, also known as
, is one of the deities best-known and most widely worshipped in the Hindu pantheon. His image is found throughout India and Nepal, and Devotion to Ganesha is widely diffused and extends too many forms.
is a word compounded from the Sanskrit word
, meaning "the hosts," "multitudes" or "troops" of demigods, especially the retinue of Lord Siva under the rule of Ganesha, and
, "ruler," "lord" or "sovereign." This is virtually synonymous with the name
"master of the hosts." As Ganapati, Lord Ganesha is the leader of the
ruling over the celestial hosts, over the benign as well as the malevolent inner-plane beings. He controls them by strategy and intelligence. We follow the path of Lord Ganesha when we resort to discrimination and sagacity to resolve our difficulties, when we proceed past obstacles in a slow, prudent and well-planned manner. Lord Ganesha is not in a hurry. He is cautious. He is patient, willing to wait the right time for events to take place. As Vighneshvara, Lord Ganesha is Lord of Obstacles, creating difficulties and obstructions if the time is wrong for us to proceed and removing those same obstacles when our success is assured. It is to Vighneshvara that we supplicate before we undertake a task, plan a change in our life or begin the worship any of the other Gods. As Ekadanta, Lord Ganesha is the Single-Tusked One, the Patron of Literature who, when all others failed, Himself undertook to scribe the great epic,
, dictated to Him by sage