Ganesha Chaturthi 2012 date is 19 September. Ganesha, said to be the son of Shiva and Parvati or of Parvati alone, is worshipped under the names of Ganesha, Vinayaka, Ganapati, Pillayar. Ganesha is worshipped in every Hindu home. Every school boy begins his lessons by lessons with Sri Ganeshaya namah; every Indian book opens with it. Every merchant asks his help before commencing any business. In marriages and every kind of religious ceremony, Vinayaka is first invoked.
By some Ganesha is described as the god of learning, but that is the province of Sarasvati. A Hindu thinks that if his literary efforts are a failure, this is not due to his own incapacity, but to demoniacal obstruction. The aid of Ganesha, as lord of demons, is therefore sought. Ganesha Chaturthi in 2012 is on Thursday, the 19th of September.
Chaturthi means fourth. This festival is celebrated on the fourth lunar day of the bright half of the month Simha. In South India rice puddings are offered to the god, to be afterwards consumed by the family. A fresh image of Ganesha in clay is made and worshipped. The 108 names of the god are repeated, and flowers are offered to him. Looking at the moon is forbidden on Ganesha Chatorthi.
Ganesh Chaturthi Legend
One day Ganapati, while riding on his favourite rat, had a fall, at which the moon laughed. Enraged at such an insult, the god of prudence cursed the moon and all who should look at her; but afterwards amended the matter by restricting any from looking at her on his birthday. Thus, on the day of Ganesh Chaturthi the Hindus are prohibited by the Shastras from looking at the moon, and are afraid to look at it this evening lest they should incur any calamity during the year; and if by any accident they happen to see it they try to provoke their neighbours to revile them, and comfort themselves with the idea that the calamities incurred will be all comprehended in the abuse, and removed by it.