On occasion of Lord Ganesh Chaturthi I went to one of friend’s house and they sang a very beautiful Aaarti. Lord Ganesh is the embodiment of the supreme reality. He constantly gives us gently nudges (thru the pleasures and pains of life) to move forward and achieve THAT which is humanely impossible. Lord Ganesha is called with many names with affection:
Devadeva: Lord of all lords.
Ganapati: He is the lord or captain of all the gana (workforce/devotee of Lord Shiva).
Vighnaraja: He is the lord of obstacles, he creates/maintains/destroys all obstacles to teach us to go towards that supreme reality.
Gajanana: Elephant lord. This is very symbolic. In scriptures it was depicted that Lord Shiva cut the original head and it was replaced by elephant head. Sounds cruel that a father cut his own son’s head. But Lord Shiva is all merciful. What he did was he destroyed the head full of ego and replaced with egoless head which is pure consciousness.
Vakratunda: Elephant trunk lord. The trunk symbolizes “Aum”, which is the most potent pointer to the eternal reality.
Musikvahana: Well he actually rides a mouse. This is very symbolic as well. The mouse symbolizes our ego. If you had ever encountered it then you would know how powerful it can be. It can sweep you like a over flowing river, it can burn you to ashes, it can drown you in the most deepest part of ocean. Try going against it and you can feel it’s power and here our beloved sweet lord rides it. How powerful and humble he is!
Jai Dev Jai Dev