Tuesday, 3 February 2015
The origin of Lord Ganapati :
The origin of Lord Ganapati :
========== Wishing Everyone Happy Ganesh Puja ============
The Samhitas :
गणानां तवा गणपतिं हवामहे कविं कवीनामुपमश्रवस्तमम |
जयेष्ठराजं बरह्मणां बरह्मणस पत आ नः षर्ण्वन्नूतिभिः सीद सादनम ||
.....Rig Ved 2.23.1
" We invoke the Brahmanaspati, the chief leader of the (heavenly) bands (Ganas) ; a sage of sage; abounding beyond measure in (every kind of) food ; best lord of mantras ; hearing our invocations, come with your protections, and sit down in the chamber of sacrifice."
नि षु सीद गणपते गणेषु तवामाहुर्विप्रतमंकवीनाम |
न रते तवत करियते किं चनारे महामर्कंमघवञ्चित्रमर्च ||
........... Rig Ved 10.112.9
" Sit down among the worshippers, O Ganapati, the best sage among the sages. Without You nothing can be done here or far. Accept with honor, our great and variegated hymns of praise. "
Indra is referred to as Ganapati here. Indra is the Lord of the Maruts.
Ganaanaam tvaa ganapatim havaamahé Priyaanaam tvaa Priyapatim havaamahé, Nidheenaam tvaa nidhipatim havaamahe.
vaso mama. Aahamajaani garbhadhamaa tvamajaasi garbhadham.
......(Shukla Yajur Ved : 23. 19)
Purport : -
”(Havaamahe) we invoke, (tvaa) You, (Ganapatim) the Most respected Lord and Protector, (Ganaanaam) of all that is perceivable; (tvaa) You, (Priyapathim) the dear Lord and Protector, (Priyaanaam) of all that is dear; (Havaamahe) we invoke, (tvaa) Thee, (Nidhipatim) the Immanent Lord and Protector, (nidheenaam) of all hidden treasures. (Vaso) Oh Real Wealth ! (mama) You are mine. (ajaani) Let me know You, (aa garbhadham) the upholder of the graspable universe. (Tvam) You, (aa ajaasi) know from all sides, (garbhadham) the universe that is the repository of the creative energy."
In the last two sentences, the word ’garbhadha’ is used both for the creator and the creation, because in both is found the energy of creation.
This is a clear picture of Ganapati. He is the Most respectable Lord and protector of all that comes under perception. He is the One knower of Truth in its entirety among truth-seers. He is the Most Praiseworthy and He is the Most Brilliant among those well-versed in the Vedas.
The Ganapati invoked here, is the Chief of the Ganas, the leader of the group, a superb seer among seers, and the lord of the mantras. It is explained that Ganapati in this Rik refers to Brahmanaspati, a Vedic divinity of the highest order, the leader of the heavenly bands and a sage (kavi) among sages (Jyeshta Rajam Brahmanam, Brahmanaspata).
In the Rig Ved, Brahnanaspati is the lord of all sacred prayers and lord of Satya mantra. He is the destroyer of enemies; and no sacrifice is complete without invoking him. He is also identified with the Vedic deity Brihaspati :
The Gaņapati in Rig-Veda is the lord of gaņas or hosts. In the Rig-Ved, the gaņās or hosts of Brahmaņaspati are :
स सुष्टुभा स रक्वता गणेन वलं रुरोज फलिगं रवेण |
.............. Rig Ved 4.50.5
" He with his cohort of the rhythm that affirms, of the chant that illumines has broken Vala into pieces with his cry."
The term Gana also denotes a host of Devas.
The mantra ‘namo Ganebhyo ganapathibyasha vo namo' that occurs in Shukla Yajur Veda Samhita refers to ganas, in plural, and says:
" Homage to the Ganas and to you, Ganapati (the lords of Ganas, Rudra) be homage. "
............ Shukla Yajur Ved 16.25
This mantra appears also in the Rudra prasnam (Taittiriya Samhita 4.1.5).
'Gana' in these contexts signifies a group of people as also a collection of mantras.
The Taittiriya Samhita also mentions Ganas as pashus. They are the Ganas of Rudra -- " Rudrasya Ganapathyam ".
The earliest reference in that regard is in the Atharva Ved which alludes elephantine countenance (hasthi –varchas) to Brihaspathi who was likned with Ganapati.
The other early references are in Maitrayaniya Samhita (2.9.1) and Taittiriya Aranyak (10.1.5) which appeal to an elephant faced (hasthi-mukha) , single-tusked (dantin) deity with a curved trunk (vakra tunda).He is also described as holding a corn-sheaf, a sugarcane and a club. Those features became the characteristics of our Ganapati, the Ganesha.
"Ganapati Atharva Sheersham" or "Ganapati Upanishad" describes the form of Lord Ganapati. This Upanishad is a part of Atharva Ved and the seer of this Upanishad is Atharvan Rishi.
तन्नो दंती प्रचोदयात।।८।।
" Mediate on the single Tusked Lord, with bent Trunk May He Grant Knowledge & Inspire me. "
एकदंतं चतुर्हस्तं पाशमंकुशधारिणम्।
रदं च वरदं हस्तैर्बिभ्राणं मूषकध्वजम्।।
रक्तं लंबोदरं शूर्पकर्णकं रक्तवाससम्।
रक्तगंधानुलिप्तांगं रक्तपुष्पै: सुपुजितम्।।
भक्तानुकंपिनं देवं जगत्कारणमच्युतम्।
आविर्भूतं च सृष्टयादौ प्रकृते : पुरुषात्परम्।
एवं ध्यायति यो नित्यं स योगी योगिनां वर:।।९।।
" I salute the Lord with 1 tusk ,Who has 4 hands; Upper Right carrying binding rope; Upper Left holding goad; Lower Left carrying Broken Tusk & the Lower Right blesses us, the Mouse on his banner is also his vehicle.
He is Blood Red in colour; Pot-Bellied; He has elephant ears & wears red clothes. He is smeared with red sandalwood & decorated with red flowers.
He is eternally blessings his devotees & was existing before Cosmos. He is beyond "PRAKRITI" & "PURUSHA" & is ever creating universes. One who meditates on him constantly, is a Supreme Yogi. "
Amarakosh, the Sanskrit lexicon, lists eight synonyms of Ganesha : Vinayaka, Vighnaraja, Dvaimtura (one who has two mothers), Gaṇadhipa (equivalent to Ganapati and Ganesha), Ekadanta (one who has one tusk), Heramba, Lambodara (one who has a pot belly, or, literally, one who has a hanging belly), and Gajanana having the face of an elephant).
Vishnudharmottara, while detailing how to make images of various deities, describes, among others, how the image of Vinayaka should be made (Part Three; Ch 71; verses 1-18).
Sage Markandeya explains: Vinayaka should have the face of an elephant and four hands .He should have a big belly; stiff pair of ears; wearing a tiger skin around his waist and a sacred-thread across his left shoulder down his belly. He should have snake as belt. a trident and rosary should be placed in right hands; an axe and a pot full of sweets in the left ones. The sweet-pot should be placed near the tip of his trunk. His left tusk should be left un-represented. Vinayaka should be provided a foot-stool; and his one foot should be placed on it.
Brahmanaspati of the Rig Ved was the divine being who led the aspirant along the path of wisdom and facilitated his progress by removing the obstacles in his path. Ganapati as Vinayaka, is the destroyer of obstacles. But Ganapati is also the lord of obstacles (Vighnaraja), one who controls obstacles.
Ganapati is also associated with mental agility and learning. He is akin to Brihaspati of Rig Ved, the personification of piety, purity and knowledge. He is known for his intelligence, and for his eloquence. He is Gishpati- the lord of speech.
The Grhya Sutras :
The first reference to Ganapati worship occurs in the Gobhila Grhya Sutra, which belongs Sam Ved. It recommends praying to Ganapati and to Matrikas at the commencement of a ritual, seeking blessings and support for a smooth and successful completion of the rituals.
Baudhayana Grihya Sutra which described Ganapati as Vigneshwara, Bhuta-natha and Gajamukha, too recommended similar worship of Ganapati.The date of this text is disputed; it could perhaps be around the same time as the other Sutras.
Smritis and Purans :
Gatha –Sapta Sati, sings the praise of Ganadhipati. The Purans, which came about around that period too carry detailed references to Ganapati and to his worship (e.g. Varahapuran, Vamanapuran and Brahmaivavarta puran).
The Yajnavalkya Smriti mentions Vinayak as the Lord of the Ganas, appointed by Brahmaa and Rudra. Here he is described as one who causes obstacles as well as one who removes them. Yagnavalkya gives four names of Vinayaka the son of Ambika as: Mita, Sammita, Salakantaka and Kusumandarjaputra.
Ganesh is also one of the five prime Hindu deities (Surya, Vishnu, Shiva and Durga being the other four) worshipped in the panchayatan puja and Ganapatya tradition.
" Om Shanti Shanti Shanti "