Lord Ganesha is a Hindu deity. It is said that he is the remover of obstacles.
Before I go further, I’d like to note that Yoga and Hinduism are two separate entities. Hinduism is a religion. It is a noun. Yoga is something you do. It is a verb. I like to compare Yoga to singing. Both are verbs. Both can be incorporated into religious practice or done separately. For instance, Christians can sing in church, but not all people who sing are Christian. Hindus can do yoga, but not all people who do yoga are Hindu. In fact, I’ll throw in a little foreshadowing here. Since embarking on this journey I’ve explored a Christian based Yoga called Holy Yoga. I’ve also traveled to a Satanic Temple in Salem Massachusetts to practice Heavy Metal Yoga. But, these stories are for later on.
Suffice it to say I’ve decided to explore yoga in many different lights- including it’s religious one. Real quickly, I’d like to be honest for a moment. I’m a little in fear of what I’m getting myself into. Simply put, I am afraid tying religion into this blog might open up Pandora’s box of comments. Nevertheless, I do not feel I’d be able to fully depict Yoga if I don’t. So, with that being said, it looks like I must face my fear. (Oh Yoga, there you go – encouraging me to face my fears…)
Anyway, back to the Hindu deity known as Ganesha…
Something interesting happened that had to do with him and I want to share it with you. It was the end of day 3 of Yoga teacher training. I was sitting in class while Karen discussed the history of Yoga. Eventually she mentioned Ganesha. Upon learning of him it made me think of the obstacles in my life. I was feeling rather stuck. So, I thought it couldn’t hurt to ask Ganesha to do a little work in my favor. I smiled, sent a quick prayer his way and then continued to listen to Karen. When her discussion finished, she wrapped up by reminding us of our homework- including work in an Anatomy coloring book.
When I got home, I went in the basement and started rummaging through a box of my college stuff. It had been collecting dust since graduation back in 2008. Ironically, when I was in college a friend of mine gave me this exact coloring book! She’d decided to drop her anatomy course and didn’t feel like selling the book. Aware I collect books, like a shoe addict does shoes, she gave it to me for free.
“ This is awesome! Thanks! I’m not sure when I’ll use it but I’ll keep it!” – I gleefully said.
“ You never know when you might need it!” She replied.
Nine years later there I was. Remembering that conversation as I sifted through my college stuff looking for that book. I soon came across it. When I found it I victoriously held it up. I was prideful of my hording and happy I saved money. Anyway, here is the interesting part…
When I opened up the book, there was a picture of Ganesha inside. It was the epitome of a ‘ when-the-student-is-ready-the-teacher-will-appear- moment.’
I’m not sure if this means my teacher is Ganesha, Yoga… or perhaps both?