Tips on Sending Wishes on Ganesh Chaturthi
Essence of Ganesh Chaturthi
Ganesh Chaturthi is celebrated on a day on which the Lord is believed to have graced Earth and is as such special for all his devotees. Albeit, the event is celebrated as Lord Ganesha’s birthday, the essence and symbolism behind the festival is much deeper and more meaningful. The significance of the festival lies in the fact that the same energy which created this entire Universe and is responsible for the manifestation of every being, is also the Ganesha energy, unborn, formless and without attributes, and is thus the core of our existence as well.
Lord Ganesha’s virtues are present in all of us and what we revere in him, makes for more within us. Given that he’s also the lord of knowledge and wisdom, we embrace knowledge only when we become aware of our self and that’s also how we evolve. Hence when we invoke Lord Ganesha’s blessings, before we begin anything new, we call for an awakening of our consciousness too. Ganesh Chaturthi marks the installation of his idol, worshipping him with infinite love, focused admiration and reconnecting with the inherent universal consciousness that all of us have been blessed with and experiencing the magic and aura of Lord Ganesha deep within.
When you send out wishes on Ganesh Chaturthi, think of each person you’re crafting the wish for and the what they need the most or miss the most in life, including your wishes for Lord’s blessings on each of those areas in the recipient’s life and then send the wish out.
Things You Should Be Aware of Before You Send Out Your Wishes
Son of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati, Lord Ganesha is perhaps one of the most popular and favoured deities for Hindus and Ganesh Chaturthi, the day of his birth one of the most awaited days in the year, especially in the Western part of India. This festival was initiated by Shri Lokmanya Tilak, a freedom fighter, whose sole intent was to unite people in the wake of Britishers wanting to do otherwise. Till date, this lovely festival fosters camaraderie across the realm of religion and regions. With all the technological advancements these days, one of the most popular ways of celebrating Ganesh Chaturthi is by sharing wishes with loved ones over mediums like social media, WhatsApp and SMS.
However, in all of this, people tend to overlook the significance of a personal connection, the warmth of a wish that comes straight from the heart and isn’t generalized in the form of a common and generalized message. Hence, before you go ahead and follow the same generalized form of wishing someone you care for, pause a while and think of why you want to wish on the festival anyway, what significance does the festival have for you and in your intent of including your loved ones in the festivities what do you wish for them and then draft your message. Explore other meaningful ways of sending your wishes, perhaps through snail mail, as it would be much appreciated and cherished for long, and you’d also attach a small token of love along with your greetings!
Little Tokens of Festive Wishes
Who doesn’t enjoy receiving gifts along with wishes of love, happiness, peace and prosperity! Warm the hearts of your loved ones with little tokens of affection by sending personalized greetings, sweet treats, perhaps some dry fruits, cute little idols of Ganpati or something else that befits this wonderful festival. You’d also look at gifting things that would be useful in the performance of the rituals during the celebrations of the festival, or anything else that signifies your thoughts and prayers for invocation of wonderful things in the lives of your loved ones.
Ideas for Wishing on Ganesh Chaturthi
Festive Wishes in Different Languages
Even though Ganesh Chaturthi is celebrated as a Hindu Festival, the essence behind the celebrations is to signify a unified bond between people beyond the boundaries of religion, regions, caste & creed. Within India, the festival is primarily celebrated at home or in public by the community in the central and western regions of M.P, Maharashtra, Goa, Gujarat and the southern regions of Kerela, Karnataka, A.P, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, West Bengal and eastern region of Odisa. So what better way to celebrate and share the joys of the festival, but by exchanging wishes in different languages, that’s personal and special to the one celebrating it. These days, with the aid of online translation tools its fairly easy to wish someone, for instance, wishing a happy Ganesh Chaturthi in Marathi would be गणेश चतुर्थीच्या हार्दिक शुभेच्छा or શુભ ગણેશ ચતુર્થી in Gujarati, ಹ್ಯಾಪಿ ಗಣೇಶ ಚತುರ್ಥಿ in Kannada, or हैप्पी गणेश चतुर्थी in Hindi. So get creative and draft your personalized wish in the language of your choice.
Sweets are a common choice of celebratory inclusions observed during Ganesh Chaturthi and just like wishes in different languages, sweets could be a unique way of exchanging wishes in a personalized manner. During the 10-day long extravaganza, sweets of different varieties make their way through during the celebrations as blog or Prasad offerings to please the Lord. For instance, the delicious Modak (sweet dumpling) is considered one of Lord Ganesha’s most favourite sweets and is usually offered on the first day of the festival. Then, there’s Satori, a Maharashtrian sweet bread made of mava/khoya, ghee, besan and milk; Puran Poli, Motichoor Laddoos, Coconut Rice (a South Indian delicacy), Shrikhand (strained sweet yogurt), Banana Sheera, Rava Pongal, Medu Vada and Payasam.
Given Lord Ganesha’s popularity, almost everyone looks forward to hosting him during the 10 special days in the year and welcome him with love, laughter and vibrant celebrations. Another unique way of wishing your loved ones for Ganesh Chaturthi would be to gift them rangoli designs, tools, crafts & artifacts that would not only liven up their homes and décor but also warm their hearts and spirits with the joy of creating beautiful designs with fragrant flowers, colors and embellishments at their doorstep, on their walls and in their living space. From ready to draw rangoli kits to rangoli stencils, to handmade rangoli mats to artificial flowers, embellished diyas and floating/unfloating rangoli décor sets, the list is as creative and unique as your thoughts for your loved ones, available on different online portals or at a store close to you.
Ganesha Décor Wishes
During Ganesh Chaturthi, the atmosphere around seems to be immersed in a festive frenzy, from perfect Ganpati idols to the religious hymns, no one seems to be untouched by the aura of the festival and celebrations along with a delightful combination of warm wishes and gifts of appreciation & gratitude. The main idea behind the festival is to invite the Lord into one’s home and life, and what better way to do that, but by brightening up someone’s living space with his presence by the help of gifts that add to the visual appeal with a touch of divinity and make way for good and positive vibes throughout. A Ganesha wall décor or a wind chime is one way of conveying your wishes while creating a Ganesha idol with the help of things lying around in your house is another. For instance, fruits and vegetables are not only good for our consumption, for the kids, but also a crafty way of inviting the Lord and showing us a healthy way of living our life! A Ganesha designed fruit and vegetable salad, or some colourful flowers & leaves placed together forming Ganpati Bappa or designing his idol with different grains stuck on a printed picture of him, or better still collecting different kitchen utensils and creatively putting them together in a Ganesha form would be ideal to accompany your wishes.
Eco-Friendly and Paper Craft Wishes
Another beautiful way of wishing your dear ones is to get creative with some easy paper craft Ganesha Idols. From a simple Origami Ganesha that you can craft with a Craft Paper and a Pen, to transforming a 2D paper into a 3D Ganesha to a 3D Quilled Ganpati or other eco-friendly options like making an Idol of Clay, Turmeric, Play Doh are some beautiful and environment useful ways of sending Lord Ganesha and his blessings to your near & dear ones.
You can specialize your wishes for Ganesh Chaturthi with personalized and handmade paper cards or digital greetings that include pop up cards, die-cut patterns, decorative embellishments with handwritten quotes, poems, prayers or wishes or GIF messages, e-cards, musical messages with images. With a variety of digital tools available online these days, at the click of a button, you can now create greeting cards on photoshop, edit existing designs online and re-design them to your liking with choice of fonts, colours and backgrounds, customized text and more. The template available on the internet is a fast way of creating beautiful designs, a handcrafted card is a lovely way to convey your wish and a personal message makes it even more special! Here are some links to help you create your personalized versions of greetings (digital or printed):
Sharing Festive Cheer with the Less Fortunate
Celebrate the bonds of love, light, good health and abundance on Ganesh Chaturthi by sharing the festive cheer with those sections of the society that are underprivileged or less fortunate when it comes to resources, companionship or simply love. You can do your bit by sharing food, donating clothes, sharing sweets or basic necessities, spending time and contributing to their wellness by way of education, entertainment and devoting time to senior citizens in elder care homes, with orphaned children, destitute and homeless people and brighten up their lives with just a few moments of your time and energy through the 10-days of festivities.
Bhajan Sandhya at Home
A bhajan in its literal sense implies to sharing, of any song with a religious theme or spiritual thoughts, with no prescribed attributes or regulations as such. It is free flowing, usually lyrical and constructed of melodious hymns and notes. One of the best ways of spreading messages of unity, goodwill and unconditional love is to create an ambiance of divinity, purity and musical cheer around yourself and others by way of a musical event or a Bhajan Sandhya, which is essentially coming together and enjoying a few moments of musical meditation and invoking the Lord’s blessings for everyone involved. Whether you do it at home, organize it in a temple, under a tree, near a water body, a place of historic significance or in a community complex, it really is about enjoying the Lord you revere and his presence along with a group of people close to you or even unknown to you and just celebrating his existence and inviting his blessings in all our lives.
Bonus Tip: Different Ways of Celebrating Ganesh Chaturthi
When it comes to celebrating Ganesh Chaturthi in India, the festival is typically enjoyed on a large scale in regions of Gujarat, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Goa, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Telangana. Given the variety of customs and traditions followed, how the festival’s celebrated in each region may differ slightly. For instance, in Maharashtra Ganesh Chaturthi seems like everyone is celebrating in their own style.
- At Home – In Maharashtra, families install little colourful clay idols of Lord Ganesha through the 10-day festivities, with flower, young grass and sweet offerings during the puja and they may choose to host Ganpati for 1½ days, 3,5,7 or 11 days.
- In Public – Local youth groups or clubs, trade associations or businessmen organize Ganesh Festival for the entire community and on a large scale with funds collected from the public or donations contributed by the elite section of the society. In Tamil Nadu, the festival is celebrated as Vinayaka or Pillayar Chaturthi and idols are made of coconuts or other organic materials, while in Kerela it is known as Lamboodhara Piranalu. In Thiruvananthapuram, a huge parade marches will huge Ganpati idols made of organic materials and immersed in the sea with milk.
- Abroad – In the United States, a Hindu organization - Swayamsevak Sangh plans events and activities to honour Lord Ganesha’s birthday, while in the UK, the Hindu Culture & Heritage Society in Southall, London performs puja the Vishwa Hindu Temple, with another celebration organized by the River Mersey at Liverpool. In Canada, various Marathi associations residing in Vancouver & Toronto organize Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations.
Make Your Own Idol
The festival was conceived as a way to bring people together and to encourage community involvement. Taking this message forward, perhaps we can start making our idols. Upcycling old products to make Ganesha idols is a good way to begin. That way, instead of immersing it, you can keep it in a showcase for the entire year. Or you can experiment with the craft of sculpting. Get creative with the material, form and the size of the idol. It is all in your hands!