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The most fundamental of Hindu deities, is the Trinity of Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva - popular deities include Ganesha, Krishna, Hanuman and goddesses like Lakshmi, Durga,Saraswati.

Story of Ganesha and Ravana

Once the demon, Ravana, undertook the most difficult tapasyas (austerities) and when Shiva appeared before him, he asked as a boon that neither he nor his kingdom should ever be destroyed or harmed.Shiva then gave him a Shiva Lingam, the symbol of Shiva, and said that he should take it to his kingdom and set it up in a shrine with proper rituals. Only then would he become invincible. But there was one condition - on no account should the Lingam be placed on the ground as it would then become immovable. Ravana was overjoyed and received the Lingam. However the lesser gods (Devas) were frightened with the consequences of Ravana obtaining all this power, and prayed to Ganesha.Varuna, the god of the waters, entered Ravana's abdomen forcing him to stop en route. Desperately, not wanting to keep the Lingam down, Ravana hailed a young boy who was passing by and asked him to hold on to the stone Lingam for a few minutes. Ravana had barely left when the boy called out to him thrice and when there was no reply, kept the Lingam on the ground. When Ravana returned, he was furious and chased the boy, threatening to kill him. Theboy took his true form as Ganesha, and over-powering Ravana, rolled him into a ball and threw him into the sky and played with him. Ravana realised his limitations and also as to how all-powerful Ganesha wasThis spot where the Lingam was placed by Ganesha is Gokarna on the west coast of Karnataka. It is worshipped to this dayThis story teaches the lesson that evil ultimately loses, especially when it aspires for power.



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