Ganesh Jayanti

Ganesh Jayanthi,popularly known as the 'Maghi Ganesh Jayanti',is the day when the Ganesha frequencies reached the Earth for the first time.This is the birth-day of God Ganesha,which falls on the fourth day of "Shukla Paksha" of Magh Month as per traditional Marathi Calendar ie the fourth day of bright fortnight).This is a very auspicious day ( Angara Yog).This corresponds to the months Jan-Feb of Gregorian calendar.It is basically Vinayak chaturthi falling in the Marathi month 'Magh' ie January - February.

It is an important festival dedicated to Lord Ganesha ,especially in Maharashtra and some parts of Kranataka,Goa.It is also known as Til kund Chaturthi, Winter Vinayaka Chaturthi,Magh Shukla Chaturthi and Varada Chaturthi.This festival of Ganesha is also called as the Tilo Chauth or Sakat Chauthis in Uttar Pradesh,where Ganesha is invoked on behalf of the son of a family.

Rituals

On the day of Ganesh Jayanti,in the morning,the devotees apply a seesame(til)-paste on their body and take a sacred bath with water,mixed with til seeds.Lord Ganesha image is made in a conical form by using cowdung or turmeric-sindhoor powder.Later on,Ganesha is worship in a traditional way with shodashopachar pooja and a fast is observed during worship during the day time followed by meals of 'Prasada' in the night.

The fast observed on this day is stated to enhance the name and fame of the individual.The image of Ganesha is immersed in water on the fourth day after the festival.A special food ie 'Prasada' made of Sesame ie til seeds, is offered to Ganesha and then distributed among the devotees.On the occasion of the Ganesh Jayanti celebrations, couples worship him to beget a son.

On this day,devotees visit Moreshwar temple near Pune,Maharashtra.This the first temple of Ashtavinayaka yatra.As per the legends, Lord Ganesha finished demon Kamlasur here, riding a peacock(Mayur) and thus is known as Mayureshwar or Moreshwar. The fast observed on this day is very fruitful.The devotes worship him to fulfil their desires.

On this day devotees also visit the Siddhivinayaka temple at Siddhatek Ahmednagar district, Maharashtra.Devotees take seven pradakhsinas (circumambulation) of the hil, to seek favour of Ganesha. Legend states that god Vishnu invoked the blessings of Ganesha at this venue before killing the demons Madhu-Kaitabh.

Ganesh Jayanti is also celebrated at Ganpatipule, on the Konkan coast, a beach temple houses a swayambhu(self-manifest) idol of Ganesha, which is visited by thousands of devotees every year. The Ganesha is popularly known as the Paschim Dwardevta(Western sentinel god of India). Ganesh Jayanti is celebrated in a big way at Gopal Ganesha Temple,Farmagudi,Goa.Maghi Ganeshjayanti is also celebrated in a grand way at Uran,Maharashtra in a place called 'Vinayak'. The Ganesha idol here is more than 250 years old which was handed oever by the Peshwas.The deity is popular by the name "Siddhi Buddhi Ganesh Uran".