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Pronunciation : Coming soon ...

(Hindu Deity)GANGA

Also known as TRIPATHAGĀ
Attributes : Coming soon ...
Festival days : Coming soon too ...
Vahana (Vehicle) : Makara (sea monster)

Born from Brahma's foot spa during the Vamana episode, Ganga is the goddess of a dirty big river. You might know her as Ganges.

As per usual, Indra had acted out of stupidity and as per usual one of the big boys had to dig him out of a hole.

Ashvamedha was a most important ritual involving the sacrifice of a horse. Obviously, if you lose the horse you can't finish the ritual, and a jealous Indra had hidden it in the underworld.

In a state of panic King Sagara sent his sixty thousand sons to look for it. Stumbling into the underworld and insulting Sage Kapila didn't help matters, especially when he burnt them to ashes for dusturbing his penance. With no final rites they were cursed to wander the earth as ghosts, their destructive energy increasing every year until Bhagiratha had a brainwave.

Without hardly a thought for the rest of earths inhabitants, he went to the Himalayas and began a thousand year penance at the end of which he asked Brahma to release Ganga and cleanse the souls of the kings cursed and fallen sons.

'Sorry chap, no-can-do' said Brahma, 'Shiva is the only one strong enough to break Ganga's fall and prevent the total destruction of earth and everything in it. Go ask him.'

Going back into Tapsaya mode Bhagiratha waited another year before Shiva came before him.

'What on earth are you doing?' asked Shiva, and listened intently as Bhagi told of his predicament.

'Such a noble and unselfish request doesn't require penance, let alone for a thousand years,' said Shiva, 'Why didn't you just ask and I'd have helped you for free. You muppet!'

As Ganga was released and Bhagiratha saw her awesome power he realised that maybe he hadn't really thought things through. She crashed onto the waiting Shiva's head who caught her in his matted locks and she was released in smaller and less destructive rivers and streams.

Bhagiratha breathed a sigh of relief as Shiva had probably the most refreshing shower he's ever had.
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'GANGA' - Indian entry : 06 May 2007
Page last modified on 21 May 2008
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