The gate made a squeaking sound when I kicked it open. It slammed against the wall and came back to its usual place. I got down my bicycle, with a frown and opened the gate slowly, leaving it half open. I pedaled my bicycle out and looked around for Ganesh idols in the street. Even though we Indians celebrate many festivals, Ganesh Chaturthi is special for us. Be it the pooja, making special sweets at home or putting our class notes and textbooks near the Lord’s idol. Everything is special. But what makes this festival exciting is the Ganesha idols, huge ones in streets. There may be one or two in a street but not one idol is similar to another.
People form groups, collect money and organize daily Poojas for these idols. Every street has a committee to do the job right. People go out at evenings to look at these idols and pray for their well being. Touching the idol feels like touching the lord himself. Visitors are given prasad (devotional offering made to a god, typically consisting of food that is later shared among devotees).
kids go out with their friends in the evenings exploring different localities and idols. I rode to my friend’s house to check his pooja idol out and prayed to God for a minute. We both walked out to see different incarnations of the Lord Ganesha (and of course, try different prasads).
The idols are kept for eleven days. Too Many forms of the lord but too less time to look at them all. The roads are generally packed with transport vehicles that transport Lord Ganesha’s idols from one place to another.
We were amazed at the lighting and decorations in every street and tired by the end of the day.
Now that I’m done with the pooja today, I’ll be heading out to see the Lord this evening with a lot of enthusiasm and nostalgia.
Happy Ganesh Chaturthi to all my fellow bloggers. May the lord bless us all with health, wealth and prosperity.
Jai Shri Ganesha.