The image shown at left was a devotionary print signed "S. P. Divau." Jeremy Bornstein bought it at an Indian grocery store in California in 1989 and "moderately edited" it in Adobe Photoshop. He then gave me permission to use it here. At upper right is a package of Vinason's Chandan Cones, a sandalwood dhoop style incense depicting Ganesh on the box. At lower right is the label from a bottle of Lucky Mojo brand Ganesh Anointing Oil.
Ganesha, the son of the Hindu deities Siva and Durga (or Siva and Parvati, depending on the region of India) is a god of luck and of "opening the way." Rotund and generally jolly, he is distinguied from other Hindu deities because he has the head of an elephant. His image appears on numerous Hindu products, such as incense and foods. His symbol is the swastika, which he bears in the palm of his hand. His identifying weapon is an elephant goad, to move stubborn people, but he is not always shown bearing it. Sometimes he carries a conch shell, holds a book, or receives offerings of sweet foods. Usually, one of his tusks is broken, a reference to a tale set in his childhood, when his father accidentally hit him too hard. His vehicle is a rat, who may be shown stealing one of the food offerings placed at his feet.
Ganesha can be represented reclining hedonistically, as befits a bringer of good luck, wealth, fine foods, and luxury. He also may be seen seated on a throne or in the form of an infant, especially as Siva and Parvati's beloved son. However, as the son of Siva, who is sometimes called Nataraja ("Lord of the Dance"), Ganesha sometimes assumes the same dancing pose taken by his father when Siva dances to destroy the world. In this form, Ganesha is an opener of the way and remover of all obstacles. Another common depiction of Ganesha is in tandem with Laksmi, the goddess of wealth, or as part of a trio with Laksmi and Sarasvati, the goddess of music. This latter grouping arises from a tale of the goddess Durga, in which she is said to be the mother of all three of these fortune-bringing deities. Finally, in depictions of Siva and Parvati as "the happy couple," Ganesha may be accompanied by his many-headed brother Kartikeya, also known as Skanda.
Related pages of interest:
- Hindu Deities for various occupations and conditions
- Gods and Saints as Lucky Figures
- The Relationship between Luck, Protection, Religion, and Magic
- Order Hindu Deity Postcards from the Lucky Mojo Curio Co.
- Order Hindu Statuary from the Lucky Mojo Curio Co.
- Order Indian Amulets and Siva Linga Stones and Siva Linga Stones and Siva Linga Stones and Siva Linga Stones from the Lucky Mojo Curio Co.
|Order Ganesh Oil from the Lucky Mojo Curio Co.|
|Order Ganesh Incense from the Lucky Mojo Curio Co.|
|Order Ganesh Bath Crystals from the Lucky Mojo Curio Co.|
|Order Ganesh Sachet Powder from the Lucky Mojo Curio Co.|
|Order Ganesh Vigil Light Candles from the Lucky Mojo Curio Co.|
|Order Ganesh Vigil Light Candles to be set on our Spiritual Altar for you|
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