– by Akash Pharande, Managing Director – Pharande Spaces
The Indian festive season is a time of a lot of investment activity, and Ganesh Chaturthi is one of the ‘prime times’ on the Indian calendar to buy a home. Is it driven purely by religious sentiment? To a large extent, the answer is in the affirmative.
But non-Indians often wonder – what guides this sentiment? Is it nothing more than signing a sales agreement on a particular day to please a god? It is much more than that.
To be sure, it is every Indian family’s fondest wish to buy its own home. It is the ultimate manifestation of increased power over one’s circumstances because living on rent in somebody else’s home is anything but empowering. The yearly financial drain of rent and annual rental escalation is just one aspect of this disempowerment.
The possibility that the landlord will ask their tenants to leave, even if they pay rent regularly, always lurks in the background. He may do so for financial or any other reasons – but either way, the personal investment poured into a rented home is nullified when this happens.
We invest much more than just money into our homes. We invest emotionally in our neighbours and neighbourhoods. Humans are ultimately social beings and forge close relationships not only with people but with areas. We build our lives around the things we can do in an area – send our kids to school, access easy shopping and weekend diversion, establish comfortable commuting routines to and from work, and bank on the availability of health assistance in the nearby hospital, if required.
It is never possible to invest fully in a rented home which is, by definition, impermanent and unreliable. Breaking the bondage and uncertainty of rental living is a power move which changes everything. Choosing to buy one’s own home requires more than courage – it requires faith. While it is highly liberating, it also calls for putting up a lot of money, most of which we don’t even have as yet.
Tapping Into a Higher Power
For making any costly and life-changing investment or undertaking anything radically new, Indians who believe in him invoke Lord Ganesh. By doing so, we affirm our faith in his protection and assurance of prosperity to those who worship him.
After all, buying a home involves making a huge financial commitment through the down payment and the home loan. We do not want to do this alone.
But Ganesh Chaturthi is about more than welcoming prosperity into our lives. Lord Ganesh is also the overcomer of obstacles that can come between us and our hopes for a better future for our family. Since life can throw many types of obstacles in our path, we invoke the god who helps us avoid and overcome adversity.
Wisdom for Good Decisions
Lord Ganesh also represents great intellect and higher thinking. This also has a lot of pertinence to the act of buying the ultimate family asset. We need the wisdom and clarity of thought to choose the right home free of future heartaches. We need patience, freedom from impulsiveness, and the ability to make a well-calculated decision, so we go to the source.
Buying a home during Ganesh Chaturthi is about much more than making a major investment on an auspicious day. It is an act of great confidence based on faith. When we honour Lord Ganesh by aligning this important purchase with his festival, we make him a partner in this endeavour. We acknowledge that we have very limited power and depend on him to empower us and clear the path for us.
It is an act of faith, and faith is often the gamechanger that guides us out of indecision into making strong, confident decisions.