He is one of the most popular Gods for the Hindus, so popular and loved that it is customary to worship Him before starting off anything new. The elephant-headed Ganesha has many stories about his birth and how he got the head of the elephant, so I thought it would be a good idea to put some of them on the blog.
A lot of the books would call Ganesha the creation of Parvati, and not the mind-born son of Shiva. This, this story focuses on Ganesha as Parvati’s son.
One day, before going for a bath, Goddess Parvati rubbed off the oil and dust from her body and from this she modelled a human figure…a young boy. She was so mesmerized by the beauty of her creation that she breathed life into it. This boy was Ganesha. While she went for her bath, she asked the boy to guard the door and not let anyone in.
While Goddess Parvati went for her bath, Lord Shiva came by but this young boy did not let him enter. Not knowing that this young boy was his son and vice-versa, the two of them engaged in a fight during which He beheaded the young boy. Parvati was extremely upset with Shiva for his act of violence that she threatened to destroy the world- after all she was Shakti! To save the world, the pantheon of Gods requested Shiva to pacify her. He sent an army of his ganas, or hordes to search for the first living being with its head towards the north (the direction of wisdom). The ganas found an elephant sleeping with its head towards the North and thus brought that back with them, and placed it over the boy’s body. Shiva breathed life into the elephant-head boy and called him Ganesha, the Lord of the ganas!
Interesting story, isn’t it? There’s more but I’ll save it for the next post.