Ganesh Chaturthi 2020
Ganesh Chaturthi is a huge event in many parts of the country. It is a religious festival that is held to celebrate the Hindu god, Ganesha’s birthday. Lord Ganesha is a very popular deity in India. People worship him if they want to have any obstacles in their life removed. He is also worshipped when people want to launch new ventures like starting a new business. He is the God of wisdom and knowledge and was the scribe who wrote the Hindu epic, Mahabharatha, as Sage Vyasa dictated it.
Ganesh Chaturthi in India
It is said that the great Maratha chieftain Chhatrapati Shivaji was the one who began the Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations in India. Later, in the 19th century, the Indian freedom fighter, Lokmanya Tilak, revived it, during British rule. Over the years, the festival has evolved into a colorful extravaganza spread over 10 days, especially in the state of Maharashtra. Huge pandals are erected, and towering idols of Ganesha are installed on them. There will be many religious and cultural programs in major areas, with community and cultural associations getting into the act. Poojas, theatrical performances based on incidents in the deity’s life, dance and music programs, bhajans, sports, and charitable activities, blood donation camps…these are just some of the things that will be part of the mega event. On the 10th day, the Ganesha idols will be taken in a procession to the sea or other water bodies and immersed. This event is called Ganesh Visarjan. Huge crowds of devotees sing and dance in gay abandon as they accompany the idols. A heartening aspect of Ganesh Chaturthi is that people of other faiths, too, take part in it, to make it a big success. Thus, the festival is a wonderful reminder of the secular character of India, where different faiths and traditions co-exist in harmony.
Ganesh Chaturthi 2020 amid the Covid-19 Pandemic
This year, however, Ganesh Chaturthi is likely to be held in a low key manner, due to the Covid 19 pandemic that is raging throughout the country. Many states are in lockdown mode, and large gatherings are banned. People have to follow social distancing rules and wear masks to prevent the disease from spreading. Under the circumstances, there will be no grand public celebrations like before. This has dampened the mood of the people, somewhat, as they will not be able to celebrate Ganesha’s birthday in a befitting manner.
But extraordinary circumstances call for extraordinary measures. We need to remember that for God, our faith is what matters, and not its mode of expression. We can have a simple Ganesh Chaturthi celebration at home, with a Ganesha idol that measures 3 ft instead of a grand ceremony attended by hordes of people in a pandal with a 10 ft Ganesha idol. All the things you need for the Ganesh Pooja are now available on online platforms. You can buy eco-friendly Ganesha idols and Pooja items online, and they will be delivered at your home. If you need a priest for the Pooja, you can book one online. Such online platforms have made it very convenient to follow our traditions and rituals in a very convenient manner during the lockdown.
Celebrate Ganesh Chaturthi Online
You can also take part in online Poojas and ceremonies conducted by online platforms offering spiritual services. For instance, AstroVed will be having a grand 3-day Ganesh Chaturthi celebration at its centers, adhering to WHO safety protocols. You can register for the Poojas and Homas and watch it live from the comfort of your own home. On Day 1, we are performing Super Grand Homa invoking 32 forms of Ganesha. On Day 2, we have Ganesha Upanishad Chanting and Maha Ganapati Homa at Vedic School, and on Day 3, we have a Raja Ganapati Homa. Those who register by August 1 will also get 315 preparatory Bonus Poojas, and upto 25% off on Ganesh Chaturthi packages.
The coronavirus pandemic may have prevented us from throwing a spectacular birthday party for our beloved Ganesha, but our faith alone will suffice to ensure a dazzling Ganesh Chaturthi celebration in 2020.