Ganesha and Creation – Balakhanda III

 UntitledNow the divine baby spoke affectionately – ” Son [पुत्र] Brahmadeva! You may think [मन्यति] many things, decide [निश्चय] to do many things, but all of them may not happen, because there could be obstacles [विग्न].  The obstacles may block your way to the success.  I am the one who removes these obstacles [विग्न] to help fruition[भोग] of whatever one desires [इच्छति] to happen. I am, therefore, called Vighneswara [ Vighna विग्न+ Eshwara ईश्वर = the master or lord of Vighna*] I am gaNapati [गणपति] leader of the gaNas[Panchabhuta/पञ्चभूत - see note section]

I am the one control who controls Vighna [विग्न] you can call me Vigneshwara [विघ्नेश्वर] in future.  Brahma wanted to clear his curiosity and the thoughts that occupied his brain.  His only question was why all his creation had become distorted.   He had planned it through carefully, still the whole creation went upside down.  Vighneshwara spoke “That was to teach you about obstacles [विग्न]”.

I first appeared to you as an infant [बाल] on a leaf [पत्र] you did not understand the significance of the vision [महत्त्वपूर्ण दर्शन] .  You were attracted [उत्कृष्ट - more like eye-catching] towards my balarupa,[बाल infant ] but you did not stop and care to think of me [मननं करोति].  You did not recognize [लक्षित] me or even it did not occur to you that you pray [प्रार्थना]to me,  the remover of obstacles[विघ्ननाशक].  If you want to remove obstacles, you must first offer prayers to me[प्रथमपूज्य]. As I told you, I control and check all hurdles  [विघ्नेश्वर].   If anyone prays to me before attempting any activity, then they will surely be successful.

Vighneshwara asked[अनुयुक्त] – Do you know what it means to be praying to me before commencing a task?

Brahma listened attentively[ध्यानेन]

Vighneshwara continued – It means when you start a task, you have to be fully aware that you are most likely to face obstacles on your way. I am the personification[मूर्तिमत् ]of that knowledge of obstructions [विग्न] and difficulties [प्रयास] that you will likely face. Whoever starts a new task [विनियोग] be it Brahma himself or a human, it is important that he is aware of the extent of his work, the risks [संकट] and responsibilities [दायित्व] involved. Only one who is aware of these two can do the duties [कर्तव्य] involved correctly and even dream of success [सिद्धि].

Matsyavatara, Made in Puri , Orissa, Late 19th to early 20th century

Matsyavatara, Made in Puri , Orissa,
Late 19th to early 20th century

Ganesha continued, “While you fell asleep [निद्राण], SomakAsura [a demon] took the form of a conch and stole the sacred scriptures (the Vedas) and hid them somewhere in the ocean.  Vishnu then incarnated as a fish [मत्स्य - matsya avatar] and killed the demon and retrieved the vedas, and gave them to me. As soon as you receive those Vedas from me, you will not face any obstacles to your activity . Lord Brahma gratefully accepted the four vedas that were handed to him by Gajanana.

Brahma created a stotra in praise of Vighneswara, and promised that he would offer prayers to him before he started his activity and asked for Ganesha’s blessing so that his task proceeds smoothly.  Vighneswara turned to Brahma, saying, “Here, I withdraw all that you created till now. Creation is an art, and should not be made a degrading activity. You must make the universe a creation of beauty.

After blessing Brahma, the elephant-headed [गजशीर्ष] figure disappeared [निमीलति -vanished]. At that time, Saraswati was playing another carnatic raga called Hindolam. A bright light lit the sky. Lord Brahma once again started creation after chanting “om Vighneswaraya namah:”  His chanting was heard all over the universe. All that he created now were perfect in shape and size, and looked beautiful. After seeing the creations, Saraswati was inspired to play different ragas.



Ganesha is both विग्नकर्त [vighnakarta] and विग्नहर्त [vighnaharta] the demon[ आसुर] विग्न-vighna resides behind Ganesha.  You can see in my images of Ganesha, Vighna resides behind HIM.  He is विग्नकर्त for those who don’t pray him before commencing any new task, and for those who trouble his devotees. We HE is for ever विग्नहर्त for those who pray to HIM

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