Ganesh 101


गजाननं भूत गणाधि सेवितं कपित्थ जम्बू फलचार भक्षणम् ।
उमासुतं शोकविनाश कारकम् नमामि विघ्नेश्वर पाद पकंजम् ॥

Gajananam Bhoot Ganadhi Sevitam, Kapittha Jambu Phalcharu Bhakshanam ।
Uma Sutam Shoka Vinasha Karanam, Namami Vigneshwarpad Pankajam ॥


Gajananam :- Gaja means elephant and anan means face or mouth. So, in this shaloka is addressed that the God who has face of elephant.

Bhoota Ganadhi Sevitam :- Bhuta means souls and gana means servants so its complete meaning come to be served by Bhoota and Ganas.
Kapittha Jambu Phalacharu Bhakshanam :- means who takes the essence of kapitta and Jambu
Uma Sutam :- means son of UMA (Mata Uma wife of Lord Shiva and is also considered as adi shakti)

Shoka Vinasha Karanam :- means the one who can destroy all the reasons of the sadness. So HE no only destroys the sadness you have but also the very reason that is causing it so that you have eternal happiness
Namami Vigneshwarpad Pankajam :-  Namami means bow or i pray; Vigneshwarpaad pankajam is the feet.

This is a shloka for worshiping Lord Ganesha, as HE should be worshiped first among all gods and he got it because of his wisdom. So I bow my head in front of him and pray him to take all the hurdles that are going to be in my path.

HE who has the head / mouth / face of elephant, who is served by Gana and Bhoota and takes the essence of  Kapitha and Jambu fruits ।

HE is son of Uma and can reason of  destruction of all sorrows, I bow in the beautiful feet (beautiful like the lotus flower) of Vigneshwara (God of obstacles) ॥


Though Ganesha is considered to be son of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati, the Purans such as Shiv, Matsya and Skand ascribe the birth of Lord Ganesha to Goddess Parvati only, without any form of participation of Lord Shiva in Lord Ganesha’s birth.

After marriage Goddess Parvati, moved to Mount Kailash to live with Lord Shiva. In their daily life one incident was always common most of the times when she was taking bath and Lord Shiva wants to visit her no guard stops Him from entering in the residential place. So after a while Goddess Parvati started to feel offended by this invasion of Lord Shiva in her private life.

So she decided to make a guard of her own and that guard should be answerable to her only and will also stop Lord Shiva from accidentally entering the house when she is taking bath. Hence she created an image of a boy out of turmeric paste which she prepared to cleanse her body, and infused life into it, and thus Ganesha was born. Parvati ordered Ganesha not to allow anyone to enter the house, and Ganesha obediently followed his mother’s orders.


After a while Shiva returned and tried to enter the house, Ganesha stopped him. Shiva was infuriated and it started a chain of events leading to war of the entire heavenly kingdom and the lone child. Midst the war, Shiva could manage to severe the boy’s head with his trishula (trident). When Parvati came out and saw her son’s lifeless body, she was very angry. She immediately revealed her true self as the adi-shakti, the primal energy sustaining matter and demanded that Shiva restore Ganesha’s life at once. The Gods prostrated at her feet and an elephant’s head was attached to Ganesha’s body, bringing him back to life. To appease Parvati further, Shiva declared that the child be made head of the ghost-followers (Gana’s)of Shiva and worshipped by everyone before beginning any activity, and gods accepted this condition.

Ganesha is identified as a god named after his mother. He is called Umaputra, Parvatisuta, Gaurisuta meaning son of Uma, Parvati and Gauri respectively. He is also called Heramba, “mother’s beloved (son)”.

According to Kundalini Yoga, Lord Ganesha resides in the first Chakra, called Muladhar Chakra (mūlādhāra). Mula means “original, main”; adhara means “base, foundation”. The muladhara chakra is the principle on which the manifestation or outward expansion of primordial Divine Force rests. This association is also attested to in the Ganapati Atharvashirsa.

Ganesh Ji

Meaning of the story of Ganesh

At first glance, this story just seems like a nice tale that we might tell our children, or a myth without any real substance. But, it’s true mystical meaning is veiled. It is explained thus:

Parvati is a form of Devi, the Parashakti (Supreme Energy). In the human body She resides in the Muladhara chakra as the Kundalini shakti. It is said that when we purify ourselves, ridding ourselves of the impurities that bind us, then the Lord automatically comes. This is why Shiva, the Supreme Lord, came unannounced as Parvati was bathing.

Nandi, Shiva’s bull, who Parvati first sent to guard the door represents the divine temperment. Nandi is so devoted to Shiva that his every thought is directed to Him, and he is able to easily recognize the Lord when He arrives. This shows that the attitude of the spiritual aspirant is what gains access to Devi’s (the kundalini shakti’s) abode. One must first develop this attitude of the devotee before hoping to become qualified for the highest treasure of spiritual attainment, which Devi alone grants.

After Nandi permitted Shiva to enter, Parvati took the turmeric paste from Her own body, and with it created Ganesha.. Yellow is the color associated with the Muladhara chakra, where the kundalini resides, and Ganesha is the deity who guards this chakra. Devi needed to create Ganesha, who represents the earthbound awareness, as a shield to protect the divine secret from unripe minds. It is when this awareness begins to turn away from things of the world, and toward the Divine, as Nandi had, that the great secret is revealed.

Shiva is the Lord and Supreme Teacher. Ganesha here represents the ego-bound Jiva. When the Lord comes, the Jiva, surrounded as it is with the murky cloud of ego, usually doesn’t recognize Him, and maybe even ends up arguing or fighting with Him! Therefore, it is the duty of the Lord, in the form of the Guru, to cut off the head of our ego! So powerful is this ego however, that at first the Guru’s instructions may not work, as Shiva’s armies failed to subdue Ganesha. It often requires a tougher approach, but, eventually the compassionate Guru, in His wisdom finds a way.

Devi threatened to destroy the whole Creation after learning of Ganesha’s demise. This indicates that when the ego thus dies, the liberated Jiva loses interest in its temporary physical vehicle, the body, and begins to merge into the Supreme. The physical world is here represented by Devi. This impermanent and changeable creation is a form of Devi, to which this body belongs; the unchanging Absolute is Shiva, to which belongs the Soul. When the ego dies, the external world, which depends on the ego for its existence, disappears along with it. It is said that if we want to know the secrets of this world, which is a manifestation of Devi, then we must first receive the blessings of Ganesha.

Shiva restoring life to Ganesha, and replacing his head with an elephant’s, means that before we can leave the body, the Lord first replaces our small ego with a “big”, or universal ego. This doesn’t mean that we become more egoistic. On the contrary, we no longer identify with the limited individual self, but rather with the large universal Self. In this way, our life is renewed, becoming one that can truly benefit Creation. It is however only a functional ego, like the one Krishna and Buddha kept. It is like a thin string tying the liberated Consciousness to our world, solely for our benefit.

Ganesha is given dominion over the Ganas, which is a general term denoting all classes of beings, ranging from insects, animals and humans to the subtle and celestial beings. These various beings all contribute to the government of the Creation; everything from natural forces like storms and earthquakes, to the elemental qualities like fire and water, to functioning of the body’s organs and processes. If we don’t honor the Ganas, then our every action is a form of thievery, as it is unsanctioned. Therefore, instead of propitiating each Gana in order to receive their blessings, we bow to their Lord, Sri Ganesha. By receiving His grace, we receive the grace of all. He removes any potential obstacles and enables our endeavors to succeed.

Broken Tooth

Ganesh Broken Tooth

Ganesh had two tusks as is usual with elephants, but he had a great fight with Parshuram, when Ganesh laid claims to immortality. There are only seven who are immortal – Hanumanji, Vibhishan, Kripacharya, Parshuram, Ashwathama, Bali, and Ved Vyas (Markande also joined their ranks later). These great men do not die and even when the world dissolves and a new world takes birth they will be here. They are not born again and again. They live on the mighty Himalayas and it is said that some great souls do come across them. Anyway, Ganeshji declared that he was eligible for such a position, but Parshuram was not satisfied and wanted to test him. Parshuram loses his temper at the drop of a hat (as the saying goes), so he declared he would fight with Ganesh; if Ganesh won, only then he would be immortal. There ensued a terrible battle. Parshuram became very ferocious in the heat of the moment and in the process he broke one of Ganeshji’s teeth; Ganeshji gave up the idea of being immortal. Therefore, he is born at the beginning when the world is formed and only dies when parlay or the end of world comes.

Ganesh was chosen by Narad to be the stenographer to write down the Mahabharata for posterity, while Vyasji related the tale of his grandsons to him. He told Vyas that he would only write if Vyasji gave the dictation continuously and did not stop or hesitate and waste time. In the process of writing the Mahabharata (at the dictation of Vyasa), Ganesh found that his pen had broken, and in the urgency of taking down the great words, snapped off his left tusk as a replacement quill.

Ganesh’s mouse

ganesh mouse

The earliest Ganesha images are without a vahana (mount/vehicle). Of the eight incarnations of Ganesha described in the Mudgala Purana, Ganesha uses a mouse (shrew) in five of them, a lion in his incarnation as Vakratunda, a peacock in his incarnation as Vikata, and Shesha, the divine serpent, in his incarnation as Vighnaraja. Mohotkata uses a lion, Mayūreśvara uses a peacock, Dhumraketu uses a horse, and Gajanana uses a mouse, in the four incarnations of Ganesha listed in the Ganesha Purana. Jain depictions of Ganesha show his vahana variously as a mouse, elephant, tortoise, ram, or peacock.

Ganesha is often shown riding on or attended by a mouse, shrew or rat. The rat begin to appear as the principal vehicle in sculptures of Ganesha in central and western India during the 7th century; the rat was always placed close to his feet. The mouse as a mount first appears in written sources in the Matsya Purana and later in the Brahmananda Purana and Ganesha Purana, where Ganesha uses it as his vehicle in his last incarnation.The Ganapati Atharvashirsa includes a meditation verse on Ganesha that describes the mouse appearing on his flag. The names Mūṣakavāhana (mouse-mount) and Ākhuketana (rat-banner) appear in the Ganesha Sahasranama.

It symbolizes tamo – guna as well as desire. It symbolizes those who wish to overcome desires and be less selfish. The Sanskrit word mūṣaka (mouse) is derived from the root mūṣ (stealing, robbing). It was essential to subdue the rat as a destructive pest, a type of vighna (impediment) that needed to be overcome. According to this theory, showing Ganesha as master of the rat demonstrates his function as Vigneshvara (Lord of Obstacles) and gives evidence of his possible role as a folk grāma-devatā (village deity) who later rose to greater prominence. Another view is that rat is a symbol suggesting that Ganesha, like the rat, penetrates even the most secret places.

108 Names of Lord Ganesha

Ganesh Chalisa

Akhurath = One who has Mouse as His Charioteer
Alampata = Ever Eternal Lord
Amit = Incomparable Lord
Anantachidrupamayam = Infinite and Consciousness Personified
Avaneesh = Lord of the whole World
Avighna = Remover of Obstacles
Balaganapati = Beloved and Lovable Child
Bhalchandra = Moon-Crested Lord
Bheema = Huge and Gigantic
Bhupati = Lord of the Gods
Bhuvanpati = God of the Gods
Buddhinath = God of Wisdom
Buddhipriya = Knowledge
Buddhividhata = God of Knowledge
Chaturbhuj = One who has Four Arms
Devadeva = Lord of All Lords
Devantakanashakarin = Destroyer of Evils and Asuras
Devavrata = One who accepts all Penances
Devendrashika = Protector of All Gods
Dharmik = One who gives Charity
Dhoomravarna = Smoke-Hued Lord
Durja = Invincible Lord
Dvaimatura = One who has two Mothers
Ekaakshara = He of the Single Syllable
Ekadanta = Single-Tusked Lord
Ekadrishta = Single-Tusked Lord
Eshanputra = Lord Shiva’s Son
Gadadhara = One who has The Mace as His Weapon
Gajakarna = One who has Eyes like an Elephant
Gajanana = Elephant-Faced Lord
Gajananeti = Elephant-Faced Lord
Gajavakra = Trunk of The Elephant
Gajavaktra = One who has Mouth like an Elephant
Ganadhakshya = Lord of All Ganas (Gods)
Ganadhyakshina = Leader of All The Celestial Bodies
Ganapati = Lord of All Ganas (Gods)
Gaurisuta = The Son of Gauri (Parvati)
Gunina = One who is The Master of All Virtues
Haridra = One who is Golden Coloured
Heramba = Mother’s Beloved Son
Kapila = Yellowish-Brown Coloured
Kaveesha = Master of Poets
Krti = Lord of Music
Kripalu = Merciful Lord
Krishapingaksha = Yellowish-Brown Eyed
Kshamakaram = The Place of Forgiveness
Kshipra = One who is easy to Appease
Lambakarna = Large-Eared Lord
Lambodara = The Huge Bellied Lord
Mahabala = Enormously Strong Lord
Mahaganapati = Omnipotent and Supreme Lord
Maheshwaram = Lord of The Universe
Mangalamurti = All Auspicious Lord
Manomay = Winner of Hearts
Mrityuanjaya = Conqueror of Death
Mundakarama = Abode of Happiness
Muktidaya = Bestower of Eternal Bliss
Musikvahana = One who has mouse as charioteer
Nadapratithishta = One who Appreciates and Loves Music
Namasthetu = Vanquisher of All Evils & Vices & Sins
Nandana = Lord Shiva’s Son
Nideeshwaram = Giver of Wealth and Treasures
Omkara = One who has the Form Of OM
Pitambara = One who has Yellow-Colored Body
Pramoda = Lord of All Abodes
Prathameshwara = First Among All
Purush = The Omnipotent Personality
Rakta = One who has Red-Colored Body
Rudrapriya = Beloved Of Lord Shiva
Sarvadevatman = Acceptor of All Celestial Offerings
Sarvasiddhanta = Bestower of Skills and Wisdom
Sarvatman = Protector of The Universe
Shambhavi = The Son of Parvati
Shashivarnam = One who has a Moon like Complexion
Shoorpakarna = Large-Eared Lord
Shuban = All Auspicious Lord
Shubhagunakanan = One who is The Master of All Virtues
Shweta = One who is as Pure as the White Color
Siddhidhata = Bestower of Success & Accomplishments
Siddhipriya = Bestower of Wishes and Boons
Siddhivinayaka = Bestower of Success
Skandapurvaja = Elder Brother of Skand (Lord Kartik)
Sumukha = Auspicious Face
Sureshwaram = Lord of All Lords
Swaroop = Lover of Beauty
Tarun = Ageless
Uddanda = Nemesis of Evils and Vices
Umaputra = The Son of Goddess Uma (Parvati)
Vakratunda = Curved Trunk Lord
Varaganapati = Bestower of Boons
Varaprada = Granter of Wishes and Boons
Varadavinayaka = Bestower of Success
Veeraganapati = Heroic Lord
Vidyavaridhi = God of Wisdom
Vighnahara = Remover of Obstacles
Vignaharta = Demolisher of Obstacles
Vighnaraja = Lord of All Hindrances
Vighnarajendra = Lord of All Obstacles
Vighnavinashanaya = Destroyer of All Obstacles & Impediments
Vigneshwara = Lord of All Obstacles
Vikat = Huge and Gigantic
Vinayaka = Lord of All
Vishwamukha = Master of The Universe
Vishwaraja = King of The World
Yagnakaya = Acceptor of All Sacred & Sacrficial Offerings
Yashaskaram = Bestower of Fame and Fortune
Yashvasin = Beloved and Ever Popular Lord
Yogadhipa = The Lord of Meditation

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