Ashtavinayak refers to a pilgrimage in the Indian state of Maharashtra that involves visiting eight temples dedicated to Lord Ganesha, who is a widely worshipped deity in Hinduism. The term “Ashtavinayak” is derived from the Sanskrit words “ashta” (eight) and “vinayak” (another name for Lord Ganesha).
The Ashtavinayak temples are located in and around the Pune and Mumbai regions of Maharashtra. Each temple is associated with a specific legend or story related to Lord Ganesha. Devotees undertake this pilgrimage to seek blessings and fulfill their wishes.
Here are the eight Ashtavinayak temples:
- Moreshwar Temple: Located in Morgaon, this is the starting point of the Ashtavinayak Yatra.
- Siddhivinayak Temple: Situated in Siddhatek, this temple is known for granting wishes and desires.
- Ballaleshwar Temple: Situated in Pali, this temple is named after the young devotee of Lord Ganesha, Ballala.
- Varadvinayak Temple: Located in Mahad, this temple is associated with granting boons and wishes.
- Chintamani Temple: Situated in Theur, it is believed to relieve mental and physical troubles.
- Girijatmaj Temple: Located in Lenyadri, this temple is unique as it is situated in a mountain cave.
- Vighnahar Temple: Situated in Ozar, this temple is known to remove obstacles and difficulties.
- Mahaganapati Temple: Located in Ranjangaon, this temple is revered for its powerful and majestic form of Lord Ganesha.
Devotees often complete the pilgrimage in a specific sequence and visit each temple to seek Lord Ganesha’s blessings for various aspects of their life, including prosperity, success, and overcoming obstacles.