The Hindu God Symbology Adventure
My name is Beejal Parmar, aka. Indian Beejones, global adventurer, explorer of ancient wisdom, husband, father, international speaker, business and lifeskills trainer, author, co-founder of GIFT Trainings.
Together with my daughter and global team, we create and facilitate Gamified Immersive Functional Themed business and lifeskill trainings for entrepreneurs and businesses.
If you’re interested to learn more about our gamified and immersive trainings, there is a link at the bottom of this page… but for now, read on:
I grew up watching movies such as Star Wars, Indiana Jones, 3-Musketeers, Zoro, Sinbad, … and sci-fi Shows such as Battlestar Galactica, Buck Rogers, Dr. Who. I was also an avid reader, and had read both the old and new Testament (aka. Bible), and Bhagavad Gita.
I also grew up reading comic books, both the western super hero ones and Hindu mythology ones. I was fascinated and loved both. Even as a youngster I believed in my own way, that these superheroes and ‘gods’ were an extension of mankind’s imagination and creativity.
Although I was born into a Hindu family, my parents never forced their religious beliefs upon me. In fact, my religious beliefs changed when I was 7 ½ years old, or shortly thereafter. When I first saw Star Wars I learnt about this thing called the ‘Force’, and although I could not articulate it, it felt like knowing that this was more realistic to me than what I was learning about religion.
In many ways, from that day on, my religion, if you can call it that, was a belief in the Jedi philosophy of the ‘Force’. Many years later, I learnt about the connection between the concept of the Force, Yoda, the Jedi Knights to Vedic philosophy, the Sanskrit word Yodha, and the warrior rishi’s of ancient India.
Ref: Star Wars, George Lukas and Joseph Campbell.
Growing up, I never could accept or believe that God was some form of ‘entity’ that favored ‘one people’ over another, or favored one color or culture over another, nor do I believe in a God, that is cruel, unjust, judgmental, angry, and passes his wraith down upon man.
In my youth, I was infamous for questioning Hindu priest, I encountered at Weddings and other Hindu ceremonies, and even family elders. I would ask questions, and no one could give me any answers that made sense. This made me question and fault Hinduism as a concept even more. Especially when friends of other religions seemed to have a more structured understanding of their religion.
Nevertheless, my interest and intrigue in the Hindu Gods and Mythology continued.
Back in 2009, I had hit rock bottom. To be honest, the struggles started in 2001, and in the years that followed, life was like a rollercoaster ride, at least that’s what I use to say, until I realized you choose to get on a rollercoaster, you know what to expect!
A more accurate description is life became turbulent. Over the next several years, our story was filled with the struggles of failed partnerships, fraud, deceit, financial losses, hardship, friendship, and friends who abandoned us, family that supported us, and family who scorned us, we found true friends who helped us, and mentors who guided us… You know, the typical hero’s adventure!
In February 2009, I woke up one day, I looked up at the heavens and shouted “why me!”. I really felt I had reached a new low, a total failure, despite a good education, growing up in a loving and supportive home, nothing I had done or doing seemed to be working, I was depressed, angry and afraid of the future. My confidence and hope was broken, despite having been an avid reader of self-help books, spiritual practitioner, attended many a seminar… the future seemed rather bleak.
This was when my wife reached out to her mother, yup, that would be my mother-in-law, and she suggested we perform a sacred Hindu ceremony to appease our ancestor. At this time we were living in San Diego, and the ritual was to take place in Gujarat, India.
However, when the crap hit’s the fan (pardon the expression), I was open to doing anything.
I don’t want to bore you with the details… so here the short version:
- We sent some of our personal items and photo’s to the head priest in India.
- He gathered 12 other priests and travelled to a sacred location at the meeting place of 3 sacred rivers.
- They would perform the ceremony on our behalf for 12 days chanting sacred Mantras several thousand times.
- My wife Yogi and I, would have to dial in, often in the middle of the night, to chant with them at key times.
- And so this went on for 12 days or so.
Towards the end of the ‘ritual’, we had to perform a Ganesha Puja…
In case you’re not familiar with Ganesha, he is the elephant headed God in Hindu mythology. He is said to be the son of Shiva and Parvathi. Here’s my ultra short version of how he came to be:
- Shiva the God of destruction, one of the 3 main God’s myth logically speaking, was married to Parvati. He had a ton of hard core followers who did his every bidding, including Nandani a man with a bull’s head…
- One fine day, Shiva decided to go on a spiritual walk about… through the cosmos…
- Parvati, feeling a little lonely after a few million years, decided to create a son from her sweat and dirt who would do her bidding…
- One day, Parvati wanted to take a bath, she asked Ganesha to stand outside their home and to not let anyone in…
- As it turns out, that’s when Shiva decided to return home, he saw this young lad guarding his home and as he went to enter his own home, Ganesha said nope… not gonna happen…
- Ganesha did not realize this was his Dad… sort of , and Shiva, despite being one of the almighty Gods, never got the memo, his beloved wife, had made herself a son…
- Shiva got rather angry and sent Nandani and his army to uproot the youngster…
- Ganesha beat the crap out of them…
- Shiva then decided to hurl his trident at Ganesha, and chopped of his head…
- Parvati came running out, cried out “you !@#$$@@#$ , you chopped of the head of our son…
- Shiva (now I am going to assume this part), gulped… and thought to him self “Ohhh crap, not the best home coming gift I could have got my wife after my million year walk about…”
- It was then he got this genius idea… he sent his peeps to look for the first living creature, to chop it’s head off, and he would re-attach it to the body of his sort of son…
- And in case you have not figured it out… they found a baby elephant.
- With his god like powers, Shiva attached the elephant head to his sons body and thus created Ganesha…
- He then proclaimed that from this day onwards, the first God to be worshipped at the start of any ceremony would be Ganesha.
- Unkowingly, Shiva created the first action figure known to man and thus started a billion dollar business of creating Ganesha statues and paintings.
Note: That’s my really short version… stories of Ganesha can fill volumes of books.
As mentioned, Ganesh or Ganesha or Ganapathi is worshipped by Hindu’s when they start something new, often at the start of ceremonies and rituals.
But what ‘he’ is most worshipped for is for the belief that ‘praying to him’ will help remove ‘obstacles / challenges’ from life.
My wife and I were sat infront of a large bronze statue of Ganesha, we were meant to be reciting some Mantra’s, but the only thoughts that seemed to be running trough my head were,
“I know there’s no god that looks like an elephant, that makes no sense whatsoever, nor do I believe there was ever a ‘god’ that looks like an elephant, for that matter like any of the Hindu God’s as per mythology… so if that’s the case, how did this form come to be and maybe more importantly why?”
As you can imagine, it’s hard to put a stream of thoughts, going a thousands miles per hour into one paragraph, but that’s pretty close for this purpose.
We finished the puja(religious ceremony), but the thoughts never fully went away.
Well as it turns out, life did turn around. Over the next 12 months we went from being broke to embarking on a 5 year global adventure. In July 2010, we started a process of letting go.
We sold most of our things, and in September, we left the US for India, with 4 red bags, 2 kids, and 1 mission… to travel the world in the spirit of love, peace, joy and adventure… and to share this with the people we met and encountered alone the way.
Our global adventure took us first to India, and we made Bangalore our home and travel base for the next 5 years. From there we would visit neighboring regions.
During our time in India, I continued my research into Hindu Mythology and specifically Symbology.
What I came to learn was that almost everything to do with Hinduism was both symbolic and scientific. Every ‘God’ was literally ‘designed’, and encoded within the design was ancient and profound wisdom.
I liken it to early day info graphics. If you knew how to decode and understand the symbology you could quite literally tap into a vast ocean of wisdom without ever needing to read a book.
Several thousand years ago, the rishi’s (wise men and women) of ancient India, knew what we know now, and that is pictures can tell a thousand words.
I met with Swami’s, Scientist, Scholars, and over time I, together with a small team of researchers, collected enough information to decode the symbolic wisdom of the Hindu God’s.
Rather than writing a big fat book, I decided to create a FREE app, with no ads I might add, in the hope that the people of all cultures and even Hindu’s themselves might glean a better understanding of the symbolic wisdom of the coded into the very form of the many Hindu Gods and Goddesses.