Ganesha symoblism

August 27, 2006

In Hinduism, Ganesha (Sanskrit: गणेश or श्रीगणेश) (when used to distinguish lordly status) (or “lord of the hosts,” also spelled as Ganesa and Ganesh, often also referred to as Ganapati) is one of the most well-known and venerated representations of God (Brahman). He is the first born son of Shiva and Parvati, and the ‘consort’ of Buddhi (also called Riddhi) and Siddhi. He is also called Vinayaka in Kannada, Malayalam and Marathi, Vinayagar and Pillayar (in Tamil), and Vinayakudu in Telugu. ‘Ga’ symbolizes Buddhi (intellect) and ‘Na’ symbolizes Vidnyana (wisdom). Ganesha is thus considered the master of intellect and wisdom. He is depicted as a big-bellied, yellow or red god with four arms and the head of a one-tusked elephant, riding on, or attended to by, a mouse. He is frequently represented sitting down, with one leg raised in the air and bent over the other. Typically, his name is prefixed with the Hindu title of respect, ‘Shree’ or Sri.

The sect of Ganesha is widely diffused, even outside of India. His devotees are called Ganapatya.

The ganapati festival is celebrated with great enthusiasm and devotion throughout India but in Mumbai, the financial capital of the Country, the festival assumes a special significance because of the scale at which it is performed.

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