God is one. His energies envelop the whole universe. Yet people worship different forms of God – because each different physical form represents different aspect of His energy and divination. Similarly, people worship different avatars of Lord Ganapati to address the different issues that may arise in different stages of their lives.
Let us understand the significance of worshiping the different forms of Ganapati:
Bala Ganapati (Child Ganapati)
In this form, Lord Ganapati appears as a lovable child. He is depicted as having four arms in which he holds a mango, a banana, a sugarcane, a flower bunch in each with his trunk holding his favorite sweet – modaka. He represents the fertility and abundance of the earth in this form.
This form has a calming and pleasing effect on an agitated mind. Worship of this form bestows one’s children with sharp intelligence, good health and all around happiness. Childless couple worship Bala Ganesha to bless them with a bright and healthy baby.
Dwija Ganapati (Twice-born Ganapati):
Ganapati is also called Dwija or ‘Twice-Born’. Lord Shiva, had first beheaded Ganapati on being refused entry into Parvati’s abode. However, on realizing the truth, He had revived him by replacing his severed head with an elephant’s head. Hence the name ‘Dwija’. this form of Ganapati is regarded to be equivalent to Lord Brahma.
Worshiping Dwija form of Ganapati blesses one in attaining worldly desires, status, name and fame in society, materialistic gains, etc. Dwija Ganapati also helps to reduce debt problems and make materialistic gains.
Ekakshara Ganapati (Single Syllable Ganapati):
‘Eka’ means ‘one’ and ‘Akshara’ means ‘syllable’. The single syllable indicates Ganesha’s sacred Beej Mantra “Gam” – “गं“. This red complexioned Ekakshara Ganapati embodies cosmic unity, oneness of matter and singleness of spirit.
Worshiping Ekakshara Ganapati helps one to gain control over one’s senses and temptations and triumphantly overcome the duality and delusions of Maya (Illusion) generated by his senses. Meditating on this form helps in focusing one’s mind and progressing in the realm of spirituality.
Heramba Ganapati (The Great Protector):
‘He’ means ‘helplessness’; and ‘Ramba’ denotes ‘protection’. HeRamba Ganapati is the compassionate form of Ganesha who protects the weak and the helpless. The five-faced Lord Ganesha rides on a mighty lion signifying that one who controls his five senses can easily win over his worst enemy.
Worship of Heramba Ganapati gives confidence to the weak and hope to the dejected. Heramba Ganapati has the power to confer fearlessness and bring defeat or destruction to one’s enemies. One gets the strength to manage the difficult situations in life and achieve their goals.
Kshipra Prasada Ganapati (Quick Blessing):
‘Kshipra’ indicates quickness, and ‘Prasada’ means blessing or action. As the name suggests, Kshipra Prasada Ganapati is an immediate provider of benefits. A devotee is able to accomplish his tasks quickly.
Kshipra Prasada Ganapati fulfils the wishes of his devotees almost instantaneously.. He not only grants immediate boons but is also an instant vindicator of wrong doings as well. He holds a pot of nectar in his hands; he also grants longevity of life besides bestowing knowledge and wisdom.
‘Lakshmi’ symbolizes prosperity and affluence. In this form, Lord Ganesha is flanked by his two consorts – Buddhi and Siddhi. Buddhi refers to intelligence and wisdom. Siddhi represents success and perfection. This form primarily represents wisdom and achievements thereby bringing in riches and growth.
The Lakshmi Ganapati form not only grants wealth but also many more blessings. Worshiping Lakshmi Ganapati is said to bless the devotee with wealth, wisdom and knowledge. It endows the devotees with material gains apart for intelligence and prosperity.
Maha Ganapati (The Great Ganapati):
Maha Ganapati is one among the most popularly worshiped form of Ganesha. In this form, He resembles his father Lord Shiva in more than one ways – He too has a third eye and also adorns a crescent Moon on his head. It is believed that Sri Krishna is offering prayer to Maha Ganapati.
Worship of Maha Ganapati brings victory, success and harmony in family and life by removing all the obstacles and negative energies. Maha Ganapati bestows upon His devotees immense merit and all-round prosperity.
Nritya Ganapati (Dancing Ganapati):
‘Nritya’ means ‘Dance’. Nritya Ganapati depicts Ganesha as dancing happily. It represents the relaxed and delightful aspect of the Lord. Ganapati is a connoisseur of fine arts.It was traditionally believed that a devotee of Nritya Ganapati attains proficiency in 64 types of fine arts (चौसठ कला ) and achieves excellence in them.
Thus, worship of Nritya Ganapati is believed to bestow one with a flair for learning fine arts, being proficient in them, and attaining success and fame in the related fields. No wonder, Nritya Ganapati is greatly worshiped by artists, and especially by dancers.
Runa Vimochana Ganapati (Reliever of Debts):
‘Runa’ or ‘Rina’ means ‘debt’ and ‘Vimochana’ is ‘getting relieved from’. Runa Vimochana Ganapati thus denotes the gracious form of Ganapati, who helps his devotees’ to relieve their debts – both worldly debts as well as Karmic debts.
Reciting Runa Mochana Ganesha Stotram on a Wednesday of Shukla Paksha certainly helps one get rid of all kinds of debt and financial constraints. Runa Vimochana Ganapathi relieves one of debts and financial burdens by granting immense wealth and lifting hurdles that prevent one from accumulating wealth.
Shakti Ganapati (Powerful Ganapati):
In this form Ganesha is accompanied along with Shakti Devi, his consort who is seated on his left lap. Shakti Devi represents Power. In this form, Ganesha is the protector of the household and the lands. He brings peace to home and dispels all negative energies.
It is believed that when a devotee worships Shakti Ganesha , he can gain control over the five senses of human body. Thus he can then act with focus, concentration and improved concentration and can consequently, achieve his aims without any difficulty. He is the protector of the householder and brings peace to the home and family.
Siddhi Ganapati (The Accomplished Ganapati):
‘Siddhi’ means accomplishment. Hence Siddhi Ganapati is regarded as the Lord of Success. He is also believed to be the storehouse of Ashta Siddhis, the 8 rare and magical powers by which one can control oneself, others and the forces of nature.
Siddhi Ganapati is regarded to be an embodiment of excellence. He removes all the obstacles and negative energies and bestows one with victory, brings harmony in family and helps one succeed in life. He blesses His devotees with the power to succeed in any venture they undertake.
Taruna Ganapati (Youthful Ganapati):
Taruna Ganapati is an eight-armed exuberant form of Lord Ganapati. This compassionate form represents youth, enthusiasm and freshness. In this form, He is depicted as a young god with a compassionate face.
Devotees worship this form asking Ganesha to remove the bitterness in their lives and to bless them with sound health, happiness and a joyful life. Worship of this form helps in removing their obstacles and solving the problems they are facing. Taruna form of Ganapati is believed to banish all the work related problems and hurdles.
Ucchista Ganapati (Blessing of Relationships):
Ucchista Ganapati is considered a superior aspect of Lord Ganesha. He is the Lord of Blessed Offerings and guardian of culture. Mediating over this form is said to impart control over the five sensory organs
Worship of this form of Ganesha is believed to strengthen relationships, increase intimacy between couples and bestow them with good progeny. Ucchista Ganesha is venerated to dispel domestic disharmony and improve relationship between couples. All sorts of troubles and differences with in-laws too are sorted; the family bonds well together and lives happily.
Urdhva Ganapati (Elevated Ganapati):
‘Urdhva’ means ‘Elevated’ or ‘Lofty’. This golden form of Ganapati form acts as a benefactor to his devotees. He provides refuge to them from all sorts of difficulties and impediments, and helps them rise to high levels in life.
Those who have lost a sense of direction or purpose or are facing severe difficulties in their lives can benefit the most by worshiping this form. Urdhva Ganapati removes obstacles and helps his devotees find solutions to their severe problems. Meditating on this form frees one’s consciousness from deep depression.
Veera Ganapati (Brave Ganapati):
Veera Ganapati is regarded as representing the element Agni, the fire. As Vira Ganapati he is depicted as a Valiant Warrior in a commanding position with 16 arms and 16 powerful weapons. This is the fiercest of all the forms of Ganapati.
Worshiping this powerful form is believed to help in overcoming fears and threats, develop courage to face difficult situations and also removes evil and ignorance. Thus, one can then face life’s challenges with confidence and win over them. Veera Ganapati also protects women from all female-related diseases.
Vighna Ganapati (The Obstacles Remover):
This is the victorious form of Ganesha. The ten-handed Vighna Ganesha is the dispeller of impediments and difficulties. He is invoked at the time of launch of any new auspicious work or business. He is regarded as remover of difficulties – both of materialistic and spiritual order.
This form of Ganapati is worshiped to mitigate problems and solve difficulties. It is believed that sincere prayers offered to him regularly can remove all negative influences, and bring success and prosperity. The devotee is able to win the hearts of all with love and without any malice.