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How Hindu Lord Ganesh came to be what he’s known for today

Millions of Hindus will celebrate the revered deity Lord Ganesh's birthday on September 19th.

Lord Ganesh is synonymous with wealth, wisdom, knowledge and education. During this festival people celebrate by sending money to their parents and elders. There are many mythological stories about Ganesh, here is one that celebrates his devotion to his parents.

As legend has it, Ganesh was always known as being someone who was full of patience and wisdom, as he and his brother, Kartikeya, were known far and wide for being intelligent and powerful. But on one occasion their parents, Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati, wanted to determine who was the wiser of the two brothers, so they decided to have race – ‘A race round the world’…!

On its face, the ultimate winner of the race seemed like it would be an easy answer, as Ganesh was slow, fat and had a mouse for a vehicle. Kartikeya, meanwhile, was well built and had a fast-paced peacock. With these benefits, Kartikeya, took advantage of his upper hand and went around the world at blistering speed. But Ganesh took a different method. To Ganesh, his world was represented by his parents, telling them this as he encircled them several times. Astounded by Ganesh's loyalty and quick-witted nature, Parvati and Lord Shiva declared Ganesh as the wiser one. Ever since, Lord Ganesh has been revered for all that he represents – including love of family, devotion, knowledge and serving as a source of strength.

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