My series of religious icons is growing. Last weekend, I was invited to a wedding of one of the doctors that completed his training in my program, Dr. Nikhil Goyal. As much as I would LOVE to go to his wedding - it's in India and way out of my budget. I took the icon that was on his invitation - Ganesha. I just learned the following about Ganesha: "By ancient tradition, the elephant-headed god, GANESHA , is always worshipped first in every ritual or festival. Ganesha has a pot belly, is short and is usually portrayed in a sitting position with one leg folded and the other touching the ground. Around his waist, there is a hooded snake. In his four hands, he carries a noose (human bondage to desires); an axe (destruction of all evil); a modak or sweet (joy) and a lotus (human evolution). His trunk, usually turned to the left, represents OM, the origin of the cosmic universe. Ganesha is the lord of all learning, the arts and of finer skills."
Obviously my Ganesha is a different model, because my Ganesha doesn't have a snake or axe or a noose. His trunk turns to the right. Sunil (another doctor) told me that Ganesha travels on the back of a mouse, which is why there is a little mouse in the picture. The bindi will be a red crystal and the necklace with the smaller red crystals as I was told that they are very important.
P.S. Here is a great view of Ganesha on his mouse - http://www.saigan.com/heritage/gods/godimages/108ganeshas/m4.html