“Why does Ganesha have a happy birthday?”

Is what N asked me yesterday. And I told him “Like you have a birthday every year, Ganesha also has a birthday every year”. So N followed this with  “Does he grow bigger like me too?” 🙂

I had taken him to the club house in the apartment complex where Ganesha Chaturthi was being celebrated. We saw the puja and participated in the morning and evening aarti and visarjan. Sang “Jai Dev Jai Dev Jai Mangalmurti” and “Om Jai Jagdish” amongst others.

To help children understand more about the puja and why people do it and how, a mini puja was organized for the children. A resident explained to the kids (of all ages) why we worship Ganesha, he is the first god to be worshipped and he helps us remove obstacles. Then he explained some of the mantras – I think that was mainly helpful for older kids. N wasn’t really interested in that but he wanted to touch all the things in the puja thali. Once the puja started he was more than happy to oblige. Loved offering the water, rice, fruit and betel leaf and nut to Lord Ganesha in his thali. Then he wanted to put the haldi kumkum on Ganesha’s forehead and on his own too.

Ganesh Chaturthi puja thali

I loved to see him having the experience and enjoying it! I guess that’s my way of helping him understand different religions, customs and worship methods and eventually religious tolerance. Hope you all had a lovely Ganesh Chaturthi/Gowri Ganesh celebration. Happy Weekend!!

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