Ganesha is one of the better-known and beloved deities in Hindu teachings: the remover of obstacles, the god of new beginnings as well as wisdom. I have always been fond of his representation with an elephant’s head. When I moved to Florida, I bought a small statue of his likeness to place near our front door. Following tradition, I rubbed his nose lovingly as I passed in or out of the condo. I felt connected to the energy of new beginnings, free of obstacles, trusting that all my dreams about this adventure would unfold perfectly.
Well, Ganesh can be a trickster as well as divine support. He can place obstacles in your path as well as remove them, all in service to your soul’s journey. This little bit of wisdom showed itself again and again as my expectations about sharing my life with a community of friends here manifested only temporarily, and things that had seemed certain began to dissolve all around me. Surrender was repeatedly the only wise response to unexpected change. I discovered that the real obstacles that Ganesh was dedicated to removing were those between me and God. All of them. And this was Ganesh’s wisdom: let go, let God.
Over the course of two years, I received this wisdom at deeper and deeper levels: through the events of my life, through a worldwide pandemic, through political upheaval—and through extraordinary moments of divine connection in Nature. The natural world here in Florida transports the soul. At any given moment, I can look up at the powder-blue sky and constantly changing cloud formations and feel as if I am in heaven, immersed in sacred energy. White ibises and snowy egrets flying overhead add to the mystery and beauty. Every morning, when I walk along a nearby nature trail, I am immediately in an altered state of receptive awareness. And this is where Ganesh delivered his summation statement to me a few weeks ago, visually and then aurally.
As I passed a group of cypress trees on the trail, I suddenly stepped into a cloud of long-winged zebra butterflies. Their black-and-white wings flashed in the morning light shining through the tree branches, creating an optical illusion of appearance and disappearance, as if they were moving from one dimension to another. I could feel my heart open into a profound soul connection to God, tears of love and gratitude in my eyes. Then, as I shifted my gaze to the beams of brilliant sunlight, I heard within me: “You did not come to Florida to live in a community. You came here to experience God.” Truth. Ganesh’s truth. My soul’s truth. And I immediately recognized it as such.
So now I see, more clearly each day, why I was brought here. In the empty spaces outside of human life plans, you can hear wisdom, you can feel peace, and you can become one with your soul. And “community” is wider and deeper than one place, one time frame; it spans the globe and lives in the heart of humanity. I also understand more fully that planning the details doesn’t always lead to certainty of outcome. I can only open the door and welcome everything that appears, flowing with the mysteries of the universe. Every seeming obstacle is a guidepost to God. Thank you, Ganesha.