When is Ganesh Chaturthi in 2021, 2022 and 2023?
The date of Ganesh Chaturthi falls on the fourth day of the waxing moon period (Shukla Chaturthi) in the Hindu lunar month of Bhadrapad. This is August or September each year. The festival is celebrated for 10 or 11 days according to the Hindu lunar calendar, with the biggest spectacle taking place on the last day called Anant Chaturdashi.
- In 2021, Ganesh Chaturthi is on September 10. Anant Chaturdashi is on September 19. (See calendar).
- In 2022, Ganesh Chaturthi is on August 31. Anant Chaturdashi is on September 9.
- In 2023, Ganesh Chaturthi is on September 19. Anant Chaturdashi is on September 28.
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Ganesh Chaturthi Detailed Information
Ganesh Chaturthi commemorates the birthday of Lord Ganesh. Hindus believe it to be the most powerful day to worship the beloved elephant-headed god who is revered for his ability to remove obstacles. On this day, beautiful handcrafted idols of the Lord are installed both in homes and in public. Prana Pratishtha is performed to invoke the power of the deity into the idol, followed by a 16-step ritual known as Shodashopachara Puja. During the ritual, various offerings including sweets, coconuts, and flowers are made to the idol. The ritual should be performed at an auspicious time around midday, known as Madhyahna, when Lord Ganesh is believed to have been born. As per Vedic astrology, it extends from about 11 a.m. to 1.30 p.m. depending on the location in India.
It's important, according to tradition, not to look at the moon during certain times on Ganesh Chaturthi. If a person sees the moon, according to Hindu mythology they'll be cursed with accusations of theft and dishonored by society unless they chant a certain mantra. Apparently, this came about after Lord Krisha was falsely accused of stealing a valuable jewel. Sage Narada said that Krishna must've seen the moon on Bhadrapad Shukla Chaturthi (the occasion that Ganesh Chaturthi falls on) and was cursed because of it. Furthermore, anyone who saw the moon then would be cursed in a similar way.
The idols of Lord Ganesh are worshiped every day, with an aarti in the evening. The largest Ganesh statues, on display to the public, are taken out and immersed in water on Anant Chaturdashi in grand street processions featuring a cacophony of traditional drumming and crackers. Many people who keep an idol in their homes carry out the immersion much before this though. However, such immersions only take place on odd days -- one and a half, three, five, and seven days after Ganesh Chaturthi.
What is the Significance of Anant Chaturdashi?
You may be wondering why the immersion of Ganeshi idols concludes on this day. Why is it special? In Sanskrit, Anant refers to eternal or infinite energy, or immortality. The day is actually devoted to the worship of Lord Anant, an incarnation of Lord Vishnu (the preserver and sustainer of life, also referred to as the supreme being). Chaturdashi means the "fourteenth". In this case, the occasion falls on the 14th day of the bright half of the moon during the month of Bhadrapad on the Hindu calendar.
More About Ganesh Chaturthi
Find out more about the Ganesh festival and how to experience the celebrations in this Ganesh Chaturthi Festival Guide.