This discourse tells you about the important role that Lord Ganesha played in the Vamanavatara of Mahavishnu.
Meaning of Ganesha
Gana means group. Isha means lord or ruler. Ganesha means the lord or ruler of groups. In the universe, everything exists in groups. Devas as Vasugna, Rudragana, Adityagana. Matter as solids, liquids, gas. Time as past, present, and future. Groups of men, groups of men, groups of trees, groups of birds, groups of buildings. The lord or ruler of all such groups is Ganesha.
In the case of both Matsarasura and Dambhasura, we saw that Lord Ganesha is a God of transformation. He killed neither of them. He transformed them and put them to productive use. Do you know the role of Lord Ganesha in the Vamana Avatara of Mahavishnu ? Devas and Daityas, both are sons of Kashyapa Prajapati. Devas are Aditi's sons. Daityas are Diti's sons. Aditi and Diti are sisters. Swargaloka was assigned to Devas. Pathalaloka was assigned to Daityas.....
In the case of both Matsarasura and Dambhasura, we saw that Lord Ganesha is a God of transformation.
He killed neither of them.
He transformed them and put them to productive use.
Do you know the role of Lord Ganesha in the Vamana Avatara of Mahavishnu ?
Devas and Daityas, both are sons of Kashyapa Prajapati.
Devas are Aditi's sons.
Daityas are Diti's sons.
Aditi and Diti are sisters.
Swargaloka was assigned to Devas.
Pathalaloka was assigned to Daityas.
But Daityas were not content with what they got.
Devas were disciplined and hardworking.
They made the Swargaloka prosperous.
Daityas were tamasik by nature.
They didn't work hard, rather they wanted to snatch Swargaloka from Devas.
Every such attempt was spoiled by Lord Vishnu who took the side of the Devas because Daityas' action was not justifiable.
They should work hard, develop their own land, rather than encroaching upon the neighbour's land.
Then Bali became the emperor of Daityas.
He was an ardent devotee of Lord Vishnu and very virtuous, even though he was an Asura.
He approached Asura guru Shukracharya and asked: how to conquer Swargaloka.
Even though he was virtuous, the basic tamasik nature of Daityas never left him.
Shukracharya said: Devas are successful because they perform yajnas.
That is their strength.
You people believe only in muscle power.
Muscle power is nothing in front of spiritual power.
So you perform 100 Ashwamedha yagas.
You will get rulership over Swarga as well.
All the three worlds: Swarga, Bhumi, and Pathala.
As per this, Bali Chakravarthy started the Ashwamedha yajnas.
When the first among the hundred was completed, Indra became worried.
If he completes 100 yajnas, then Bali will also become Shatakratu like him and become eligible to become the ruler of Swarga.
Indra went to Lord Vishnu.
Lord Vishnu said: your parents Kashyapa Prajapti and Aditi once did intense tapas to propitiate me and they wanted me to take birth as their son.
I gave them that boon.
I will make use of that and will take birth as your younger brother and save you.
And send Bali to suffer in Naraka.
But Bali was a parama bhakta of Vishnu and Lord Vishnu is famous as a bhakta-vatsala.
He will never go against the interests of his devotees.
But how did this happen?
Vishnu trying to destroy his own devotee.
Planning to send him to Naraka.
When Bali started the Ashwamedha yaga, he being a Vishnu bhakta, he completely ignored Lord Ganesha.
Did not do Ganesha Puja at the beginning.
That triggered the whole chain that followed.
Vighna was bound to happen since Ganesha Puja was not performed.
Lord Ganesha is both Vighna-karta and Vighna-harta.
Causing obstacles, removing obstacles, both are under his control.
Lord Ganesha as Vighna-karta entered Vishnu's mind and made him forget that Bali was his own devotee.
This is how it happened.
Then, Sri Hari took Vamanavatara and was born as the son of Kashyapa and Aditi.
As soon as he was born, Vamana Bhagavan realized that defeating Bali was not all that easy.
He was very powerful, his army was huge.
So Vamana asked his father for his advice.
Kashyapa said: you propitiate Lord Vakratunda, Lord Ganesha through tapas and gave Vamana upadesha of the Shadakshara-mantra of Lord Ganesha.
Vamana went to Vidarbha and performed tapas with the Shadakshara-mantra for 10 years.
By the time, he had become the ten year old brahmachari as we see him.
Lord Ganesha in his Vakratundavatara appeared before Vamana and asked him what he wanted.
Vamana said: bless me so that I can send Bali to Naraka.
Lord Ganesha must have been laughing inside that I am only making him do this against his own devotee.
Lord Ganesha said: that will happen, remember me whenever you need my help.
Vamana came to Bali's yaga vedi.
Here, since Bali did not worship Lord Ganesha in the beginning Matsarasura and Dambhasura had occupied his mind.
He was not doing the yajna for his own progress anymore.
He was doing it to beat his brothers, the Devas.
And he became arrogant also.
Matsara and Dambha.
As Vamana approached the yaga vedi, Bali welcomed him respectfully.
And asked him what he would accept as a gift, he would give him anything that he asks for.
All the hundred Ashwamedhas were completed.
By this time, Shukracharya realized what was happening.
He saw that Vamana was none other than Lord Vishnu and Lord Ganesha was controlling Vamana's mind.
But nothing he could do.
By this time, Vamana had said: give me three feet of land.
Bali said: only that much?
I can give you more if you want.
Vamana said: no that much is enough.
Then suddenly, Vamana started growing.
Touched the sky.
With one foot he measured the entire Swarga.
With the second, he measured the entire Pathala.
What belonged to Bali was gone.
What he aspired for was also gone.
Then Vamana asked: where should I put the foot now, for the third?
Bali did not know what to do now.
He had already made the promise.
If he doesn't honour the promise, it is going to be very dangerous.
Vipra rina, debt to a noble Vipra is very dangerous.
Such debt will lead to Naraka.
Vamana didn't have to do anything.
Bali's own broken promise will land him in Naraka.
Bali again looked up to his guru.
Shukracharya said: this is all your fault.
Why did you not propitiate Lord Ganesha before starting the yaga?
Now you pray to Lord Ganesha, he can only save you from Naraka.
Bali started praying to Lord Ganesha.
Lord Ganesha is karunamurthy.
Bali has also learned his lesson.
Lord Ganesha came out of Vamana's mind and also told Bali: tell him to put the third foot on your head.
Offer your own body as the third foot measure of land.
Bali did so.
As Vighna-karta Ganesha came out of Vamana's mind, Vamana realized then only what he was doing to his own devotee.
Anyway, since Bali kept his promise, he will not have to go to Naraka.
He has completed the hundred yajnas and has become eligible to be the ruler of Swarga in the dharmik way.
Lord Vamana told him: you wait in Pathala, your own world till the present manvantara is over.
Purandara is the present Indra, the ruler of the Swarga.
Once his tenure is over, you will become the ruler of Swarga.
This was Lord Ganesha's role in Vamanavatara.
Have you ever heard about this before?
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