A belief that has been held staunch since ages are that if you ardently bow down and pray to Lord Ganesh then, all prosperity will reign and every problem shall be alleviated. Praises for Shri Maha Ganapathi/Ganesh puja have been profusely proclaimed in gratitude in The Vedas, The Puranas, The Smrithis, Aagamans and The Mantra Shastras.
It is a timeless habit that everyone from children to elders, from commoners to pundits, before the beginning of any activity, will first seek the blessings of Lord Ganesh to being able to carry out the activity without any obstacles and without any distractions.
Many kinds of simple fasts have been suggested as offerings for Lord Ganesh. Vinayakashakthi Vrutham, Chovvapillayar Vrutham, Sangadaharachathurthi Vrutham and Friday Vrutham are some of the fasts that are taken in the name of Lord Ganesha puja in a year.
Just as how we have the Navrathri fast for the Goddess, in a similar way, a nine-day fast observed for the happiness of Vinayaka is known as the Vinayaka Navrathri fast.
It is believed that Lord Ganesh feels immensely happy just looking at Durva (karuka pullu). As preparation for the 9 days Ganesh puja/ fast, a pedestal out of Durva is made, Lord Ganesh is placed on it, and an offering of three kinds of fruits, modak and unniyappam for each of the nine days to the corresponding Ganesha(as explained below) is carried out. This is considered to be very special.
On the first day of Ganesh Puja, Ganesha is worshipped as Bhakti Ganesh. In the evening, keeping a kalash in front of the deity, praises are sung and modakas are offered. After which, Ashtothara Archana is carried out in all devotion. The worship of this particular Ganesh blesses us with the wisdom on how to emerge victorious in whatever activity we are involved in and also to faithfully grow in spirituality.
On the second day of Ganesh Puja, Ganesh is worshipped as Bal Ganesh. The deity is brought about in a solemn procession. The worship of this particular Ganesh pours out blessings for the goodness of our children.
On the third day of Ganesh Puja, Lord Ganesh is worshipped as Lakshmi Ganesh. On this day, we request to be blessed so as to gain the blessings of the sixteen Lakshmi Goddesses. This, in turn, will help replace poverty with abundance and prosperity at home.
On the fourth day of Ganesh Puja, Ganesh is worshipped as Tharuna Ganesh. The worship of this particular Ganesh blesses people to be able to achieve or accomplish the beautiful opportunities in life that were lost.
On the fifth day of Ganesh Puja, Ganesh is worshipped as Santana Ganesh. This particular deity is worshipped to evoke blessings, especially by childless couples in order to bear fruits.
On the sixth day of Ganesh Puja, Ganesh is worshipped as Narthana Ganesh. It is believed that when people who face never-ending debts and unemployment issues worship this particular deity, they are bound to gain redemption from the above-said problems.
On the seventh day of Ganesh Puja, Ganesh is worshipped as Sangadahara Ganesh. By worshipping this particular deity, it is believed that people with a lot of worries and facing a lot of disadvantages from the enemy will definitely find relief.
On the eighth day of Ganesh Puja, Ganesh is worshipped as Swarna Ganesh. By worshipping this particular deity, you will stand to have a lot of luck with gold and ladies will be fortunate enough to adorn themselves with gold ornaments.
The ninth day of Ganesh Puja is known as Vinayaka Chathurthi. As with the previous days, the usual pujas are done and then after the worship, the fast and the pujas come to an end.
During these nine days, praises are sung and prayers are chanted for the nine forms of Ganesha. It is said from experience that all the bad effects will lift off and our lives will be enriched with harmony and prosperity.