Ganesha: Replacing ignorance by wisdom and unconciousness by awareness


Replacing ignorance by wisdom

and unconsciousness by awareness

Ganesha Rishikesh


The symbolism behind Ganesha got me interested while walking past this statue today. I wondered why  it has the head of an elephant. Apparently Ganesha’s dad, Shiva, shopped his previous head off, because he was in the way but he did not realize it was his son. So when he realized he found the body of his sun a new head and so Ganesha was born.

Often these Indian legends have a big meaning behind them so I started to read into this one. Apparently one of the meanings/ symbolisms of this story is that ignorance has to be overcome by knowledge. Ignorance is a lack of knowledge. On Wikipedia the word ignorant is described as an adjective that describes a person in the state of being unaware, and can describe individuals who deliberately ignore or disregard important information or facts, or individuals who are unaware of important information or facts. Aren’t we all like this in some aspect of our life? For example towards how we treat the environment, towards our feelings, towards what we eat, towards relationships? Often we judge ourselves or others because we do not understand or don’t have the information to understand. We go back to concepts (ideas in our head) of what is going on based on what happened in the past, instead of directing our attention to the full scope of the here and now. 

Especially when something is difficult we prefer to go into a state of not allowing, self protection, in the form of a coping strategy that makes us able to stay comfortable on the short term at least.

In addition to this there is the tendency for a self confirming bias, in other words we select information, memories, interpretations and pay attention to things that confirm our previous views and experiences. This can turn into a cause for regret.

For change to happen and to have compassion for ourselves and others we need to get in touch with new and wider perspectives and educate ourselves with study, introspection and becoming aware of and questioning our own behaviours and truths. At the same time investing in a deep understanding of those around us.

In other words we need to learn to pay attention to and open up to the here and now fully. That means to be fully aware of our body’s, feelings, thoughts and what is happening around us, even if this is sometimes uncomfortable or painful.

To become wiser we must listen more and talk less. Accept more (on an experiential level) and resist less. In this way we can become more conscious so that we can make better choices.

No mud no lotus 💐


Surrendering to who you are

Surrendering to the “I am”

Aren’t you like the water in the river?

Holding onto water doesn’t make sense

and pushing water away neither

All that can be done is to surrender to this river called life

All the coming and goings..

…embrace them with awareness… this is you

I wrote this poem a year ago in Rishikesh while watching the river Ganges and while attending Mooji’s satsangs.

With this poso-who-are-youem I’m trying to say that the “selfs” that we often identify with for example the body, the mind etc. are fluid, it does not make sense to hold on to any versions of it. It also raises the question who is suppose to be holding on to it as the something that is nature fluid can’t hold on to something else that is fluid. At the same time to hold on to pleasant experiences and push unpleasant ones away,  is an illusion and discouraging peace.

I think we do not control this river called life, I suspect this movie might be predetermined, so there is not much to do, but a lot to “BE”. This is pointing to a spiritual practice of not identifying oneself with the body nor mind and not to be affected by the nature of it’s experiences. In other words the invitation is: See what happens.

In addition to this, experiential avoidance of “what is” can create more suffering than is already inherent to this experience called life. Our inner and outer reality is constantly changing, comings and goings. We can live with more peace if we realize who we really are: awareness of awareness. Surrendering to the fact that change is inherent to reality.

But is this “surrendering” something that can be done? Or is it something that is? Or does this just happen as well and if so, can it be observed? Because who or what is it, that is surrendering? I start to come to an little understanding of this, but to Talk the talk, is different from walking the walk, but let’s see what happens ;-). I assume that the path and the one walking it are not separate and in that case there is nowhere to go and no one to be, but here and now.

Inspired by Mooji, Sri Ramana and a friend.

The reversed warrior of happiness

Inspired by yoga philosophy I realized again that being present here and now is the point of everything.

I wrote something about this from the viewpoint of a yoga pose called reversed warrior:

The reversed warrior of happiness:

He is the one who realizes again and again that life is not about
the waves of happiness or suffering, that is what comes and goes.
Instead of looking for happiness in the ocean of conditions he realizes
happiness is found in the water that never changes, that has no conditions
there is a stillness, peace and bliss to be found in that water,
called equanimity, the only unchanging phenomena
of consciousness and presence
I am that
Aham brahma asmi
© Susan Schmeetz

the reversed warrior of happinesss