Lord Ganesha is unique among all deities. He has a human form with the head of an Asian elephant. Like the elephant which can grasp objects with its trunk, the entire realm of knowledge is in His grasp. In brilliance, He outshines Sun (Surya) and His radiant appearance can illuminate the entire universe. His body is so huge, it can accommodate the entire creation.
Lord Ganesha is worshiped to remove obstacles. He removes obstacles when we contemplate actions that promote our well-being and brings us the goodwill of others and the actions should have no evil design or purpose. Lord Ganesha removes obstacles and paves the way for accomplishment and success in human endeavors. The notion that success is the result of divine sanction rather than being entirely due to personal effort, would let us reach our goals with a sense of modesty and humility.
The primary goals for man have been described as Dharma, Artha, Kama, and Moksha. Dharma (right conduct)is not only a goal but also is the way. The other three goals should only be reached following the way of Dharma. To prepare for the journey on the path of Dharma, the traveler finds direction from a sense of humility. The radiant and immense personality of Ganesha endows us with humility. Having reached the goals of Artha (personal wealth, social status and position), and Kama (fulfillment of desires, progeny, and family), we inevitably encounter with the consequences of the powerful effects of time. The following verse from ‘ Bhaja Govindam’ sets us on a mission to seek the fourth goal of human existence.
The fear that time would dissolve everything we possess would help us to overcome arrogance that may be associated with acquiring wealth, family and being youthful in age.
Sooner or later, we set our sights for the fourth goal and it will not be very easy to visualize the final destination. To achieve Moksha or Mukti, to reach the shore of liberation and conclude the journey across the ocean of Samsara, a person endowed with humility would be able to say the following prayer and get the needed help.
Human existence is permanently bound to the illusion that shapes the sensory experience of Sunrise and Sunset. Sun shines with all His radiance all the time. The living entities exist in an illusion state which helps them to mark their existence by the alternating periods of light and darkness. We do not have the biological ability to detect the spin of the Earth and we have synchronized our existence with Sunrise and Sunset and this biological rhythm, known as Solar Rhythm, Circadian Rhythm, or Diurnal Rhythm, manages several of our biological functions.
It is not easy to comprehend the Ultimate Reality when the existence is synchronized with an illusion. Time’s Power of Dissolution would eventually compel us to investigate and to explore the concept of Absolute and Unchanging Reality. A prayer to Lord Ganesha would endow us with humility that we need to achieve the four primary goals and gives us success in life.
MENTORSHIP: Bammera Potana, the well-known Telugu poet while translating the epic poem of Bhagavatam from the Sanskrit language into Telugu stated that he would narrate the story of Bhagavatam using imagination and inspiration entirely provided by Lord Rama:
I would like to narrate my story, describe my ideas, and share my thoughts drawing inspiration from Lord Rama. My endeavor is to destroy the state of conditioned existence called ‘Bhava’, and get over the fear of ‘Samsara’, a journey of the embodied soul across uncharted sea which constantly evokes a sense of fear of the unknown.
Maharishi Valmiki, Adikavi, Prime Poet, had no formal education. He was totally inspired to narrate the Story of Lord Rama called RAMAYANA. Telugu Poet Bammera Potana who also had no formal education translated the epic poem known as Bhagavatam from Sanskrit into Telugu and displayed his immense powers of creativity. He not only dedicated his work to Lord Rama but also acknowledged that every word that he used was inspired by Lord Rama. For my humble endeavor, I seek the same inspiration.
Anyatha sharanam nasti, tvameva sharanam mamah
Tasmat karunya bhavena, kshamasva Parameshvara.
I have no other refuge, Thou art my sole refuge,
Out of a sense of compassion, protect me, O Supreme Lord!