Whispering to God
One one of my visits to Ganapatipule, as soon as I entered the Hindu temple complex, I was awestruck by the spiritual vibrations around me. I am not a religious person, but I could feel the presence of Lord Ganesha spiritually in the people. On the path leading up to the temple, there were rows of shops selling flowers, coconuts, sweets, incense sticks and other things that are required for offering prayers to the God.
Inside the temple, the sanctum’s gold plated dome sparkled with the glow of an opulent chandelier hanging from the ceiling. The elaborate statue of Lord Ganesha was at the far end.
I noticed a long queue of people converging on a point. Curiosity made me walk there and I marveled at a big idol of a mouse! Yes, a mouse!
Made of fiber glass and gold in color, it was a huge idol not to be missed. In more affluent temples these idols are made of either gold or silver.
On enquiry I was told, “Do you have a wish that you want fulfilled? Pray to Lord Ganesha, the remover of obstacles”.
I looked at the serpentine queue again. Oh! The crowd had swarmed around the temple and patiently lined up for the wishes to be heard.
Thus, a India traveling tip is that if you happen to visit any temple dedicated to the elephant headed God, Lord Ganesha, you first get to meet His ‘mount’, a mouse.
And how our wishes get conveyed to the God?
It is believed that the mouse, as Lord Ganesha’s ‘mount’ (vaahan in Hindi), will carry the devotees’ wishes to Him. So, you should approach him, make some offerings such as flowers, coconuts and sweets to be given to the God and whisper your wishes into one of the mouse’s ears while placing a hand over the other ear.
If the mouse is happy, the offerings and wishes reach to the God and you will receive Lord Ganesha’s blessings in return.
I watched people do this with such sincerity and earnestness, that I don’t remember when I joined the queue and invoked Lord Ganesha’s blessings through a small prayer whispered in the ear of his trusted servant, the mouse.
Who knows, the wishes just might come true!
I was overwhelmed by the sights all around me. People of all ages and religions, irrespective of their faiths, were bowing their heads in reverence.
On specials days or festivals the feverish activity of this belief in Lord Ganesha’s ability to answer their prayers grows up many folds.
Note - This article was published sometime back in Vagabundo magazine.
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