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The Riddle of Ganesha
The Riddle of Ganesha
Description
About the Author

The author Rankorath Karunakaran hails from Elapulli, a village of Palghat District in Kerala. He was born on 30th January 1904 in a Nair family.

After graduating from Madras Law College he started practicing in Madras itself. During World War II, he served as a Volunteer Home Guard Officer. It was during this time that he came in contact with Mr. L.G. Banks, an Englishman who invited him to work as a Legal Officer in his firm, a post which he continued till his retirement.

After his retirement he became a member of Theosophical Society. He developed an interest in Philosophy and became a member of the Madras University Library where he spent most of his time. This place was his inspiration for writing this book. The author book, 'Chips and Charcoal from Bharath' which is pending release.

His family consists of his wife, seven children and a younger sister.

Preface

This book is presented to the readers with a foreword by His Holiness Dr. E. Nandiswara Nayake Thero. The author made it clear that His Holiness' wisdom shall prevail over that of the author in the assessment of the typescript.

Mahatma Gandhi said, "God is not a person but an immutable law and in this the law and the maker are one".

Buddha called this immutable law as Dharma. Christ called it as Eloi the Will of his father in heaven. Mohammed called it as Allah a word related to El and Eloi. Einstein called it as the cosmic law, Douglas Fawcet referred to it as cosmic Intelligence, Spinoza illustrated the law by saying "two apples added to two apples make four". Any amount of prayer or pious wish will not make it five. Even God will not countenance such a move.

Ganesha obviously is a design likewise meant to convey a profound meaning. But owing to the play of ignorance a good deal of ritualism has sprung up around him clouding the meaning of his design and form. This is unfair and it behoves one and all who is in search of knowledge to probe into the deeper meaning behind Ganesha's funny form.

The author offers his sincere thanks to Mr. Howard Murphet the learned author of 'Sai Baba - Man of Miracles' for suggesting the title for this book.

This book is placed in the hands of the readers by the author in all humility as a humble tribute to Ganesha.

Foreword
By H.H. Dr. E. Nandiswara Nayake Thero

I have been aware of the activities of the Author Sri R. Karunakaran, B.A., B.L., as a Member of the Bar, a Member of the Theosophical Society, for the past several years and a researcher in the schools of Indian Philosophy. His present task in this light work has been to give a perspective of ancient cult, the Ganesha cult, prevalent from the earliest times in the sub-continent and the Indians have carried it to farther shores of Asia and even South America. The elephant was a symbol of majesty and strength and determination in early iconography. In the animal kingdom it was symbolical rank, sagacity and profound intelligence. It was also remarkable for its purity of habits. Its food too is pure vegetarian.Thousgh regarious Tanugh greaterious in habit, in Nevertheless commonded monarchical ascendarcy over all animals

The elephant's precedence of astute intelligence was accepted by early man. It was in recognition of this remarkable caliber and sense of propriety that the royal elephant was entrusted with the task of selecting a successor to the throne, in the event of a demise of a monarch without a real heir. In ancient India, the numerical superiority of the army was in accordance with the strength of the elephant force. King Bimbisara of Maghadha had an army of 5000 elephants and King Pasandi of Khosala had an equally strong army of elephants. The superiority of the clansmen was reckoned on the number of elephants that clansmen held. The second and third degree of prestige in clansmen were the numerical superiority of the equestrian and cattle holdings. Thus in early society the pride of worldly possession was given to the elephant. The master of the largest kraal of elephants commanded the highest respect in primeval society. The possession of a white tusker by any monarch was a symbol of ethereal favour, and wordly prosperity in the kingdom. This was a feature in India, Burma, Thailand, Cambodia and Sri Lanka. The elephant was deemed as a Rathna (jewel) and was adored as one of the seven jewels of monarchical luck.

The birth of a white elephant in a kingdom was a rarity and such a birth ushered in an era of prosperity and plentitude in the land. The birth of Prince Sidhartha in the human world severing his connection with the Tusita heaven was after the assumption of the shape of a white baby elephant. Tradition states that Maha Mayadevi dreamt that a lustrous silver elephant magnificent in its grace descended from the clouds upon a silver peak and approached the Queen and she felt that, piercing her right side with its shining tusks and that the elephant entered her womb. The white elephant was a symbol of purity and perfection.

The elephant in accordance with folklore are of several noble families. The Culla Hathi, Padopama and the Maha Hathi Padopama suttas identify seven families of elephant. The 'Kanno', 'Naga' and 'Halthi' are common terms used in Pali language to identify an elephant. Dandhi-Tusker has been used in terms of an elephant with tusks only. Nontuskers were not engaged in warfare or on ceremonial occasions. They were relegated for labour and were not considered as noble. The elephant was valued according to its majesty, of its height and the length and grace of its tusks. It the tusks were milky white and parallel and have equal length gracefully valued. Very often the colour of its skin too mattered. The whiter the skin, the greater the appreciation. The jathaka tales specify that 'Chata danta kala' is the noblest in the family of elephant. These magnificent animals are supposed to have reached forty feet height in ancient India and bragged of a pair of tusks exceeding 18 feet in length. Probably, these must have been the last family of the prehistoric mammoths. The elephant was a symbol embodying many qualities - royalty, benignity, prudence and compassion. The worshipper of Ganesha adores not the figure but the qualities symbolized by the elephants head.

The serpent girdle of Ganesha worn around the loins or in certain figures, as an additional embellishment of a sacred thread suspended from the left shoulder is again a significant deviation. The Naga, the hooded cobra was an emblem of totemistic worship among the earliest jungle dwellers; though its venom was deadly, yet the reptile was sacred, as primitive man visualized a divine agency in the appearance of cobra. Superstitious rituals were perfomed to propitiate the provocation of the Naga. In early Buddhist texts reference is made to the Naga and its various communities. In the 'Kandha Paditha' mention is made of as many as twelve families of Nagas. These cobras are supposed to have bred in communities. The earliest forest dwellers of the Indian Community that migrated to the Indo-Gangetic and Indo-Brahmaputra valleys worshipped the Naga and they were also identified as Nagas. The Buddha encountered this community of Nagas in the valley of the Narmada. They were at that time adorers of the serpents and the seven-hooded Naga and the amorous clasp of the male and female cobra were forms of totems they worshipped. When the Buddha converted them to the fold of Buddhists, they abandoned their animistic worship and requested the Buddha for a form of enlightened worship. Then the Buddha imprinted his left foot on the banks of Narmada and asked them to grace the foot of the Buddha.

The earliest Aryans in the Euphrates, Tigris and Nile Valleys resorted to Naga worship and the same Aryans that settled in the river valleys of Bharat associated the visit of the Naga with the reflections of dead ancestors. Frequency of such visits compelled them to conduct pooja to propitiate the dead who now had visited them in the form of cobras. These ancient ancestors that now visited were welcome guests and afforded food in forms of milk, rice and eggs and implored to leave them after blessing them. The ancients were particular to avoid curse of the serpents. These were never killed but courteously coaxed to leave; if ever one callously destroyed a cobra, the ignorant villagers attributed all in clemencies of weather and failure of crops to such a wanton act of the community, as the weather Gods had rebelled against them due to the wrath of the ancestors.

The same serpent that some times was reckoned as a harbinger of goodwill was reckoned as an evil omen that brought them curse of Gods on certain occasions. All semitic civilizations have associated the visit of the viper with curses of God. It is perhaps this fear of the serpent power that incited them to adopt some form of the reptile in the sphere of wordly power symbolically. The Indian pantheon of ideological Deities have all embraced the hooded cobra. Cobra reliefs are prominently portrayed in all columns of Hindu Temples.

The Buddhsits and joins too have associated the cobra (Naga) with remarkable powers of discreation. Saints are protected by them and the purity of the saint is vouchsafed by them. Hence the wisdom of the Naga supercedes man's. The Naga supercedes man's. The Naga is a Symbol of purity in the Pali language. The aspirant for higher ordination brought before the sangha is named the Naga implying one without faults, absolved purified one, befitting one, etc. The Vammika one without faults, absolved purified one, befitting one, etc. The Vammika Sutta mentions the discovery of the Naga at the bottom of the pit in the excavation of the mound "Do not harm the Naga; it is fully absolved, cleaned one; its state is that of perfection." Thus the state of Arhat hood-perfect saint-the jeevan mukta has been associated with state of Naga. In the Uraga Vagga of the Sutta Nipata and the Naga Vagga of Dhammapada, many a description is found based upon the Naga or Serpent. In Sanyutta Nikaya, Mara assumes the form of a deadly cobra puffing flames and smoke.

Thus religious schools both Indian and foreign have associated the Cobra with the purest and the heinous. What one may attribute to be necklace or girdle of serpents in the figure of the elephant trunked Hindu Deity is to be understood in accordance with the motive for which he is worshipped.

Ganesha is supposed to ride upon a mouse. It is strange that Ganesha the Lord of Wisdom has been granted most dissimilar and disproportionate attributes in the world when his brother Kumar has been accorded a noble bird like the peacock as his vehicle. Parvathi's son is granted a humble obsequious mouse quite incapable of lifting the bulging belly and massive head that he possesses. Does it imply that wisdom is an attribute of ugly conglomeration of factors or that the wise do not find anything in the world disproportionate or ugly?

The mouse symbolizes hidden life in the atom. The spark of fire that is vibrant in every living phenomena. Agni that assumed the form of a mouse is that atomic energy which is procreation of life. Even as fire is a faithful servant but a bad master, the mouse is both creative and destructive; therefore it is kept under the footstool of the Master. This feature could be attributed to the task of nirmana and pralaya of Shiva, the father of Ganesha. Shiva creates and destroys; but is also capable of maintaining his creation in trim. The obsequious rat, the great elephant, the powerful man and the crawling reptile are cross sections of the Nirmana Sakti of Shiva. These were personified in Ganesha, the son of Parvathi, even in the absence of Iswara, the Creator. Here again, the potential evidence of the Sakti is revealed in magnificence.

Shiva in the form of linga or Shakti in the form of Ambal the Universal Mother is a primitive cult goes back to the earliest Dravidians of Mohanjodaro and Harappa cultures. His place was Supreme in South India and he was patronized by the ruling class. The plebians of the south adopted the crude composition of Ganesha as more proximate to an agrarian populace. His wisdom, his compassion, his steadfast non-frivolous nature and his pot belly significant of the bounty of nature all appealed to their crude mind.

Vinayaka is a name given to Ganesha. The Lord Buddha is called Vinayaka as he had the singular power to bring under control those that are uncontrollable; the tractor of untractable. Whether Ganesha was endowed with such powers of curbing the indocile is not clear in the history of his cult; but Vinayaka in Hindu Pantheon signifies the chitta visuddhi endowing the knowledge of liberation. This clarity of knowledge is obtainable through yoga alone.

The author has vividly and cogently identified the Pancha Makara Thathwa of the Shakti cult and stripped it of the licentious interpretation given at the hands of fanatics who had no understanding of the inner spiritual methods and engaged to demean lofty thought with obscene wordly renderings.

Lobsang Rampa in his book 'the third eye' refers to the intelligent eye that is opened under the pursuit of higher meditation. Tibetan mystics paid the highest respect to the enlightenment through the mystic third eye. The two natural eyes exposed the reach of the average man. Ganesha's third eye is the symbol of this supramundane knowledge he is said to be endowed with.

The term 'OM', has been used in all Hindu literature Sanskrit and Dravidian. All schools of Hinduism accept 'OM', as indicative of purity and divinity. The main fact remains that all meditation in Hinduistic schools resort to 'OM', as a primary source of intelligence leading to Brahma Vidya. The four states Turya, Sushupta, Swapna and Jagratha are conditions existing upon the stream of consciousness. Consciousness is alert from birth till death. There is consciousness vigilant even in deep sleep. Man may slumber in deep forgetfulness but consciousness never sleeps.

Shiva's role as the patron of yogis is a duty assigned to him long before he became Kapala Iswara or Nata Raja. These qualities of Shiva are attributes assigned to him by Dravidians. The earlier Aryan Brahmins disrespected him sheerly because the Dravidian plebians worshipped him. Even after shiva gained a permanent place in the Pantheon, Ganesha was laughed at by Aryan Brahmins. It was just fifteen centuries ago that Ganesha was able to make his impact felt in the North.

Ganesha was created out of the body Chandana Scrubbings of his mother and Shiva that severed his young head implanted the elephant head with the proboscis trunk and tusks. Yet he is imperishable, stainless, unconditioned of transcending omkar and of supreme bliss. These are qualities that arise from deep meditation equating to the state of Jivan muktas Therefore; Ganesha is symbolical of the finite perfection of man in his supreme ascendance to liberation from birth. Therefore, one that worships Ganesha should aspire for this perfection in him.

The writer in his chapter on psychic centers refers to Muladharam the base of mental action. The psychic cynosure is neither the base of the spine nor the heart. It is the brain, the base of the cognition series. Ganesha in the early days was the patron of music and fine art. Prior to the ear that Shiva assumed the role as patron of music and dance, in his pose of Nataraja, Ganesha was invoked as the presiding Deity of knowledge culture and fine art. Just as Ganesha was the brainchild of the artist, he presided over the brain of the art student. Yoga was the highest art of frail humanity in the quest of perfection; therefore Ganesha's invocation at the beginning of yogic adventure requesting him to guide the student was an accepted norm.

Ganesha cult was a primitive cult among the Dravidians of the prehistoric era. The early Aryan invaders did not accept the Dravidian Gods, but degraded them. At a later stage the renegaded Deities were uplifted to the united Hindu Pantheon. The Indian whether Aryan or Dravidian was an idol worshipper. Ganesha symbolized unity of the primaeval forest denizen with man, the majesty of the elephant combining the physical energy of the homosapiens. The Dravidian made Ganesha, the son of Shiva but subsequent bhaktas have made an effort to make Ganesha, the son of shiva but subsequent bhaktas have made an effort to make Shiva, a creation of Ganesha, with the avowed purpose of reviving the universal mother who was a more magnificent personality in Dravidian culture. The Amman worship prevails to this day, pursued mainly by the labour and working communities.

CONTENTS
Prefacev
Foreword by H.H. Dr. E. Nandiswara Nayake Therovii
1.Ganesha the Sumukha1
2.Ganesha and the Elephant5
3.Ganesha and the Serpent9
4.Ganesha and his Mount13
5.Ganesha and Shiva17
6.Ganesha and Yoga21
7.Ganesha and Psychic Centers29
8.Ganesha and Mysticla Terms35
9.Ganesha and 'OM'41
10.Ganesha in the Hindu Pantheon45
11.Ganesha and his Idol49
12.Ganesha and his Lambodaram55
13.Ganesha and his Worship59
14.Ganesha and his Martyrdom63
15.Ganesha and Mythology67
16.Ganesha and Karthikeya73
17.Ganesha and his Festival77
18.Shree Ganesh Atharva Sheersha81
19.One thousand names of Lord Ganesha85

The Riddle of Ganesha

Item Code:
IDJ919
Cover:
Paperback
Edition:
2000
ISBN:
8186025006
Size:
10.8" X 8.0"
Pages:
96 (Illustrated throughout in color)
Price:
$30.00   Shipping Free
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About the Author

The author Rankorath Karunakaran hails from Elapulli, a village of Palghat District in Kerala. He was born on 30th January 1904 in a Nair family.

After graduating from Madras Law College he started practicing in Madras itself. During World War II, he served as a Volunteer Home Guard Officer. It was during this time that he came in contact with Mr. L.G. Banks, an Englishman who invited him to work as a Legal Officer in his firm, a post which he continued till his retirement.

After his retirement he became a member of Theosophical Society. He developed an interest in Philosophy and became a member of the Madras University Library where he spent most of his time. This place was his inspiration for writing this book. The author book, 'Chips and Charcoal from Bharath' which is pending release.

His family consists of his wife, seven children and a younger sister.

Preface

This book is presented to the readers with a foreword by His Holiness Dr. E. Nandiswara Nayake Thero. The author made it clear that His Holiness' wisdom shall prevail over that of the author in the assessment of the typescript.

Mahatma Gandhi said, "God is not a person but an immutable law and in this the law and the maker are one".

Buddha called this immutable law as Dharma. Christ called it as Eloi the Will of his father in heaven. Mohammed called it as Allah a word related to El and Eloi. Einstein called it as the cosmic law, Douglas Fawcet referred to it as cosmic Intelligence, Spinoza illustrated the law by saying "two apples added to two apples make four". Any amount of prayer or pious wish will not make it five. Even God will not countenance such a move.

Ganesha obviously is a design likewise meant to convey a profound meaning. But owing to the play of ignorance a good deal of ritualism has sprung up around him clouding the meaning of his design and form. This is unfair and it behoves one and all who is in search of knowledge to probe into the deeper meaning behind Ganesha's funny form.

The author offers his sincere thanks to Mr. Howard Murphet the learned author of 'Sai Baba - Man of Miracles' for suggesting the title for this book.

This book is placed in the hands of the readers by the author in all humility as a humble tribute to Ganesha.

Foreword
By H.H. Dr. E. Nandiswara Nayake Thero

I have been aware of the activities of the Author Sri R. Karunakaran, B.A., B.L., as a Member of the Bar, a Member of the Theosophical Society, for the past several years and a researcher in the schools of Indian Philosophy. His present task in this light work has been to give a perspective of ancient cult, the Ganesha cult, prevalent from the earliest times in the sub-continent and the Indians have carried it to farther shores of Asia and even South America. The elephant was a symbol of majesty and strength and determination in early iconography. In the animal kingdom it was symbolical rank, sagacity and profound intelligence. It was also remarkable for its purity of habits. Its food too is pure vegetarian.Thousgh regarious Tanugh greaterious in habit, in Nevertheless commonded monarchical ascendarcy over all animals

The elephant's precedence of astute intelligence was accepted by early man. It was in recognition of this remarkable caliber and sense of propriety that the royal elephant was entrusted with the task of selecting a successor to the throne, in the event of a demise of a monarch without a real heir. In ancient India, the numerical superiority of the army was in accordance with the strength of the elephant force. King Bimbisara of Maghadha had an army of 5000 elephants and King Pasandi of Khosala had an equally strong army of elephants. The superiority of the clansmen was reckoned on the number of elephants that clansmen held. The second and third degree of prestige in clansmen were the numerical superiority of the equestrian and cattle holdings. Thus in early society the pride of worldly possession was given to the elephant. The master of the largest kraal of elephants commanded the highest respect in primeval society. The possession of a white tusker by any monarch was a symbol of ethereal favour, and wordly prosperity in the kingdom. This was a feature in India, Burma, Thailand, Cambodia and Sri Lanka. The elephant was deemed as a Rathna (jewel) and was adored as one of the seven jewels of monarchical luck.

The birth of a white elephant in a kingdom was a rarity and such a birth ushered in an era of prosperity and plentitude in the land. The birth of Prince Sidhartha in the human world severing his connection with the Tusita heaven was after the assumption of the shape of a white baby elephant. Tradition states that Maha Mayadevi dreamt that a lustrous silver elephant magnificent in its grace descended from the clouds upon a silver peak and approached the Queen and she felt that, piercing her right side with its shining tusks and that the elephant entered her womb. The white elephant was a symbol of purity and perfection.

The elephant in accordance with folklore are of several noble families. The Culla Hathi, Padopama and the Maha Hathi Padopama suttas identify seven families of elephant. The 'Kanno', 'Naga' and 'Halthi' are common terms used in Pali language to identify an elephant. Dandhi-Tusker has been used in terms of an elephant with tusks only. Nontuskers were not engaged in warfare or on ceremonial occasions. They were relegated for labour and were not considered as noble. The elephant was valued according to its majesty, of its height and the length and grace of its tusks. It the tusks were milky white and parallel and have equal length gracefully valued. Very often the colour of its skin too mattered. The whiter the skin, the greater the appreciation. The jathaka tales specify that 'Chata danta kala' is the noblest in the family of elephant. These magnificent animals are supposed to have reached forty feet height in ancient India and bragged of a pair of tusks exceeding 18 feet in length. Probably, these must have been the last family of the prehistoric mammoths. The elephant was a symbol embodying many qualities - royalty, benignity, prudence and compassion. The worshipper of Ganesha adores not the figure but the qualities symbolized by the elephants head.

The serpent girdle of Ganesha worn around the loins or in certain figures, as an additional embellishment of a sacred thread suspended from the left shoulder is again a significant deviation. The Naga, the hooded cobra was an emblem of totemistic worship among the earliest jungle dwellers; though its venom was deadly, yet the reptile was sacred, as primitive man visualized a divine agency in the appearance of cobra. Superstitious rituals were perfomed to propitiate the provocation of the Naga. In early Buddhist texts reference is made to the Naga and its various communities. In the 'Kandha Paditha' mention is made of as many as twelve families of Nagas. These cobras are supposed to have bred in communities. The earliest forest dwellers of the Indian Community that migrated to the Indo-Gangetic and Indo-Brahmaputra valleys worshipped the Naga and they were also identified as Nagas. The Buddha encountered this community of Nagas in the valley of the Narmada. They were at that time adorers of the serpents and the seven-hooded Naga and the amorous clasp of the male and female cobra were forms of totems they worshipped. When the Buddha converted them to the fold of Buddhists, they abandoned their animistic worship and requested the Buddha for a form of enlightened worship. Then the Buddha imprinted his left foot on the banks of Narmada and asked them to grace the foot of the Buddha.

The earliest Aryans in the Euphrates, Tigris and Nile Valleys resorted to Naga worship and the same Aryans that settled in the river valleys of Bharat associated the visit of the Naga with the reflections of dead ancestors. Frequency of such visits compelled them to conduct pooja to propitiate the dead who now had visited them in the form of cobras. These ancient ancestors that now visited were welcome guests and afforded food in forms of milk, rice and eggs and implored to leave them after blessing them. The ancients were particular to avoid curse of the serpents. These were never killed but courteously coaxed to leave; if ever one callously destroyed a cobra, the ignorant villagers attributed all in clemencies of weather and failure of crops to such a wanton act of the community, as the weather Gods had rebelled against them due to the wrath of the ancestors.

The same serpent that some times was reckoned as a harbinger of goodwill was reckoned as an evil omen that brought them curse of Gods on certain occasions. All semitic civilizations have associated the visit of the viper with curses of God. It is perhaps this fear of the serpent power that incited them to adopt some form of the reptile in the sphere of wordly power symbolically. The Indian pantheon of ideological Deities have all embraced the hooded cobra. Cobra reliefs are prominently portrayed in all columns of Hindu Temples.

The Buddhsits and joins too have associated the cobra (Naga) with remarkable powers of discreation. Saints are protected by them and the purity of the saint is vouchsafed by them. Hence the wisdom of the Naga supercedes man's. The Naga supercedes man's. The Naga is a Symbol of purity in the Pali language. The aspirant for higher ordination brought before the sangha is named the Naga implying one without faults, absolved purified one, befitting one, etc. The Vammika one without faults, absolved purified one, befitting one, etc. The Vammika Sutta mentions the discovery of the Naga at the bottom of the pit in the excavation of the mound "Do not harm the Naga; it is fully absolved, cleaned one; its state is that of perfection." Thus the state of Arhat hood-perfect saint-the jeevan mukta has been associated with state of Naga. In the Uraga Vagga of the Sutta Nipata and the Naga Vagga of Dhammapada, many a description is found based upon the Naga or Serpent. In Sanyutta Nikaya, Mara assumes the form of a deadly cobra puffing flames and smoke.

Thus religious schools both Indian and foreign have associated the Cobra with the purest and the heinous. What one may attribute to be necklace or girdle of serpents in the figure of the elephant trunked Hindu Deity is to be understood in accordance with the motive for which he is worshipped.

Ganesha is supposed to ride upon a mouse. It is strange that Ganesha the Lord of Wisdom has been granted most dissimilar and disproportionate attributes in the world when his brother Kumar has been accorded a noble bird like the peacock as his vehicle. Parvathi's son is granted a humble obsequious mouse quite incapable of lifting the bulging belly and massive head that he possesses. Does it imply that wisdom is an attribute of ugly conglomeration of factors or that the wise do not find anything in the world disproportionate or ugly?

The mouse symbolizes hidden life in the atom. The spark of fire that is vibrant in every living phenomena. Agni that assumed the form of a mouse is that atomic energy which is procreation of life. Even as fire is a faithful servant but a bad master, the mouse is both creative and destructive; therefore it is kept under the footstool of the Master. This feature could be attributed to the task of nirmana and pralaya of Shiva, the father of Ganesha. Shiva creates and destroys; but is also capable of maintaining his creation in trim. The obsequious rat, the great elephant, the powerful man and the crawling reptile are cross sections of the Nirmana Sakti of Shiva. These were personified in Ganesha, the son of Parvathi, even in the absence of Iswara, the Creator. Here again, the potential evidence of the Sakti is revealed in magnificence.

Shiva in the form of linga or Shakti in the form of Ambal the Universal Mother is a primitive cult goes back to the earliest Dravidians of Mohanjodaro and Harappa cultures. His place was Supreme in South India and he was patronized by the ruling class. The plebians of the south adopted the crude composition of Ganesha as more proximate to an agrarian populace. His wisdom, his compassion, his steadfast non-frivolous nature and his pot belly significant of the bounty of nature all appealed to their crude mind.

Vinayaka is a name given to Ganesha. The Lord Buddha is called Vinayaka as he had the singular power to bring under control those that are uncontrollable; the tractor of untractable. Whether Ganesha was endowed with such powers of curbing the indocile is not clear in the history of his cult; but Vinayaka in Hindu Pantheon signifies the chitta visuddhi endowing the knowledge of liberation. This clarity of knowledge is obtainable through yoga alone.

The author has vividly and cogently identified the Pancha Makara Thathwa of the Shakti cult and stripped it of the licentious interpretation given at the hands of fanatics who had no understanding of the inner spiritual methods and engaged to demean lofty thought with obscene wordly renderings.

Lobsang Rampa in his book 'the third eye' refers to the intelligent eye that is opened under the pursuit of higher meditation. Tibetan mystics paid the highest respect to the enlightenment through the mystic third eye. The two natural eyes exposed the reach of the average man. Ganesha's third eye is the symbol of this supramundane knowledge he is said to be endowed with.

The term 'OM', has been used in all Hindu literature Sanskrit and Dravidian. All schools of Hinduism accept 'OM', as indicative of purity and divinity. The main fact remains that all meditation in Hinduistic schools resort to 'OM', as a primary source of intelligence leading to Brahma Vidya. The four states Turya, Sushupta, Swapna and Jagratha are conditions existing upon the stream of consciousness. Consciousness is alert from birth till death. There is consciousness vigilant even in deep sleep. Man may slumber in deep forgetfulness but consciousness never sleeps.

Shiva's role as the patron of yogis is a duty assigned to him long before he became Kapala Iswara or Nata Raja. These qualities of Shiva are attributes assigned to him by Dravidians. The earlier Aryan Brahmins disrespected him sheerly because the Dravidian plebians worshipped him. Even after shiva gained a permanent place in the Pantheon, Ganesha was laughed at by Aryan Brahmins. It was just fifteen centuries ago that Ganesha was able to make his impact felt in the North.

Ganesha was created out of the body Chandana Scrubbings of his mother and Shiva that severed his young head implanted the elephant head with the proboscis trunk and tusks. Yet he is imperishable, stainless, unconditioned of transcending omkar and of supreme bliss. These are qualities that arise from deep meditation equating to the state of Jivan muktas Therefore; Ganesha is symbolical of the finite perfection of man in his supreme ascendance to liberation from birth. Therefore, one that worships Ganesha should aspire for this perfection in him.

The writer in his chapter on psychic centers refers to Muladharam the base of mental action. The psychic cynosure is neither the base of the spine nor the heart. It is the brain, the base of the cognition series. Ganesha in the early days was the patron of music and fine art. Prior to the ear that Shiva assumed the role as patron of music and dance, in his pose of Nataraja, Ganesha was invoked as the presiding Deity of knowledge culture and fine art. Just as Ganesha was the brainchild of the artist, he presided over the brain of the art student. Yoga was the highest art of frail humanity in the quest of perfection; therefore Ganesha's invocation at the beginning of yogic adventure requesting him to guide the student was an accepted norm.

Ganesha cult was a primitive cult among the Dravidians of the prehistoric era. The early Aryan invaders did not accept the Dravidian Gods, but degraded them. At a later stage the renegaded Deities were uplifted to the united Hindu Pantheon. The Indian whether Aryan or Dravidian was an idol worshipper. Ganesha symbolized unity of the primaeval forest denizen with man, the majesty of the elephant combining the physical energy of the homosapiens. The Dravidian made Ganesha, the son of Shiva but subsequent bhaktas have made an effort to make Ganesha, the son of shiva but subsequent bhaktas have made an effort to make Shiva, a creation of Ganesha, with the avowed purpose of reviving the universal mother who was a more magnificent personality in Dravidian culture. The Amman worship prevails to this day, pursued mainly by the labour and working communities.

CONTENTS
Prefacev
Foreword by H.H. Dr. E. Nandiswara Nayake Therovii
1.Ganesha the Sumukha1
2.Ganesha and the Elephant5
3.Ganesha and the Serpent9
4.Ganesha and his Mount13
5.Ganesha and Shiva17
6.Ganesha and Yoga21
7.Ganesha and Psychic Centers29
8.Ganesha and Mysticla Terms35
9.Ganesha and 'OM'41
10.Ganesha in the Hindu Pantheon45
11.Ganesha and his Idol49
12.Ganesha and his Lambodaram55
13.Ganesha and his Worship59
14.Ganesha and his Martyrdom63
15.Ganesha and Mythology67
16.Ganesha and Karthikeya73
17.Ganesha and his Festival77
18.Shree Ganesh Atharva Sheersha81
19.One thousand names of Lord Ganesha85
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