Tuesday, September 18, 2012


Ganesha idols for sale on the roadside in Bengaluru
Religion  in India is still a living force and Indians appreciate and cultivate the festival spirit even in this age of industrialization and political upheavals. Ganesh Festivals bring people together and make the nation move forward and grow. Ganesh Festival is very popular in our country.
The birth of Lord Ganesh is on the 4th day of the bright half of Bhadrapad Shukla (August/September). This festival is celebrated and everyone loves this deity with his curving trunk, potbelly and big flat ears. He is the benevolent protector of the innocent, yet the ruthless destroyer of evil. His mount is a rat.
Paayasa. avalakki, laddu, chakkuli..
In several states of India, clay idols of Ganesh in varying sizes are made and sold. The idols are purchased and brought home the day previous to Ganesh Chaturthi, Lord Ganesh is very fond of sweets and hence kheer, panchamrit, fruits and sweets and specially modaks are placed before him as "Naivedya" or "Bhog". After the ritual worship this "Bhog" is distributed as "Prasad".

The main sweet dish during the festival is the modaka  A modaka is a dumpling made from rice flour/wheat flour with a stuffing of fresh or dry-grated coconut, jaggery, dry fruits and some other condiments. It is either steam-cooked or fried. Another popular sweet dish is the karjikai which is similar to the modak in composition and taste but has a semicircular shape.
Many interesting legends about the birth and the greatness of Lord Ganesh are found in old ancient religious texts. He is considered to be the god of wisdom, prudence and prosperity. The worship of this god is coming down to us right from the Vedic times. Every religious ceremony is completed even today with invoking his blessings at the very beginning with the solemn recitation of "Om Ganeshaya Namaha" (I bow to Thee Lord Ganesh). 

1 comment: