Ganapati means the Lord of the senses. That Lord is within us.
Ganapati pooja is best performed with the attention turned inwards.
(H.H. Swami Brahmanandaji of Chinmaya Mission,
On the night of Ganesh Chathurti, we are warned not to look at the moon. It is said that if you look at the moon on this night, then you will get blamed for something you didn’t do!
Is there some deeper meaning to this? The moon symbolizes the mind. Just as the moon waxes and wanes, the mind goes up and down. Some days it makes you feel good, other times it can drag you down into the pits of despair for the smallest of reasons. The mind is what constantly gets you into trouble.
Ganesha is the Lord of Wisdom and it is He who teaches us how to get over the vagrancies of the mind, how to be established firmly in Knowledge and let nothing shake us out from the Bliss of the Being. And so on the day when we are going to celebrate Lord Ganesha, we don’t look at the moon meaning Follow Knowledge, not your little mind!
Don’t look at the moon! Don’t let that small mind of yours rule you. Be in Knowledge, Be wise, Be happy! Celebrate Ganapati in Satsangh, in the spirit of knowledge and reverence for nature.
Ravi Shankar, Art of Living)