Ganesha is a deity often referred to as the remover of all obstacles. He is the son of Shiva & Shakti and the gate keeper of the Muladhara Chakra. Ganesha has a unique and bizarre appearance which draws you into questioning his origin, but it is the symbolic representation of his features that really bring about change. Ganesha has many stories as to his true origin, of which can be found in many a literature. What is of more significance though, is how he ties in with Shiva & Shakti and what part he plays in there union.
To start with let me begin by discussing some of this deities characteristic features and the type of message they are trying to convey. You will see from the outset that the first striking question that glares out to anyone viewing an image of ganesha is the fact that he appears to be half human, half animal. This is for sure a thought provoking observation and one that would easily question anybodies intellect. However once you look at what it is maybe trying to depict it can start to reveal some very smart symbolism.
Out of all of the species that we see in the animal kingdom, the elephant is known to have some of the most favourable characteristics known to man. They are known to exhibit an excellent memory, as they say ‘elephants never forget’, they are found to be gentle in nature, wise in there demeanour and they seem to be very patient listeners. You will agree these are very admirable qualities to find, and this is exactly what the elephant head on a human body is trying to present. Even though we maybe classed as human in physicality, we should all at times try to change our characteristics, in order to evolve and become better individuals. These changes no doubt will bring us closer to revealing a lot about who we are and what our purpose in life really entails. The improvements we should all try to work towards are as follow, each represented symbolically in lord ganesha.
- The large elephant head, depicts that we should always try to think big. We should strive to always remember that there is something bigger than you and I and no matter what we strive for, ensure that we are becoming wiser with each step that we take.
- The large ears, small mouth and small eyes are a reminder to listen more, speak less and concentrate. To listen is to learn and to speak is to only give opinion based on ones own experience. It is sometimes better to sit still and concentrate, only to give opinions when asked. But remember in giving opinions, you are merely recycling information which you have stored from personal experience and it is sometimes of no use in the present moment.
- The trunk is a representation of how one should try to always remain efficient and adaptable. Life is in constant flux and we should all try to move in harmony with its ebbs and flows. Resistance should not be an option and all change should be embraced as positive progress.
- The vehicle of choice is a mouse, small yet fierce in numbers. It is a gentle reminder that in life there will be many obstacles especially those of desire. What is important to acknowledge here is to ensure that when desires do arise, be conscious of them, let them pass without giving them any energy. Ride them out and keep them under your full control.
- Usually you will find some sweet delights next to ganesha, usually a reminder that the world is your oyster and it has many rewards to offer those seekers who are looking to fully enjoy its opportunities. Just remember to consciously enjoy the worldly delights so that they do not entrap you in a world of illusion.
So these are some of the many qualities that individuals should try to attain, if they want to really see progress on this wonderful journey. But you may ask why should I want to change? Am I not already perfect? Well the answer to these questions really lie in you. Any obstacles you face in life are lessons waiting to be learnt, they are put before you as a learning tool and they will only ever cease to exist once you have consciously acknowledged them. Until you embrace there presence, they will just keep repeating themselves. It is you who is creating the obstacles and it is only you who will be able to dissolve them. The magic will only happen once all obstacles have been totally removed, this is when ganesha will finally open the gates to his kingdom. It is in the sanctuary of the muladhara chakra where he sits patiently, patiently for the day to come where the orders are given to finally let kundalini energy (shakti) begin her ascension.
‘Obstacles don’t block the path they are the path’