and an old dome. The dome had a kalash (a small sized pitcher) above it and around it was the four sided wall with grills. This was the original structure of the old Siddhi Vinayaka Temple.
The temple is situated at the corner of the busy roads of Kakasaheb Gadgil Marg and S.K. Bole Marg in Prabhadevi, Mumbai. It was built by Late Mr. Lakshman Vithu Patil and was funded by Late Mrs. Deubai Patil. Late Mrs. Patil was from an extremely affluent family but did not have a child. The idea of constructing a temple came to her mind a day when she was praying to Lord Ganesha. She told Ganesha, ”Although I could not conceive a child, I request you to bless the ladies and couples who would come there to ask for a child. This particular Ganesha is thus popularly called as‘Navsacha Ganpati’ or ‘Navasala Pavanara Ganpati’, which means Ganpati who bestows devotees by fulfilling their wishes.
The idol of Siddhi Vinayak Temple is carved out of a single black rock and is 2’6” high and 2’ wide. It has a usual posture of the deity with his proboscis on the right side. It is believed that the idol with the trunk on the right is considered to be auspicious. The upper right and left hands hold a lotus and an axe respectively and the lower right and left hands hold rosary (japmala) and a bowl of modaks (sweet delicacy). A snake also appears on the left shoulder coming to the right side of the belly, which appears like a janeu (sacred thread). On the forehead, there is a mark that resembles the third eye of the deity. On the right and left sides there are idols of his consorts Riddhi and Siddhi. They appear to be peeping out of the Ganesha idol from behind. As the two goddesses accompany Ganesha, this temple is called as Siddhi Vinayaka Temple. These two goddesses signify opulence, wisdom, wealth, prosperity and sanctity.
Lord Hanuman’s Temple:
Whenever one enters a temple we can see the idols of many deities being worshipped. Devotees put their whole faith in building and maintaining a temple. When the road near the Siddhivinayak Temple was under renovation, the workers from the municipal corporation unearthed an idol of Lord Hanuman. They placed it in a corner and continued with their work. Devotees who came to visit Siddhi vinayak temple noticed this, and the matter was brought into the light of the head priest of the temple. Head priest immediately went and brought the idol of Lord Hanumana along with him. He built a temple for Lord Hanuman on the premise of SiddhiVinayak temple in 1952. The Hanuman temple was renovated and now it has a brand new look. From morning to evening, the schedule of Hanuman Temple’s prayers is very different. Every Tuesday and Saturday devotees are supplied with the traditional offerings of oil and cotton (Rui) at a minimal rate. These are the two days apart from other significant days, like Hanuman Jayanti, when there is a flock of devotees in the temple.