Om Shree Ganeshay Namah(Hail Lord Ganesh)
When starting a new work, it's a tradition to name Lord Ganesha first, for overcoming any obstacles that may come your way.
Today in my first post, I want to share stories of Lord Ganesha and why he is worshiped first before starting anything new.
But before I share those stories, I want to share my thought on a famous Ganesha Shloka as follows.
If you chant this shloka every day or before you start anything new, obstacles disappear, and it's known for years to get the blessings of Lord Ganesha.
वक्रतुण्ड महाकाय सूर्यकोटि समप्रभ ।
निर्विघ्नं कुरु मे देव सर्वकार्येषु सर्वदा ॥
Vakra-Tunndda Maha-Kaaya Suurya-Kotti Samaprabha |
Nirvighnam Kuru Me Deva Sarva-Kaaryessu Sarvadaa ||
Meaning of Shloka
Vakra-Tunndda means who has a curved trunk,
Maha-Kaaya means who has a mighty body,
Surya-kotti Samaprabha means whose knowledge equals with thousands of Sun.
Nirvighnam Kuru Me Deva means — please remove all the obstacles that may come my way, O! Lord.
Sarva-Kaaryessu Sarvadaa means shower your blessings on us always, and may all our desires come true.
Few stories traditionally are popular for praying Ganesha first, and I am sharing those stories here for your knowledge.
A story in Ganesh Puran(Holy-Book)
Praying Ganesha and worshipping him before starting any new work brings good luck & prosperity to your life.
All the Lords once got confused about whom to pray first among them. So all of them decided to consult lord Shiva for the solution. After carefully listening to all of the lords, he decided to do some competitive tests for making a decision.
All the lords asked to travel the world and come back. Whoever comes first will be crowned the winner. All lords agreed to the competition.
On an auspicious day, competition started to travel the world among all the lords. All the lords rushed to travel the world and tried to finish the competitive test & win except lord Ganesha.
Ganesha stayed back home and decided to pray and worship their parents instead.
Lord Kartikey(Elder brother of Ganesha) came back first, traveling the world claiming to win the competition. Amazed to see the lord Ganesha stay back at home & not participate. He tried to find out the reason behind Ganesha staying back at home. Ganesha smiled at brother Kartikey but decided not to answer yet.
Once all the lords arrived back from traveling the world & asking about who the winner is? All the Lords also got curious to know; the reason behind Ganesha staying back home and not participating in the competitive test. Lord Shiva calmed everyone and asked to listen to him carefully.
Shiva asked Ganesha to explain his reason behind staying back home and not traveling the world for winning.
Ganesha smiled and replied politely in his charming way. After giving a considerate thought about traveling the world to win a competition and other best way to win it.
I decided to worship my parent's — lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati instead. I thought about circling(praying and touching their feet for blessings) my parents to get their good wishes & which also equals traveling the world and visiting holy places. I worshiped and prayed to my parents every day by circling them and touching their feet to be blessed & be prosperous, said Ganesha.
All the lords lauded Ganesha's wisdom and his knowledge of respecting elders. After consulting all the lords and approval of them; lord Ganesha crowned the winner and decided to pray first of them all — while starting anything new or starting a prayer.
Another story of an Elephant God
This story is also famous among believers, so I am also sharing this for your interest.
One day mother Parvati decided to take a bath in the holy river of Ganges(Ganga) at a place suitable for immersing in the water for some time. She asked Ganesha to stay outside at a distance and not allow anyone to come near to river Ganga & protect her. Ganesha agreed and stood outside of river Ganga at a distance for obeying his mother's orders.
While Ganesha stood there to guard her mother against any evil or bad coming near to his mother, he noticed someone approaching him and going towards the river Ganges. He tried to stop an unknown person from coming near the river Ganges and invading his mother's privacy.
Unaware of the person's identity, Ganesha tried to stop him and asked to leave the place as his mother took a holy bath in the river of the Ganges.
An unknown person turned out to be Lord Shiva. He came in search of his wife and her whereabouts. Lord Shiva said to Ganesha that I am Shiva and husband of Parvati, I came looking for her. Let me go and meet my wife, but Ganesha refused and asked Shiva to leave without confronting him. Ganesha stood there firmly, unaware of his father and ignorant about knowing his father.
Shiva asked Ganesha not to confront him. Ganesha refused to allow him and asked to stay back. Shiva got angry and asked Ganesha not to confront him or be ready to face dire consequences.
Ganesha again said politely not to go near the river Ganges. But Shiva lost his temper and asked to fight with him. Quarrel turned into a battlefield between them, and either of them was not ready to calm down.
Ganesha barely could stand against the almighty Shiva but confronted him without fear. Shiva got surprised to see Ganesha fight with bravery at a tender young age.
Shiva's anger reached an extreme, So he threw his Trishul(Shiva's weapon) on Ganesha. Ganesha couldn't stand against Trishul, and his head got destroyed. He fell and lay down unconscious.
Goddess Parvati came back looking at her son lying unconscious and saw Ganesha's head apart from his body. She cried and asked for help. She inquired about what happened during her absence & got replied that Shiva fought with the Ganesha.
Goddess Parvati rushed to Lord Shiva and explained; Ganesha is none other but your son. Shiva calmed down Parvati and asked not to worry about their son. He then ordered among his followers to get the head of anyone who comes across first to fix on Ganesha.
Lord Brahma requested to allow him to get head for Ganesha. Shiva allowed and asked him to get the best suitable head for Ganesha.
Lord Brahma found one elephant near a small pond. So he removed its head and gave moksha(Heavenly Abode) to the elephant. He gave the elephant head to Shiva, and likewise, Ganesha got an elephant head.
Ganesha got his consciousness back and asked for blessings from all the lords. Lord Shiva, impressed with the bravery and obedience of Ganesha, announced that he be prayed first among all the lords today onwards.
Let's pray and hope that we all get the blessings of Lord Ganesha so that all our obstacles disappear immediately.