Vinayagar Chathurthi - Ganesh Chathurthi 2011

Ganesha Chaturthi or Vinayaga Chaturthis as it is also known, is the Hindu festival which celebrates Lord Ganesha’s birthday, an offspring of Lord Shiva and Parvati, it is observed in the month of Bhaadrapada and the date usually falls between 20th August and !5th September and lasts for a total of 10 days.

Ganesh chaturthi is a very sacred and auspicious occasion. It is one of the most sacred and believed festivals among Hindus. The earliest Ganesha Chaturthi puja were recorded way back in the time of the reigns of the Satvahan, Rashtrakuta and the Chalukya dynasties. Lord Ganesha is known as the God of prosperity and wisdom.

he birth of Lord Ganesha is celebrated massively in various hindu communities. Lord ganesha is worshipped before the worshipping of other Gods and Goddesses. He is worshipped all over India before getting started for any auspicious occasion. The festival is known for its community participation and involvement of people from all walks of life irrespective of their religion or culture; these 10 days include various religious and intellectually motivated activities. Huge public installations of idols of Ganesha which at times can be as big as 25 feet are a very integral part of the overall celebrations.

Ganesha chaturthi is celebrated massively throughout India. This occasion is happened to fall month of Bhadrapada as per the Hindu calendar. The festival is initiated on the Shukla chaturthi...Priests clad in robes of red silk, as a symbol, invoke life in the statues by chanting mantras and then coconuts, jaggery, grass blades and red flowers are given as offerings. The statues are then decorated with paste made from Sandalwood& Kumkum...

There is a specific and special weet dish for this festival is the Modak which is basically a kind of a jaggerynut kind made from flour and fresh dry coconut, dry fruits etc.The Vinayakar Chathurthi (Ganesh Chathurthi) 2011 is a much awaited festival. The occasion of ganesh chaturathi 2011 would combine all the people from various casts to join together and be a part of this occasion. This festival holds a special significance among the Hindus. 

1 - வாக்குண்டாம் நல்ல மனமுண்டாம்
மாமலராள் நோக்குண்டாம்
மேனி நுடங்காது-பூக்கொண்டு
துப்பார் திருமேனித்
தும்பிக்கையான் பாதம்
தப்பாமல் சார்வார் தமக்கு

2 - கணபதி என்றிடக் கலங்கும் வல்வினை
கணபதி என்றிடக் காலனும் கைதொழும்
கணபதி என்றிடக் கருமம் ஆதலால்
கணபதி என்றிடக் கவலை தீருமே

The festival is similarly celebrated all across the world with major celebrations in UK, USA and Canada with people wishing each other ‘Happy Ganesh chaturthi’

Vasantha Panchami - Most auspicious day to worship goddess

The beauty of Hinduism is that there are numerous opportunities for people to thank gods for various reasons throughout one.s life. This could be for rain, sunshine, wind, wealth, health, and for everything that humans enjoy in their life. There are numerous stories in the Hindu scriptures that emphasize the importance of worshipping gods and goddesses before starting a new task. That.s why Hindu calendar is filled with festivals and special occasions. Vasanth Panchami is one of those special occasions on which Hindus worship the goddess of education, Saraswathi Devi.

Saraswathi Devi

Saraswathi Devi is the wife of Lord Brahma, the creator and one of the Trinity gods. The other two are Lord Vishnu, the proprietor, and Lord Shiva, the destroyer. Saraswathi Devi is the goddess of vidya(education). It is her blessings that make on a writer, poet, orator, and an expert in any field of study. That.s why Hindus often refer to an expert in a field of study as .Saraswathi Puthra/ Puthri..
On this day Saraswathi Devi is worshipped at temples and homes. People get ready in the morning and place books in front of Saraswathi Devi, and perform Shodasha Upachara Pooja to the goddess. After the pooja everyone takes the prashad(holy food offered to Saraswathi Devi) and children start reading and writing for the first time under the guidance of a teacher or parents. Saraswathi Devi is worshipped all along the year whenever any educational task is started at any time of the year.

Arrival of Spring Season

Vasanth Panchami is also the arrival of spring season. From this day onwards trees start blossoming with new leaves and buds. Spring season marks the arrival of new life not only in Hindu tradition but in all traditions faiths. The hidden meaning of new life is that high and low times are cyclical and there is always light after darkness. Further, life and death are inevitable to every kind of life on this earth, and one must always remain hopeful of better time in spite of difficulties and challenges.

Kama Deva- The god of desire and passion

Spring time is also an occasion to offer prayers to Kama Deva, who is the god of love and desire. Obviously, beautiful springtime colors in nature create a mood for passion and desire. Kama Deva is responsible for creating passion and desire, which encourages male and female forms to unify and create new life. The act of creating new life is regarded as very important in attaining God through Karma Yoga. In Hindu way of life creation is regarded as .Yagna.(worship of gods through fire). However, gaining control over Kama is highly important for every human being to perform Karma Yoga in a balanced manner. Due to this significance, people consider Vasanth Panchami an auspicious day for marriages and to perform the .gruhasthashrama dharma. (married life) through Karma Yoga.

Yaa Kundendu tushaara haaradhavalaa, Yaa shubhravastraavritha|
Yaa veenavara dandamanditakara, Yaa shwetha padmaasana||
Yaa brahmaachyutha shankara prabhritibhir Devaisadaa Vanditha|
Saa Maam Paatu Saraswatee Bhagavatee Nihshesha jaadyaapahaa||

So, make sure to take time and worship the goddess of education, Sarawsathi Devi on this day and get her blessing for a good education!

||Saraswathee Namasthubhayam||
Courtesy : Pundit Srinivas Khedam