5 Things About Lakshmi You Didn’t Know

Lakshmi: The Goddess that Gives Strength to the Gods

Lakshmi is one of the most highly revered gods in Hindu mythology. She is known as the goddess of wealth and fortune, and for her close relationship to Vishnu. Lakshmi is one of the most interesting- and least known gods in the west.

And that’s why we decided to make this list! Not only for you guys, but because we were interested too. :)

1. Origin and Marriage

When the gods saw Lakshmi, born from the Milky Ocean, they all instantly fell in love…Shiva even tried to marry her; but he realized he couldn’t because he had already taken the moon.

This turned out to be for the best, because Vishnu asked for her hand, and she had wanted him anyways (score!).

This led to one of most well-known and enduring love stories in Hinduism- because every time Vishnu incarnated, she incarnated with him. Her famous incarnations were Sita (Ram’s wife) and Radha (Krishna’s lover).

2. Leaving the Gods

Lakshmi at one point left the gods because they had become too arrogant. Their success against the demons had been taken for granted, and had really only come from Lakshmi’s presence and blessings.

It had reached a zenith when Lakshmi saw Indra (the king of the gods) throw sacred flowers on the ground given to him by a sage; after that, Lakshmi went back to the Milky Ocean for 1,000 years.

3. Come Back!

Having left the gods, their luck began to run out and they soon realized that she had brought all their success. Without fortune, they eventually began to lose their power as darkness crept over the world.

This led to the demons taking control.

Out of desperation, all of the gods began to churn the Milky Ocean to find Lakshmi. Eventually, after 1,000 years, they found her…and never took her for granted again.

lakshmiAd

4. Diwali (Festival of Lights)

The Festival of Lights, also known as Diwali, was created to honor Sita’s return from her rescue by Ram.

Having been abducted by a demon-king Ravana, she spent a long time waiting for her rescue; and after the epic battle and return back to their humble house in the woods, people lit candles to guide their way in the dark.

5. Symbolism

The usual representation of Lakshmi has many different meanings:

the four arms represent 4 directions in space and symbolize omnipresence; the four hands represent righteousness, genuine desires, wealth, and liberation; and the lotus she stands on represents the material wealth of the world- like the lotus, it grows from water, but it is not wetted by it.

A Recipe Anyone can Love
You might have heard the word Ayurveda thrown around recently…maybe your friend’s wife’s sister’s cousin recently became an Ayurvedic specialist, or perhaps you’ve just wondered how to say the word.
But what does it actually mean?
Ayurveda (pronounced Eye-yur-VAY-dah) is a traditional Hindu methodology of medicine based on the idea of balancing the bodily systems.
It’s formatted around physiological makeup, herbal treatment, and yogic breathing.
Ayurveda is complex, fascinating, and definitely worth your time to read a little more about.
But for now, try our sesame crusted tofu; Ayurvedic or not, it’s one of our favorites!
Ayurveda Sesame Crusted Tofu
Ingredients:
1 Block firm tofu
2 Tbsp sesame oil
¼ Cup soy sauce
1 Tbsp genuine maple syrup
1 Garlic clove, minced
1 Tsp minced ginger
2 Tbsp minced green onion
¼ Cup sesame seeds
1. Drain the tofu and cut block in half, then cut each half in 2 pieces and then into 4 smaller pieces. You will have 16 blocks in the end.
2. Combine sesame oil, soy sauce, maple syrup, minced garlic, minced ginger and minced green onion in either a flat tupperware or large bowl. Place tofu in marinade and cover completely in order for the tofu to absorb all the juices. (Save this for dipping later!) Place in the refrigerator for ½ hour or overnight if making ahead of time.
3. In a large pan, evenly heat 1 tbsp of oil. While you’re waiting for the pan to get hot, place sesame seeds in a shallow dish and cover tofu on both sides. Place one at a time in hot oiled pan and fry for about 5-10 minutes on each side until nicely browned.
You can also place your sesame tofu on an oiled baking sheet and bake for ½ hour at 350 degrees until toasty.
Place on bamboo skewers for kabobs and try with our Best Peanut Sauce Ever recipe, or toss into your favorite stir fry or noodle dish!

A Recipe Anyone can Love

You might have heard the word Ayurveda thrown around recently…maybe your friend’s wife’s sister’s cousin recently became an Ayurvedic specialist, or perhaps you’ve just wondered how to say the word.

But what does it actually mean?

Ayurveda (pronounced Eye-yur-VAY-dah) is a traditional Hindu methodology of medicine based on the idea of balancing the bodily systems.

It’s formatted around physiological makeup, herbal treatment, and yogic breathing.

Ayurveda is complex, fascinating, and definitely worth your time to read a little more about.

But for now, try our sesame crusted tofu; Ayurvedic or not, it’s one of our favorites!

Ayurveda Sesame Crusted Tofu

Ingredients:

1 Block firm tofu

2 Tbsp sesame oil

¼ Cup soy sauce

1 Tbsp genuine maple syrup

1 Garlic clove, minced

1 Tsp minced ginger

2 Tbsp minced green onion

¼ Cup sesame seeds

1. Drain the tofu and cut block in half, then cut each half in 2 pieces and then into 4 smaller pieces. You will have 16 blocks in the end.

2. Combine sesame oil, soy sauce, maple syrup, minced garlic, minced ginger and minced green onion in either a flat tupperware or large bowl. Place tofu in marinade and cover completely in order for the tofu to absorb all the juices. (Save this for dipping later!) Place in the refrigerator for ½ hour or overnight if making ahead of time.

3. In a large pan, evenly heat 1 tbsp of oil. While you’re waiting for the pan to get hot, place sesame seeds in a shallow dish and cover tofu on both sides. Place one at a time in hot oiled pan and fry for about 5-10 minutes on each side until nicely browned.

You can also place your sesame tofu on an oiled baking sheet and bake for ½ hour at 350 degrees until toasty.

Place on bamboo skewers for kabobs and try with our Best Peanut Sauce Ever recipe, or toss into your favorite stir fry or noodle dish!

In Need of Some Obstacle Removing?
Get some elephant power on your side and download the free Ganesh iPhone wallpaper.
Ganesh is known as the ‘Remover of Obstacles’ in Indian mythology. He is generally prayed to before starting a new project or stage of life to bring about the smoothest path to results.
SEE ALSO: 7 Surprising Things You Didn’t Know About Ganesh
Instructions for download:
1. Click here to go to our site.2. Add the item to your cart!3. Check out (no credit card info is needed since its 100% free!).4. Link to wallpaper will be emailed to you.5. After image is imported into phone library, Go into “settings” and tap on “wallpaper” and choose the image from your phone’s library. 

If Ganesh didn’t remove the obstacles to your download, you can get some additional help here.

 
Feel free to download anytime.

In Need of Some Obstacle Removing?

Get some elephant power on your side and download the free Ganesh iPhone wallpaper.

Ganesh is known as the ‘Remover of Obstacles’ in Indian mythology. He is generally prayed to before starting a new project or stage of life to bring about the smoothest path to results.

SEE ALSO: 7 Surprising Things You Didn’t Know About Ganesh

Instructions for download:

1. Click here to go to our site.
2. Add the item to your cart!
3. Check out (no credit card info is needed since its 100% free!).
4. Link to wallpaper will be emailed to you.
5. After image is imported into phone library, Go into “settings” and tap on “wallpaper” and choose the image from your phone’s library.
 
If Ganesh didn’t remove the obstacles to your download, you can get some additional help here.

 

Feel free to download anytime.

The Amazing Benefits Of The Sun

By Jenifer Chevallier, February 6, 2014


Sunshine is the Best Medicine
This message is so important to me, I just had to write about it! The Sun has been such a powerful influence on my well-being.

The Sun is my love – literally. I can’t live without its energy, heat, and soothing effects.
The Sun sustains me mentally and physically: it restores my soul and brings me warmth and comfort. In this way, it cares for me by sharing everything it is.
But I’m not the only one that can have this kind of genuine love for the Sun…you can too, provided you understand the benefits our Sun provides : )
The Vitamin D Connection
One sunbath a day keeps the doctor away! For a glowing, healthy looking skin, no one can deny its revitalizing effects– especially not women. Inside and out, the Sun will make you feel radiant.
UVB (present in every ray of sunshine), helps the body synthesizevitamin D, which is essential for good health. It has the ability to improve the skin’s elasticity, restore its youth, and protect it.
Many people suffer from vitamin D deficiencies, which can easily be remedied by regular sunbathing.
Vitamin D is vital for the proper development of bones and teeth, plays a key role in cell development, and fortifies the immune system- all of which reduces the incidence getting a whole host of diseases…even cancer.
It actually influences over 200 genes!
 The Natural Rhythm of Life
Did you know that sunlight also stimulates the secretion ofmelatonin? This hormone has a direct impact on the quality of your sleep. Hence, it improves the rhythm of your life and your psychological balance.
How is this possible?
Light affects the level of melatonin in your system- decreasing it by day and increasing it by night. The daylight will enable you to be active and motivated, and then after dusk have a good night’s sleep.
Endorphin levels also rise and fall with the Sun. These are natural antidepressants, and are responsible for happiness and pleasure. Thus they will lift your spirit and calm anxieties.
Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), is a common mood disorder which can result from a lack of sunlight. This mostly occurs during the winter, when there are fewer hours of daylight…and is linked to the rise and fall of melatonin and endorphins secreted.
The Sun Deserves our Gratitude! 
Despite the fact that the earth revolves around  the sun, it’s one of those things we take for granted- and one of those things we are never quite grateful enough for.
In my opinion, it is one of the best assets for a healthy life. Taking advantage of it demands no effort and is completely free.
Abundance is the word that best describes the Sun.
What about you? What’s your relationship to the sun???
Read more like this on Jenifer’s site

The Amazing Benefits Of The Sun

By February 6, 2014

Sunshine is the Best Medicine

This message is so important to me, I just had to write about it! The Sun has been such a powerful influence on my well-being.

The Sun is my love – literally. I can’t live without its energy, heat, and soothing effects.

The Sun sustains me mentally and physically: it restores my soul and brings me warmth and comfort. In this way, it cares for me by sharing everything it is.

But I’m not the only one that can have this kind of genuine love for the Sun…you can too, provided you understand the benefits our Sun provides : )

The Vitamin D Connection

One sunbath a day keeps the doctor away! For a glowing, healthy looking skin, no one can deny its revitalizing effects– especially not women. Inside and out, the Sun will make you feel radiant.

UVB (present in every ray of sunshine), helps the body synthesizevitamin D, which is essential for good health. It has the ability to improve the skin’s elasticity, restore its youth, and protect it.

Many people suffer from vitamin D deficiencies, which can easily be remedied by regular sunbathing.

Vitamin D is vital for the proper development of bones and teeth, plays a key role in cell development, and fortifies the immune system- all of which reduces the incidence getting a whole host of diseases…even cancer.

It actually influences over 200 genes!

 The Natural Rhythm of Life

Did you know that sunlight also stimulates the secretion ofmelatonin? This hormone has a direct impact on the quality of your sleep. Hence, it improves the rhythm of your life and your psychological balance.

How is this possible?

Light affects the level of melatonin in your system- decreasing it by day and increasing it by night. The daylight will enable you to be active and motivated, and then after dusk have a good night’s sleep.

Endorphin levels also rise and fall with the Sun. These are natural antidepressants, and are responsible for happiness and pleasure. Thus they will lift your spirit and calm anxieties.

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), is a common mood disorder which can result from a lack of sunlight. This mostly occurs during the winter, when there are fewer hours of daylight…and is linked to the rise and fall of melatonin and endorphins secreted.

The Sun Deserves our Gratitude! 

Despite the fact that the earth revolves around  the sun, it’s one of those things we take for granted- and one of those things we are never quite grateful enough for.

In my opinion, it is one of the best assets for a healthy life. Taking advantage of it demands no effort and is completely free.

Abundance is the word that best describes the Sun.

What about you? What’s your relationship to the sun???

Read more like this on Jenifer’s site

The Best Homemade Peanut Sauce…Ever.

http://blog.sivanaspirit.com/best-homemade-peanut-sauce-ever/

So, here’s the scene.
You’re at your favorite Thai restaurant and order some fried tofu, cooked with just the right amount of crispiness and the texture is one that would please the gods. Sure enough, they come with the most, mouth watering, savory, spicy, yet sweet peanut sauce and you just think, “Gosh, I wish I had this at home to put on everything!”
Well, after many years of searching, search no more. Here is our hands down best Homemade Peanut Sauce recipe… ever.
Ingredients:
1 13.5oz can of coconut milk
2 ounces thai chili paste
¾ Cup unsweetened natural peanut butter (personally, we like to use a chunky peanut butter for some texture, but creamy will do just fine)
½ Tablespoon salt
¾ Cup sugar
2 Tablespoons of either apple cider vinegar or white vinegar
½ Cup of water
1. Place all ingredients into a medium heavy-duty bottom pot and bring to gentle boil over medium heat, whisking constantly.
2. Let the sauce simmer for 3-5 minutes over low heat, continue to stir as needed to avoid sticking.
3. Remove from heat, let your beautiful creation cool down a bit to room temperature or slightly warmer.
If you’re just really excited and can’t wait to make your peanut sauce, you can make ahead of time and store in a glass container, refrigerated for up to 2 weeks. It will thicken over time, as needed you can reheat and add a bit of water to your desired consistency.
We recommend serving with satay, fried tofu, or get creative.
Tell us how you used your peanut sauce!

http://blog.sivanaspirit.com/best-homemade-peanut-sauce-ever/

The Best Homemade Peanut Sauce…Ever.

http://blog.sivanaspirit.com/best-homemade-peanut-sauce-ever/

So, here’s the scene.

You’re at your favorite Thai restaurant and order some fried tofu, cooked with just the right amount of crispiness and the texture is one that would please the gods. Sure enough, they come with the most, mouth watering, savory, spicy, yet sweet peanut sauce and you just think, “Gosh, I wish I had this at home to put on everything!”

Well, after many years of searching, search no more. Here is our hands down best Homemade Peanut Sauce recipe… ever.


Ingredients:

  • 1 13.5oz can of coconut milk
  • 2 ounces thai chili paste
  • ¾ Cup unsweetened natural peanut butter (personally, we like to use a chunky peanut butter for some texture, but creamy will do just fine)
  • ½ Tablespoon salt
  • ¾ Cup sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons of either apple cider vinegar or white vinegar
  • ½ Cup of water

1. Place all ingredients into a medium heavy-duty bottom pot and bring to gentle boil over medium heat, whisking constantly.

2. Let the sauce simmer for 3-5 minutes over low heat, continue to stir as needed to avoid sticking.

3. Remove from heat, let your beautiful creation cool down a bit to room temperature or slightly warmer.


If you’re just really excited and can’t wait to make your peanut sauce, you can make ahead of time and store in a glass container, refrigerated for up to 2 weeks. It will thicken over time, as needed you can reheat and add a bit of water to your desired consistency.

We recommend serving with satay, fried tofu, or get creative.

Tell us how you used your peanut sauce!

http://blog.sivanaspirit.com/best-homemade-peanut-sauce-ever/

Checkout the Original Article Here: http://blog.sivanaspirit.com/10-avatars-vishnu/
Now serving, all Vishnu’s at window number 108!
Vishnu is one of the three-headed honchos of Indian mythology. He’s also known as Narayana and Hari along with many other names that you’ve probably heard of while jamming out to Krishna Das on your early morning commute. A little confusing, huh? Don’t worry, we’ll try to explain some of the ins and outs of this incredibly intriguing fellow.
Vishnu is a supreme soul and supreme god in Indian mythology. He is said to be the all-encompassing essence of all life, the controller of the past, present and future, and the one who supports, preserves, sustains and governs all things in creation.
Now, Vishnu isn’t just sitting on a cloud in his heavenly abode; He’s busy making sure all the pins and needles of the universe run seamlessly. In order to do that, sometimes he needs to take a physical form. There are said to be 10 Avatars of Vishnu, meaning 10 different incarnations that he took to intervene on the world’s behalf to make sure the big show would go on. The “dasavatara” (ten avatars) always come to establish dharma or righteousness and fight cruelty and injustice on our pale blue dot. Let’s get this list started.

1. Matsya (The Fish)

Matsya is the first of Vishnu’s many avatars and was one of the first physical beings of this world. Born as a fish in the Satya Yuga or Golden Age, it’s said that he rescued the first man in creation from a great flood that covered the world.

2. Kurma (The Tortoise)    

The second incarnation of Vishnu was that of Kurma, the giant tortoise. Also born during the Satya Yuga, he appeared on the scene when the original Angels and Demons were attempting to churn the ocean in order to reach an elixir of immortality hidden away at the bottom. The Angels and Demons were using a mountain as a churning staff, and just as the mountain began to sink into the ocean, Lord Vishnu took the form of a Kurma to carry the weight of the mountain on his back.

3. Varaha (The Boar)

Varaha, the great boar came to Earth’s aid to save it from an incredibly powerful demon. The demon was so powerful that he stole the earth from it’s place in the sky and carried it to the bottom of the cosmic ocean. Vishnu incarnated as Varaha and fought the demon in a battle that lasted a thousand years. Once the enemy was vanquished, Varaha gently rested the earth between his mighty tusks and carried her back to her resting place in the sky once again restoring order and balance.

4. Narasimha (The Lion Man)

My personal favorite incarnation of Vishnu was born as Narasimha the Man-lion. It’s pretty much exactly what it sounds like, he was born half-man and half-lion at the end of the Satya Yuga. This was the last of Vishnu’s incarnations to be born during this age of man. Narasimha defies the laws of nature and seeks to overpower mortals who attempt to find immortality in unnatural ways.
He specifically came into being when a mighty evil Demon became upset with his son praying to Vishnu and tried to hurt him. The Demon had received a boon (a wish) that he could not be killed by man or animal, inside or out, day or night, on earth or the stars, with a weapon either living or inanimate. So Vishnu manifested as Narasimha. With the body of a man, and the head and claws of a lion, he and killed the deomon using his claws under a courtyard threshold of his home at exactly dusk, while he lays on his lap. Therefore finding a loophole in the boon allowing him to protect the young boy.

5. Vamana (The Dwarf)

Vamana was the first of Vishnu’s incarnations to be born during the Treta Yuga. He is also the first of Vishnu’s incarnations to be fully human. The story goes that a great king grew in power and extend his kingdom over all the three worlds. To restore order, Vishnu was born as Vamana, a gentle dwarf of incredible intelligence and power. He approached the king during a great festival when he could not refuse a request, and respectfully asked him if he could have three paces of land. The king humored him and granted his request. At that moment, Vamana grew to the size of the world and took three giant steps. He stepped over heaven on his first step, and hell on his second step. The king realized Vamana was Vishnu and out of respect and honor offered his head as the third place for Vamana to place his foot. Vamana did just that and in doing so granted the king immortality.

6. Parashurama (The Lumberjack)

Parashurama is the original lumberjack. He got his famous axe after a penance to Lord Shiva where he also received a boon of immortality. Parashurama is the first warrior-saint with training both in meditation and warfare and is bound by both codes of honor. Once a great king and his army visited Parashurama’s father at his monastery, and his father fed them all with the milk of the divine cow he had in his possession. The greedy king wanted the incredible animal and demanded the cow for himself, his father refused, and the evil king took it by force destroying the ashram and Parashurama’s entire family. In revenge Parashurama destroyed the evil king and his entire family and took a vow to destroy every evil warrior on earth. After 21 generations of destruction, he halted and continued on the rest of his immortality in meditation and prayer.

7. Rama

Now we are starting to get closer to the most popular of Vishnu’s avatars. The seventh incarnation of Vishnu was Lord Rama, also considered to be the perfect man. The story and life of Rama is pretty well known with the typical defeat of a demon and an incredible saving of the day. Rama is most famous for being honorable and heroic, even giving up his right to rule his kingdom and going into exile because his father asked it of him. Some other famous characters in Rama’s life are his brother Lakshman, his wife Sita, and his best buddy Hanuman. You have probably heard one of these names in every Krishna Das song ever.

8. Krishna

The most famous of all of Vishnu’s incarnations is Lord Krishna. The first of the incarnations to be born in the Dwapara Yuga. He is the origin of the famous Bhagavad Gita and essentially created the foundation of yoga off of which Patajali’s Yoga Sutra’s is based. He is famous for destroying countless evil kings and demons, and being a key figure in the Mahabharata and the Battle of Kurukshetra. The appearance of Krishna was to usher in and lay the foundation of principles in the Gita to help mankind through the Kali Yuga or Stone Age.

9. Buddha

Buddha is typically thought to be the ninth avatar of Vishnu. Originally born an Indian prince with the name Siddhartha, he became world renowned as Gautama Buddha when he became a monk and attained enlightenment. Buddha (literally translating to enlightenment) is said to have incarnated in this form to bring about social change, setting a new standard for the life of a yogi. He is also said to have changed the tradition of animal sacrifice in India and taught new forms of prayer through mindfulness.

And the best is yet to come!
10. Kalki (The Horseman)

Kalki, the last and final incarnation of Vishnu is still expected to come. He is said to bring harmony to the imbalances of the world and restore order by dethroning the unjust. He will be a horseman, riding on a white horse with a blazing sword to wipe away the darkness of the past. It is said that he will appear on the scene at the end of the Kali Yuga, the age we are currently in.
 Which incarnation would you like to meet? Comment below!

Checkout the Original Article Here: http://blog.sivanaspirit.com/10-avatars-vishnu/

Checkout the Original Article Here: http://blog.sivanaspirit.com/10-avatars-vishnu/

Now serving, all Vishnu’s at window number 108!

Vishnu is one of the three-headed honchos of Indian mythology. He’s also known as Narayana and Hari along with many other names that you’ve probably heard of while jamming out to Krishna Das on your early morning commute. A little confusing, huh? Don’t worry, we’ll try to explain some of the ins and outs of this incredibly intriguing fellow.

Vishnu is a supreme soul and supreme god in Indian mythology. He is said to be the all-encompassing essence of all life, the controller of the past, present and future, and the one who supports, preserves, sustains and governs all things in creation.

Now, Vishnu isn’t just sitting on a cloud in his heavenly abode; He’s busy making sure all the pins and needles of the universe run seamlessly. In order to do that, sometimes he needs to take a physical form. There are said to be 10 Avatars of Vishnu, meaning 10 different incarnations that he took to intervene on the world’s behalf to make sure the big show would go on. The “dasavatara” (ten avatars) always come to establish dharma or righteousness and fight cruelty and injustice on our pale blue dot. Let’s get this list started.

1. Matsya (The Fish)

Matsya (The Fish)

Matsya is the first of Vishnu’s many avatars and was one of the first physical beings of this world. Born as a fish in the Satya Yuga or Golden Age, it’s said that he rescued the first man in creation from a great flood that covered the world.

2. Kurma (The Tortoise)    

Kurma (The Tortoise)

The second incarnation of Vishnu was that of Kurma, the giant tortoise. Also born during the Satya Yuga, he appeared on the scene when the original Angels and Demons were attempting to churn the ocean in order to reach an elixir of immortality hidden away at the bottom. The Angels and Demons were using a mountain as a churning staff, and just as the mountain began to sink into the ocean, Lord Vishnu took the form of a Kurma to carry the weight of the mountain on his back.

3. Varaha (The Boar)

Varaha (The Boar)

Varaha, the great boar came to Earth’s aid to save it from an incredibly powerful demon. The demon was so powerful that he stole the earth from it’s place in the sky and carried it to the bottom of the cosmic ocean. Vishnu incarnated as Varaha and fought the demon in a battle that lasted a thousand years. Once the enemy was vanquished, Varaha gently rested the earth between his mighty tusks and carried her back to her resting place in the sky once again restoring order and balance.

4. Narasimha (The Lion Man)

Narasimha (The Lion Man)

My personal favorite incarnation of Vishnu was born as Narasimha the Man-lion. It’s pretty much exactly what it sounds like, he was born half-man and half-lion at the end of the Satya Yuga. This was the last of Vishnu’s incarnations to be born during this age of man. Narasimha defies the laws of nature and seeks to overpower mortals who attempt to find immortality in unnatural ways.

He specifically came into being when a mighty evil Demon became upset with his son praying to Vishnu and tried to hurt him. The Demon had received a boon (a wish) that he could not be killed by man or animal, inside or out, day or night, on earth or the stars, with a weapon either living or inanimate. So Vishnu manifested as Narasimha. With the body of a man, and the head and claws of a lion, he and killed the deomon using his claws under a courtyard threshold of his home at exactly dusk, while he lays on his lap. Therefore finding a loophole in the boon allowing him to protect the young boy.

5. Vamana (The Dwarf)

Vamana (The Dwarf)

Vamana was the first of Vishnu’s incarnations to be born during the Treta Yuga. He is also the first of Vishnu’s incarnations to be fully human. The story goes that a great king grew in power and extend his kingdom over all the three worlds. To restore order, Vishnu was born as Vamana, a gentle dwarf of incredible intelligence and power. He approached the king during a great festival when he could not refuse a request, and respectfully asked him if he could have three paces of land. The king humored him and granted his request. At that moment, Vamana grew to the size of the world and took three giant steps. He stepped over heaven on his first step, and hell on his second step. The king realized Vamana was Vishnu and out of respect and honor offered his head as the third place for Vamana to place his foot. Vamana did just that and in doing so granted the king immortality.

6. Parashurama (The Lumberjack)

Parashurama (The Lumberjack)

Parashurama is the original lumberjack. He got his famous axe after a penance to Lord Shiva where he also received a boon of immortality. Parashurama is the first warrior-saint with training both in meditation and warfare and is bound by both codes of honor. Once a great king and his army visited Parashurama’s father at his monastery, and his father fed them all with the milk of the divine cow he had in his possession. The greedy king wanted the incredible animal and demanded the cow for himself, his father refused, and the evil king took it by force destroying the ashram and Parashurama’s entire family. In revenge Parashurama destroyed the evil king and his entire family and took a vow to destroy every evil warrior on earth. After 21 generations of destruction, he halted and continued on the rest of his immortality in meditation and prayer.

7. Rama

Rama

Now we are starting to get closer to the most popular of Vishnu’s avatars. The seventh incarnation of Vishnu was Lord Rama, also considered to be the perfect man. The story and life of Rama is pretty well known with the typical defeat of a demon and an incredible saving of the day. Rama is most famous for being honorable and heroic, even giving up his right to rule his kingdom and going into exile because his father asked it of him. Some other famous characters in Rama’s life are his brother Lakshman, his wife Sita, and his best buddy Hanuman. You have probably heard one of these names in every Krishna Das song ever.

8. Krishna

Krishna

The most famous of all of Vishnu’s incarnations is Lord Krishna. The first of the incarnations to be born in the Dwapara Yuga. He is the origin of the famous Bhagavad Gita and essentially created the foundation of yoga off of which Patajali’s Yoga Sutra’s is based. He is famous for destroying countless evil kings and demons, and being a key figure in the Mahabharata and the Battle of Kurukshetra. The appearance of Krishna was to usher in and lay the foundation of principles in the Gita to help mankind through the Kali Yuga or Stone Age.

9. Buddha

Buddha

Buddha is typically thought to be the ninth avatar of Vishnu. Originally born an Indian prince with the name Siddhartha, he became world renowned as Gautama Buddha when he became a monk and attained enlightenment. Buddha (literally translating to enlightenment) is said to have incarnated in this form to bring about social change, setting a new standard for the life of a yogi. He is also said to have changed the tradition of animal sacrifice in India and taught new forms of prayer through mindfulness.

And the best is yet to come!

10. Kalki (The Horseman)

Kalki (The Horseman)

Kalki, the last and final incarnation of Vishnu is still expected to come. He is said to bring harmony to the imbalances of the world and restore order by dethroning the unjust. He will be a horseman, riding on a white horse with a blazing sword to wipe away the darkness of the past. It is said that he will appear on the scene at the end of the Kali Yuga, the age we are currently in.

 Which incarnation would you like to meet? Comment below!

Checkout the Original Article Here: http://blog.sivanaspirit.com/10-avatars-vishnu/

So you’ve decided you want a new piece of jewelry, but how do you choose from all the beautiful pieces out there? Gemstones and precious stones have been an integral part of cultures for centuries and are known for their various healing properties.
Curious? Take a peek at the significance of common gemstones and beads found in jewelry.
Amethyst

Amethyst gemstone prayer beads enable you to combine the gemstone’s inherent energy of wisdom with the spiritual power of the ancient prayer bead traditions and your own devotional efforts. Amethyst is a stone of inner wisdom. It offers peaceful, centered awareness and enhances psychic and mental abilities and beauty. Amethyst also helps overcome addictions and protects in stressful situations.

Best used for:  Protection against fear and feelings of guilt, instilling calmness, and pleasant dreams

Blue Lapis

Highly valued by ancient Egyptians, the Lapis stone relieves anxiety and insomnia and can strengthen the immune system, cure sore throats and headaches. Lapis also helps to open both the third eye and throat chakras in meditation as well as lead to greater creativity, spiritual enlightenment, wisdom and self-expression. Known for awakening respect and compassion within ourselves, the power of one of the oldest spiritual stones will aid in harnessing your individual personal truth.

Best used for:  Harnessing wisdom, spiritual enlightenment, creativity

Malachite

This magnificent gemstone associated with the heart chakra, it provides powerful grounding energy that clears obstructions and blockages and helps avert confusion and apathy. Malachite helps with business success & meditation. Malachite is a very important earth stone: it helps one break unwanted ties and then connect to and work with healing earth energies. Also spoken to protect against radiation pollution, keep malachite near microwaves, televisions and other potentially harmful technology rays.

Best used for:  Strengthening immune system, travel, treatment of travel sickness & vertigo

Rose Quartz

One of the most commonly used stones in many forms of healing, Rose quartz is beneficial in dissolving emotional wounds, fears, and helps to cultivate divine loving energy as it directly correlates to the heart chakra.  Wearing rose quartz is excellent during times of trauma or crisis as it strengthens empathy, sensitivity, and aids in the acceptance of necessary change, in addition to being an excellent stone for comforting grief.

Best used for:  Healing emotional wounds, cultivating divine love, improves compassion & friendships

Turquoise

Turquoise is a valued power stone. It will strengthen and align all of the Chakras; and it can be used to cleanse your energy centers. It is said to fade in color when worn by a sick, unhealthy or depressed individual as well as deepen in color when worn by a healthy individual. As a meditation tool, the gem can assist in clearing your mind, opening you to the Universal All. Use Turquoise to attune to the spiritual plane or provide protection during vision quests or astral travel.
Best used for:  Exhaustion, depression, anxiety attacks, aids respiratory system ailments
Jade

Jade is commonly associated with good luck and friendship. Jade signifies wisdom gathered in tranquility and is excellent for healing feelings of guilt, dispelling negative energies and those in need of aid in forging their own path.  This stone is most valued for its metaphysical properties, and has been revered in ancient cultures, as well as today to access the spiritual world, gain insight into ritualistic knowledge, encourage creativity, and dream solve.

Best used for:  Protection against illness, releasing negative thoughts, cultivating harmonious relationships

Hematite

When wearing Hematite, this stone brings an energy shield down to protect from the negativity of others. This can be especially good for city living, business, travel and martial arts. Because its contents are highly composed of iron, this stone is known for simulation of iron into the bloodstream which increases oxygen within the blood supply.

Best used for:  Intuition & mental clarity, blood circulation & anemia, will power, courage

Mother of Pearl

Mother of Pearl brings gentle healing power of the sea.  It can relieve stress and is soothing and calming to the emotions, and it stimulates our intuition, imagination, sensitivity and adaptability. It is calming and soothing and helps eliminate feelings of fear.  Mother of Pearl gives you the ability to more easily express feelings of love.

Best used for:  Attracting prosperity, simulate imagination, protection against negative environments

Tiger Eye

Tiger Eye is a stone of protection that is also very grounding. It enhances integrity, willpower, practicality and correct use of power. It is a stone that enhances good luck, and brings prosperity, often in the form of money. Tiger eye is also a very protective stone which is especially protective during travel.  With its vibrant golden color, Tiger Eye is used to increase vitality and it enhances courage, brings passion and physical strength, and allows these attributes to be tempered with mental clarity and a joyful outlook.

Best used for:  Courage, focus, prosperity, protection

Red Bamboo Coral

Red Bamboo Coral is still used today as a protective talisman against evil spirits.  It is said to bring luck to the home, and used as a protector for those who work on or near the water.  Coral is also beneficial for bone growth and helps those who suffer from arthritis and other bone ailments. It can ease digestive problems, eye problems and blood-circulation disorders.

Best used for:  Stress relief, stimulates intuition, peace & emotional healing

So you’ve decided you want a new piece of jewelry, but how do you choose from all the beautiful pieces out there? Gemstones and precious stones have been an integral part of cultures for centuries and are known for their various healing properties.

Curious? Take a peek at the significance of common gemstones and beads found in jewelry.


Amethyst

Amethyst Gems

Amethyst gemstone prayer beads enable you to combine the gemstone’s inherent energy of wisdom with the spiritual power of the ancient prayer bead traditions and your own devotional efforts. Amethyst is a stone of inner wisdom. It offers peaceful, centered awareness and enhances psychic and mental abilities and beauty. Amethyst also helps overcome addictions and protects in stressful situations.

Best used for:  Protection against fear and feelings of guilt, instilling calmness, and pleasant dreams


Blue Lapis

Blue Lapis

Highly valued by ancient Egyptians, the Lapis stone relieves anxiety and insomnia and can strengthen the immune system, cure sore throats and headaches. Lapis also helps to open both the third eye and throat chakras in meditation as well as lead to greater creativity, spiritual enlightenment, wisdom and self-expression. Known for awakening respect and compassion within ourselves, the power of one of the oldest spiritual stones will aid in harnessing your individual personal truth.

Best used for:  Harnessing wisdom, spiritual enlightenment, creativity


Malachite

Malachite

This magnificent gemstone associated with the heart chakra, it provides powerful grounding energy that clears obstructions and blockages and helps avert confusion and apathy. Malachite helps with business success & meditation. Malachite is a very important earth stone: it helps one break unwanted ties and then connect to and work with healing earth energies. Also spoken to protect against radiation pollution, keep malachite near microwaves, televisions and other potentially harmful technology rays.

Best used for:  Strengthening immune system, travel, treatment of travel sickness & vertigo


Rose Quartz

Rose Quartz

One of the most commonly used stones in many forms of healing, Rose quartz is beneficial in dissolving emotional wounds, fears, and helps to cultivate divine loving energy as it directly correlates to the heart chakra.  Wearing rose quartz is excellent during times of trauma or crisis as it strengthens empathy, sensitivity, and aids in the acceptance of necessary change, in addition to being an excellent stone for comforting grief.

Best used for:  Healing emotional wounds, cultivating divine love, improves compassion & friendships


Turquoise

Turquoise

Turquoise is a valued power stone. It will strengthen and align all of the Chakras; and it can be used to cleanse your energy centers. It is said to fade in color when worn by a sick, unhealthy or depressed individual as well as deepen in color when worn by a healthy individual. As a meditation tool, the gem can assist in clearing your mind, opening you to the Universal All. Use Turquoise to attune to the spiritual plane or provide protection during vision quests or astral travel.

Best used for:  Exhaustion, depression, anxiety attacks, aids respiratory system ailments

Jade

Jade

Jade is commonly associated with good luck and friendship. Jade signifies wisdom gathered in tranquility and is excellent for healing feelings of guilt, dispelling negative energies and those in need of aid in forging their own path.  This stone is most valued for its metaphysical properties, and has been revered in ancient cultures, as well as today to access the spiritual world, gain insight into ritualistic knowledge, encourage creativity, and dream solve.

Best used for:  Protection against illness, releasing negative thoughts, cultivating harmonious relationships


Hematite

Hematite

When wearing Hematite, this stone brings an energy shield down to protect from the negativity of others. This can be especially good for city living, business, travel and martial arts. Because its contents are highly composed of iron, this stone is known for simulation of iron into the bloodstream which increases oxygen within the blood supply.

Best used for:  Intuition & mental clarity, blood circulation & anemia, will power, courage


Mother of Pearl

Mother of Pearl

Mother of Pearl brings gentle healing power of the sea.  It can relieve stress and is soothing and calming to the emotions, and it stimulates our intuition, imagination, sensitivity and adaptability. It is calming and soothing and helps eliminate feelings of fear.  Mother of Pearl gives you the ability to more easily express feelings of love.

Best used for:  Attracting prosperity, simulate imagination, protection against negative environments


Tiger Eye

Tigers Eye

Tiger Eye is a stone of protection that is also very grounding. It enhances integrity, willpower, practicality and correct use of power. It is a stone that enhances good luck, and brings prosperity, often in the form of money. Tiger eye is also a very protective stone which is especially protective during travel.  With its vibrant golden color, Tiger Eye is used to increase vitality and it enhances courage, brings passion and physical strength, and allows these attributes to be tempered with mental clarity and a joyful outlook.

Best used for:  Courage, focus, prosperity, protection


Red Bamboo Coral

Red Bamboo Coral

Red Bamboo Coral is still used today as a protective talisman against evil spirits.  It is said to bring luck to the home, and used as a protector for those who work on or near the water.  Coral is also beneficial for bone growth and helps those who suffer from arthritis and other bone ailments. It can ease digestive problems, eye problems and blood-circulation disorders.

Best used for:  Stress relief, stimulates intuition, peace & emotional healing

So, what’s the deal with these beautiful beads?
Traditionally, a mala is a strand of 108 beads that are symbolic in many ways, but literally translates to a “garland of beads, flowers or prayers”.A focused use in meditation practices is to count prayers, mantras, or breaths. Others use them as spiritual jewelry and sometimes combine with crystal energy work.Wearing Malas can help to signify one’s spiritual focus, awaken energy into oneself, and help to focus, center and recharge.
I’m not very spiritual you say?
Spirituality can be as simple as honoring yourself daily and being patient and loving with yourself. We are all searching for something greater than and within ourselves. Wearing a mala can be as simple as a fashion statement or as mindful as refocusing your thoughts in a positive way.
Your mantra can be anything you choose to focus on. From the classic, “Om Mani Padme Hum” pronounced {Ohm Mahnee Paymay Hoom} to any positive affirmation that provides peace & clarity to your life.
And they’ve been around for how long? Because I thought I saw Julia Roberts wearing them in “Eat, Pray Love”…
Around 800 B.C.E. since there were no clocks or smart phones in India, counting the beads allowed people to not show up late to dinner. As Buddhism began to spread into China, Korea and Japan, and Tibet the use of malas grew. The Catholic church utilized the concept of a mantra in the practice of rosaries officially in 1520, coming from the Latin name ‘rosarium’ which translates to rose garden.
What is the significance of 108 bead malas?
It’s up for discussion as to what the significance behind the number of beads that exist in malas. They can range from 16, 27, 54 or 108 beads. One theory is that the first manned space flight lasted 108 minutes by Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin. The jury is still out on that one, maybe he had a turquoise mala up there with him, as turquoise is known to help attune those to the spiritual plane and provide protection during vision quests or astral travel.
Traditionally, the belief held in certain Buddhist traditions is that we as humans are said to have 108 afflictions or kleshas.
There are 6 senses, sight, sound, smell, taste, touch and consciousness. Yes, the movie “The Sixth Sense” might have been on to something, Bruce Willis just got a little sidetracked for Hollywood’s sake.
To each of these senses, we have reactions, positive, negative or indifference.Let’s do some math, 6 senses x 3 reactions = 18 different feelings
To each of these feelings we are either attached, or detached.Okay, get out your calculator, 18 feelings x 2 reactions = 36 Passions.
It gets better. Each of our passions can be manifested in the past, present or future.The combination of all of these human attributes makes a total of 108.
Another popular held practice is to repeat a mantra 100 and the additional 8 beads are extra mantras performed to compensate for any errors. Sure, you may have made a few more than 8 mistakes today, but who’s counting?
Every stone directly reflects different energies.Check out our gemstone post to discover which mala will serve you in your quest for peace!

So, what’s the deal with these beautiful beads?

Traditionally, a mala is a strand of 108 beads that are symbolic in many ways, but literally translates to a “garland of beads, flowers or prayers”.
A focused use in meditation practices is to count prayers, mantras, or breaths. Others use them as spiritual jewelry and sometimes combine with crystal energy work.
Wearing Malas can help to signify one’s spiritual focus, awaken energy into oneself, and help to focus, center and recharge.

I’m not very spiritual you say?

Spirituality can be as simple as honoring yourself daily and being patient and loving with yourself. We are all searching for something greater than and within ourselves. Wearing a mala can be as simple as a fashion statement or as mindful as refocusing your thoughts in a positive way.

Your mantra can be anything you choose to focus on. From the classic, “Om Mani Padme Hum” pronounced {Ohm Mahnee Paymay Hoom} to any positive affirmation that provides peace & clarity to your life.

And they’ve been around for how long? Because I thought I saw Julia Roberts wearing them in “Eat, Pray Love”…

Around 800 B.C.E. since there were no clocks or smart phones in India, counting the beads allowed people to not show up late to dinner. As Buddhism began to spread into China, Korea and Japan, and Tibet the use of malas grew. The Catholic church utilized the concept of a mantra in the practice of rosaries officially in 1520, coming from the Latin name ‘rosarium’ which translates to rose garden.

What is the significance of 108 bead malas?

It’s up for discussion as to what the significance behind the number of beads that exist in malas. They can range from 16, 27, 54 or 108 beads. One theory is that the first manned space flight lasted 108 minutes by Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin. The jury is still out on that one, maybe he had a turquoise mala up there with him, as turquoise is known to help attune those to the spiritual plane and provide protection during vision quests or astral travel.

Traditionally, the belief held in certain Buddhist traditions is that we as humans are said to have 108 afflictions or kleshas.

There are 6 senses, sight, sound, smell, taste, touch and consciousness. Yes, the movie “The Sixth Sense” might have been on to something, Bruce Willis just got a little sidetracked for Hollywood’s sake.

To each of these senses, we have reactions, positive, negative or indifference.
Let’s do some math, 6 senses x 3 reactions = 18 different feelings

To each of these feelings we are either attached, or detached.
Okay, get out your calculator, 18 feelings x 2 reactions = 36 Passions.

It gets better. Each of our passions can be manifested in the past, present or future.
The combination of all of these human attributes makes a total of 108.

Another popular held practice is to repeat a mantra 100 and the additional 8 beads are extra mantras performed to compensate for any errors. Sure, you may have made a few more than 8 mistakes today, but who’s counting?

Every stone directly reflects different energies.
Check out our gemstone post to discover which mala will serve you in your quest for peace!

Of course most of us have all heard of Ganesh, but there may be a few facts you didn’t know about our favorite chubby little deity.
Yes, now of course we all know that Ganesh is the remover of obstacles, everybody and their yoga teacher knows that! But lets cover ground in some of those other little known secrets about Ganesh, so you have something to woo the crowd with at your next yoga party.

1. Family Drama
Ganesh is the son of Shiva the Destroyer and Parvati. A lot of family pressure, right? He also has an older brother Kartikeya, god of war and victory, which doesn’t make anything easier for our gentle remover of obstacles.

2. Birth
Parvati, Ganesh’s mother, was hanging out at her and Shiva’s mountain home one day when she tried to go visit her husband only to be blocked by Shiva’s head attendant, Nandi. Apparently, Shiva was in one of his deep meditations again and wanted for no reason to be disturbed. Parvati, as you can imagine, was deeply hurt and felt very lonely being ignored by her husband. She made the decision to have someone who would be there anytime she needed and would only respond to her. So, right then and there she collected some clay from the ground and molded the most handsome young man she could image, the next moment she breathed life into him and lo and behold, handsome Ganesh was born.

3. Elephant Head
We take it all for granted that Ganesh has always had an elephant head, but it wasn’t always that way! Oh no, Ganesh was quite a looker in his early years. So much so that he was extremely arrogant of his looks. Soon after his creation Parvati requested Ganesh to guard her side of the mountain while she bathed. As she was away, Shiva came out of his deep meditation and, as any good husband would, went to go visit his wife unaware of the newly created Ganesh. Suddenly he was confronted by a handsome young man telling him he couldn’t see his wife….. you can imagine how furious Shiva was. There was a quick battle and in the process Shiva beheaded Ganesh. After learning who he really was, Shiva decided to bring him back to life and told his entourage to bring the head of the first sleeping being they found with it’s head facing towards the North. Well, the first thing they found was an elephant, so Shiva attached the elephant head to Ganesh’s body, then proceeding to save Ganesh from his pride over his body, he increased his weight to make him the chubby deity we know and love today.

4. The Broken Tusk
We have all seen it, but it may have not struck you why our elephant-headed friend has a broken tusk.  One day, as Ganesh was guarding his father who was in one of his deep meditations, a family friend came to visit. It was Parashurama an incarnation of Vishnu who is known for his serious temper. Ganesh was a little perplexed because he was told to not let anyone disturb his father in meditation, however here was a serious VIP in the house. Unable to disobey a direct order from his father he blocked Parashurama’s way, and as a result Parashurama lost his temper and threw an axe at Ganesh. Ganesh knowing that the axe was a gift from his father allowed the axe to hit him out of respect. The result: a broken tusk!

5. Popularity
You might wonder why Ganesh is truly one of the most popular hindu gods while there are many other of the same status or position that are far less well known. Well, that isn’t because of good marketing! Ganesh was actually the recipient of a boon (a wish) from another god. The boon granted him to be more revered and worshiped than even his father, and he would be the first god to be acknowledged when entering a temple. Modern day translation: most shared and posted god on all of Facebook!

6. That Sweet Ride
Now, most people may not know this, but almost every Hindu god has a vehicle or trusty steed. If that is the case, then what is Ganesh’s vehicle? Well, have you ever noticed that tiny mouse that always seems to be in the pictures with Ganesh. Yup, that’s his trusty steed! But, what Ganesh lacks in physical power he certainly makes up for in brains. During a bet, Ganesh and his brother Kartikeya challenged each other to see who could go around the world 3 times the fastest. As Kartikeya jumped onto his huge bird of a vehicle and flew at records speeds to get around the world and win the challenge, Ganesh was left on the ground. Nobody had ever given him a vehicle to ride, so he quickly asked his father for some form of a vehicle to ride upon, to which Shiva gave a tiny mouse. Ganesh, knowing this mouse could never carry him started brainstorming. An idea came to him and he went up to his parents, walked around them 3 times and announced he had won the challenge, because parents are the highest respected members of any family they are respected as symbolic of the world. Shiva was pleased that he won his challenge, and forever after he was revered for his incredible intellect. 

7. Writers Block
Our last fun fact is about Ganesh’s writing ability. He was actually the scribe who hand-wrote the entire Mahabharata poem. The great sage Vyāsa requested Ganesh to write the poem as he dictated, knowing this would be a huge project Ganesh agreed on one condition, Vyasa must recite the entire poem un-interrupted, without pausing or taking a break. The great Vyāsa agreed to this request however found a loop-hole to give himself a break, he would give Ganesh incredibly difficult complex passages so Ganesh would be forced to ask questions giving the tricky Vyāsa the time to rest when needed.

Check out our store for Ganesh gifts

Of course most of us have all heard of Ganesh, but there may be a few facts you didn’t know about our favorite chubby little deity.

Yes, now of course we all know that Ganesh is the remover of obstacles, everybody and their yoga teacher knows that! But lets cover ground in some of those other little known secrets about Ganesh, so you have something to woo the crowd with at your next yoga party.

1. Family Drama

Ganesh is the son of Shiva the Destroyer and Parvati. A lot of family pressure, right? He also has an older brother Kartikeya, god of war and victory, which doesn’t make anything easier for our gentle remover of obstacles.

2. Birth

Parvati, Ganesh’s mother, was hanging out at her and Shiva’s mountain home one day when she tried to go visit her husband only to be blocked by Shiva’s head attendant, Nandi. Apparently, Shiva was in one of his deep meditations again and wanted for no reason to be disturbed. Parvati, as you can imagine, was deeply hurt and felt very lonely being ignored by her husband. She made the decision to have someone who would be there anytime she needed and would only respond to her. So, right then and there she collected some clay from the ground and molded the most handsome young man she could image, the next moment she breathed life into him and lo and behold, handsome Ganesh was born.

3. Elephant Head

We take it all for granted that Ganesh has always had an elephant head, but it wasn’t always that way! Oh no, Ganesh was quite a looker in his early years. So much so that he was extremely arrogant of his looks. Soon after his creation Parvati requested Ganesh to guard her side of the mountain while she bathed. As she was away, Shiva came out of his deep meditation and, as any good husband would, went to go visit his wife unaware of the newly created Ganesh. Suddenly he was confronted by a handsome young man telling him he couldn’t see his wife….. you can imagine how furious Shiva was. There was a quick battle and in the process Shiva beheaded Ganesh. After learning who he really was, Shiva decided to bring him back to life and told his entourage to bring the head of the first sleeping being they found with it’s head facing towards the North. Well, the first thing they found was an elephant, so Shiva attached the elephant head to Ganesh’s body, then proceeding to save Ganesh from his pride over his body, he increased his weight to make him the chubby deity we know and love today.

4. The Broken Tusk

We have all seen it, but it may have not struck you why our elephant-headed friend has a broken tusk.  One day, as Ganesh was guarding his father who was in one of his deep meditations, a family friend came to visit. It was Parashurama an incarnation of Vishnu who is known for his serious temper. Ganesh was a little perplexed because he was told to not let anyone disturb his father in meditation, however here was a serious VIP in the house. Unable to disobey a direct order from his father he blocked Parashurama’s way, and as a result Parashurama lost his temper and threw an axe at Ganesh. Ganesh knowing that the axe was a gift from his father allowed the axe to hit him out of respect. The result: a broken tusk!

5. Popularity

You might wonder why Ganesh is truly one of the most popular hindu gods while there are many other of the same status or position that are far less well known. Well, that isn’t because of good marketing! Ganesh was actually the recipient of a boon (a wish) from another god. The boon granted him to be more revered and worshiped than even his father, and he would be the first god to be acknowledged when entering a temple. Modern day translation: most shared and posted god on all of Facebook!

6. That Sweet Ride

Now, most people may not know this, but almost every Hindu god has a vehicle or trusty steed. If that is the case, then what is Ganesh’s vehicle? Well, have you ever noticed that tiny mouse that always seems to be in the pictures with Ganesh. Yup, that’s his trusty steed! But, what Ganesh lacks in physical power he certainly makes up for in brains. During a bet, Ganesh and his brother Kartikeya challenged each other to see who could go around the world 3 times the fastest. As Kartikeya jumped onto his huge bird of a vehicle and flew at records speeds to get around the world and win the challenge, Ganesh was left on the ground. Nobody had ever given him a vehicle to ride, so he quickly asked his father for some form of a vehicle to ride upon, to which Shiva gave a tiny mouse. Ganesh, knowing this mouse could never carry him started brainstorming. An idea came to him and he went up to his parents, walked around them 3 times and announced he had won the challenge, because parents are the highest respected members of any family they are respected as symbolic of the world. Shiva was pleased that he won his challenge, and forever after he was revered for his incredible intellect. 

7. Writers Block

Our last fun fact is about Ganesh’s writing ability. He was actually the scribe who hand-wrote the entire Mahabharata poem. The great sage Vyāsa requested Ganesh to write the poem as he dictated, knowing this would be a huge project Ganesh agreed on one condition, Vyasa must recite the entire poem un-interrupted, without pausing or taking a break. The great Vyāsa agreed to this request however found a loop-hole to give himself a break, he would give Ganesh incredibly difficult complex passages so Ganesh would be forced to ask questions giving the tricky Vyāsa the time to rest when needed.

Check out our store for Ganesh gifts

Now everyone loves their inspiring yoga teacher, but there are also the big name yoga stars who inspire us to go deeper and try harder to improve ourselves and practice. These people are the ones who embody yoga without ever striking a pose. Martin Luther King, Jr. was one of the many incredible individuals.
Let’s takes moment today and reflect on some of this inspirational man’s yoga qualities and let it inspire us to elevate ourselves to be even better than we ever dreamed possible with his example. After all, B.K.S. Iyengar said it best “It is through your body that you realize you are a spark of divinity.”

1. Fearlessness (Abhayam) 
Clearly it was difficult to stand up to millions of people and proclaim his dream.  Have courage and faith in yourself and make it clear that what you want to see in the world will come to pass, and nothing anyone thinks or says can change your conviction.

2. Patience or Fortitude (Dhriti)
Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither is a dream. It took more than one speech to put an end to segregation in the United States. More than one march or one demonstration, more than one sit-in. It was continuous effort that made his dream come alive. Martin Luther King, Jr. was forced to practice patience all this time to truly see his goals. Things don’t change overnight and and he knew it. Be patient with your dreams and let them grow step by step, day by day. You will realize your goals. It’s a marathon, not a sprint.

3. Radiance of Character (Tejas)
Those who followed Martin Luther King, Jr. believed in him 100%. That kind of trust did not come just from his words alone, but the harmony between word and action. He lived what he preached. To have a True Radiance of Character, one must be true to themselves, they must be trustworthy, honest, open and most importantly pour their inner compassion out to the world.

4. Non-Violence (Ahimsa) 
Few others in our history have practiced this yoga quality to the extent he had. He layed out beautiful guidelines and concepts to bring true non-violence into our everyday lives. He showed by example how one can truly triumph through non-violent action, and by doing so, had changed his community, his country, and his world.

5. Self Discipline (Tapas) 
Self Discipline is the ability to control your words and actions in a way that serves you and those around you to elevate everybody you cross paths with. Martin Luther King, Jr. clearly showed his true strength, taking the high road and putting himself out there to be an example for others. He did what he needed to do because he was living in his truth and to not live his truth would be impossible. It’s controlling your frustration when someone speaks to you harshly. It’s controlling your tone when someone frustrates you, and I believe in our time, nobody could set a higher example of this incredible quality than Martin Luther King, Jr. As he said best, “The time is always right to do what is right”

So there you have it. He may have not taught at any popular yoga festivals, or created his own style of yoga, but he was truly one of the greatest yogi’s this country has and will ever produce. Namaste.

“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.” -Martin Luther King, Jr. “Take the first step in faith. You don’t have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step.” -Martin Luther King, Jr. “Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.” -Martin Luther King, Jr.

Now everyone loves their inspiring yoga teacher, but there are also the big name yoga stars who inspire us to go deeper and try harder to improve ourselves and practice. These people are the ones who embody yoga without ever striking a pose. Martin Luther King, Jr. was one of the many incredible individuals.

Let’s takes moment today and reflect on some of this inspirational man’s yoga qualities and let it inspire us to elevate ourselves to be even better than we ever dreamed possible with his example. After all, B.K.S. Iyengar said it best “It is through your body that you realize you are a spark of divinity.”


1. Fearlessness (Abhayam) 

Clearly it was difficult to stand up to millions of people and proclaim his dream.  Have courage and faith in yourself and make it clear that what you want to see in the world will come to pass, and nothing anyone thinks or says can change your conviction.

2. Patience or Fortitude (Dhriti)

Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither is a dream. It took more than one speech to put an end to segregation in the United States. More than one march or one demonstration, more than one sit-in. It was continuous effort that made his dream come alive. Martin Luther King, Jr. was forced to practice patience all this time to truly see his goals. Things don’t change overnight and and he knew it. Be patient with your dreams and let them grow step by step, day by day. You will realize your goals. It’s a marathon, not a sprint.

3. Radiance of Character (Tejas)

Those who followed Martin Luther King, Jr. believed in him 100%. That kind of trust did not come just from his words alone, but the harmony between word and action. He lived what he preached. To have a True Radiance of Character, one must be true to themselves, they must be trustworthy, honest, open and most importantly pour their inner compassion out to the world.

4. Non-Violence (Ahimsa) 

Few others in our history have practiced this yoga quality to the extent he had. He layed out beautiful guidelines and concepts to bring true non-violence into our everyday lives. He showed by example how one can truly triumph through non-violent action, and by doing so, had changed his community, his country, and his world.

5. Self Discipline (Tapas) 

Self Discipline is the ability to control your words and actions in a way that serves you and those around you to elevate everybody you cross paths with. Martin Luther King, Jr. clearly showed his true strength, taking the high road and putting himself out there to be an example for others. He did what he needed to do because he was living in his truth and to not live his truth would be impossible. It’s controlling your frustration when someone speaks to you harshly. It’s controlling your tone when someone frustrates you, and I believe in our time, nobody could set a higher example of this incredible quality than Martin Luther King, Jr. As he said best, “The time is always right to do what is right”

So there you have it. He may have not taught at any popular yoga festivals, or created his own style of yoga, but he was truly one of the greatest yogi’s this country has and will ever produce. Namaste.

“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.” -Martin Luther King, Jr. “Take the first step in faith. You don’t have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step.” -Martin Luther King, Jr. “Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.” -Martin Luther King, Jr.