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Thoughts on Ganesh Chaturti

Thought One

Lord Ganesh was born on the 4th day of the bright fortnight of the month of 'Magh'. 'Chatur' means 4. He controls the 8 directions of the Cosmos. 'Gana' means to count. The science of Astrology is dependant on numbers. Hence Lord Ganesh is the Master of Astrology. No wonder that one worships Lord Ganesh before embarking on anything auspicious. Those who would like to fast on Ganesh Chaturthi, start their series of fasting as of today. 

One worships Ganeshji before the start of anything auspicious. He is resourceful. Ganeshji offered to write the Vedas as Ved Vyaasji dictated. But there was a condition to fulfill. Ganeshji could not stop writing...It so happened that Ganeshji's pen broke as he wrote. Without a moment hesitation he used his broken tusk as a pen...So we hope that Ganeshji will always be there as and when an obstacle arises...

The broken tusk symbolically means that Ganpatiji is beyond duality.

Ganpatiji sits with one foot on the ground and the other folded up, above the ground. This posture means that while we must operate in the world one must be constantly aligned to our spiritual nature

Lord Ganesh's big ears denote that He can hear and understand Vedantic Truth. His big head reminds us that we are Spiritual Creatures so we must 'Think Big'. His small mouth denotes that He talks less. (So must we: Talk less and Listen more) His small eyes urge us to 'focus'. Besides small eyes denote a subtle vision.The long trunk of an elephant has the quality of being able to uproot a tree, and at the same time pick up a tiny needle from a haystack. This is again a quality attributed to the Lord, as we believe that in spite of His great power, the tiniest creature does not pass unnoticed by Him. The mouse though small can play havoc. Ganeshji has him under His control. 

The parsaad offered to Lord Ganesha symbolises material and spiritual wealth.

Baskaran Pillai explains: Ganesha has an elephant face and prominent ears. Elephants can process infra sound waves (below 20 Hertz) This allows them to sense danger and leave a place before the occurrence of natural disasters such as tsunamis or earthquakes.

Gam is the beej or seed mantra for Ganesha. In Tamil there is a saying “Gammunu iru” which translates as ‘Be still through Gam’ By chanting the mantra you can connect with inner silence and find solutions. It is common to see people tapping their temples with their knuckles when visiting a Ganesha shrine. This activates the frontal lobes, enhancing rational intelligence.

One generally breaks a coconut during a Ganesh puja. The 3 eyes of a coconut are said to correspond to the 3 eyed Shiva. It is believed that Shivji once told Ganesha: Whoever sacrifices a coconut is sacrificing Me, and this is the highest sacrifice. When you circle the coconut around your head, it energetically absorbs the lower vibrations in your aura. When smashed the energy holding back your progress is forcefully disseminated. Breaking coconuts before Ganesha is a symbolic act of sacrificing ones own life for renewal

As the Lord's mode of transport, the rat  increases the difficult task that a spiritual person faces when treading on the 'Way to the Almighty'. A rat keeps nibbling all the time just like our senses which are never satisfied. The wise man rides on his senses. He keep them under control.

Lord Ganesh's large belly denotes prosperity and that He digests all the good and bad in the world. The planet Mars and Ganpati are considered to have the same complexion. On Ganesh Chaturthi frequencies from Mars and Ganesh reach the Earth.

Ganeshji holds in His 4 hands:

An axe to cut off evil and worldly attachments and old karmas.

A Rope pulls His disciples closer to the Spiritual Path.

The Rosary beads remind one to continuously strive towards the Real Knowledge.

The last hand is held up in a posture of blessing.

May the Lord Ganesh bestow His Grace upon all of you today.

Thought Two

So people will once again  be bringing 'Lord Ganpati' into their homes. They will be performing prayers and entertaining Him for a few days and then they will bid Him farewell with a request to return next year!

This wonderful custom was popularized by Lokmanya Balgangadhar Tilak to bring together the 'Hindustanis' during the British rule. Originally worshipping Lord Ganesha was a family affair. Wet clay was fashioned into a symbolic Ganesha form, placed on the left palm and worshipped with the chanting of mantras, followed by the rituals. The idol was the immersed in the well or a pond. A devout Hindu believes that what came from the earth should return there.

Ganpati is supposed to smash, with the help of His trunk, all the obstacles that come in the path of His devotees. When an elephant moves through the forest, his massive body clears the way for others who follow. If the trunk of 'Ganesha' is curved to the right He is called 'Sidhi Vinayaka' and requires special worship.

So let us worship Him again this year. Let us bring Him, not only into our homes, but into our hearts and keep Him there. The idol we may do 'visarjan' (immersion) of, and together with it, our negative tendencies.

Thought Three

Those conversant with Yoga would know that the 'Kundalini Shakti' or primordial energy, rises in a zigzag manner through the Spinal chord, culminating in the third eye, which resides in between the eye-brows. When the trunk of Ganeshji is facing straight forward, it signifies that the passage, though the Spinal chord, or 'Sushumna' is entirely open. When the trunk of Ganeshji is swung  right in the air, it means that the 'Kundalini Shakti' has reached the Sahasraar' or the Region of the third eye, permanently.

When Ganeshji's trunk is curved to the right. He is called Siddhi Vinaayak.

The left side, represents the Moon. The right side represents the Sun. Hence if the Trunk of ones Ganeshji leans towards the Right, It would require special worship, as the 'Sun' would burn one if rules are violated.

Another explanation: According to Hindu texts there are three channels or naadis that are responsible for overall health.

The left channel is called the Ida Naadi and is connected to the right side and the back of the brain. This naadi looks after our emotional side.

The right side channel is called the Pingala naadi. It crosses the Ida naadi at the third eye or the Agna Chakra. Pingala is connected with the left side and the front of  the brain. It is the Super conscious mind.

The central channel is called the Sushumna. This channel helps us integrate and helps in our Spiritual Evolution.

During earlier times, Ganpati was a tribal God, Guardian of the forests. He was, in fact believed to be a creator of obstacles, by whose Grace one could survive in the treacherous jungles. This world is no less than a jungle, where we constantly require His Grace to survive.  He forever protects us. His Big ears hear our tiniest complaint. His Big Belly, remind us that He is Prosperity Itself, and He owns all that we might require. His trunk has the capacity to uproot a tree and to pick up a needle from a hay-stack. He is all powerful, yet He sits on a humble mouse to remind us that however powerful He may be is forever present on Earth, a humble planet, in the vast Universe.

Thought Four

In the case of  Aum What looks like 3 is the 'a' sound in Sanskrit, the tail or trunk is the 'u' sound and the dot on the half moon is the nasal sound Together it says 'Aum' Aum is also a visual, and if you care to interpret it in the following way, it looks like a Ganpati. The lower part of the 3 is the belly,and the 'u' is the trunk, with a tika on top.

21 Durva blades are offered to Ganpatiji. It is believed that Ganpatiji is formed from No 3.  2+1=3    2+1 is 21

9 is a complete and powerful number. The devout who believe in the power of number 9 visit 108 Ganpatijis during these auspicious days.

Once again it is that time of year when the devout invite Lord Ganpati to their home and entertain him, with so much love!

Thought Five

People often say that God is Just and Merciful.

If one analyses the two adjectives, one will realise that if one relies on justice, one cannot always be merciful and if one shows Mercy, one probably cannot exercise proper justice. The theory of karma is based on justice. Forgiveness is a gift of Mercy. If you will only bear with me, I would like to explain to you a theory which explains the above a bit better.

On the earth and for some miles around it we experience the Law of Gravity. The Law of gravity does not exist in Space. Similarly while we are bound by human knowledge, the Laws of karma apply. Once we transcend through love. We break the barriers and we enter the Law of Grace, compassion and mercy. We have then entered the realm of miracles. Now we can use our thoughts, feelings, words and actions to co-create with God our own reality.

I will not  write further on  the above subject. Will you re-read what I have written and ponder upon it?

The Lord  Ganpati,  is being revered across India, for the present 10 days as a great clearer of obstacles. He is considered a symbol of wisdom and a bringer of good luck. He is believed to be a very powerful positive force in the Universe. It is said that Ganpati was born when Shivji and Mother Parvati contemplated on 'OM'

There was once a competition in Heaven as to who would circle the Universe first. While the other gods went in different directions, Ganpati circled round His parents. Some believe that because of Ganpati's example, we hindus revere our parents always. Therefore we need not celebrate Mother's and Father's day , only on a particular day each year. So let us call upon Ganpati to enter into our lives and affairs, and not leave our hearts even though we bid adieu to Him at the end of the 10 day celebration. 

Thought Six

The 12th of Sepember, 2000 is Maha-visarjan-day. The grandest (in stature) of Ganpatis will be returned to the elements (Water). They have been feasted in a grand manner fit for gods, and now it is time to chant:

Ganpati Baba Morya!
Pudcha varshi laukarya!

Which means: O Ganpati
Return soon, next year

As we prepare to allow Him to leave, let us get to know a little more about Him.

It is believed that Ganeshji Himself wrote the Mahabharata, to the dictation of Guru Veda Vyasa. He is also considered the most intelligent. A challenge was thrown to brothers Ganeshji and Karthikeya by Sage Narada. The challenge was whoever went around the globe first would have the fruit first. Karthikeya went around the world which took quite some time while Ganeshji went round his parents thrice and claimed the fruit. The logic he gave was that since his parents represented the universe he had gone round them. 

Ganeshji (Another name for Ganpati Bapa) is the beloved son of Shivji and Ma Parvati. Shivji used to leave Parvati for long periods of time, to immerse Himself into deep meditation. During one such time, Ma was feeling lonely, so she took some clay and water and commenced to shape a baby. She breathed life into him, and called the beautiful baby, Ganesh.

Once Ma Parvati went in to bathe and asked Ganesh not to let anyone in. Shivji happened to return from his long sojourn and Ganesh refused him entry.  Enraged Shivji cut off Ganesh's head as he did not recognise the child. Ma Parvati implored him to restore her son's life. Lord Shiva said that he would cut the head of the first living creature that passed by and use it to replace his son's head, and that is what he did.

However it makes me wonder why Lord Shiva said that he would cut the head of the first living creature that passed. Could Lord Shiva have performed a head transplant?  Eric Van Daniken in his book 'Chariots of the Gods' claims that humanity was very advanced in early history and far-fetched theories like the above one, should be taken literally.

Another version: Mother Parvati pointed out the planet Saturn to Ganpati. The latter's head got burnt due to the power of the planet.

The point to remember is that Ganeshji triumphed the onslaught of Saturn and became immortal.

Later, Ganeshji married Sidhhi and Buddhi and had two sons called Kshem and Labh. Please do some homework! find out the meaning of the above names and you will be able to learn the great qualities that Ganeshji is endowed with.

According to Wapedia:

The marital status of Ganesha varies widely in mythological stories and the issue has been the subject of considerable scholarly review. [1] Several patterns of associations with different consorts are identifiable. One pattern of myths identifies Ganesha as an unmarried with no consorts. Another pattern associates him with the concepts of Buddhi (intellect), Siddhi (spiritual power), and Riddhi (prosperity); these qualities are sometimes personified as goddesses who are considered to be Ganesha's wives. [2] Another pattern connects Ganesha with the goddess of culture and the arts, Sarasvati, and the goddess of luck and prosperity, Lakshmi. [3] In the Bengal region he is linked with the banana tree, Kala Bo. [4] He also may be shown with a single consort or a nameless servant (Sanskrit: daşi). [5]

Some of the differences between these patterns can be understood by looking at regional variations across India, the time periods in which the patterns are found, and the traditions in which the beliefs are held. Some differences pertain to the preferred meditation form used by the devotee, with many different traditional forms ranging from Ganesha as a young boy (Sanskrit: बालगणपति; bālagāņapati) to Ganesha as a Tantric deity."

Ganeshji is called 'Ekdanta' because he broke one tusk while he engaged in a fight. 'Ekdanta' means 'one tooth'

Once the 'Moon' laughed at the appearance of Ganpati. The moon since has had dark spots on its beautiful surface as punishment.

Ved Vyaasji is the Poet Supreme . He penned the Shrimad Bhaagvat besides other remarkably Divine compositions. While writing the Mahabharata, Ved Vyaasa realised that his thoughts were flowing faster than his pen. So he requested Ganpatiji to write, while he dictated. Ganpatiji agreed. But he put up a condition. VedVyaas must not stop his dictation even for a second. VedVyaas agreed on the condition that Ganpatiji would only write a couplet after he understood it. 

Ganeshji speed in writing was unsurpassed, hence Ved Vyaasji composed a difficult  'shloka' from time to time to keep Ganeshji busy trying to understand what he was writing.

So we have Ganpatiji to thank, for writing the hundred thousand couplets (shlokas) of the Mahabharata, which took 3 years to complete.

Remember, Ganpatiji's wife's name is 'Buddhi'? Buddhi means intellect and wisdom.

Truly Ganpati possesses all the powers to do away with any difficulty that confronts a devotee of his.  So say with me:

Ganpati Bappa Morya
Pudchaa Varshi laukarya!

and may our troubles be as small as Ganpati's mouse &
our moments as sweet His laddus.

When we chant Aum Ganeshaaya Namah before starting anything we are saying: In what we are about to do, let wisdom be our Guide.

Names of  Ganesha

Each different form has a name and colour says

Seema Burman

Dvija Ganapati is like the moon

Dvimukha Ganapati is bluish green

Dhoomravarna Ganapati has a smoke coloured body

Haridra Ganapati is bright yellow

Rinamochana Ganapati is white like crystal

Heramba Ganapati is of dark green colour. In some cases , the colour of his head and body are different-the head is brick red with a flesh coloured body...

Incarnations described in the Mudgala Purana took place in different cosmic ages. These incarnations express complex philosophical concepts associated with progressive creation. The demons mentioned exist within us and we need the Grace of Ganesha to overcome them.

Vakratunda, (One with a twisted trunk) The purpose of this Incarnation is to overcome the demon Matsaryusara who symbolises envy and jealousy. His mount is a lion.

Ekadanta, (One with a single tusk) The purpose of this Incarnation is to overcome Madasura , symbolic of arrogance and conceit.

Mahodara,(Big bellied Ganesha) The purpose of this Incarnation is to overcome the demon Mohasura

Gajanana, (Elephant faced) The purpose of this Incarnation is to overcome demon Lobhasura or greed.

Lambodara (Large bellied) The purpose of this Incarnation is to overcome demon Krodhasura or anger.

Vikata ( One with an unusual form) He is an embodiment of the Illuminating nature of Brahmn. The purpose is to overcome kamasura or lust. His mount is the peacock.

Vighnaraja, King of obstacles corresponds to Vishnu and is an Incarnation to preserve the nature of Brahmn. The purpose is to overcome Mamasura or possessiveness. His mount is the celestial serpent Shesha.

Dhumravarna, The grey coloured one corresponds with Shiva and is an embodiment of the destructive nature of Brahmn. The purpose is to overcome Abhimanasura, full of pride and attachment. His mount is a horse.



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