g o d s - o f - i n d i a ++ GANESHA / KRONCHA|
KRONCHA ---- How the Mouse Became Ganesha's Vehicle.
ONE OF THE THINGS I HAVE A HARD TIME GETTING MY HEAD AROUND REGARDING THE STORY OF GANESHA IS THIS -- how does such a big elephant-headed he-man manage to ride around on top of a tiny mouse?
It doesn't make sense, and it seems absurd -- surely the mouse would be crushed to death, if it really was Ganesha's vehicle? I know that Ganesha is a mystical being who can perform miracles, but the idea of having a mouse depicted as Ganesha's vehicle has always struck me as odd. Frankly, it didn't sell. To help resolve my cynicism on this issue, I recently turned to the Holy Ganeshapurana for Insight on the Mouse Question. It turns out that Ganesha's Mouse was actually a god in his own right at one time -- his name was Kroncha. Kroncha had the misfortune once, at the assembly of Lord Indra, of stepping on the toes of one Muni Vamadeva, another god. Thinking that Kroncha had done so intentionally, Muni Vamadeva grew enraged. In his wrath M.V. said: "Kroncha! I curse you to become a mouse!"
TRANSFORMATION ---- Kroncha Becomes Rodent.
TERRIFIED, KRONCHA FELL TO HIS KNEES AND PLEADED FOR MERCY. This subdued M.V.'s anger -- to an extent. He said: "All right. Kroncha, you will become a vehicle of Lord Ganesha, and this will bring an end to your sufferings."
And so it was. Kroncha, transformed into a mouse by the curse of M.V., fell into the hermitage of Maharshi Parashar.
GANESHA STEPS IN ---- How to Tame a Mountain Sized Mouse.
TO UNDERSTAND THIS STORY, YOU HAVE TO UNDERSTAND THAT KRONCHA IN HIS NEW ANIMAL FORM WAS NO ORDINARY MOUSE -- in fact, he was as big as a mountain and frightening to all who beheld him. He caused no end of trouble and destroyed everything in his path, just like a mountain-sized mouse could be expected to do.
Lord Ganesha, who was being taken care of by Maharshi Parashar and his wife Vatsala in the hermitage, heard all the commotion and decided to do something about this pesky little -- sorry, make that HUMUNGOUS -- mouse!
Ganesha unleashed one of his his secret weapons: a glorious pasha (noose), which he sent flying in the general direction of the rodentified Kroncha. The pasha was so radiant its light filled the entire universe, if the Hindu scriptures can be trusted as a historical guide! Pasha chased the mouse and looped around his neck, lassoo-style; Kroncha fainted, overcome by radiance; Pasha tightened Its Grip, retracted, and brought Kroncha to Ganesha's feet. It was the kind of action scene worthy of a Bollywood melodrama!
GANESHA'S MERCY ---- Kroncha Is Mounted.
AND LORD GANESHA SAID: "Kroncha, you have troubled the Sages and Brahmins to no end, but since you sue for forgiveness, I shall use you as my vehicle." Whereupon Ganesha mounted Kroncha. But Ganesha was too heavy -- Kroncha was being crushed into His Elephantine Weight! Or so the Hindu story goes. But if Kroncha was at this time the size of a mountain, then Ganesha must have been much, much bigger than a mountain. This indeterminancy in the size and scale of things drives me crazy, but seems endemic in Hindu mythology!
Anyway, Kroncha cried with pain and pleaded: "Aah! I am being pulverised under your weight. Oh God! -- please be kind to me and make yourself light, that I can more easily bear your weight."
Seeing the mouse so subdued Ganesha took pity on him and made himself light, such that Kroncha could bear Him.
Ever since, Ganesha has been using the mouse, Kroncha, the DemiGod, as his vehicle, and Kroncha has happily borne Him, everywhere.
Or so the story goes. But in other stories, Ganesha's Mount Mouse is called Mushika, a tiny mouse or shrew. He attests to the all-pervasiveness of the Elephant God and carries Ganesha's grace into every nook and cranny. So who is the real mouse: Kroncha or Mushika? Is he really the size of a mountain, the size of a standard Earth mouse, or kind of cow-sized (as in the illustration above)? In Hinduism there is never a straight answer to any of these questions. Which is exactly what makes it cool, in a crazy uncertain infuriating kind of way! There is more than one answer to every question.
How Did Ganesha Get an Elephant's Head? |
How the Mouse Became Ganesha's Vehicle |
How to do Ganesha Puja at Home |
Moon Cursed by Ganesha |
Origin of Ganesha
Symbolism of Ganesha's Body |
The Remover of Obstacles
Hinduism 101 | Hindu Gods | Hindu Saints | Hindu Thought | Indian Palmistry | Indian Medicine | Yoga | Mantras | Yantras | Subcontinental Travel Guide
Contact the author Rob Sullivan at email@example.com. Anticopyright June 2010.
f e e d b a c k
Mog Rhod (firstname.lastname@example.org)
says: "There are even more descriptions of the mouse, to some it is the massive penetration of expedient means, upaya, which is inseparable from dharma and evolution.
"It Italian MUSCI means muscle, as the muscle ripples underneath the skin like mice scurrying through a sack.
"Isn't muscle reddish?
"Prana, Ojas (color red) on the Danda Staff of the Kshatriya.
"Awake...and where dharma and evolution are one...
"Tarsier are said to commit suicide in captivity, dukha, suffering...
JOIN THE CONVERSATION!
What are your thoughts on Hindu gods? Who is your favourite god (the One you worship?) Or are you losing your religion, as the old REM song went?