Lord Ganesh – One of the most popular Gods in India, lord Ganesh or Ganpati is considered a symbol of wisdom and a bringer of good luck. It is said that his elephant head epitomises everything related to wisdom-small shrewd eyes, long ears that miss nothing, a long nose that can smell out anything fight and his vehicle, a mouse, reflects how much importance a wise man gives to the smallest of life forms. Shown at gateways and on doors, either by visuals or symbols, generally facing the rising sun in the east, Ganesh is revered across India as a great clearer of obstacles. Meetings, gatherings, weddings, functions and celebrations begin with a prayer of lord Ganesh and no new venture-be it a new company, a new house, a new shop is inaugurated without reciting a ‘mantra’ of lord Ganesh.
Ganesh is remembered on chauth or chaturthi, the 4th day of every month of the Hindu calendered, but most of all on Ganesh Chaturthi which is celebrated as his birthday. Ladoos are distributed on the day-by tradition ladoos were placed in different corners of the house and eaten before the meal. Milk is offered to idols of lord Ganesh at home and at temples, and Ganesh puja is performed at all temples and hi-house prayer rooms. Fasting, feasting and distribution of sweets offered to Lord Ganesh are important aspects of Ganesh chaturthi rituals in India. Hindus pray to images of Lord Ganesha, large and small, many of them made specially for the occasion by cottage industries and street side artisans, and those that do not wish to keep the idols alive by daily prayers, offerings and lighting oil lamps, immerse them in the nearest water body (all rivers, lakes and the sea which are sacred to Hindus).