The Symbolism of Lord Ganesha – Wisdom Embodied & Remover of Obstacles
Today is a day in India called Ganesh Chaturthi – a day when we celebrate Ganesha. The “Gods” and “Goddesses” of ancient India are actually symbolic representations of laws of nature. The symbolism tells us how to align.
Ganesha represents wisdom and is known as the remover of obstacles. When we unlock the symbolism of Ganesha, we are shown how to access wisdom and how to remove “obstacles” in our lives.
Wisdom is demonstrated by the story of Ganesha. He is the son of Shiva, who represents consciousness. Shiva is the divine masculine energy – that abundant light and love that witnesses all of creation. It shines on all of us. We all have access to this light. It is what we are actually made of. The trouble is: we often forget or get clouded by thoughts, feelings, stories or patterns of behavior that keep us from tapping into the deepest source of who we are.
The mother of Ganesha is Parvati. She is divine feminine in the form of emotions, compassion and heart. Ganesha is the result of the coming together of masculine and feminine. Wisdom is the result of tapping into the source of consciousness and filtering it through the heart. When we connect to something outside of ourselves and allow that bigger truth to come through our heart, we see beyond the mind and body.
How do we do this? Well Ganesha rides on a mouse. First of all he is humble. No fancy vehicles needed here. We must humble ourselves and be of service. When we come from the pure desire to serve, we are delivered everything we could ever want.
The mouse also represents the part of our mind that likes to run wild. It will chew through everything in our lives if we don’t get it under control. The mind, if undisciplined, will drag us around like a dog on a leash. We must learn discrimination. We must identify the patterns of thought that are creating our external reality. We must exercise our mind in correct discrimination so that it is strong enough to uproot a tree and nimble enough to move a single blade of grass like the trunk of the elephant. Also, notice that the elephant is not squishing the tiny mouse. This wisdom, once cultivated, is not heavy. There is a lightness that comes when we live our lives in alignment with Ganesha.
Ganesha uses the axe to cut off all ties with ideas, thoughts, beliefs and attachments that do not serve us.
Finally, Ganesha is known as the remover of obstacles. I used to think this meant that the obstacles in life would be cleared away when I was living from a place rooted in wisdom. However, one day in meditation, it came to me. The “obstacles” that need to be removed are not outside of us at all. The only obstacles in life are internal beliefs, thoughts, emotions, patterns of behavior, reactions and shortcomings. It’s so true that our external reality is a reflection of our internal state.
For example: If you live under the false belief that you are not worthy or not good enough, you will notice and attract situations in your life that affirm that belief. Your thoughts are powerful things that shape your life. As soon as you realize that this belief is not true, your life will shift in an instant.
Therefore, let us not look outside ourselves and ask for life to be improved in any way. Let us ask to be shown any and all internal barriers from our own growth, happiness and fulfillment!!!
Om Mahaganapataye Namah