Today is ”Ganesh Chaturthi” – the auspicious day on which we celebrate the birth of Shri Ganesh. Shri Ganesh is widely revered as the remover of obstacles (”VidhnhartA”) and is usually invoked when beginning something new (I usually begin my day with the “VakratunDa MahAkAya…” shloka, below).
वक्रतुंड महाकाय सूर्यकोटी समप्रभ:
निर्विघ्नं कुरु मे देव, सर्व कार्येशु सर्वदा ||
vakratuNDa mahAkAya sUryakoTisamaprabha
nirvighnaM kuru me deva sarvakAryeshhu sarvadA ||
Loose Translation: O Ganapati, (the) One with a curved trunk, a large body, and a brilliance equal to millions of Suns! Please make all my undertakings free …