Why Ganesha ‘Lord of Obstacles’?

||Om hreem Vighneshwaraaya namaha||

A very happy ‘Sri Ganesha chaturthi’ to every one! It is a joyous occasion always. All our Centres in South Africa celebrate this day in a solemn manner.

Ganesha at the temple altar of Ramakrishna Centre of SA, Durban

Importance is given to japa whereby the wisdom aspect of our personalities is stimulated. The day starts with a special puja to Sri Ganesha in our temple. Devotees, by turn perform japa of the above-quoted mantra from 6 am to 6 pm on a relay manner. In the evening it concludes with a satsang where devotees in chorus sing bhajans and kirtans interspersed with Talks or Readings.

As children we were not only treated with different kinds of sweets during dining time, (note: earlier I wrote about that delicious dish Kozhuk kattai or modakam) but also were trained in lots of traditional practices that were initially appeared as queer but later loved. In igniting the imagination of the child, Ganesha worship would or even now stands supreme. Imagination about what? About creating a living contact between the visible human and the invisible super-human. It leads the growing child in the practice of devotion. This worship acts as a means in giving practical shape to develop a healthy and loving relationship with friends and neighbours.

I am reminded of the allotted duties among the siblings and oh! what verve and vigour the children used to show in fulfilling their arduous(!) tasks like plucking flowers, cutting fruits,  arranging durwa grass etc. A sense of camaraderie prevails that brings peace and happiness. May Sri Ganesha resolve all our conflicts!

Lord Ganesha, ever the son, with His brother and parents

Worship of Personal God in whatever form has many distinct advantages. Lord Ganesha though He is ever the son of Parvati and Shiva is known as ‘Vighneshwara’ the Lord of Obstacles. Often children (the mustachioed babies too…!) ask how is it that this God is called ‘Lord of Obstacles’. Is it not good to worship those gods who can offer boons instead of those creating obstructions?  Late Revered Swami Chidbhavanandaji maharaj (famous for his translation of Bhagavad Gita in Tamil and English – perhaps the very first one in bringing Master’s teachings at relevant places – used to compare this Universe to an automobile. He says in one of his books “Facets of Brahman” which is as delightful as inspiring, explains why and how Lord Ganesha brings good to the devotees :

“In the working of an automobile each mechanism has its particular part to play. The function of one part in it cannot be the function of another.” This means that notwithstanding each part having its own structural and functional individuality the motor car an move only with the combined effect of all of them. So, he concludes that the Universe is a self-projected living and intelligent mechanism. It is the material manifestation of the saguna brahman

While harmony exists in its variation, discord and conflicts are also seen. Thus Nature brings all the beings into existence and provides opportunities ‘to evolve into higher and yet higher order of life’. All levels have their intrinsic two categories called Divine and Demoniac.

This Cosmic Intelligence is symbolically called Ganesha. Those who are honest and strive to lead a peaceful life, thus possessing Divine qualities, He definitely comes to their aid. And he does not neglect those with asuric qualities. By creating obstructions, He brings disappointment in the minds of devotees as what was prayed goes not sanctioned! But in the course of life’s journey, a devotee finds out that seeming obstruction was in one way a blessing in disguise. In short by introducing lesser evils He wards off greater evils of life and Vighneshwara (Vighna – obstacles, Ishwara – Lord) rightly represents this particular aspect of Nature.

How Ganesha came in the practical life through dreams and fulfilled the desires of the devotees is narrated here.

It was sometime in 2005. This happened while I was in Ranchi. Once I received a post parcel that looked very tiny. Well, I just kept it on my study table; I never even ventured to open it. Everyday I was seeing it but somehow had no urge to open the parcel and look what the gift was. Suddenly one fine early morning a devotee rang me up to say that she was indeed frightened by a dream. I asked her what was the dream. She explained that she was entering into our Temple. She saw a small figure of Ganesha slowly emerging from nowhere and becoming crystal clear and was walking towards her. The image was in utter black colour. She asked me whether this dream was inauspicious.

Consoling her with words of sympathy, I told her that seeing Ganesha is considered as most auspicious and who knows that black Ganesha wants to come to her home! Did she not tell me earlier that she wanted to worship Ganesha in some murti? So, I concluded by telling her that she might wait till Ganesha makes some arrangement.

That day while I was just going out, the cleaning boy came and put that tiny parcel into my hands and said that I had not yet opened it as it was lying for many days on the table. I quickly thrusted it into my pocket and went out.

Lord Ganesha
Image by Swami Stream via Flickr

It was a pleasant surprise when on my way back, I met the son of this devotee who insisted that I should visit his home. Since I had some time, I agreed and reached his house. The devotee welcomed me and was talking about her dream; she asked me, ‘Maharaj, when would Ganesha come to my home?’

While the conversation was going on I casually took the parcel and opened it and lo! it was black Ganesha murti! So tiny and cute, I said, “See! here He is!” I placed that Ganesha into her altar under the feet of the Mother Kali image. Well, son got his place again under mother!

A devotee from South Africa, the other day narrated this following incident.

It was in 1997. I was overwhelmed by money and power. I had a successful business and everything was hunky dory in my life. My day used to start quite early, leaving home everyday including Sundays at 7am and returning at 10pm.  That meant neglecting my home, children and daily prayer.

This continued for 2 years. Although I was a devotee of the Master from the age of 13 years, somehow at the age of 29, I faltered in my spiritual life. My conscience used to prick me every now and then….. but still I neglected my sadhana.

As the second year was coming to a close, my body and mind was beginning to tire and so were my kids on whom I could sense the effect of neglect. It was late one night while I was asleep, that I had a wonderful dream… or was it real, I will never know that… Lord Ganesha came to me while I lay on the bed and spoke softly to me. He kept telling me ‘arise and offer some fruit and milk’. I could still see Him in His flowing yellow dhoti and  with a flower garland around His neck. When I was reluctant to get up, he firmly, at the same time, very lovingly coaxed me to wake up. I lay in my bed wondering at the strange, yet divine dream that I just experienced.

I gazed around to see whether the Gracious Lord was still in the room, was it my imagination, was it a dream, was it real? who knows!  After a quick bath and breakfast, just out of curiosity I went to the calendar to check what day it was… I WAS STUNNED TO SEE IT WAS  THE AUSPICIOUS DAY OF GANESH CHATURTHI. I immediately went into my shrine and offered milk to the Lord and realised that the Lord is continuously knocking on my door, and He is waiting for me to open. It was on that auspicious day that by the will of the Lord, I quit my job and became a mum to my kids and held on tightly to the Lord’s Feet… Never to let go AGAIN!


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30 thoughts on “Why Ganesha ‘Lord of Obstacles’?

  1. Happy ‘Sri Ganesha chaturthi’ to all the readers.
    So much has been imparted in just this one article!
    How very aptly put ‘why we should worship the Lord of obstacles!’
    Swamiji, you always have the alternate reasoning and explanation. Very nicely put!
    And of course, two very inspiring stories, illustrating how the Cosmic Intelligence (Ganesha) is keeping “us” as parts in this cosmic automobile functioning.
    Swamiji, by your grace, I too have seen the power of Sri Ganesha in my own life.
    Om hreem Vighneshwaraaya namaha
    Shaimel Singh
    Johannesburg, SA


    1. ||Sri Ramakrishna sharanam||
      Dear Shaimel
      Thanks for your appreciative words!
      Yes, the power of that Ganesha mantra is inherent in those syllables. But do you know what awakens that Power? It is your faith and devotion to the deity. Strong faith and devotion can do wonders!
      May God Ganesha be generous in getting you freed from all stumbling blocks!
      Swami Vimokshananda


  2. Most Revered Maharaj,
    This is indeed a festive weekend, with the double celebration of Eid and Ganesh Caturthi! Even the stars and charts are pronouncing oneness. It is only we fools, that keep on fighting!
    Ganesha always captures a big share of Indian hearts.
    Fondly remembering the gusto with which celebrations happen in Maharasthra.
    My pranam on this holy day.
    New Delhi, India


    1. ||Sri Ramakrishna sharanam||
      Dear Sabuj
      Rightly said! Yes as Master explained Shiva and Rama became friends but the bhutaas and vaanaraas are still fighting!
      Thats why we need along with the westernised education, a good dose of elevating spiritual values. You minus the eternal values, what remains? a mass of information or data only. There are, in recent times upcoming western Thinkers who are in favour of retracing their steps to Eastern mysticism. Ordinarily, we do not understand the difference between Knowledge and Wisdom. Revered Swami Ranganathanandaji used to quote many times while explaining how the knowledge must mature into wisdom. He was fond of quoting the confirmed agnostic Bertrand Russel, who said :

      We are in the middle of a race between human knowledge as to means and human folly as to ends.

      And he ends the statement by saying

      Unless men increase in wisdom as much as in knowledge, increase of knowledge will be increase of sorrow.

      May God Ganesha be generous in getting you freed from all stumbling blocks in realising the Unity!
      Swami Vimokshananda


  3. Pranam Maharaj!
    On the very auspcious day of Ganesh chaturthi, your blog reached me bringing His Blessings.
    Nice reminder of Chinnu Maharaj‘s wonderful explanation of Saguna brahman as an automobile machine!! Reminded of Lord’s glory through the 2 interesting incidents showing awakening of Him in their minds!
    Last year you gave Ganesha pancharatnam, now Him and 2 devotees!
    Lovely Kozhukkattai kidaithadha maharaj?
    Dr Y Hariharan
    Tiruchirappalli, Tamil Nadu, India


    1. ||Sri Ramakrishna sharanam||
      Dear Hariharan
      Happy to note that this Blog is of some use!
      We always referred Chinnu Maharaj as Chidbhavananda Swamiji. During my school and college days in the then Madras (now Chennai), I used to visit the T’Nagar Ashram where one Mandiram Sir was staying. He only introduced that great Swami to us, some youngsters who took deep interest in reading the Ramakrishna-Vivekananda books. Chidbhavanandaji’s books are even today fascinating. I hope you had gone through the “Facets of Brahman or The Hindu Gods”.
      The last chapter is unputdownable!
      I am so happy that you remember my posts too well !!
      And for Kozhukkattai, yes in the evening supper time a Hindi-speaking devotee brought a few pieces that were sweet and enjoyable. The unbounded devotion in making it for God Ganesha added much taste.
      May God Ganesha be generous in getting you freed from all stumbling blocks to spiritual journey!
      Swami Vimokshananda


  4. Dear Maharaj
    It was in the year 1997 that I was blessed by my GURU MAHARAJJI to visit MANSOROVAR. There, I collected many stones, as I heard that all stones are symbols of SADHUS.
    At home, in Kolkata, while washing the stones, my husband to his utter surprise saw one stone looked like GANESH. I showed thIs small idol of stone to Swami LOKESWARANANDAJI MAHARAJ in Golpark. He was very happy; he did pranam; kept over his head and told me to keep it in the shrine, and do puja.
    I also do believe that He came to me unasked through HIS infinite grace.
    I just wanted to share my inspiring incident with all the fellow readers of this excellent Blog!
    Kolkata, India


    1. ||Sri Ramakrishna sharanam||
      Dear Jayita
      A warm welcome to you for sharing your interesting experience with all of us!
      Though I had no opportunity yet to visit Manasarovar in the Himalayas, I can very well understand the deep reverence for the stones and that too with the form of familiar Gods. It is indeed a Shiva-sthal, Shiva-spot, utterly holy and auspicious. All objects of this world wherever they are, are nothing but God’s forms whether familiar or unfamiliar. God ‘s forms are infinite. But the joy of seeing known form of God in any material object knows no bounds! You are indeed blessed!
      May God Ganesha be generous in giving you more such experiences!
      Swami Vimokshananda


  5. Revered Maharajji,
    I am very much happy to see the nice photo of Lord Ganesh, as, in Kolkata, Ganesh puja is not so popular!
    So I really enjoyed and offer my sincere pronam to Lord Ganesh.
    Madhumita Ghose (TYPHOON)
    Kolkata, India


    1. ||Sri Ramakrishna sharanam||
      Dear Madhumita
      Yes, I also did notice that in Kolkata, Ganesh puja is not as publicly prominent as done in western parts of India. Yet, Ganesha comes first in all undertakings. He has sizable number of devotees too there. Hindus, Buddhists and Jains in Kolkata have in their homes Ganesha murti in various sizes.
      May God Ganesha be generous in getting you freed from all stumbling blocks in spiritual life!
      Swami Vimokshananda


  6. Dear Maharaj,
    Om Namo Narayanaya!
    My humble salutations and adorations at Thy Lotus feet!
    Greetings on Sri Ganesh Chaturthi!
    Maharaj, You were in my thoughts just now so it felt good when I saw this mail. The narration of the black Ganesh was inspirational and brought tears to my eyes and a smile on my face. Thanks for sharing this!
    I like the manner in which you always inspire us to intensify our faith in God through your beautiful narrations and spiritual experiences. Even a child can relate to Maharaj’s simple yet powerful and thought provoking words.
    Thank You Maharaj!
    Jotireka Premrajh
    Durban, SA


    1. ||Sri Ramakrishna sharanam||
      Dear Jotireka
      Welcome to this Blog! I am happy that you liked my Posts.
      Do you know that if noble thoughts and good ideas appeal to you, it is because of your inherent nature of being noble and good.
      No credit to narrator! As I told somewhere else too, this blog is nothing but a simple tale of private diary for public viewing!
      May God Ganesha be generous in getting you freed from all stumbling blocks!
      Swami Vimokshananda


  7. Namaskarams Swamiji on this auspicious day!
    Very nice post especially with the Ranchi incident.
    Very interesting read!


    1. ||Sri Ramakrishna sharanam||
      Dear Anand
      Welcome to this blog! Happy that you enjoyed reading.
      May God Ganesha be generous in getting you freed from all stumbling blocks!
      Swami Vimokshananda


  8. I am a monk of the Ramakrishna Order.
    Today I am attached to the Holy Founders of the Ramakrishna Mission but throughout my earlier years, I was attached to Lord Ganesh. Now Lord Ganesh is not leaving me though I never worship him, remember him nor fold hands. I have not kept a single photo or statue of Ganesh with me. Even then, He is showering His blessings on me by way of appearing in VIVID dream, etc.
    A monk should never boast about. So I am stopping here. But the point is the grace of Sri Sri Ganesh is on me UNASKED for.
    Swami N ananda


    1. ||Sri Ramakrishna sharanam||
      Dear brother
      It is to say the least, gratifying to note your observation. Yes, I am happy that you are able to feel the presence of Sri Ganesh’s grace with you. It does little matter whether you worship Him, or keep His image with you. All these external aids actually go to assist a sadhaka to ultimately internalise the worship. Since you have reached that state you no longer require those aids. So, brother, your vivid dreams of Ganesha indicate that Godly thought is pervading your subconscious mind.
      But, know whatever be the dream – whether pleasant or horrible,- its interfering with your having a DEEP SLEEP. That means the subconscious is STILL working and the required rest is not available to the brain. Thats how being one of the reasons, the sleep specialists explain that we sometimes feel exhausted on getting up from sleep. Some do not even remember their dreams!
      There is a simple way of Auto-suggestion suitable to devotional types that you can try. Just before lying on the bed, apply a little vibhuti (bhasam) on your forehead telling Om namah Shivaaya three times. Then after lying down, say to yourself in a commanding tone as if you are ordering a naughty child to discipline: Look ! Tonight you are going to have undisturbed sleep. You are not going to dream at all. Then pray to Nidra Devi, the Goddess of Sleep saying, please Ma Nidra devi, bestow me dreamless sleep tonight.
      People who have tried this Auto-suggestion told me that lo! their sleep had become more natural and they could get up next day with vim and vigour!
      Best wishes brother,
      Swami Vimokshananda


      1. Most Revered Maharaj,
        My humble pranam at your holy feet. Accepted with gratitude your suggestion for getting deep sleep.
        As a matter of fact, “Vivid Dreams” are a rarity only & I do enjoy deep sleep. But, as you have rightly pointed out, there have also been occasions wherein the sleep was disturbed by dreams which can’t be remembered after waking up. Now that I have received an aid from you, I WILL CERTAINLY TRY IT when such things happen again.
        Swami N ananda


  9. Namaskaram Swamiji.
    Just read the blog. It was inspirational and the explanation of why Ganesha is the Lord of Obstacles was amazing. The black Ganesha murti incident was a very nice and auspicious story to read about. In fact, mum has started going regularly to the Ramakrishna Math in Sydney for meditation class on Mondays and she is really enjoying it. I will make sure i go too soon!
    Abhi Mahadevan
    Sydney, Australia


    1. ||Sri Ramakrishna sharanam||
      Dear Abhi
      Thanks for your visit to this blog and appreciative words!
      Some time back i did hear from your mother that she has started to attend Meditation classes at our Sydney Centre. it is indeed a welcome step. This would definitely help her in assessing her mind and assist in further spiritual progress. You also must attend such classes. The Head of Sydney centre is Revered Sridharanandaji Maharaj. He is so well versed in Gita and other Vedanta scriptures, his classes attract sincere seekers and have great value for humanity.
      I hope you will utilise the wonderful opportunities that are present in your country.
      with love
      Swami Vimokshananda


  10. Respected Swamijee
    Please accept humble pranam!
    Swami Vivekananda said “This entire universe is a marvellous university, and every being is being taught here incessantly through various experiences.”
    Having read this brilliant post, I felt that not only it enhances our spiritual knowledge but makes us want to delve deeper into the realm of Divinity. The noble and interesting experiences that we read on this blog induces pure and powerful thoughts and ideas to us.
    Please pardon for my silly query on Ganesha. In some paintings on Ganesha I find a small snake tied around His belly. How is a snake connected to Ganesha symbolism? Is not mouse and snake eternal enemies?
    Heartfelt thanks Swamijee for your excellent blog.
    Glory to Sri Ramakrishna!
    With loving pranam
    Pietermaritzburg, SA


    1. ||Sri Ramakrishna sharanam||
      Dear Avithaa
      Thanks for your appreciative words about the Post on Ganesha!
      To answer your query on snake on Ganesha, you must know a little story behind the symbolic snake. It runs like this: Once mother Parvati cooked for him twenty-one types of delicious food including his most favourite modaka. His big belly (lambodara) was full. Mounting his little mouse, when he was travelling, his mouse suddenly stumbled upon seeing a huge snake. To adjust His belly, Ganesha put the snake on as a belt around his stomach. The story of course goes on further but not relevant to the present discussion now.
      The snake symbolism has a deep Yogic significance. Lord Ganesha is considered the presiding deity of the Mooladhara Chakra. This is the first Chakra wherein the Kundalini shakti is lying dormant like a coiled sleeping serpent. The snake around Lord Ganesha’s belly reminds us that we have to awaken this energy to reach the state of expanded consciousness. The snake around the belly also shows that everything in nature (the pot-belly) is supported by one energy. The whole cosmos is known to be the belly of Ganesha. Parvati is the primordial energy. The seven realms above, seven realms below and seven oceans (21) are inside the cosmic belly of Ganesha, held together by the cosmic energy (kundalini) symbolized as a huge snake which Ganesha ties around Him.
      Hope this makes some sense!
      I hope you remember the wonderful verse on Ganesha (vide Prayer Book page 8):
      Vighneshwaraaya varadaaya surapriyaaya
      lambodaraaya sakalaaya jagat hitaaya |
      naagananaaya sura yagya vibhushitaaya
      Gaurisutaaya gananaatha namo namaste ||

      I bow to the Lord, who is the remover of obstacles, the giver of boons, the beloved of the virtuous, who has embedded in his belly the whole cosmos, who wears the serpent, who is entreated by the devotees’ sacrifices,To that son of Gauri and who is the lord of All, I offer my prostrations!
      with loving prayers
      Swami Vimokshananda


      1. Revered Swamijee
        My loving pranam!
        Thank you for answering my question. It is much appreciated.
        We are often asked questions of a similar nature at our Children’s classes. It is always wise to be fully equipped with spiritual knowledge in order to teach the basics of Hinduism to our children.
        Once again, I am happy to say that Swamijee’s blog has been of immense help.
        With humble pranam!
        Pietermaritzburg, SA


  11. Respected Maharaj ji,
    Due to I-net connectivity problem of Broadband (BSNL), your kind and very colorful Janmasthami greetings could be accessed by us just today.
    We are overwhelmed to receive your kind message and greetings. In fact, we regularly receive your messages through the blog which not only provide us immense pleasure but also enrich our spiritual knowledge, understanding and realization.
    Kindly accept our Pranam.
    Dipankar & Mausumi
    Hazaribag, Jharkhand, India


    1. ||Sri Ramakrishna sharanam||
      Dear Mausumi & Dipankar
      Sorry to note that you had net connectivity problem. But I am pleased that you could finally respond.
      How is Revered Swami Tapanandaji Maharaj? He has been of late not keeping good health, I heard. Please convey my loving pranam to him.
      with loving prayers
      Swami Vimokshananda


  12. Pranam to Revered Maharaj
    Greetings to you on this auspicious occasion (although somewhat belated!).
    Thinking of Bhagawan Ganesh always tends to lead me to reflect on the most venerable Srimat Swami Saradanandaji, the burden bearer of Sri Ramakrishnadev and Sri Ma. Just like in Bhagawan’s leela, the venerable Swami would stand guard at Mother’s door in Udbodhan, which even today is sanctified by the imprint of their presence.
    As always, one is blessed to engage in spiritual communion here in this world wide web, as also gather knowledge to ruminate on, and thus experience peace!
    Thank you for this kindness Revered Maharaj!
    Sincere Pranam
    New Delhi, India


    1. ||Sri Ramakrishna sharanam||
      Dear Skendha
      Welcome and better late than never!
      Indeed Saradanandaji’s standing guard at Mother’s house is legendary. I remember another direct disciple Swami Niranjanandaji‘s standing guard at Master’s door in Cossipore! During this time Master told Niranjan: “Look, I am now in such a state that whoever sees me in this condition will attain liberation in this life by the grace of the Divine Mother. But know for certain that it will shorten my life.” Upon hearing this from the Master, Niranjan became more vigilant about his guard duty. He sat at the gate day and night with a turban on his head and a stick in his hand to keep outsiders from visiting the Master!
      And think of that Brahmachari who stood guard at Swamiji’s room on his last day of his earthly stay in Belur Math!
      This guard duty is not definitely a pleasant one! Think also of those two guards – Jay and Vijay – of Bhagawan Vishnu! They even disallowed the famous four rishikumars who cursed them to be born on this dreaded earth!
      Yes this blog is my e-Sadhana!
      with loving prayers
      Swami Vimokshananda


  13. Revered Maharaj
    Yes, it is indeed fitting to remember venerable Srimat Swami Niranajananandaji and the revered Brahmachari Maharaj. But for me it is easier to connect Srimat Swami Saradanandaji, as perhaps Bhagawan Ganesh is Mother’s doorkeeper first!
    Thank you for reminding me of Jaya and Vijaya, theirs were one of the first stories I read as a child (this was from the Pictorial Stories series published by RKM Chennai) and always marvelled at their devotion in willing to be born as the Lord’s enemies only to return sooner! Their stories are the graphic illustration of Shukdev’s beautiful advice:
    “Tasmaat kenapyupaayena manah krishne niveshayat”
    Also, Revered Maharaj, I have read the wonderful comments and your responses above and I would like to share here that whatever I read at your blog, I share with my parents and friend(s) and really enjoy the discussions.
    We are all enjoying the fruits of your e-sadhana, reminding one of the saying that a Sannyasin is like a tree bearing fruits for all but itself.
    Sincere Pranam
    New Delhi, India


    1. ||Sri Ramakrishna sharanam||
      Dear Skendha
      Well, it is not possible to controvert an argument from not only a ‘philosopher’ but who is also a ‘feel’osopher! I fully agree with you about Saradanandaji.
      I too in my childhood days was fascinated by mysteries of Mythology. Every story from purana has a moral teaching. Thats why in my almost all Talks, I do bring in the puranic stories which go well with the listeners everywhere. So far you try to bring out the moral rule behind the story, its alright. We cannot but accept what Swamiji says about Puranas:

      Some historical truth is the nucleus of every Purana. The object of the Puranas is to teach mankind the sublime truth in various forms; and even if they do not contain any historical truth, they form a great authority for us in respect of the highest truth which they inculcate…for the purpose of estimating the philosophical truth contained in any Purana, we need not consider the question whether the personages treated of therein were really material men or were fictitious characters. The object of the Puranas was the education of mankind, and the sages who constructed them contrived to find some historical personages and to superimpose upon them all the best or worst qualities just as they wanted to, and laid down the rules of morals for the conduct of mankind…but there stands the grand philosophy contained in the Puranas.

      And many thanks for sharing the ideas of the blog with your friends and relatives. The views of readers like you give the blog-ger a definite source of encouragement. I am humbled at the one SA ‘devotee-reader-duo’ providing me the wherewithal to maintain the i-connectivity to run a blog!
      with loving prayers
      Swami Vimokshananda


      1. Revered Maharaj
        Maharaj, who would dare to argue with one such as you? I humbly apologise if I have seemed childishly stubborn but that is how one feels in the presence of great souled ones – childlike. Therefore, if one is a little too free and perhaps disrespectful, it is unintentional and so please excuse me.
        Very grateful to you for sharing Swamiji’s advice on the Puranas. I have such a fascination for stories and their telling since childhood. And it is something I have not yet outgrown, intellectually or spiritually. Infact, it was the stories that drew me to God.
        It is our privilege to be able to read this blog and discuss it! So thanks are due from all of us.
        With warm regards!
        Sincere Pranam
        New Delhi, India


  14. Thanks for this new insight on Vighneshwara!
    I always thought it meant ‘Beyond Obstacles’. Didn’t realise Ishwara meant Lord. Lovely incidents have been narrated here.
    A really surprising co-incidence took place this year. During Varakshmi Puja in our house, the diety was by chance dressed up in yellow and surprisingly the Ganapathi idol that was bought about a month later was also dressed in yellow!! Wonder if it means something!!
    Pune, India


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