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Ganesh Chaturthi: How Lord Ganesha Got His Elephant-Like Head And Why He’s Worshipped First

Lord Ganesha, also known as Ganpati, is usually worshipped before any other Gods. People never begin any auspicious work without worshipping Lord Ganesha. Not only this but Lord Ganesha has the body of a human but has the head of an elephant.

Have you ever wondered why is it so? Well, this Ganesh Chaturthi that is on 22 August 2020, we are here with a story that will tell you the reason why people worship Lord Ganesha before worshipping any other Gods and why He is elephant-headed. Scroll down the article to read more.

Also read: Ganesh Chaturthi 2020: Things You Can Offer To Please The Elephant-Headed God

Goddess Parvati

Parvati, also known as Adi Shakti, the Goddess of divine strength, power, beauty, fertility, marital bliss and children was the daughter of Himavat, the great mountain king. Upon getting married to Lord Shiva, she went on to live with Him.

Goddess Parvati never liked being disturbed while she bathed. She always wanted to bathe in solitude without anybody's interference, including Lord Shiva. She often conveyed the same to Lord Shiva but He often forgot this. One day, Goddess Parvati asked Nandi, Lord Shiva's bull to guard outside her bathroom, while she was bathing. She asked Him not to allow anybody inside, no matter what. Nandi agreed and went to obey the orders of Goddess Parvati.

But when Lord Shiva came back home and asked for Goddess Parvati, Nandi being devoted and loyal to Lord Shiva stepped aside to let Him go inside the house while Goddess Parvati was bathing.

The Birth Of Goddess Parvati's Son

This saddened Goddess Parvati as She thought there was no one as loyal and faithful to Her as Nandi is for Lord Shiva. This is when Goddess Parvati scrubbed some turmeric paste (that she was supposed to use while bathing) from her body and kneaded it into a small boy. She then breathed life into it and thus a boy with beautiful sparkling eyes and divine looks stood before her. She hugged the boy and called it Her son. She then asked Her son to guard her bathroom while she was taking a bath inside it. She asked him not to let anyone inside unless She herself came out. The boy agreed and went out to guard the bathroom while his mother bathed inside.

The Wrath Of Lord Shiva

This is when Lord Shiva came home once again and tried to get inside. He saw a small boy standing in front of the entrance of the house with legs apart and arms folded. He ordered the boy to let him in but the boy didn't agree. Lord Shiva tried to persuade the boy, only to hear that his mother has asked no one to step inside. This enraged Lord Shiva and in a fit of rage, He ran his sword around the neck of the boy. The boy fell down with a loud cry, "Mother!"

Hearing the cry of Her son, Goddess Parvati ran and came out of the house. She saw the headless and lifeless body of Her son. She picked her dead son in Her lap and cried bitterly. She started scolding Lord Shiva bitterly and said she would destroy the entire universe. She became so angry that nobody could pacify her. Finally, Lord Shiva apologised and asked His dear wife to calm down. But Goddess Parvati said that She wanted Her son to be alive and healthy as before, else she would destroy life on earth.

The Head Of The Elephant

Lord Shiva then requested Lord Brahma to bring the head of the first living being they came across. He also asked to bring the head of only that living being whose mother would be sitting with her back facing her children and head facing North. Soon Lord Brahma came with the head of a baby elephant and gave it to Lord Shiva. Lord Shiva put the head on the lifeless body of the boy and breathed life into it. Soon the boy stood up once again with tiny sparkling eyes. Goddess Parvati lifted Her son into Her arms and smiled joyfully.

This is when Lord Shiva too hugged the boy and said, "You are beautiful my dear son. I am sorry for not recognising you." He also blessed the boy and named him as Ganesha, the leader of the Ganas (living being). He blessed the boy and said, "from now onwards you will be worshipped before any other God. No auspicious work will commence without your worship and you will be known as the one who removes obstacles from one's life."

Other Gods too blessed Lord Ganesha and said that He will lead not only the living beings but also the Gods and will bring fortune and wisdom to those who worship Him.
This is why Lord Ganesha has the head of an elephant and is worshipped before any other Gods.

Ganpati Bappa Morya!!!