g o d s - o f - i n d i a ++ GANESHA|
GANESHA ---- The Popular God.
GANESHA CHATURTHI CELEBRATIONS ARE MOVING TOWARDS THEIR CLIMAX... FOR THE FULL DETAILS CLICK HERE.
Ganesha is one of the most loved gods in India, and all over the Hindu universe you will find pictures and statues of this lovable elephant-headed deity. To choose your favourite Ganesha idol from the 2010 Chaturthi festivities, click below:
Ganesha is easily the most popular god in India and is the one you pray to when launching new projects. On wedding invitations, at street come shrines, in carved doorways and in every temple -- Ganesha is everywhere in the Hindu world. He is worshipped before any venture is started. He is obviously important to Hindus and non-Hindus alike, and constantly in the news -- as this simple Twitter feed should demonstrate.
There are of course many answers to this question. Perhaps, as one website points out, Ganesha's popularity stems from the fact that he is the most physical of the major gods: Ganesha is the closest to the material plane of consciousness, most able to assist us in our day-to-day life and concerns. Maybe, maybe. Personally, I think that it is only natural Ganesha is so popular and so beloved by millions -- people usually adore the fat guy who makes a lot of jokes. Especially when said fat guy is generous handing out good luck to everyone. Think of Santa Claus -- a case in point. People like Ganesha because he is the nice guy. He represents the jovial in the human nature -- he is a celebration of fun and good living.
The son of Shiva and Parvati, Ganesha has an elephantine countenance with a curved trunk and big ears, and a huge pot-bellied body of a human being. He is the Lord of success and destroyer of evils and obstacles. In fact, Ganesha is one of the five prime Hindu deities (Brahma, Vishnu, Shiva and Durga being the other four) whose idolatry is glorified as the panchayatana puja. Ganesha's life cycle is broken into eight main incarnations, based on the accounts of the Ancient Hindu classics.
In the website that follows, I want to explore some of the popular stories and myths about Ganesha, provide some information on the symbolism he represents, and even suggest ways you can make Ganesha work for you, to enhance your life. Let us begin!
GANESHA ---- The Remover of Obstacles.
HINDUS PRAY TO GANESHA BEFORE STARTING ANY BUSINESS VENTURE OR SPIRITUAL GATHERING, AND THE PRAYER BEGINS: "OM SRI GANESHAYA NAMAH!" "Hail to the Lord Ganesha", or words to that effect. As stated earlier, Ganesha is the lord of doorways and new beginnings. He is the remover of obstacles.
THE GANESHA STORY ---- How Ganesha Got That Elephant Head.
THERE ARE MANY STORIES ABOUT GANESHA WAS BORN AND HOW HE ENDED UP WITH THAT ELEPHANT HEAD. To find out more, click here...
GANESHA'S WIVES ---- A Hindu Story.
ALTHOUGH IN MOST PARTS OF INDIA GANESHA IS CONSIDERED TO BE A BACHELOR, SOME HINDU'S BELIEVE OTHERWISE. According to one story, Ganesha actually has two wives, Riddhi and Siddhi. Now, Riddhi/Buddhi and Siddhi are the two beautiful daughters of Vishwabrahma. Representing knowledge (Riddhi/Buddhi) and perfection (Siddhi), the myth implies both of these qualities kiss those who adopt all the virtues of Lord Ganesha in their life. Some other Hindu sons say Lord Ganesha had two sons, Kshema and Labha.
The Shiva Purana reports: "Shiva and Parvati told their two sons : "You two are good sons, equal to our eyes. An auspicious marriage will be granted to the first of you coming back here after he has travelled three times all over the universe." Skanda started immediately to journey round the world, but Ganesh took time to think about the challenge. He got a purification bath, then installed two comfortable seats and invited his parents to sit down on these. Praising them, he turned around them seven times, then declared: "Please take the decision to celebrate my marriage. I am the winner". Indeed, his parents were surprised, but Ganesh replied: "Is it not written in the Veda and the Shastra that the man who ritually circumambulate (pradakshina) seven times around his parents can get as many merits as if he journeys round the world? Please, let organize quickly my wedding now". Hearing this statement from their son, Shiva and Parvati were really surprised but they decided to congratulate him for his guile. So, Ganesh was married to the Prajapati's daughters: Siddhi (success) and Buddhi (wisdom, cleverness). After some times, Ganesh got two sons: Kshema (prosperity) born from Siddhi, and Labha (acquisition) born from Buddhi. When Skanda came back and discovered that his brother had diddled him, he went to the Krauncha mountain where he dwelled unmarried, still now..."
Vinayaki is a feminine form of Ganesh; she has a elephant head and female breast. Only a few such representations of Vinayaki are known in India, about thirty only, for instance -- for more information, click here.
How Did Ganesha Get an Elephant's Head? |
How the Mouse Became Ganesha's Vehicle |
How to do Ganesha Puja at Home |
Moon Cursed by Ganesha |
Origin of Ganesha
Symbolism of Ganesha's Body |
The Remover of Obstacles
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Contact the author Rob Sullivan at firstname.lastname@example.org. Anticopyright September 2010.
f e e d b a c k
says: "What a comprehensive view of the gods of india..really enjoyed it. I thank u for the clarity this article has given me in my seeking.
"I used to be a die hard atheist since childhood-praying to Shiva, vishnu, krishna, ganesha, saraswati, hanuman etc. I beleived in ONE omnipotent,omniscient, omnipresent God.
"But my recent experience with a spiritual master and organization took me towards Advaita philosophy-which makes possible the existence of many gods and the god inherent in every one of us. With the possibility of man becoming GOD one day, it has obviated my belief in 'one GOD for all'.
"So my allegiance shifted from Dvaita(dualistic) to the Advaita(non dualistic) shcheme of things, where there is no radical difference between man and god as man is god's low frequency existence,capable of reaching godhood by various means(bhakti,gyan,karma,meditation,etc).
"All this was fine till i realized that this advaita concept of GOD is effectively atheism in the eyes of a monotheist.
"Nevermind, 'reailty is relative'-I said to myself and continued my journey inwards.("One should have the courage of following truth to wherever it takes").
"WIth my beleif in God shaken, I decided to test my second most prized belief-the concept of Atman through the Advaitic Lens...."
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