WE FEEL A GREAT LOVE OF GOD; sometimes the grace of Ganesha
fills us with such enthusiasm and joy that our heart bursts
in an overflowing expression of devotion. Our bhakti turns
the word into song, which in turn is offered back to the
Deity whence came this gift of divine love and bliss. There
may also be other times when our heart is dry, our mind
distracted; we feel forlorn and distant from Ganesha. At
such times devotional singing is a simple, sure way to raise
our spirits up to a level where we can commune with Ganesha
once again. Or we may find ourself together with other Hindus
who want to join in fellowship to joyfully affirm our religion
and praise the Gods that guide us. So we join together in
song. In Hinduism this form of worship, called bhajana or
kirtana, is an age-old tradition, ranging from simple melodious
repetition of the names of the Lord to the singing of inspired
song/poems of great devotees. Presented here are a few songs
in modern notation to aid international group participation.
But remember that Hindu music has never been rigid like
Western classical music, where a small deviation is viewed
as error. In Hindu music melodies often vary from one village
to another, singer to singer, one satsanga to another. Infinite
diversity, tolerance and flexibility is a central theme
of Hinduism and its sacred music as well. Deep devotion
is the standard. Particular notes, in time, in tune or not
are hardly noticed. If you are singing with genuine feelings
and awareness, then even the song itself will be transcended.
Before presenting some of these hymns for us all to use
together, let us first consider the deeper meaning of bhajana
as elucidated in a talk I gave at Kauai Aadheenam in Hawaii
on October 16, 1978.
to the Gods:
Hindu Hymns of Invocation
An Inspired Talk on the Power
Hindu approach to God is well-defined and mystically oriented.
It confidently proclaims that every soul is created by God
and is destined to return to God; and it provides through
its vast cultural and scriptural heritage both the intellectual
insight and the pragmatic means for following that path and
attaining life's ultimate objective, spiritual realization.
One of the legacies inherited by all Hindus is the rich and
varied collection of sacred hymns, sung alone in the privacy
of early morning worship or in gatherings of like-minded devotees
whose combined invocations bring forth in each participant
heightened communion with the Divine. There are many ways
that Hindus offer devotion through chanting and song. Through
the sadhana of japa yoga, the holy names of
the Deities and sacred mantras are chanted both silently and
aloud as a constant remembering. Pilgrims to the temple will
assemble in the outer chambers to hear skilled musicians and
singers well-versed in age-old devotional arts, fully capable
of turning the mind toward God and away from the world through
the subtlety and beauty of their lyrical offerings. Religious
epics and stories filled with history and with parable are
related to large congregations through dramatic choral presentation.
Devotees gather in small and large groups throughout the world
to chant in unison, generally led in turn by one among them
and then another, singing their praises to the Gods to the
accompaniment of the harmonium, drums, tambura and
cymbals. This is called bhajana. It is certainly the
most popular form of Hindu devotional singing.
For thousands of years Hindus have gathered
in conclave to share hours of the outpouring of their love
of the Gods. Their chants have filled the temple chambers,
the village hall and the private courtyard; but mostly it
has filled and thrilled those who participated with a full
heart. In the advanced stages of bhakti it matters little
whether we are alone or with others when chanting the names
of the Lord, for that mature state is steadfast in the higher
devotional sensibilities, unruffled by the external world
of name and form. Yet few have attained the serene heights
of perfect devotion, and fewer still are steady enough to
maintain such states once reached. The steadying support
of others who also share spiritual goals in life can enhance
the individual aspirant's efforts, keeping him firmly on
the Sanatana Dharma, the Eternal Path. When these sacred
gatherings are regular, either daily or weekly, they generate
a spiritual dynamic in the lives of all who participate,
a shared energy to which all contribute and from which all
The Working Together of Three Worlds
is an essential part of the Hindu religious life. My satguru,
Sage Yogaswami of Columbuthurai, Sri Lanka, placed great
importance on chanting. He would say, "Sing, sing, sing.
Morning, noon and evening we will chant with joyful hearts
the blessed name of Siva. Sing always of the Lord and meditate
on Him who bestows virtue, wealth, happiness and liberation."
We join a revered band of devotees when
we chant the praises of God. Hindus sing to God, to the
Gods, to the multitudes of devas within their temples and
home shrines who will gather around devotees when they congregate
together almost anywhere. Each Hindu has his or her own
guardian devas who are never far away, always available
and willing to assist from an inner world of consciousness,
from the Second World, or astral plane. These guardian devas
attend Hindus from the time of birth or from a previous
birth or from a ceremony or event occurring anytime in life
when they enter the great assembly known as the Hindu religion.
When two or more Hindus gather, each brings to that assembly
-- depending upon the personal sadhana that the Hindu
has performed in this life and in past lives -- his own
devas to add to the throng.
As sincere devotees meet, the inner-plane
devas form a conclave in the same room, invisible to the
physical sight but fully visible to the inner sight and
sensed through the feeling of sanctity that pervades the
atmosphere of the room. As the singing of the Hindu hymns
commences, other Second World devas are drawn according
to the sum of devotional intensity. These devas sing together
in the inner planes in concert with the First World bhajana,
and that calls others, until a multitude of beings in the
Second World join in the same chorus as is being sung in
the First World.
Sincerity of Purpose
We must realize that when we sing bhajana
the devas of the Second World and even the Gods of the Third
World hear our intonations and are aware too of the depth
of our devotion. They are fully aware of us, though we may
be only partially aware of them. They know and appreciate
the meaning of the words that we chant. For this reason
it is very necessary that each one deeply understand the
meaning of the words, even when those words are in Sanskrit.
The meaning, the tones of the voice, the thought behind
the meaning, the feeling behind the thought -- all these
give power to the bhajana, add their beauty to the
sounds that radiate out from our love and devotion, taking
that meaning, thought, feeling and sound from this macrocosm
into the microcosm of the devonic world and through that
into a greater macrocosm where the Gods live. High tones
penetrate deepest, piercing through the microcosm into the
great macrocosm that we know as the inner worlds. Also,
concentration of mind, awareness of meaning and sincerity
of inner feeling add to the ability of the chant to penetrate
to spiritual depths or, in their absence, to remain little
more than a sweet song hardly distinguishable from any other
Singing is Prayer and Thanksgiving
Most Hindu chants are a joyous praising
of the Divine. They can also be a reminder that there are
subtle inner worlds of existence, a pleading that we may
be more aware of them and more in harmony with their great
beauties and truths, and an invocation of the Gods and even
of certain benefits which they are empowered to bestow.
Our hymns are a thanksgiving for all that we have, for all
the good that has been granted to us in life by our Gods,
or during an immediate time span. Of course, we are only
capable of such thanksgiving when we inwardly feel grateful,
content within ourselves and not dissatisfied with our dharma,
not struggling to oppose our karma in this life but to fulfill
it by bringing it into harmony with our religion. True thanks
must be offered, or true petitions made, with the mind and
emotions and thought in a single accord as the Sanskrit
lyrics are enunciated. How would the God perceive a devotee
who is chanting something to him, pleading to him through
the tones of his voice, but simultaneously thinking about
something totally different and unrelated -- or if he is
not thinking at all but merely mouthing meaningless syllables?
Obviously the devotee will be inwardly seen as insincere
and shallow, saying things that he doesn't really mean.
It would be unwise to assume that the Gods are incapable
of perceiving such states of mind. They are, in fact, more
fully aware of the devotee's inner feeling and thinking
states during bhajana than the devotee himself.
bathes before coming to satsanga or bhajana.
One prepares the mind and the emotion, knowing that he is,
in a sense, on stage and performing before beings of great
intelligence who are able from their microcosm to look into
this macrocosm. These Gods are being invoked, and they will
attend if the invocation is properly and sincerely performed
with a devout heart and a mind that is one-pointed in spiritual
pursuit. The devas in the Second World -- which is the world
of astral or mental bodies -- will respond because their
function, their fulfillment and dharma on their plane of
consciousness is to help evolution in the First World, physical
plane, and thereby further evolve themselves. They are spiritual
helpers, working with the First World to open it up to the
Third World. All the worlds work together when Hindu devotees
gather together. The astral beings who work on the lower
astral plane contact more evolved beings in the higher Second
World who are able to themselves work with the individual
and to invoke the Third World. The Personal Deity is thus
reached, and the blessings flood forth from within.
It is very important that we are sincere
when we chant these holy hymns that have reverberated in
the nerve systems of uncounted seekers and sages down through
the millennia. We would not want to be seen as insincere
or inattentive, saying one thing and thinking another, or
saying and thinking one thing and feeling another. Presenting
ourselves to the Gods through prayerful song or just appearing
before them in the temple precincts, we want to be in a
most pious and profound state of mind. Ordinary affairs
must be temporarily relinquished, along with ordinary feelings
and thoughts. Yet, you would not want to pretend either.
If you are unhappy when you come to the temple, they must
see that unhappiness; and you must not try to cloud or conceal
it from them or yourself. Then they can help. The Gods are
going to see you the way you are from their vantage point
in the microcosm looking out and into this macrocosm.
Depth of Meaning and Feeling
For those of you who may not know the Sanskrit
language, it is necessary to make a special effort to understand,
in English or in the language with which you are most familiar,
what is being chanted in Sanskrit during bhajana.
When we chant together "Ganesha Sharanam," it is essential
that we know that it means "I take refuge in the darshana
of Lord Ganesha." Even knowing the meaning is not enough.
You must actually take refuge in the overpowering feeling
of Ganesha's presence as you visualize His murti
or form. You must also be able to awaken to the higher emotional
realms, to rise to a devotional mood as you are singing
to the Gods, a mood that itself carries you into Ganesha's
protective refuge, a mood that awakens you to the presence
of Ganesha's love and compassion. If you are singing to
the Gods with such genuine feelings, then the song itself
has been transcended even while you are in the midst of
your lyrical worship. Now this is very important. That makes
your chanting truly beneficial, beneficial not only for
yourself and those who are with you but for all mankind.
You could be singing Ganesha sharanam,
sharanam Ganesha most beautifully, with no thought deeper
than enjoying the sounds and realizing that you were on
key and another in the room was not. Or you could be singing
and at the same time thinking about some problem that came
up during the day or an event that will take place in the
days to come.
Little benefit is to be derived from such
an approach to bhajana. Similarly, when the time
comes at a later date for you to be initiated into the art
of meditation, there will be no real meditation if the mind
is allowed to wander aimlessly, mulling over things of the
past and imaginings of the future. Bhajana too, is
a sadhana that requires preparation, attention and
concentration. It is not an external performance meant to
entertain the participants. It is an internal performance
that invokes the inner-plane Gods and draws awareness deep
within. Approach your chanting as a devotional sadhana.
Let it be a time of communion with the deepest strata of
consciousness within you and a communication with the Gods.
Study the chants. Memorize their meanings so that as your
voice goes out into the physical room your awareness simultaneously
pierces into inner dimensions.
From your own experience in the world you
can understand how the Gods naturally perceive an aspirant
whose body is joining in the bhajana but whose mind
is elsewhere. People have come to you and said things that
they did not mean. People have talked with you and you knew
that they were thinking about something entirely different
and thinking only absent-mindedly about the conversation.
You have observed the results when people approach anything
half-heartedly, perhaps preferring that they were somewhere
else doing something else. Nothing permanent and valuable
is ever accomplished even on the gross physical plane by
such an approach. Then how much more important is it that
the subtle worlds, the deeper states of consciousness, be
approached with mindfulness?
The Group Helps the Individual
A group that is chanting regularly, singing
to the Gods day after day after day, gives the devas great
power, a channel through which they can reach out and help
other Hindus in the community and around the world. Within
a hundred-mile radius inner-plane helpers assigned to guide
Hindus, who are perhaps not religious Hindus, would come
to the bhajana on the astral plane and be renewed
themselves. Inner-plane helpers may also be renewed and
A large satsanga or bhajana
conducted regularly at the same time can summon these thousands
and thousands of guardian devas together in a single conclave,
renewing and inspiring them. Then they go back to the First
World Hindu whom they are bound to guard and guide and in
turn uplift and inspire him. He may be lifted out of the
fog of the outer mind in its morass of confusions and become
inspired to pay closer attention to his religion. He may
awaken a desire to go to the temple, to serve others more
selflessly, and on and on. Such things can happen just because
a group of devotees get together and sing to God, feel what
they are singing, know the meaning of the words they are
saying and the implications within the meaning of the words.
Of course, children love to sing; and bhajana is
universally enjoyed by children of all ages, providing one
of the most wonderful ways to bring your sons and daughters
fully into the religion. They should attend group bhajanas
often. The family itself can chant together in the shrine
room each day for at least a few minutes.
We want to take it all in, take in the tone,
take in the thought, take in the feeling, take in the knowledge
-- take it all back to the source, back to the microcosm
where you were living ten months before you were born in
this physical world. You were there in the microcosm, fully
aware, fully matured, working out your own spiritual destiny
through helping those on this plane, awaiting another birth
that would catapult you into an even greater evolution when
you returned to the microcosm. So the microcosm is nothing
with which you are not familiar. You came out of the microcosm
and will return to it after the purpose of this birth has
been fulfilled. It is really more your home than any structure
on this earth could ever be. So you are just contacting
home when you invoke the Second World. It is nothing difficult.
It is relatively easy, and you can do it night after night
after night as you sing here to the Gods. Know that there
are people listening, people just like you, people on the
lower astral plane and people on the higher astral planes.
They too join in the chanting where they are. If you had
an inner ear, you could stop chanting and they would all
be heard chanting simultaneously. This has been done; these
inner-plane chants have been heard. The more regular the
bhajana, the deeper it penetrates into the inner
worlds. We believe that religion is the working together
of the three worlds, and in our bhajana this working
together is a joyous ritual simultaneously celebrated on
all planes of consciousness.
Association with Other Devotees
One of the great benefits to be derived
from bhajana is the association with other devotees,
others of your religion who believe as you do and whose
strength is added to your own. This is known as satsanga.
Satsanga is the traditional meeting of Hindu Truth-seekers,
gathered often to read from scripture or to receive upadesha
from a swami or their own satguru. The company of
good men and women who themselves exemplify the Hindu ideals,
who are striving, who are devout and virtuous, is to be
sought after. Such association will immeasurably enhance
your own efforts.
It is very important in the world today
that Hindu people gather together and express themselves
in a religious way. Satsanga groups are formed all
over the world wherever Hindus are found. The greatness
of Hinduism lies in its diversity, and this diversity is
also its greatest strength. This applies to the religion
as a whole as well as to various groups within it. No single
satsanga group will be quite like another, yet those
within it must be in agreement on at least the major points
of the philosophy that it represents.
When you join a satsanga group, this
becomes your religious experience and focus. It is different
from the experience of worship in the temple, and it is
different from private meditation and devotions in your
home shrine. When you go to worship in the temple, you are
there alone even though others may be present. It is a most
sacred and individual experience, a time set aside for communion
with your personal Deity. Within the satsanga group,
however, within that kind of sanga, you are sharing
your devotion with others. You temporarily set aside your
own mind, your karma, for a period of time and work your
mind within the context of the group, which is the combined
mind or karma of those present. This by no means should
be taken to be a total involvement or entangling of the
various karmas, but is a temporary combining or merging
of karmas for those few hours each week when the satsanga
I have often said that the individual helps
the group and the group helps the individual. This is to
be clearly seen in the working of group devotions and chanting
in satsanga groups. We are inspired, lifted above
our personal concerns and able to give our thoughts entirely
to the high purposes of the satsanga; and with everyone
present doing this, a dynamic vibration is created, an environment
that is conducive to further progress on the spiritual path.
Sharing Individual Karmas
There are many religious groups throughout
the world sharing the same philosophy and beliefs, chanting
the same bhajanas and meeting together regularly.
Some of these groups are productive, while others are unproductive.
The actual results which manifest as a consequence of the
gathering of a satsanga group are totally dependent
upon the combined karma of the group as a whole.
The one mind of the group is made up of
both the positive and negative karmas of each member. This
does not mean that if a group is unproductive or unhappy
that certain members should be singled out and sent away,
for that would only serve to create yet a greater unseemly
karma for the outcast as well as for the group that inadvisedly
cast him out. Rather this indicates that the group must
perform a deeper sadhana, a greater disciplined effort,
that it must make a special effort to feel inwardly the
meaning of the words as they are chanted and be in tune
with the extraterrestrial vibratory rate of the devonic
world. The group may also ponder whether the social period
is excessively long, whether too much emphasis is being
placed on the foods being served and whether one or more
members are bringing their personal karmic implications
and involvements into the group rather than taking these
matters to the feet of the Lord. Above all, the group should
realize that a problem exists within the mind of the group,
which is no particular individual's fault or problem. It
is simply an effect of accumulated and combined karmas of
the entire membership and must be faced in this impersonal
A productive group is also a harmonious
group, a useful group. Its members will want to distribute
religious literature as a natural overflow of the energies
that well up from within them during the satsanga.
They will want to give food to the hungry. They will not
be able to neglect the needy. They will naturally want to
host a Hindu family newly arrived in their community, to
visit Hindus in the hospital, to write letters for them,
talk to them and see that they are properly cared for. There
are so many practical things that a satsanga group
can and should involve itself with, but this is possible
only when all members are of a one mind, a one harmony.
If the group is an unproductive group, it
will be found to be a group that is inharmonious and argumentative,
one in which the asuric forces are perhaps more prevalent
than the devonic forces. This must be dealt with
positively, not run away from or avoided. If asuric
forces have penetrated the group, it is best to chant sitting
in a circle, thereby creating enough magnetism to lift the
consciousness of the entire satsanga simultaneously.
If the group is a harmonious group, then all may sit, as
at traditional Hindu gatherings, with the women on one side
of the room and the men on the other. It is always preferable
to sit on the floor, for that releases certain forces from
within the body that can greatly enhance the spiritual life
of man. When we worship in a temple, we receive individual
attention from the great beings of the Second and Third
Worlds. That is our time for personal communication with
the inner worlds, with the inner realms of our own being.
But satsanga is different, and that difference should
be realized by all present. It is a group religious experience.
It enhances both the personal karma of every member as well
as the collective karma of the one mind which is the sanga
I urge each satsanga group to look
sincerely into its productivity and to seek creative ways
that it can be useful to its members and to the community
in which it lives. It is important that we use our energies
well, that we do not waste energy, do not waste our lives.
Satsanga groups can search out ways to help the many
thousands of Hindus who have migrated from the Holy Land
to all parts of the world and would benefit from a kind
word and a compassionate smile.
There are many ways that satsanga
groups can be conducted, and there will be established groups
with their own routines. New groups just being formed may
wish to follow our schedule of twenty minutes of bhajana
followed by twenty minutes of scriptural
reading or upadesha and then another twenty minutes
of bhajana, making a total of one hour. It is customary
to have satsanga groups move from one home to another
each week or each month, and of course the leader and host
of the satsanga that week is always the person in
whose home the group is meeting. He or she would select
the reading or recording to be used that week, or arrange
for a talk by a swami or other spiritual leader. The host
would also arrange the room, preparing a small altar which
could have a picture of the Deity -- Lord Ganesha is agreeable
to all -- and pictures of the gurus of the various members
of the satsanga, for all will not necessarily share
the same preceptor. As a satsanga group grows in
strength and maturity, these and other ways of helping our
fellow man will blossom forth. That is the first sign that
the satsanga has done its work on the inside, has
begun to fulfill its purpose.
Special Collection Of Hymns to Lord Ganesha
For Young and Old Alike
On the following
pages we have assembled several hymns for individual or
group singing and chanting. We have put the chants into
Western musical notation so they can be played easily on
a harmonium. A free translation of the Sanskrit into English
has also been added to inspire high-minded thought and visualization
based on the meaning of the songs. Usually one person leads
the group, and then another, with the leader chanting the
verse initially, then the entire group repeating that verse
once. The leader then chants the second verse, and so on.
Often the leader, if he or she is musically adept, will
make embellishments on the musical line; but the group generally
repeats the verse in its simple form. Many chants start
off slowly and gradually pick up in both speed and volume.
The length of the chant is left to the leader's discretion,
but usually is best when limited to five or ten minutes.
These songs may be used during formal bhajana
and informally to yourself at other times during the day.
Sing them during your morning meditations and silently to
yourself throughout the day. Sing them before meals and
to the children just before they go to sleep. Sing them
as you work and in the car as you travel. When you are discouraged,
sing. When you are inspired and creative, sing. When you
are upset, sing. When you find yourself waiting somewhere
and feeling there is nothing to do, sing to the Gods. Sing
with a full heart. As you sing, listen for the silence within
the sounds; for that silence is itself the voice of God.
Gita means song. Gitas can
be sung solo or in unison by a group. The pace is relaxed.
The words aid in devotional visualization. We seek to invoke
the darshana and shakti of Lord Ganesha, picturing
Him in our minds while concentrating on His divine attributes.
A deep communion with the joyous Lord is attained. "Vighneshvara
Gita" is often the first taught to beginning students of
Hindu music. Sing with all your heart this ode to our Loving
Ganesha. He will hear. Yes, He will hear. It is important
to realize that, with His big ears and His astute mind,
He knows everything at every point in time, even when eating
a modaka. This is amusing. So, sing out loud; sing
boldly His songs; and His grace will pour upon you with
all the abundance under His control (which is, actually,
SONG TO THE LORD OF OBSTACLES
VERSE 1: O Ganesha, You are the red-colored
of the ganas, the ocean of compassion,
O elephant-faced Lord.
VERSE 2: The siddhas and charanas
ever in Your service, the grantor of all attainment. O Vinayaka,
we bow to You again and again.
VERSE 3: Master of all arts and knowledge,
the best one of all, we bow to You again and again.
REFRAIN: Big-bellied Lord who blesses all
with prosperity, Parvati's son, you are praised by all the
Composed by Purandaradasa
Dhyanam means "meditation." This
form of song is usually done solo, slowly, in free time,
with no instruments other than a drone. More prayer than
music, the words of a dhyanam are often from our
ancient Sanskrit scriptures. For singers, it is a devotional
offering. For listeners, the words direct the mind to commune
silently with Loving Ganesha. A short meditative silence
following any dhyanam is traditional. Not enough
can be said about meditation. It is the perfection of the
peaceful mind. What makes the mind not peaceful? Well, Ganesha
would explain in His exemplary way, "Among the realms beyond
My reach, one is fear." Still, He can help, for fear is
within His control, even though it resides as the emotion
within the chakra directly below the muladhara chakra
upon which He sits: the four-petalled lotus of great beauty
and strength rising above the waters of memory. Further
below Him is the chakra of anger and rage in which the mind
gives up its control to asuric forces. He, our loving
Lord, prays for those in the state of anger, because mind
and emotions out of control seals us from His grace. So,
sing the song to lift up the purusha into its own
pristine glory, and begin to change. That is the message
of our loving God.
"MEDITATION ON OUR LOVING GANEShA"
Translation: O elephant-faced Lord
Who is served by all creatures and satisfied with the juice
of kapittha and jambu fruits, son of Uma,
remover of sufferings and pains, O Remover of Obstacles,
Vigneshvara, I bow at Your lotus feet.
Bhajana means adoration or worship,
often by responsive group singing. A leader sings a phrase;
the group repeats it exactly. Bhajanas usually have
a strong rhythm, sometimes slow and steady and then fast,
sparking attention, and raising the group energy. Bhajana
is dynamic japa. The goal is concentrated communion
with the God. Three bhajanas follow, two from tradition
and one from recent times.
"Lord Ganesha, you are my refuge."
This song was inspired by the eight-foot-tall
granite statue of Panchamukha Ganapati that we installed
on the north shore of Mauritius, the Pearl of the Indian
Ocean. This majestic five-faced, ten-armed Ganapati looks
east toward India over azure blue seas -- a towering reminder
of the original home of the nation's Hindus and of the importance
of harmony in life. The greatest linguist of all time is
He who holds time in ten hands, balancing it moment to moment
by slightly moving His magnificent trunk. Yes, language
is no mystery to our loving Lord. He knows them all. The
island's official language, French, and its sweet child
Creole are perfect mediums for bhajana. All Creole
vernaculars of the world are dear to His ears. They are
languages of the heart.
VERSES: O Five-faced Lord of Ganas, let there
be harmony in the family, in society and in all our business
affairs. Long live culture and our religion. Grant us love
of God and charity for all.
REFRAIN: O Elephant-Lord, protect and heal
INVOCATION DE CINQ GANESHA
The venerable sage, Asan Yogaswami
of Jaffna, Sri Lanka, sang many songs of God, Gods and his
beloved guru which contained profound religious and metaphysical
teachings. These songs were called Natchintanai, meaning
good thoughts. In one famous ode to the One
God Íiva, Yogaswami invokes Ganesha in the first
verse, before proceeding to sing of the One. Using traditional
images, he alludes to a famous story where Lord Ganesha
gave His grace to Lord Indra, king of the Vedic devas. He
also speaks of the ancient mystery teaching that Lord Ganesha's
form is the mantra Aum itself. Thus did Yogaswami affirm
the teaching to worship our loving Lord Ganesha first before
beginning any worship or task.
Invocation of the Elephant-Faced Lord
O elephant-faced Lord, son
with voluminous belly and earrings, who granted grace
to Indra, the king of the devas.
You who are of mantra form I will never forget.
Throughout time Lord Ganesha
as Aum has come into the lives of the elemental beings,
men, women, children and even the Gods themselves. For His
is the office of gatekeeper. Nothing can begin without a
nod of approval; and nothing can end without giving thanks
and showing appreciation to Him, for every end is a new
beginning. Loving Ganesha has a mystical symbol, the swastika.
It represents the power of the matured mind: a mind that
has flexibility; a mind that has resilience; a mind that
has compassion; a mind that has the twice-born strength
to finish what has been begun; a mind that is in touch with
the divine -- above, below and to either side. The swastika
represents Ganesha, to be sure.
TANDI MUKHAN TANAI