| Vakrtund Mahakaya Surya Koti Samaprabha |
|Nirbhignam Kurumedaya Sarva Karyashu Sarvada |
Ganesh Utsav or Ganesh Chaturthi is one of the festivals in India. This Year Ganesh Chaturthi falls on August 23, 2009 Sunday. Ganesh Chaturthi is celebrated as birth day of Lord Ganesh, supreme god of wisdom, prosperity and good fortune. The celebration of Ganesh Chaturthi continues for five, seven, or ten days. Some even stretch it to twenty one days. In the tradition of the right hand path the first day is the most important. In the left hand path tradition the final day is most important.
Pray with faith and devotion
On the Ganesh Chaturthi day, meditate on the stories connected with Lord Ganesha early in the morning, during the Brahmamuhurta period. Then, after taking a bath, go to the temple and do the prayers of Lord Ganesha. Offer Him some coconut and sweet pudding. Pray with faith and devotion that He may remove all the obstacles that you experience on the spiritual path. Worship Him at home, too. Don’t look at the moon on that day.
During one of his birthdays, His mother, Parvati, cooked for him twenty-one types of delicious food and a lot of sweet porridge. Ganesha ate so much that even his big belly could not contain it. Mounting his little mouse, he embarked on his nightly rounds. His mouse suddenly stumbled upon seeing a huge snake. To adjust His belly, Ganesha put the snake on as a belt around his stomach. All of a sudden, he heard laughter emanating form the sky. He looked up and saw the moon mocking him. Parvati, seeing this, immediately cursed the moon that whoever looks at it on Ganesh Chaturthi will be accused of a wrong doing.
Ganesha statues installed in street corners and in homes and elaborate arrangements are made for lighting, decoration, mirrors and the most common of flowers. Poojas (prayer services) are performed daily. The artists who make the idols of Ganesh compete with each other to make bigger and more magnificent and elegant idols. The relevantly larger ones are anything from 10 meters to 30 meters in height.
On final day, these statues or idols are then carried on decorated floats to be immersed in the sea. Thousands of processions converge on the beaches to immerse the holy idols in the sea. This procession and immersion is accompanied by drum- beats, devotional songs and dancing.
The most serious impact of the Ganesh festival on the natural environment is due to the immersion of Idols made of Plaster of Paris into lakes, rivers and the sea. Colors and materials used for decoration of idols pollute environment and cause serious threat for nature.
Today the awareness campaigns by environmental organizations, association of apartment owners, youth group have led people to celebrate festival eco friendly. Use eco friendly idols and create an artificial tank or tub to immerse idol. Immerse the idol in the tank specially made for the purpose. Enjoy Ganesh Chaturthi but with eco-friendly methods.