The Ganesh Chaturthi 11-day festival Festival begins - Tiruvannamalai
The annual 11-day Ganesh Chaturthi festival, celebrating the birthday of elephant-headed Hindu god Ganesh, also called Ganapati or Vinayaka, starts and is observed with joy all over India. 1st September 2011
Lord Ganesh is one of the most popular Hindu deities in India. Naturally, because he is as likeable as likeable can be. He sports a huge belly, symbolic of prosperity and ease, fostering a sense of relief in minds plagued by the anxieties of constant weight-watching. Anorexics, take a page out of this book.
As a boy, he was willing to defy his fierce-some father, Lord Shiva himself, whom he denied entry into the bathing chamber of his mother Parvati, Shiva's wife. Dad saw red, chopped off his son's head. In order to bring Ganesh back to life, and console Parvati, Shiva sent out his men to bring back the head of the first living creature they found, which would be attached to the body of his son. It was an elephant and Ganesh was restored to life.
Today Lord Ganesh is universally invoked at the beginning of any venture, to ensure its success, or during times of difficulty as he is also the remover of obstacles.
Lord Ganesh also epitomizes tenacity and perseverance. He wrote the epic "Mahabharata," which consists of tens of thousands of verses, taking dictation from the great sage Vyasa. Ganesh ran out of ink, wore out all his pens, but didn't stop writing, breaking off his own tusk to keep on writing. It's still there, in his right hand.
But all of this is academic in the face of his generosity and benevolence, for which the price is simply to like him. Now, how easy is that?