The Remover of Obstacles, Ganesha

At the accomodation where I’m staying, there are two icons of Ganesha: a statue and a framed picture. I remember Ganesha, like Hanuman, from my readings. And my impressions towards this God have more to do with his “Panda On” shape than the the fields he is representing or looking after.

The remover of obstacles as I came to know him, was for me a generous selfless God who came between his two parents, Shiva the Destroyer and Parvati. As a consequence of such an act, Shiva beheaded him. Then, taken by remorse, he decided to take the head of the first animal who comes by to give his son a new head. You can guess what animal was peacefully walking by. Even to this day, Ganesha is for me an icon of generosity and selflessness though Eshwara told me he was the lord of sciences and art and the one who removes the obstacles and who creates beginnings.

I was told he is often painted dancing or playing music or fighting demons. But in Bangalore, I see him standing on a lotus, or sitting, with a peculiar rat eating a white ball near him. When I asked Christopher, he told me the rat is actually a mount – a vehicle- for the God to ride. It also symbolizes the wish to overcome desires and wordly needs.

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