Click The Birth of Lord Ganesha to read about the very weird tale of how Lord Ganesha was born. What follows is the interpretation of that story…
Parvati is the Celebrative aspect of our consciousness. Parvat means mountain: The Earth herself rising up in celebration…
Now Parvati was dirty, meaning, the celebration had gone out of life, feeling of sadness, etc had arisen, and she decides to take a bath (be alone)…When you are not feeling good (your celebratory aspect is dirty), you say, give me my space, leave me alone…
The dirt that comes off her and she gives life to is the Ego… She tells the Ego see that no one disturbs me while i am not feeling well… dont let anyone come in!
Thats exactly what most people do when they are not feeling good: people usually isolate themsleves, feel separate from everyone and dont like others around them…
This is the significance of Parvati animating her ego and asking it not to let anyone disturb her because she is feeling dirty.
Lord Shiva is the protector of Parvati. So when He sees her that way with her ego standing guard, keeping the Bliss of the Self out, He does what any protector would do… Kills it!
Chopping off the head signifies killing the ego… Now, when you have had your ego trampled upon, you are going to feel even more hurt and bewildered, which is where Parvati flares up… to appease her and teach her, Lord Shiva replaces the child’s (ego) head with an elephant head.
The Elephant in Hindu mythology is held in great reverence. In old times, if a lover wanted to praise his girlfriend, he would tell her she is like an elephant… That was supposed to be the ultimate praise! Please don’t try this today… you just might get flattened
The big head symbolizes Knowledge. The eyes of the elephant are kind, full of compassion and innocence: the most beautiful in the animal Kingdom. So Shiva replaces the head of ego (ignorance) with Knowledge and innocence! That’s not all, if you have ever seen an elephant walk, stately and strong, you can see that nothing can stand in its way! So Shivji removed the ego and replaced it with Strength, Grace, Knowledge and innocence. What a superb combination! And the perfect gift for an angry, sulking wife!
Lord Shiva then names the child, Ganesh. The Lord of Knowledge and Wisdom.
Tomorrow more will be revealed about the mouse and some other really fascinating aspects of Ganeshji…
ps Dinesh is flying with Guruji to Oslo for the Nobel Laureates Conference… hopefully he will be posting about the goings on there