Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Vinayaka Chathurthi - A festival to celebrate humanness and nature!

Jai Sai Master!

Today, all over India, people celebrate Vinayaka Chathurthi with reverence. Pandals on the streets, in the house with the families and friends, a real joyful day. Particularly for kids, who are told to keep their books and pray to the Lord Ganesha for the "success". 

With time, this festival also became a regular affair with people bringing in Ganesha idols made of plaster of paris and with paints etc.. However, with someone telling us all as to what is the importance of each festival, understanding and realising the importance of festival of Lord Ganesha has become more meaningful and a day of joy. (Article on Ganapathi pujaloni Rahasyam by Sri Sai Master in Manamu- Mana Samskruthi)

As Sri Sai Master writes, this is the day on which we do puja to the Lord of Ganas (groups). In this universe, various objects appeared as groups or classes (Ganalu). Planets, trees on the earth, even in the human being, various elements as groups. Everything performs the action as defined fundamentally by the Ultimate, or the Universal Energy, which we call as Ganapathi, Lord of Ganas or Groups or Classes. There is none who can command this Ultimate Energy or the All Pervading Energy, which we call as Lord Ganesha or Vinayaka. Maharshis who realised this truth, described Lord in a form which we do puja today. The Lord's head, which is elephant form, symbolises the nature. Elephant has the ability to hear smallest of sounds from a long distance. This symbolises power of Yogis who can hear the silence that is behind the noise, or the Om. The long nose or the trunk that elephant possess symbolises the ability of performing pranayama. Elephant also represents enormous power or strength. By keeping the head of elephant for a human, the power of a human being is being described. The Rat which is shown as the vehicle of Lord Vinayaka or Ganesh symbolises the  fickleness, narrowness and devious mind which needs to be controlled always. We perform puja with variety of leaves picked from the nature on this day to remind us of rich variety and wonder of God's creation. 

If one understands the deeper meaning of today's puja, and various names, it will enlighten us to a greater levels giving utmost happiness. It is not only our duty to perform after thoroughly understanding, but to pass on to the next generation and further, to help everyone live harmoniously with nature. Only then it will help protect the nature and we can live happily, lest..we keep walking towards complete destruction. Our ancestors created the cycle of festivals across the year, to remind us of the beauty of nature and Lord's creation. Let us pause and start looking at it, hearing it and.....feeling it.

Jai Sai Master!!

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