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“Ganapati Bappa Moriya”: On the occasion of Ganesh Chaturthi, know why ‘elephant- headed God is one of the most loved Deities among Hindus!

Lokmanya Tilak realized this cultural of Ganapati and popularised Ganesh Chaturthi as a National Festival to unite everyone

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Ganesh traveling on a mouse, Wikimedia

“Ganapati Bappa Moriya”

Sept 05, 2016: The familiar chant that every Hindu bows their head to! The elephant-headed Hindu God who unites people is worshipped on the occasion of Ganesh Chaturthi. Needless to say that the festival continues for 10 days and the fervour is at its peak among Indians. There are many stories about Lord Ganesha in the Hindu Mythology and this article focuses on why is He ‘elephant-headed’? Why is he worshipped first? Why does he ride on a rat?

There are many stories about Lord Ganesha in the Hindu Mythology and this article focuses on why is He ‘elephant-headed’? Why is he worshipped first and Why does he ride on a rat?

Shiva Purana, Brahmabaibarta Purana narrate different stories about the birth of the son of Mahadev and Devi Parvati and how he became elephant-headed.

Professor Phyllis Lee,  a behavioral psychologist at University of Stirling and chair of the scientific advisory committee for the Amboseli Trust for Elephants says, “It is the ability to influence others and sustain friendships are important to an elephant group, while in other animals it is often aggression or dominance.”

Elephants tend to influence the group in the correct direction and they respect the intelligence of the leaders. Ganeshji united people, not in the age of Purana but also at the crucial time of Indian revolution against British.

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Lokmanya Tilak realized this cultural of Ganapati and popularised Ganesh Chaturthi as a National Festival to unite everyone, from brahmins to non-brahmins.’Gana’ means followers of Shiva and Devtas including Aditya (solar deity), Vasu (attendant deity of Indra), Vayu (air), Rudra (deity of storm and hunt) etc. who are led by Ganesh.

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In Hinduism, Lakshmi is worshipped for Dhan (money), Saraswati for Vidya (knowledge), Viswakarma for Shilpa (Art), Kartikeya for Vijay (wining). The deities are worshipped by people for personal gains but Ganesh is the god who brings unity in society. Thus Ganesh is worshipped first in any auspicious occasion like marriage and other pujas.

According to Ganesh Purana, Ganesh is the Omkara. The text utters:
“Omkarrupi Bhagwan Yo Vedado Pratishthita
Yang Sada Munaye Deva Smarantindradayo hridi
Omkararupi Bhagawanuktastu Gananayaka
Yatha Sarveshu Karmshu Pujyatehso Vinayaka”

This means ‘Omkara’ is pronounced before every Mantra is memorising Ganesh as he is Nayak (leader) of Gana.

Ganesh Chaturthi celebration, Wikimedia commons
Ganesh Chaturthi celebration, Wikimedia commons

The presence of rat with Ganesha as the ride is quite significant. The Gajamundadhari (elephant-headed) deity has one of the smallest creature Mushika (rat) as ride which symbolises Ganapati brings everyone under same roof- from big to small, wise to ignorant, sophisticated to Bhuphal (who born from the earth, rat). Rat is the symbol of patience and enthusiasm. Ganeshji is named Abyakt, Sarvesh, Akshar, Nitya which express his glory as Param Brahma. To understand him better- one need realisation, self-restraint and spirit.

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An old text Panchatantra, taught us a very familiar story of a lion and a mouse where the mouse cuts the ropes and frees the lion. In a similar manner, Lord Ganesha too detaches the followers from Ashtapaasha, the eight ties- (Ghrina, Apamana, Lajja, Mana, Moha, Dambha, Dwesha, Baigunya: Hate, Insult, Shame, Standard, Affection, Pride, Grudge, Defect respectively). Thus, he selected rat as his mate to cut the trap and release people from the prejudices.

– by Priyanka Saha of NewsGram. Twitter: @priyanka140490

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Dalai Lama says that India and China have great potential

The spiritual leader feels that both the countries are doing compassionate works

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Dalai Lama talks about India and China
Tibetan spiritual leader Dalai says that India and China can work together. VOA

New Delhi, Nov 19

Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama on Sunday said India and China have “great potential” and they could work together at a “practical level”.

“I think, a great potential… India and China combined are doing more compassionate work… At a practical level also. Imagine two billion people working together,” he told reporters here after inaugurating Smile Foundation’s initiative, The World of Children.

The spiritual leader, who has lived in India in self-imposed exile since 1959, said neither country had the “ability to destroy the other”.

“Whether you like it or not, you have to live side by side,” he said.

Underlining the ancient spiritual connection between the two countries, he said Chinese Buddhist Hsuan Tsang visited Nalanda (now in Bihar) and brought Nalanda Buddhist traditions to China.

“All thinkers of Nalanda are Indian. So Nalanda’s tradition is India’s tradition,” he said.

The Nalanda traditions had turned Tibetans, who were warriors, into more compassionate, peaceful and non-violent nation, he said.

“So sometimes in Delhi, teasing my Indian friend, (I say) if Tibet still remained in the previous way of life, like Mongols, Chinese invasion may not have taken place,” the Dalai Lama said in a lighter vein.

He said nobody in the world wanted violence but it was happening “because our minds are dominated by destructive emotions due to short-sightedness”.

“Nobody wants problems. Yet, many problems are our own creation.”

The Dalai Lama said the existing modern education was oriented to material values. India can take lead in improving the education system by combining modern education with ancient knowledge, he said. (IANS)

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Manushi Chhillar from India Wins the Miss World 2017 Title

India's Manushi Chillar won the coveted Miss World 2017 pageant here, 16 years after Priyanka Chopra won the title in 2000.

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Miss World
Manushi Chhillar has been crowned as Miss World 2017. Instagram #ManushiChhillar

China, November 19: India’s Manushi Chhillar won the coveted Miss World 2017 pageant, 16 years after Priyanka Chopra won the title in 2000.

Chhillar competed against 108 contestants from various countries at a glittering event held at Sanya City Arena here.

Miss World 2016 winner Puerto Rico’s Stephanie Del Valle gave away the coveted crown to the winner.

Chhillar, who is from Haryana, had earlier this year won the Femina Miss India 2017.

Miss world
Anti Ageing was the official skin care expert for Manushi Chhillar at the Miss World 2017 pageant. Instagram #ManushiChhillar

India, England, France, Kenya and Mexico grabbed the top five spots at the peagant.

Manushi, born to doctor parents, studied in St. Thomas School in New Delhi and Bhagat Phool Singh Government Medical College for Women in Sonepat.

Her entire family including brother and sister were present and they looked excited watching Manushi grabbing top five spot.

As many as 108 beauty queens from different parts of the world participated in the prestigious pageant. (IANS)

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The major Challenge is to make the Youth of the Country Entrepreneurial and not Job Seekers : Venkaiah Naidu

"The challenge for us is to make the youth entrepreneurial, and not become job seekers," Venkaiah Naidu said pointing to the NDA government's various initiatives.

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Venkaiah Naidu
Venkaiah Naidu. Wikimedia Commons
  • At a time of tepid job growth and continuing income disparities, the major challenge is to make the youth of the country entrepreneurial and not job seekers, Vice President  Venkaiah Naidu said on Thursday.

“Disparities continue to remain in India and so there is a need for inclusive growth… there is the need to take care of the suppressed, oppressed and depressed,” Venkaiah Naidu said at the Bharatiya Yuva Shakti Trust’s (BYST) silver jubilee celebrations here with Britain’s Prince Charles as the chief guest.

“The challenge for us is to make the youth entrepreneurial, and not become job seekers,” Venkaiah Naidu said pointing to the NDA government’s various initiatives to encourage youth enterprises like Startup India, Standup India and the Mudra financing scheme for underprivileged sections.

Modelled on Prince Charles’ Trust for business startups, BYST, founded by Lakshmi Venkatesan, daughter of former President R. Venkatraman, is engaged in building rural entrepreneurship — “grampreneurs” — as also enterprise among under-privileged sections, which includes business mentoring. The current BYST chairman is Bajaj Group chief, Rahul Bajaj.

“Without mentoring, it would be very difficult to set up startups, with all the business, marketing and other vital issues involved in the first two-three years,” Prince Charles said in his address at the International Mentoring Summit organized by BYST to mark its 25 years.

“What amazes me are the sheer number of jobs these young entrepreneurs had created. The aim of such a project should be to create a virtual cycle of creating entrepreneurs who can then invest in the future of business,” Charles said referring to his trust.

BYST was officially launched in 1992 by Prince Charles and expanded its operations to six major regions of India.

Out of these six regions, four — Delhi, Chennai, Pune and Hyderabad — run the urban programme while two regions — Haryana and Maharashtra — run the rural programme.(IANS)