By upending our lives this year, COVID 19 has also come in the way of our festival celebrations. These much-awaited festivals have been canceled to contain the spread of the deadly virus – including Lord Ganesha’s arrival. Although unfortunate, this in fact is the need of the hour.
The month of August is quite special in the states of Karnataka, Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu. Followers of Ganesha look forward to celebrating Ganesh Chaturthi every year. This 10-day cultural extravaganza begins with devotees bringing home beautifully sculpted and hand-painted Ganesha idols. Ganesh festival organizers in Mumbai spend weeks erecting extravagant public pandals and preparing the city for the biggest religious celebration.
India will celebrate Ganesh Chaturthi on 22 August, but the celebrations will be toned down – limiting all the fun and fervor indoors. But here’s how you can celebrate an intimate Ganesh Chaturthi with your friends and family during the COVID 19 pandemic.
Food and lots of good food
No festival in India is complete without food, especially Ganesh Chaturthi. Known for his wisdom and benevolence, Ganesha is worshipped as the God of auspicious beginnings and remover of obstacles. But the thing about Lord Ganesha that appeals to people the most is the stories describing his love for sweets. In all pictures and paintings of Ganesha, you will find ladoos, modak, and fruits in his hands. Let this year be no different. Celebrate Ganesh Chaturthi with Ganesha’s favourite delicacies.
Let us pledge to never take things for granted
If anything, this year has taught us that our world is fluid, constantly mutating and wildly unpredictable. Months of self-isolation at home taught us how we can never take anything for granted again in this transient world. Therefore, this year’s Ganesh Chaturthi demands a different kind of celebration – a celebration of our blessings, our strength, and our resilience. Enjoy a small celebration at home with only your near and dear, reminiscing the good ol days when festivals were grand and full of life.
Let us be more mindful this Ganesh Chaturthi
Don’t we all appreciate the little joys in life now which we were too busy to acknowledge earlier? When all of this is over, I am certain people will take responsibility and be more mindful of the world they reside in. After coming out of this COVID pandemic, the path that lays in front of us has to be molded into a sustainable one if we were to avoid another outbreak in our lifetime. Therefore, this Ganesh Chaturthi let’s be mindful of our actions and ensure that we leave fewer footprints behind. Let us be more sensitive to our nature, our rivers, and our plants; let’s be eco-friendly this year.
Since this year’s celebrations will be held indoors, choosing an eco-friendly Ganesha for your home will be the safest option at a turbulent like this. Made out of eco-friendly materials such as clay, terracotta and other recyclable options; these Ganesha idols can reduce the risk of pollution and at the same save you the trouble of stepping out for a visarjan. Some even turn into plants. There are plenty of options to choose from. In fact, DIY Ganesha kits can be a super fun activity as well as offer a great bonding experience to the families.
Ganpati Bappa Morya!
Stay indoors, stay safe. This too shall pass.
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