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Symbolism of Lord Ganesh

  1. Trunk– Symbolic of discrimination power (viveka). Ability to discriminate between right and wrong. Flexibility in trunk indicates that one should not be rigid and should be ready to adapt himself with time.
  2. Big ears– Listen more and talk less. while listening digest only those things which are wise and discard all unnecessary things. It also indicates that he listens carefully to the prayers to his devotees.
  3. Small mouth– Talk less and only what is essential.
  4. Big head– Wisdom and think big.
  5. Big belly– The whole world is contained in him. He accepts everything good or bad with the same equanimity. it represents the capacity to absorb all pleasant and unpleasant experiences of the world with grace.
  6. Single tusk– One truth or non-duality. Broken tusk indicates at the imperfections of the ever-changing material world.
  7. Small eyes– Power of concentration. Elephant eyes can even see small things even from a distance, because his eyes make them look big. Do not judge or see things from a narrow perspective. Do not judge the book from its book cover. look at the bigger picture and at all the angles while giving justice. It also indicates to have a foresight for future.
  8. Third eye– To see the world with spiritual wisdom.
  9. Modak– Symbolic of gyana (enlightenment) which gives bliss.
  10. Tray of Ladoos at Ganesha feet– The luxuries of whole world are at your feet. if you want then you can achieve them with determination. The mind (indicated by mouse or your desires) will be obviously attracted towards them, but you should follow the path of dharma.
  11. Four hands– Lord Ganesh is often shown with four hands.
    a)First hand is always giving blessings to his devotees and assuring them fearlessness. it also indicates that he can fulfil the desires of his devotees.
    b) Second hand contains rice ball which indicates the sweet fruit of spiritual sadhana.
    c) Noose bearing hand – it represents many things. first, all worldly desires are a noose. Secondly, with noose Ganesh catches the delusion and free his devotees from its effects. Thirdly he uses noose to pull his devotees close to the truth and bind them to the god.
    d) Ankusha (elephant goad) bearing hand – represents his power and ability to direct his devotees on the right path.
  12. One leg resting on the ground and other leg folded up– The leg on the ground indicates that we need to perform our worldly duties (duties of a householder). the leg pointing upwards indicates that in midst of doing these worldly duties we should not forget the divinity within us (god). Do your duties but side by side remember god. Do not lose track of real purpose of life in this materialistic world.
  13. Mouse– Symbolic of worldly desires and passions which needs to be overcome.
  14. Lotus – Symbol of purity. stay in the world yet do not get attach to the materialistic world.
  1. Crescent moon– Auspicious time to do things. it also represents that this third day crescent moon without blemishes will lead to spiritual growth and attainment of moksha.
  2. Veena– Symbolic of nada-brahman, the ever-pervading music of the universe.
  3. Snake– Kundalini shakti which we all need to awaken in this lifetime.
  4. Hammer– he is the patron of arts, crafts and sculptors.
  5. Sugarcane-Elephant favourite food is sugarcane. similarly, the soul hankers for liberation. It is not easy to break the shell of ego (like sugarcane) but once broken then the result is very sweet.
  6. Axe– Used for cutting worldly attachments and desires of devotees thus freeing them from sorrow and pain.
  7. Om– The cosmic sound which represents brahman (supreme knowledge or supreme soul). Ganesh has realized the brahman and is the deity who controls the muladhara chakra where kundalini shakti resides. Ganesh has the power to unlock the kundalini shakti.
  8. Swastika– Mark of auspiciousness, good luck and fortune

(Ref: The spiritual Indian)


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