Since we are not performing the Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations at home this year, I am sharing images from the celebrations at my mom's place.. All photos have been clicked by my sister, Kanthi.
Celebrations begin with prayers to Gauri, a day before Ganpati arrives.
It is believed that Gauri, or Parvati, has a fight with Lord Shiva and comes to her maternal home on earth. Shiva immediately regrets the fight, and sends Ganesha to bring her back. They stay on earth for a few more days, and return to heaven together. The number of days they stay depends on various factors, such as family traditions and convenience!
An image of Gauri is made with sand wrapped up tight in a cloth, eyes, ears, nose and mouth pained on the cloth, and decorated to resemble the goddess. These days, a brass figure of the goddess has replaced the sand, so that it can be re-used.
Since Gauri is beleived to be the daughter of the house, she is offered lots of stuff.. from flowers and fruits to things for her to take back to her home. After the puja, all those articles are given to a married daughter, in this case, me.
Ganesha arrives the next day...
Usually, only one idol of the Lord is placed, but ours is a home filled with Ganesha idols, so almost every single one finds itself on the podium! The big brass idol has replaced the clay one, for eco-friendly reasons, while the smaller one is a very special one. It shows the Ganesha in our favourite temple in Delhi. The third and smallest one is the one I made this year... with a mixture of clay, sandalwood powder, haldi (turmeric), kumkum, vibhuthi (ash) and rosewater.
And the whole range of edible offerings which are for the Lord, but enjoyed by the devotees!!
And a view of the whole arrangement..
This year, both, Gauri and Ganesha had a special and surprise offering too... the Brahma Kamal plant in the house bloomed for the first time!!!
A special celebration indeed!!!
I had originally planned to attend the puja at my mom's place to compensate for not doing the puja myself, but as it turned out, I enjoyed the festival morning on the beach!!! Thanks to my sister, Kanthi for the virtual delight!!