He is Ajanm (unborn), Niraakaar (formless) and Nirvikalpa (attribute less) symbolizing the consciousness which is omnipresent. Ganesh Ji is the same energy which is the reason for this universe, from which everything is manifested and it is the same energy in which the whole universe will be dissolved. He is not somewhere outside of us, but at the very center of our lives. Not everyone can perceive the formless without the form. Our ancient Rishis and Munis created the form for the benefit and understanding of people at all levels. Those who can’t experience the formless, over a period of sustained experience of manifested form reach the formless Brahman.
Ganesh Chaturthi marks the unique art of reaching the formless Parmatma called Lord Ganesha by a repeated worship of the manifested form of Ganesha. Even the Ganesh Stotram, the prayers we recite in his praise, emanates the same idea. We pray to Ganesh Ji in our consciousness to come out and sit in the idol for us for a while. After the Puja, we again pray asking him to go back to where he comes from; that’s our consciousness.
The Visarjan ceremony represents the concept of the cycle of birth and death. Once the presiding deity departs from the idol, its physical illustration is then returned to nature only to be reanimated the following year. Similarly, this fate befalls all living creatures including humans, as life is fleeting and once the soul departs from our body, the corporeal form then perishes and returns to its base elements.
The ten-day long spectacular glorification of Lord ends every year with much pomp and gaiety. Ganesh Chaturthi is one of the most magnificent festivals celebrated with stupendous zeal and grandeur. In the ardour and splendour of celebrating this iconic festival, we very conveniently forget the impact of idol immersion on our environment. We bid good bye to Ganesha only to invite the irreparable damage. After the immersion, It takes several months for these idols to completely dissolve in water since they are made using highly corrupt materials like POP and other chemical paints which contain good amounts of mercury and lead. It acts as a slow poison to the eco-system. A very hard to believe the fact is the idols we worship to and pray before for prosperity is later the cause of the destruction of the environment.
People have totally blindfolded themselves in the name of religion. They blatantly ignore their accountability towards Mother Nature to accomplish their own spiritual motives. Only if they could realise that it is not possible to please the God by destroying what he created.
We have failed to apprehend the true essence of this celebration. The purpose of such ceremonies is to replenish our spiritual reserves and to remind us that material wealth is transitory and no use to the soul and realise the importance of detachment. To understand that what comes has to go. In this process, it is very inconsiderate of us to give up on the nature that sustains us.
At the end of the day, people will definitely realise that just as it is important for us to worship God it is necessary for us to protect what he has bestowed us with.