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Gajanan – the elephant-headed-God

Remember, how Goddess Parvati created her son Ganesh in desire to have her own dedicated and loyal Gan? Read about this in the previous post, if you haven’t already!

Parvati had instructed Ganesh then to guard her private quarters and to not let anyone inside without her permission.

Ganesh guarding the door

As he was about to start his service, God Shiv hastily walked towards Parvati’s room. Ignoring the guard at door, Shivji was about to enter when Ganesh stopped him. Amused by this boy’s confidence, Shivji said, “Who are you? I am the owner of these quarters and how can you stop me?” 

Ganesh said, “That could be the truth, but let my mother finish her bath and get dressed. I will seek her permission, post then and only then you can get in.

Looking at the young and determined boy, Shivji decided to take a step back. He then sent his Gan to investigate further about the boy guarding door with just one stick.

The battle of determination against the Gods

When the Shivgans arrived, Ganesh told them that he is ‘Parvati-putra’. Nandi mentioned, “You are beautiful and must be intelligent as well. So, it is only wise to obey elder’s orders. You have to let Shivji enter this room, for he is the God supreme and none should deny him anything.

This led to a heated argument. Ganesh said, “I am just a kid and unaware of war tactics. But, I understand this wouldn’t be a win or loss for you or me, it will be for Jagadamba and Jagadeeshwar.” Ganesh was full of wisdom.

Thence followed a unique battle of one kid against all the mighty elders. Shivgans, Devgans, Kartikeya and Dev Indra, went to put down Ganesh. Ganesh with his wit and just one stick fought bravely with them all. God Vishnu saw this and praised the boy. Just then Ganesh blew his stick on Lord Vishnu. This was a great dishonor to the almighty and that did it. After which, angry God Shiv sent Trishul to slit Ganesh’s throat and behead him.

Mahashakti Jagadamba’s angst and pain

Ma Parvati, aka Jagadamba, learned that her beloved son is killed by her own husband. There was no amount of pain and anger that could describe her state. Ma Shakti didn’t know how she would survive without her son, who was her heart and soul. She called all the Mahashaktis and asked them to destroy the universe, “…for it is now futile for anyone else to live in such a bad and unlawful place“.

Sensing that this untimely Pralay could lead to massive destruction and nothing would be able to bring it back, everyone seeked the 3 supreme God’s help, Lord Brahma, Lord Vishnu and Lord Mahesh. On seeking their advice, all the people, Gods, Rishis, etc. started praying to Ma Jagadamba for mercy on the universe.

She didn’t calm down and roared, “My son, the piece of my heart was fighting you all alone and now he is dead. If only he can be given life again, shall I stop this Pralay.

Rebirth of Gajanan

This was a peculiar ask and something that was against the rule of the nature. Yet, God Shiv ordered his Gan, “you must not waste anymore time and head towards the north direction. Find the first living creature that you come across and bring their head. Then clean Ganesh’s body with pious procedures and to put it on.


And thus, Ganesh became Gajanan – the elephant-headed-God. All the Devi-Devatas, Rishis, etc. who witnessed this unique moment bestowed powers and blessings upon Gajanan.

Read more Ganesh stories here

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