Ganesha Statue - Antique Khmer Style Standing Bronze Bayon Ganesh Statue - 40cm/16"

Who was Ganesha?

Ganesh or Ganesha is a deity of Hinduism and is one of the most popular and beloved gods in the Hindu pantheon. He is the God of wisdom, knowledge, and new beginnings. He is also known as the remover of obstacles and is often worshipped before starting a new venture or project. Ganesha is easily recognizable by his elephant head and human body, and is often depicted riding a mouse or rat. His image is widely used in Hindu art, culture, and religion, and he is associated with wisdom, intellect, and good fortune.

In this essay, we will explore the origins of Ganesha, his role in Hindu mythology, and his continued importance in contemporary Hinduism.

Indonesian Ganesha

Ganesha is the son of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati, and is known by many names such as Vinayaka, Ganapati, and Gajanana. He is often depicted with four arms, each holding different objects such as a lotus, an axe, a bowl of sweets, and a noose. The lotus symbolizes spiritual enlightenment, the axe represents the ability to cut away any obstacles in one's path, the sweets represent the rewards of spiritual practices, and the noose represents the ability to capture and control negative thoughts and emotions.

The origins of Ganesha are somewhat shrouded in mystery. One legend says that Ganesha was created by Shiva, one of the most powerful gods in Hindu mythology. According to this story, Shiva's wife, Parvati, created Ganesha from the dirt on her body while she was taking a bath. She then breathed life into the figure, and Ganesha became her son. Another story says that Ganesha was created by Parvati alone, without any input from Shiva.

Ganesha is also associated with education, as he is believed to be the patron saint of students and scholars. He is often depicted with a book or pen in one of his hands, representing knowledge and learning.

Ganesha is celebrated annually during the festival of Ganesh Chaturthi, which is a ten-day festival that begins in late August or early September. During this festival, people erect temporary shrines dedicated to Ganesha, and perform traditional rituals and ceremonies. 

Khmer Ganesha