On Saturday 22nd August 2020, devotees across Australia, New Zealand, Fiji and Papua New Guinea, gathered online to celebrate Ganesh Chaturthi. The event was hosted by Victoria Regions East and West in collaboration with the National Devotional Wing of Australia. It included presentations from the Young Adults and the SSE students.
The celebrations commenced with a beautiful rendition of Lord Ganesha Gayatri followed by Ganashtakam (Ganesha Stotram). The prayer contemplates the various characteristics and glories of Lord Ganesha and oﬀers salutations to that Lord who is the remover of all obstacles.
The program then continued with a beautiful display by the Victorian SSE students on the various features of Lord Ganesha and the subtle values and principles they represent. One student reflected on Lord Ganesha’s belly which signifies that, “We must be able to digest everything that happens to us, good and bad”.
The expose was followed by a heART-istic offering by the Victorian Young Adults, where time lapses of art inspired by Lord Ganesh were presented in many diﬀerent mediums, including paintings, drawings and rangoli (Art pattern created on the floor). The art series were accompanied by a background audio of meditative bhajans sung by Young Adults across the state and salient points from Swami’s Ganesh Chaturthi discourses. A Young Adult then spoke on the significance of Ganesh Chaturthi and how Lord Ganesha facilitated her journey of self-inquiry and spiritual knowledge.
The SSE students then presented a scintillating traditional Bharatanatyam (Classical Traditional Dance of India) piece with short skit, depicting the story of Lord Ganesha and the moon. The story illustrates how Lord Ganesh forgave the moon, after the latter laughed at Him when He fell off His Vahana (Vehicle).
A play by the SSE students then followed. The fastest, between Lord Ganesha and His brother Kartikeya, to go round the world three times would be the winner and would be granted eternal knowledge and wisdom. To accomplish this challenge, Lord Ganesha circumambulated His parents, Lord Shiva and Parvathi, implying that They are His world. This ultimately proved that Ganapati, the masters of all Ganas, was the most intelligent. The students reflected on the importance of respecting the parents.
The Divine Discourse of Swami on the occasion of Vinayaka Chaturthi on 10 September 2002 was shared, where Swami emphasized on the importance of eating healthy. The Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations concluded with Bhajans and Mangala Arathi.
The Online Ganesh Chaturthi celebration was indeed a beautiful informative opportunity for devotees to reconnect with the inner significance of Vighneshwara. It is a timely reminder for all to continue to seek the highest truth, while practicing good thoughts, words and deeds.
The celebration was very well appreciated by devotees across the globe and many shared their positive feedback.