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Ganesha, Ganpati or Vinayaka, the names may be different but the feeling is the same. Lord Ganesha is the lord of success and wisdom and is believed to be the remover of obstacles. The characteristic elephant head and pot belly have become his identity. He is the son of Lord Shiva and goddess Parvati.
One of the most popular deities among Hinduism, Lord Ganesha personifies effervescence and knowledge. He is in fact one among the five prime deities of Hinduism. The other four are – Brahma, Vishnu, Shiva and Durga.
According to Hinduism, it is believed that before beginning any auspicious work Lord Ganesha should be worshipped. Lord Shiva said that before any beginning any pooja one must pray Lord Ganesha and seek his blessings. Ever since that boon bestowed upon him, Lord Ganesha is worshipped right at the beginning. With devotion and dedication people pray to Lord Ganesha so that he removes all the obstacles of their path and leads them onto the path of properity. He takes away all the worldly attachments. He also graces devotees with knowledge, spiritual success and power. Religious experts and historians believe that Lord Ganesha is worshipped in all castes of Hinduism. His popularity is such that people from all parts of the country worship him. The most famous Ganesha mantras are – Om Shri Ganeshaya Namah and Om Gam Ganpataye Namah.
Astrologically speaking Wednesday is the best day for worshipping Lord Ganesha. Wednesday is the day of planet Mercury – the planet for success and Lord Ganesha is also the lord of success. Astrologers believe that if Mercury is weak in your horoscope you must worship Lord Ganesha whole heartedly on Wednesdays for fruitful results. By doing so Lord Ganesha would bless you with luck and fortune.
Lord Ganesha is known for his love for Modaks. Therefore offering modaks to him is considered an essential part of the worship. One can also offer laddoos, fruits and other sweets. He is often associated with the color red. As a result, it is said that preferably offerings of red flowers should be made.
The most popular festival associated with the worship of Lord Ganesha is Ganesh Chaturthi. It is celebrated with zeal and enthusiasm throughout India and many other foreign lands. It is usually a ten day festival falling either in late August or early September. Although whenever you pray with a pure devotion, Lord Ganesha will bless you, but supposedly Ganesh Chaturthi is said to be the most auspicious day to worship Lord Ganesha.
Whether you are worshipping Lord Ganesha at home or in a temple, what matters most is that you pray with sanctity.
You can follow these simple steps of worshipping Lord Ganesha at home.
- Get Lord Ganesha’s idol or photo and establish it in your temple.
- Arrange some red flowers, incense stick, fruits and modaks.
- Light and diya and the incense sticks.
- Cover your head with a scarf and recite Ganesha aart and other bhajans of Lord Ganesha.
- Offer modaks, fruits and other sweets to Lord Ganesha.
- Apply red tilak on Lord Ganesha’s forehead.
- Apply the red tilak on your forehead and on those attending the pooja.
- Distribute Prasad to everyone.
Pray with dedication and faithfulness to receive the blessings of Lord Ganesha. Om Ganeshaya Namah!!!