#Festivals of India

October 5 is Sankashti Chaturthi. Know Its Meaning And Significance

Ganesha Less-known Stories

On October 5, India will be observing the Sankashti Chaturthi or the Sankatharan Chaturthi. Etymologically, Sankhashti is a Sanskrit word which means freedom from all the pain and miseries while Chaturthi means the fourth state, day or month. This day is observed on every fourth day after the full moon day. So a  full moon day was on October 1 which was celebrated as Adhika Mass Purnima and exactly after 4 days, Hindus will be celebrating the Sankashti Chaturthi. Read on to know what happens on this day and what is the story behind it.

How Is It Celebrated?

On this day, Hindu devotees worship Lord Ganesha who is popularly known as Vighnaharta or the lord who removes the obstacles in life. The devotees, especially women and couples, observe fast to wish for the family’s well-being, health, wealth and happiness. Moreover, some devotees also observe this fast for marriage and childbirth.

Also Read: Are Hindu Festivals An Annual Celebration Of Indian Patriarchy?

Idols of Lord Ganesha is installed at houses, offered with flowers, modakas and laddoos. On this day, the devotees wake up early, dress in clean clothes and observe the fast until they watch the moon at the night. Once the moon rises in the sky,  the families indulge in reciting scriptures and holy stories about Lord Ganesha.

History

Sankashti Chaturthi is considered auspicious because on this day Lord Shiva declared his son Lord Ganesha as the most superior of all the Hindu Gods.

Different From Vinayaka or Ganesh Chaturthi

Vinayaka Chaturthi which is popularly known as Ganesh Chaturthi is celebrated in the fourth day of Bhadrapada month of Hindu lunisolar calendar. It is celebrated widely in Maharashtra and is an occasion of worshipping Lord Ganesha. Small to life-size idols of Ganesha are installed at various places which are worshipped in the group and later immersed following a routine ritual.

The patriarchal origin of the festival

Although the fast on Sankashti Chaturthi is not gender-specific, it is mainly women who observe the fast. In the Hindu religion, men have the power to be an atheist without any objection or obligation at the hands of society. Moreover, offering prayers especially for childbirth and marriage reinforces the importance of mother and marriage in society. The fact that if a couple is not able to reproduce or a man or a woman is not getting married has to go through severe fast and rituals point out that marriage or parenthood is a necessity and not an option.

Also Read: Hindu Festival Calendar: A Comprehensive List of Festivals and Holidays