Worshipping Lord Ganesh

Lord Ganesh like we all know is also known as Ganapati. According to sage Panini Gana is a group of eight directions called Vasus. Pati means master or nurturer. So Ganapati is master or nurturer of directions. According to others, Ganesh is the master of ten directions. Add the eight to the upward and downward movements. To them other Gods cannot reach from any direction to the worship places without Ganapati’s permission. Therefore all kinds of religious worships of all Gods first start with offering of prayers to Ganesh. Ganpatyas or devotees of Ganapati chant Mahaganapati instead of Parambramham when they pray to the supreme God. Sanskrutakosh says Gana is a pure particle of spirituality. Pati is master. Accordingly Ganapati is the master of the purest form or particle of Chaitanya or divine consciousness. Nighantukosh elaborates that Gana is a compilation of frequencies that cause damage to existence. The Pati who controls them and wards off the evil forces is Ganapati.

When Lord Ganesh is the first to be worshipped before any endeavor or task, before any other deity, his idols too are an important issue. Like early times idols ought to be made in consonance with the scriptures and the science behind it. Unfortunately idol makers of Ganapati today do not follow these principles. Ganesh Chaturthi is the time when idols are made and decorated on platforms and offered prayers followed by festivities.

Mud or clay has been used and have been the preferred medium due to the knowledge that Lord Ganesh was created from grime by his mother. Scientifically mud or clay dissolves in water quickly and is not harmful to the water or the surroundings when the idols are immersed. Plaster of Paris is used extensively nowadays for making Ganesh statues. It is easy to mould, light in weight and dries instantly. There are many disadvantages of using plaster of Paris. They do not dissolve easily, and float in the water for long period by polluting it. At times they are pulled out and crushed by machines dishonoring the Lord himself.

By methods other than mud or clay, moulds are used to make the idols taking away the spiritual communication of the sculptor with the Lord in the process. Today an idol maker is simply a commercial vendor of Lord Ganesh statues.

Ganesh Puja in the state of Maharashtra in India is the most vibrant. For almost a month the entire sate including the big cities like Mumbai and Pune explode in celebrations. Ganesh idols of all shapes and sizes can be found decorated in the finest at homes, streets, offices, public places and almost everywhere. The immersion ceremony in Mumbai has become so famous that it is televised the world over live. It also has become a tourist attraction. Tourists from all over the world are flocking to witness this rare spectacle of procession, chanting, music, dance and immersion of the Lord in the sea with awe and piety. Not only films made in India but Hollywood too has used the immersion ceremony in Mumbai as an important scene in their films.

Offer your prayers to Lord Ganesh, he will destroy all the evil that comes your way and bless you!