Ganesh Visarjan and Anant Chaturdashi as per scriptures! | The Financial Express

Ganesh Visarjan and Anant Chaturdashi as per scriptures!

Let’s begin: According to Bhavishya Purana Uttara Parva Chapter 94, Anant Chaturdashi is observed on Chaturdashi Krishna Paksh of Bhadrapad, during which Bhagwan Anant is worshipped. Yudhishthir questioned Krishna about Bhagwan Anant and the significance of this festival.

Ganesh Visarjan and Anant Chaturdashi as per scriptures!
According to Bhavishya Purana Uttara Parva Chapter 94, Anant Chaturdashi is observed on Chaturdashi Krishna Paksh of Bhadrapad, during which Bhagwan Anant is worshipped. (Photo source: IE)

By Anshul Pandey 

People from all over the world celebrate Anant Chaturdashi and Ganesh Visarjan in their own special ways. On this auspicious occasion, let us discover authentic customs and facts. Let’s begin: According to Bhavishya Purana Uttara Parva Chapter 94, Anant Chaturdashi is observed on Chaturdashi Krishna Paksh of Bhadrapad, during which Bhagwan Anant is worshipped. Yudhishthir questioned Krishna about Bhagwan Anant and the significance of this festival. So Bhagwan Krishna referred a story to this subject.

Yudhishthir had inquired as to whether or not Anant was Sheshanag, Brahm, or Parmatma. Krishna responded that he is known as Anant, was born into the Vasudev clan, and had taken avtar to destroy Demons and lighten Prithvi’s burden. He possessed the identities of Vishnu, Jishnu, Shiva, and Anant. There is no distinction between him and Sheshanag.

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Yudhishthir inquired about the significance of this Vrat and who was the first to perform it. According to the legend, a Brahmin of the Vashishth gotra named Sumantu was married to Diksha, the daughter of Sage Bhrigu. Their daughter’s name was Sheela. However, Diksha passed away from fever. Thus, Sumantu wed another woman, Karkasha, who was extremely cruel. Sheela was extremely devout. Sumantu married Kaudinya Muni when she reached the age of legal marriage.
Sumantu requested that Karkasha give the newlyweds some gifts; Karkasha then shut the door in their faces.

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The newlyweds walked slowly towards their destination. On the way, Sheela observed a woman performing Puja on the riverbank. She inquired about this Puja and its significance, indicating her willingness to observe this Vrat. The ladies informed her that it was a day of Janardan worship, during which flowers, incense, lamps, and sweets are offered to the statue of Janardan. They recite his story before presenting a silk or cotton thread with fourteen knots. According to Narad Puran, Chaturth Paad 113, they then wear the same thread, with women wearing it on the left hand and men on the right, until the following year, when they exchange it for a new one. Ganesh, however, is worshipped first. This must be adhered to for fourteen years. The prayer should be addressed to Lord Anant or Sheshnaag. We must chant the following mantra:

अन्नतसन्सारमहासमुद्रे मगनान समंतभद्र वासुदेव।।
अनंररूपे,विनियोजितात्मा ह्यनन्तरूपाय नमो नमस्ते।।

After tying the thread, half of the sweets should be given to Brahmins. The remaining food should be consumed by yajman and his family. The statue should be given to Brahmin. Sheela observed this Vrat as well. Her entire life, home, and personal belongings changed immediately. She became wealthy and lived a happy life.

Once, Kadhinya severed the Anant thread in Sheela’s hand. Sheela’s bad luck continued to return. Kaudinya muni then set out in search of Anant while constantly praying. He inquired about Anant from a mango tree, a cow with a calf, a bull, two lakes, two donkeys, and an elephant as he traversed the forest. Suddenly Kaundinya Muni fell down in exhaustion. During that time, Bhagwan Anant arrived as a Brahmin and subsequently granted Vishwaroop Chaturbhuj darshan. When Kaudinya Muni asked Bhagwan why so many things and elements could not tell him where Bhagwan was, Bhagwan provided a brief history of their past lives as sinners. So he remained unseen to them. For a happy life, Anant Bhagwan requests that Kaudinya muni observe the Anant Chaturdashi vrat.

Now the question is, why do so many people in Maharashtra do Visarjan on Anant Chaturdashi?

Well, it’s not written anywhere in the scriptures that we should do Ganesh Visarjan on Anant Chaturdashi, but there are many reasons why we do. The main reason is because of Lokmanya Bal Gangadhar Tilak; before him, this festival was a private event. He told people about the Ganesh Chaturthi festival. According to Dhananjay Kheer’s biography of Lokmanya Tilak used channelised the enthusiasm of people and suggested Ganesh festival, so people had something to do. Before this happened, only a few people knew about the Ganesh festival. It turned into a public festival because of his ability to plan and lead. All over Maharashtra, groups were started to celebrate the Ganesh festival. For the Sarvajanik Ganesh Utsav, pandals were set up. Young people put together groups of singers. During Ganesh Chaturthi, there was a push for gymnastic societies, and fiery speakers and Acharyas showed the young people acts of self-control and bravery that they should try to copy.

People started putting idols in Pandals and doing Visarjan on Anant Chaturdashi, 10 days later. Anant Chaturdashi is the last good day in the Bhadrapad month. After that comes Shradha/Pitru Paksha, which is inauspicious according to Sanatan Dharma. So, we have to do Visarjan on that day. If not, we have to wait until Navratri for a good day.

Chapter 113 of the Narad Puran, Purva Bhag, says that we should worship Ganesh first before doing Anant pooja. Both holidays are celebrated with devotion and a lot of noise at the same time. Ganesh Visarjan is on one side, and worshipping Bhagwan Anant is on the other.

(The writer is an author and freelance columnist. He tweets with @anshulspiritual. Views expressed are personal and do not reflect the official position or policy of the FinancialExpress.com.)

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