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ॐ श्री गणेशाय नमः

om shree ganeshaya namaha

OM, Lord Ganesha, I offer prayers to you.


Chathurthi Vrat

Every Hindu deity (specific energy of the divine) has two days in the month when it is specially worshiped. These days are called "Vrat". The devotees fast during the day, perform ceremonies, recite mantras and meditate. And of course there are also these "Vrat" days for the followers of Ganesha. If you have a particularly strong need to unite with the energy of Ganesha, then these special fasting days are for you!

Ganesha's "Vrats" are called "Chathurti". That means "the fourth day". And correctly guessed, it is the fourth day after the new moon and the fourth day after the full moon.


Vinayaka-Chaturthi

The “Chaturthi”-day of fasting after the new moon is called Varad Vinayaka Chaturthi. Varad means "to ask God to grant every wish one has". Ganesha blesses devotees with wisdom and patience who truly bond with him.

The time after new moon is the “Shukla Paksha” phase, the period of the brightening moon and it is favorable to growth or expansion on every plane of existence i.e. mental, physical and spiritual plane.

Although Varad Vinayaka Chaturthi fasting is done every month but the most significant Vinayaka Chaturthi falls in month of Bhadrapada (end of August or September). It is known as “Ganesha Chaturthi”. Ganesha Chaturthi is celebrated by Hindus all over the world as the birthday of Ganesha.

(you can find more about this below)

next celebrations:

July 13, 2021, Tuesday

August 11, 2021, Wednesday

September 10, 2021, Friday (Ganesha Chaturthi!)

October 9, 2021, Saturday

November 7, 2021, Sunday

December 7, 2021, Tuesday

 


Sankashti Chaturthi

Now I would like to talk about the fourth day after the full moon. It is called "Sankashti Chaturthi". The period of the waning moon, Krishna Paksha, is considered inauspicious, as the moon loses light during this period. It is the dark period. This also describes the word "Sankashti": "Liberation in difficult times". And which divine energy is best suited for such a phase? Ganesha! Therefore, on this auspicious day, devotees worship Ganesha to help them overcome all obstacles in life and emerge as a strengthened, wise, more conscious soul in every difficult situation.

It is believed that you can especially feel Ganesha's divine energy on the day of Sankashti Chaturthi. Make yourself receptive to Ganesha!




next celebrations:

depends it depends on your location (America / Europe-Asia-Australia)

June 27/28, 2021

July 26/27, 2021

August 25/26, 2021

September 24/25

October 24/25, 2021

November 22/23, 2021

December 22/23, 2021



Angarki Sankashti Chaturthi

When "Sankashti –Chaturthi” is on a Tuesday the Vrat is particularly auspicious! This day is also known as “Angarki Sankashti Chaturthi”. Angarki Chaturthi is a day of liberation and the worship of Ganesha on this day, it is said, would fulfill the desires of the devotees. Fasting for Ganesha can free you from all troubles and bless you with a content life. Fasting brings about healing powers in you, health-wise, but also spiritually. Angarki Chaturthi performs once every six months and Lord Ganesha, the Supreme Lord of Intelligence, is worshiped on that day to seek his eternal blessings of prosperity and happiness. I am thinking of our ashran gatherings with Manose Newa. When we chant the Ganesha mantra, does it really awaken every pore of happiness in us! Really a rich gift!

And why is a Tuesday so special? There is a mythological story behind "Angarki Chaturthi":

“According to Ganesha Purana’s Upasana Khand (one of the three divisions in the Vedas), Goddess Prithvi (mother earth) brought up Mangala, sage Bharadwaj’s son, until seven years of age and then returned the child to his father. The boy learned Vedas and Puranas (sacred texts) from his father. The boy showed great devotion towards Lord Ganesha and wanted to observe penance to seek his blessings. Sage Bharadwaj taught him Ganapati mantra and sent him to meditate upon the benevolent God.

He sincerely prayed to Lord Ganesha for several years and on Magha Krishna Chaturthi (4th waning Moon during mid-Jan to mid-Feb), Ganesha blessed the boy by showing his universal form. Ganesha told the boy that he could ask for any boon, as he was impressed by the boy’s devotion. The boy replied, “O Lord. I would like to have ambrosia with all the Gods in heaven. My name Mangala should be famous in all the three worlds. Since I saw you on the day of Magha Krishna Chaturthi, this day must be special and devotees who observe fasting for you on this day should get their desires fulfilled.” Ganesha granted him the wishes. He further informed him that his name would be Angarak from then on and this day would be celebrated as Angarak or Angarki Chaturthi. Ganesha also decreed that whoever worships him with a Vrat on this day would be blessed with wish-fulfillment.”

next celebrations:

July 27, 2021, Tuesday

November, 23, 2021


"Varad Vinayaka and Sankashti Chaturthi" rituals

I would like to explain the rituals of "Varad Vinayaka and Sankashti Chaturthi" to you in a somewhat simplified way, as I perform them myself:  

These days are entirely dedicated to the worship of Ganesha.

You start the day by lighting a candle and incense sticks (preferably sandalwood) in front of the statue or the picture of a Ganesha. Recite a Ganesha mantra in Japa form, i.e. at least one cycle of 108 times.

For example the Ganesha Bija Mantra:

"om gam ganapataye namaha"

It's very simple and yet so powerful. I put a lot of emphasis on the emphasis on OM and GAM. Do not forget the "M", because the universe is in this sound!

On this day, you should fast from sunrise until the moon appears in the night sky. If this is not possible for you, try a fruit diet. Or eat sattvic vegetables that grow underground, for example a potato or peanuts, but not bulbs or garlic, they are not sattvic. And do not consume rice, wheat and lentils in any form. Consumption of tobacco and alcohol is strictly prohibited.

The actual "Sankashti Puja" (ceremony) is celebrated in the evening just before seeing the moon. Bring fresh flowers to Ganesha, light another candle and incense sticks (sandalwood).

Ganesha likes "Modaka", which is an Indian dessert made from jaggery, rice flour and fresh coconut flakes. But I'm sure he likes other sweets too! Make something with oure love and give it to him as an offering along with fruit.

Recite Vedic Ganesha mantras.

This can be the bija mantras,

om gam ganapataye namaha

Meaning: OM, salutations to the remover of obstacles.

or

om shree ganeshaya namaha

Meaning: OM, Lord Ganesha, I offer prayers to you.

or the Ganapati Gayatri Mantra

OM Ekadantaya Viddhmahe, Vakratundaya Dheemahi Tanno Danti Prachodayat

Meaning: OM, Glory to the one who has one tusk and a curved trunk, I bow before you to get blessed by your grace for an illuminated life.

But there are as many mantras as there are forms of Ganesha!  

Also think of the moon, because the divine dwells in it too. I always have water in a sacred vessel on my Shiva altar. "Tirtha", holy water, that's how I know it from Bali. Spray this water towards the moon and recite a mantra in honor of the divine moon.

JAI SHREE GANESHA SHARANAM GANESHA … OM SOM SOMAYA NAMAHA

When you see the rising moon you can break the fast. Now you can eat yourself the offerings that you gave to Ganesha. It is now sacred "Prasad". It has a very different energy than normal food!

Ganesha is the formless energy from which everything manifests and into which everything will dissolve.

Ganesh is the embodiment of spirituality, prosperity, wisdom and consciousness.

In difficult times as we have been experiencing for a year, Ganesha can awaken a different perspective in us.

He can open new doors for us. New ways.

Everything should start with Ganesha.

Every mantra, every ceremony, everything we do.

Liberate from old views in order to be open to new ideas.

Free from prejudice, free from patterns that only hinder us.

The holy fast, or partial fasting, can help.

When I recite 

Om Gam Ganapataye Namaha

before starting anything, I say to myself:

In what I am about to do, let wisdom be my guide".

Om Gam Ganapataye Namaha
         

Be aware, that Ganesha is in everybody of us, in every atom of the universe.

“Angarki Sankashti Chaturthi” is over. It was a bright day in the energy of Ganesha. I had profound moments and realizations. Ganesha is really the remover of obstacles! I have recognized them all and will now gradually dissolve them. I ended my darshan with Ganesha with great joy. When the moon was seen at 11 p.m., I splashed the holy water (tirtha) on Ganesha, then in the direction of the moon, on a lingam and poured the rest over myself. I am grateful for this day and out of deepest gratitude I would like to share my experience and the wonderful moon with you.

Be aware, That Ganesh is in everybody of us, in every atom of the universe!

(my OMline Ashram post, 2021-03-02)

 

Ganesha Chaturthi in Mumbai-India, 1994

Ganesha Chaturthi

Ganesha Chaturthi is the most important annual festival dedicated to Ganesha, who is also known as Ganapati, Vinayaka and several other meaningful names. He is hailed as the one who removes obstacles, and hence he is worshipped first before initiating a new venture, work or auspicious beginning.

Clay Ganesha figures of all sizes are made 2-3 months before the festival. Often these are then decorated with flowers and lights before they are displayed in houses and apartments for the holy-day. Many Hindus visit a temple on Ganesha Chaturthi to dedicate offerings such as coconut or sweet porridge to the god. In many places there are public events on this day. Communities compete against each other in competitions in which, for example, the largest Ganesha statue is chosen. Singing performances, art exhibitions, yoga performances and theater performances are also part of the program. There are also many charitable activities. After the main celebrations, processions with music and dance take place in many places on the 11th day, during which pictures and statues of Ganesha are carried through the streets. In the end, Ganesha is symbolically sent back to his hOMeland on Mount Kailash by sinking the statues in the river or sea. On this journey God is supposed to take with him all the bad luck and misfortune of people.

I bring a statue into the sea every year, but not to get rid of bad luck. I give it out of gratitude that all the obstacles over the past year have made me grow spiritually and creatively. Maybe I can inspire you with this idea.

And please, do NOT looking to the moon on Ganesha Charturthi. Ganesha despised the moon because it once laughed at him!

(the story of Ganesha and the moon you will find below)

Ganesha Chaturthi 2019

GANESHA CHATURTHI 2021

Om Ekadantaya Viddhmahe, Vakratundaya Dheemahi Tanno Danti Prachodayat

Today was Ganesha's birthday, also the celebrating the arrival of Ganesh to earth from Kailash Parvat with his mother Goddess Parvati (Gauri) and I welcomed him to my hOMe. He is now my special guest. Like every year I made a small murti out of clay. Unlike in his home country India, I always make a murti (statue) or a relief that reminds me of everything that was important to me during the year. It is also a thank you to everything that I was able to experience. This time my statue is very colorful. Ganesha sits on the Balinese cosmos "Nawasangha". During this "Ganesha year" I felt how much Bali there is in me. When I have spoken and written about Bali, I felt at home. For this reason I have chosen this typical lotus flower with the nine directions, the eight cardinal points with the center. The Nawasangha embodies all aspects of the divine, but also all aspects in our human world. I am grateful for everything and really everything that I was allowed to experience. Some experiences were just beautiful, others sad, but exactly these gave me awareness and let me grow. And how can it be otherwise: Ganesha sits in the middle! Yes, it was kind of a focus this year. Every Monday I told a different story about Ganesha. Sometimes it was his pranks, sometimes something about its meaning, sometimes one of his mantras, sometimes a certain form of him or just thoughts that came out of my heart. You will surely notice that my Ganesha this year has very big ears. I chose it that way. I recently wrote about the importance of our listening CORRECTLY. TRUE listening, listening without judging, without your own interpretation. This is a very important teaching that Ganesha wants to express with his ears. And then there is the big red Omkara, the OM. Symbolic for all mantras, which almost all start with the OM and end with the OM. The sound of the universe, Ganesha resides in OM. And OM, that is also the symbol for the Gayatri-OMline-APPshram, in which I feel so at hOMe. For which I am grateful. But this statue or mandala also expresses forgiveness for me. I forgive myself. I set out to do so much. I wanted to make a really great Ganesha statue. Yes, I said that to myself on the last Chaturthi. And now I formed one at the last second. I've made such great works of art in my life and now something like that. But when I was done with it in the middle of the night, I said to myself: It was something out of the mOMent. There is only this time, everything else is unimportant. I was full of love in that moment, full of devotion. It is not the result that is important, but the moment in which I had this clay in my hand. I forgive myself. I also forgive myself for everything that was not accomplished again this year. I forgive myself for everything that wasn't the way it should be. And with this self-forgiveness, I also forgive all living beings around me.

It doesn't all have to be perfect. Is something perfect even alive?

Today the ten day Chaturthi Festival started. I will now recite Ganesha's mantras every day and meditate in his light. Puja ceremonies will be held in India. All with precise guidelines. For me prayer is spontaneous and out of this spontaneity I will celebrate these ten days with Ganesha. Don't I celebrate with him every day anyway ??? On the tenth day, on Sunday, September 19th, I will say goodbye to my "Ganesha-Nawasangha-Cosmos".

Ganesha Anant Chaturdashi Visarjan 2021

 

Yesterday the ten-day festival in honor of my beloved Ganesha came to an end with the Ganesha Anant Chaturdashi Visarjan. For ten days Ganesha was received as a special guest in the homes and temples of the Hindus. And as is customary all over the world: guests receive special hospitality! Ganesha got the most delicious food, there was music and dancing. Of course, pujas took place with prayers, mantras and meditation. Perhaps you are now asking yourself: But isn't Ganesha always in a house or temple? That's right, but in honor of his birthday, a special murthi is made from clay. At the Ganesha Charturthi festival, this Murthi is solemnly welcomed in the house / temple (I told you ten days ago) And now it was time to say goodbye. There is, of course, a meaning behind this tradition. In short, Ganesha is invited to remove all bad energies, pains, sufferings and obstacles from the past year. And on the day of the “farewell” he takes them with him and leaves behind peace, prosperity and health.

This is one of the mantras that are chanted to Ganesh Anant Chaturdashi Visarjan:

Mushikavaahana modaka hastha

Chaamara karna vilambitha sutra

Vaamana rupa maheshwara putra

Vighna vinaayaka paada namasthe

“O Lord, the son of Lord Shiva and the remover of all obstacles with a mouse as Thy vehicle, with sweet pudding in hand, with wide ears and long hanging trunk, I prostrated at Thy lotus-like Feet!”

Anant Chaturthi is a very auspicious day, full of positive vibrations. Have you ever seen a picture or a murthi of Anant Vishnu? There are also holy places with this representation, for example in Nepal – Budhanilkantha, located at the foot of the Shivapuri hills in the northern-most part of Kathmandu Valley. In this depiction, Vishnu rests peacefully on a bed of snakes. It is Vishnu's reclining posture when he was lying on the world serpent before the cosmos came into being. You probably know it as Narayana, especially from the mantra "Hari Om Namo Narayana". “Anant” also means “endless”, that is, without beginning and without end, the true being. The posture also means something like spiritual rest. The day reminds us that we should rest like Anant Vishnu, be in balance, not be influenced by happiness or sorrow. Both belong to the divine whole and will always be in balance if we accept them with awareness, with consciousness. And what does this “Vishnu day” have to do with Ganesha? Ganesha embodies this consciousness. Ganesha is the body of consciousness. At Anant Charturdashi, the Murthis of Ganesha are now solemnly brought in processions in a lake, a river or into the sea. Because the Murthis are made of clay, they dissolve in water. Symbolically, then, the body dissolves into the whole, in the Paramatma. What remains is the consciousness!

I also had a little Ganesha Murthi as a guest this year. It sat on a Balinese Nawasangha cosmos. I certainly didn't celebrate like a Hindu would, but Ganesha was my guest and he got frangipani flowers, fragrant mangoes, pomegranates and also a coconut every day. I shared with him what I like myself. Nuts too. I didn't mean to copy anything that I am not. I prayed with him, chanted mantras and I visualized in front of him what my obstacles are. I am now aware of them and am working to resolve them by his next birthday. I thank Ganesha for everything that I was able to experience in his "year". With this in mind, I handed the Murthi over to the sea last night. Before that I had to apologize to Ganesha. I have already told you several times that one should not look to the moon on Ganesha Chaturthi. I don't know if the same is true of Anant Chaturdashi, but I wholeheartedly apologized to my beloved Ganesha. When I got to the beach the moon was so golden and big over the sea - how could I not look at it. Its light was reflected on the water. Wouldn't Ganesha have looked there too? Actually, I wanted to take my Murthi to the sea in the morning, but on Saturday I checked what times would be best for it. I had never done it like this before, but I had a feeling. Sunday morning was not at all auspicious, on the contrary. So I chose the time after sunset. And there was the moon. So should it be that I look at the moon? I answered this question with "yes".

Om Gam Ganapataye Namaha

I gave my Murthi to the sea and took some sand and a stone with me from this place ... as an invitation for next year!

Ganpati bappa morya, Pudhchya warshi lavkar ya;

Ganpati baapa morya, Mangalmurti morya!

“Ganpati bappa morya, pudhchya warshi lavkar ya” indicates that devotees are referring to Ganesha as the Lord of all (Ganpati) and a father (Bappa), who was worshipped by Morya Gosavi. They are praying to Him that He should return soon (lavkar) next (pudhcha) year (warshi)

Be aware, That Ganesh is in everybody of us, in every atom of the universe!

And I feel deep in my heart that Ganesha was happy with me this year

and he will continue to be if I share with you all the strength that he gives me.


 

 

HAPPY GANESHA CHATURTHI 2020

and I would like to share my experience on the beach with you. Like every year, I brought another Ganesha image into the sea.
This time it wasn't a statue, I had made a relief. A mandala.

I've already told you that Ganesha is given in a river or the sea so that he can go back to his hOMe.
On this journey God is supposed to take with him all the bad luck and misfortune of people. But I brought this mandala into the sea, not to get rid of bad luck. I gave it out of gratitude that all the obstacles over the past year have made me grow spiritually and creatively. The mandala reflects our mala, which we form around the planet. The blue symbolizes the infinite ocean, the infinite sea that connects with the infinite sky every time I'm on the beach, but also the BLUE of Blue Spirit in Costa Rica!!! The Gayatri gatherings from the Sangha I belong to! The green and the flowers symbolize the time in the garden - the three months of lockdown (we were almost not allowed to go out on the street here in Spain). Ganesha himself as the OM symbol. In OM I find my freedom
My beloved deity Ganesha also lives in the OM.
He is OM, without beginning, without end.
And it's black because Deva Premal and Miten taught me that black is the color of love.

I am grateful for all the experiences I was able to make this year. I am grateful for the Global Gayatri Sangha and the wonderful gatherings with Deva Premal, Miten and Manose. I am grateful for all the love that is shown to me. And today I gave this gratitude to the sea.

Om Gam Ganapataye Namaha

Be aware, that Ganesha is in everybody of us, in every atom of the universe.


GANESHA CHATURTHI 2017

full of tears

tears of sorrow,

but also tears of gratitude

in deepest bond with the water

that surrounds me

the sea, which is also my papa's resting place.

Oh Ganesha,

I am so grateful for all the unforgettable, wonderful years with him.

Om Gam Ganapataye Namaha

I am aware, that Ganesha is in everybody of us, in every atom of the universe.

 

Om Gam Ganapataye Namaha

Be aware, that Ganesha is in everybody of us, in every atom of the universe.


The story of Ganesha and the moon

There are endless stories and anecdotes about the gods of Hinduism. And so many different interpretations. And that's what makes it so exciting and lively. Everything is right, everything is wrong and everything is true!

Ganesha loves to eat modaka, sweet rice balls. On one of his feast days (when he is worshiped) Ganesha went from house to house and received Modaka as offerings. When he had eaten a considerable amount of it, he sat on his mount, the mouse, and rode hOMe. It was a full moon night and the moon was shining in all his splendour – clean, round and unblemished. Ganesha and his mouse were making their shaky way home when suddenly a snake crossed their path and frightened by it the mouse made a dash for safety, dislodging Ganesha in the process. Ganesha fell to the ground and his stomach broke open, and all the modakas he had eaten rolled on to the ground. Ganesha had nothing else in mind than to put the Modaka back in his stomach. So Ganesha hastily stuffed all the modakas back, grabbed the serpent and tied it round his stomach to keep the modakas in. Ganesha thought that no one had seen it, but suddenly a laugh came down from night sky. The moon, having seen him fall, was laughing at him. Now, Ganesha lost his temper easily. Quick as a flash, Ganesha broke off one of his tusks and flung it up to the moon, making a direct hit, and shouted that the moon would never be whole again. That’s the reason why the moon has a crater which we can see right from the Earth. Furiously, he cursed the moon to never again appear in the sky. The moon asked his forgiveness and Ganesha weakened his curse. On the one hand because he had reacted out of anger and on the other hand it was simply too dark at night: From now on, the moon was allowed to shine in full size for one day per cycle, then slowly decrease and then slowly increase again. But on his birthday you should still avoid consciously looking at the moon.

And what can we learn from this story? I see several aspects there.

Ganesha is the god of the beginning. He always reminds me that I don't just get started, but rather go inside myself at the beginning of every day, every trip or every project. Deep within me is the root that all I'm doing is good. Good in the sense that it's something that comes from my heart. Only what emerges from my deepest being can be wise and bring success or happiness. But in the story, I just told you, Ganesha was very spontaneous (seems so very human, that's probably why it's so popular). He had overreacted. So better I should take a deep breath before cursing someone. Yes, breathing is a great way to get back to my center.

Ganesha looks a bit misshapen and yet he is the protective padron of us yogis. Like his father, Shiva, he also dances the cosmic dance. Ganesha's motto is: You don't have to live ascetically to be religious. It all looks a bit opposite, but it shows me that I shouldn't jump to wrong conclusions. Opposites are part of the whole. The balance is the right way. Forgiveness is the key! And Ganesha reminds us to lighten up, to take things as they come. And that I don't have to take everything so seriously.

(the photo I made at the Sri Mariamman Temple in Kuala Lumpur ,2017)

Om Gam Ganapataye Namaha
         Be aware, that Ganesha is in everybody of us, in every atom of the universe.

Ganesha Chaturthi 2013

 Om Gam Ganapataye Namaha
         Be aware, that Ganesha is in everybody of us, in every atom of the universe.



OM SHREE GANESHAYA NAMAHA!


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OM SHANTI SHANTI SHANTI OM