Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Ganpati Visarjan - Lord Ganesha's Journey Back Home

11th September, 2011 - Ananth Chaturdashi (11th day of the Ganesh Chaturthi Festival):

Ganpati Gele Gavala, Chain Padena Amhala

These few lines in Marathi, very pertinently describe the feel in the atmosphere today.

After 10 days of fanfare and merrymaking, the time has come to see off our very dear friend Lord Ganesha. Lacs of idols all across the city will be immersed in sea, artificial lakes and ponds as HE returns to His heavenly abode. Though the mood is a bit somber but He is given a grand farewell… Amid musical beats of drums and loud chants, thus begins His journey back home…

He is taken in trucks, cars, carts, on top of heads or held in hands for the visarjan towards the water body
Beating of drums as Ganpati idols are taken for visarjan in carts
Ganpati idols being brought for visarjan in cars
A very Huge Ganpati idol of Shiv Mitra Mandal being taken for visarjan in a cart
A Huge Ganpati idol being brought for visarjan in a truck
Ganpati idols being brought for visarjan

He is seated on a platform before the visarjan takes place
Lord Ganesha idols in a Mumbai temple before Ganpati Visarjan
Lord Ganesha idol in a Mumbai temple before Ganpati Visarjan

He is pampered as devotees surround him for the final prayers,
sing artis (hymns) and let out loud chants before bidding him adieu
People performing aarti and pooja before the Ganpati visarjan
Ganpati aarti being performed before visarjan
Ganesh idol being redied for visarjan in MumbaiPeople performing aarti and pooja before the Ganpati visarjan

He keeps hold of all the focus, everything else is just that... a blur!
Devotees crying on the eve of Ganpati Visarjan in Mumbai

In all these days gone by,
everyone has formed an individual bond with the Lord,
and for many it’s not that easy to let it go loose…
Devotees crying on the eve of Ganpati Visarjan in Mumbai

He gets in line with His other Siblings
before He can start His journey back home
People bringing Ganesha idols for Ganesh Visarjan in Mumbai
People bringing Ganesha idols for Ganesh Visarjan

All His religious belongings like garlands
and other spiritual paraphernalia are removed
All religious paraphernalia are removed before ganesh immersion

Devotees look on as their Beloved gets ready to slowly blend with water
Devotees look on as Ganesh Visarjan takes place in a local Ganesha Temple

The kids look on too grabbing hold onto their balcony seats
People enjoying the Ganpati Visarjan in Mumbai

And eventually, He departs vanishing out of everyone's sight...
Ganpati Visarjan in an artificial lake in Mumbai
Ganpati Visarjan in an artificial lake in Mumbai

As one looks at these scenes pass by, hearts are warm and eyes moist... the mind can’t help but roll back to the festivities of the days gone by – The Ganpati Pandal Hopping, darshan of the Lalbaugcha Raja or the different Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations cutting across boundaries – …and tries to hold all of them tight... but the more it tries to do so, the faster they keep slipping by, ultimately evaporating into a huge void…

A devotee bids adieu as Lord Ganesha Visarjan takes place

He has finally departed but... not before teaching us a lesson of detachment, not before leaving behind His blessings for all, not before whispering a soft promise in our ears, a promise of coming back soon next year... Then, the city will be full of life once again and dance away to His festive tunes, and things will pick up right from the very point they have become blurry…

Till then, however, let's all say it loud and clear... for one last time... zor se bolo

Ganpati Bappa Maurya… Pudcha Varshi Lavkar Ya!

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  1. Superb.. Very well covered Arti..!

  2. Wonderful journey . Ganapathibhappa Mourya .

  3. wonderful pics! good to see that ur comp is back! i esp love the way the arrangements are made for immersion., unfortunately, the crowd makes me stay away!

  4. Good post with some nice pictures and fine narration!

  5. sob sob very tearfull to see the pictures of visarjan ... loved every moment of ur journey...may lord ganesh protect u in all your journeys the year ahead and look forward to all ur lovely posts

    Super Yummy Recipes

  6. Arti, these are such great photographs, and the idols are so beautiful! Jai Ganesh!
    Thank you for your comment on my blog (:
    I apologize for my tardiness in replying to you; more information on my unintentional disappearance will be posted on my blog, Western Sanatana Dharma, soon.
    - Alicia

  7. Great post...Felt as if was a part of visarjan. Thanks for sharing it with us.

  8. Awwwwww, i feel like i have been there now, so sad to see Lord Ganesha go ... xx

  9. Thank you for such wonderful coverage of the festival, Arti! Marvelous captures and narrative! I always learn something about your beautiful country from your posts! Hope your week is going well!


  10. There is always sadness in goodbye! Even the children look melancholy at seeing Ganesha's departure. So interesting to read about this festival, Arti.

  11. Beautiful post. You have covered every aspect of it including the rituals. Thanks.

  12. I really get emotional seeing post like this sitting so far away from home.Thanks Arti!

  13. You have gotten so many really good pictures! I seem to remember this ceremony from last year? I love your emotive description of it all, what a special time!

  14. I have a question, which camera do you use for taking photographs???

  15. Good photos of the Ganesh Visharjan Arti

  16. Wow, seeing Ganesha's watery departure like that is nothing short of spectacular, many thanks for sharing these wonderful images with us.

  17. Beautifully explained, Hindu religion is so hard to understand to me, even after three times I've been to India. Every time I go I do make some progress though ;)

  18. A lovely end to this beautiful festival. I especially loved the pictures of the kids taking it all in from their high perches! This is how traditions are started and kept in our hearts.

  19. Love the pics, wish the immersion day had never ended. Good post, Arti :-)

  20. this has been a fascinating festival and your photos provide a wonderful peek into the energy and love that flowed through it all. I especially like that blurred photo. thanks for sharing this journey with us. happy day to you Arti!

  21. Hello, Arti

    Attractive works.
    You are the excellent artist.

    I thank for your usual and hearty support.
    And i pray for you and yours peace.

    arigatou gozaimashita !!
    ありがとう ございました。

  22. Loved al the roly-poly Ganeshas. You have captured them so well..thanks.

  23. Thanks for the pictorial journey of Ganesha as He goes for Visarjan.

    My brother explained the significance of the idols and their visarjan. i thought I would share it here.

    We bring home an idol, and do avahan of the Lord in it with mantras and as we do pooja, the Paramatma enters the Atma and returns to its idol state.

    Even as it is hard to let go of Ganesha at the end of the festivities, we are not immersing the Lord, but the idol alone, which we had brought home ten days back.

  24. Arti,
    How fascinate the festival is! Thanks a lot for letting me know the entire story of the festival. I feel very familiar with this festival which a deity is invited during and then goes back after. Arti, I love this vivid and nostalgic atmosphere of the festival very much. Splendid shots. Have a great week!
    Best wishes

  25. By taking place the ritual with kids, people's pious or thought for him or society descend from parents to kids, doesn't it?
    Thank you for sharing a lovely custom.
    Have a great time.

  26. superb collection of pics .

    while going through your blog the flashback of my pune stay was running in my mind.

    thanks for presenting the gem...

  27. great pictures.... sorry for visiting ur blog after a long time...

    the pictures r wonderful... nearly similar to how it is done here, but here it will be over in 2-3 days... crowd and the enthusiasm is fantastic... a good post...

  28. Ahh! The enthusiasm and the energy during Ganpathi Visarjan is unparallelled. :) Beautiful post, Arti! Loved the last para so much.

  29. What a wonderfully warm-hearted send-off to Lord Ganesha. And such joyous pictures too.

  30. Have a sweet sunday Arti, thanks for your nice comment on my last post and see you back soon ;)

  31. This reminds me of similar festivities I attended when I was a child. I'm pleased to know that our cultures have so much in common, though on the surface they appear to be diferent.

  32. Your beautiful photos and moving reporting bring the ceremony alive. I feel as if I were there. Thanks!

  33. Nice Arti, As always its good to see your post. Unfortunately i misses Ganpati visarjan this year.Now after seeing the snaps, feels like i m here watching the visharjan live. thanks much for putting this up... Ganpati bless you.

  34. Wow.... lovely captures!

    Thanks for sharing :)

  35. We celebrate Ganesh Chaturti in out apartment in Bangalore. Always feel a void after the Ganpati visarjan and look forward to next year. Nicely captured in your article.

  36. There's always something sad and lonely at the end of the festival mingled with an expectation for the next time. Your narrative and photos made me feel as if I were part of it, arti. Thank you for sharing. Have a nice week.

  37. This post is beautifully written, Arti. Very poignant. :)


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