In India, Lord Ganesha is worshipped in various manifestations. He is worshipped as Vigneshwara, the obviator of evil forces. He is also worshipped as Gajanana, the fount of knowledge and wisdom. He is also worshipped as Lambakarna, or the patient one who is willing to survive the long haul. Above all, he is Ganapati, the god of new beginnings.
On the occasion of Ganesh Chaturthi 2021, let us invoke Lord Ganesha’s blessings in the form of these 7 pearls of investment wisdom.
1. Invoking Chinteshwara – Focus on investment goals
Do you know what the small eyes of Lord Ganesha represent? You would have noticed that for the size of his body, Lord Ganesha’s eyes are extremely small and fire like. These eyes represented a single-minded focus. When it comes to investing, your single-minded focus comes from your investment goals. You first need to be clear as to why you are investing and what you want to achieve. At no point, should this focus be lost.
2. Invoking Gajanana – Wisdom beyond knowledge
Lord Ganesha is also worshipped as Gajanana or the fount of infinite knowledge and wisdom. The significance of Gajanana is the focus on wisdom beyond knowledge. After all, knowledge is just a body of information and insights. Knowledge can be acquired, wisdom has to be developed. That is why it is said that investors need wisdom beyond knowledge. Investors with high-end knowledge of fundamentals and technicals can still make bad investment decisions if they lack discernment. That is what Gajanana represents.
3. Invoking Lambakarana – Having an ear to the ground
The large ears of Lord Ganesha represent the ability to pick up information, process it rapidly and convert it into action. Even as the Lord appears to be lumbering along, his ears are picking up the minutest details. When it comes to investing, that is called having an ear to the ground. There is information, insights, rumours, tips and grapevine. In all these information flows, there is always some wisdom hidden. A good investor must develop the ability to distil wisdom from various sources. Interesting, Lord Ganesha also has a small mouth, highlighting the importance of listening more than speaking.
4. Invoking Lambodara – the one with insatiable appetite
How is insatiable appetite relevant in investing. Did you know the significance of Lord Ganesha’s huge belly. It is about the ability or appetite for the good and the bad. When it comes to investing, it is never a one-way street. There are good times and there are prolonged bad times. Investors need an insatiable appetite for risk, resilience to bounce back from a bad performance and also the stoic ability to accept good and bad news as part of the larger investment game.
5. Invoking Vakratunda – the flexible all-purpose trunk
You will realize this point if you see an elephant at work. The elephant uses its trunk to eat food, pick fruits, bathe itself by spraying water, fight opponents and also to help lift weights. It is hard to think of any other organ that is so adaptable. Like Vakratunda, your investment strategy needs to adapt with changing times. You cannot get stuck to one idea or approach. Your strategy needs to adapt to the times. It is this flexibility that Vakratunda represents. Remember, the dinosaurs became extinct not because it was weak but because it was not adaptable.
6. Invoking Ekadanta – Resilience from downturns
There is an interesting story behind the Ekadanta (one-tooth) form of Lord Ganesha. When Lord Ganesha was writing the Mahabharata recited by Ved Vyas, the peacock feather which he was using as a pen broke. Since Lord Ganesha had committed to write non-stop, he broke part of his tusk and continued writing. That is why one of his tusks is broken. That shows resilience to bounce back. When it comes to investing, there are going to be rough patches along the way. The long-term investors are normally the ones who are most resilient and able to bounce back from a crisis.
7. Think out of the box in a crisis – Like Lord Ganesha
There is an interesting story in Hindu mythology. Lord Shiva once promised his sons, Ganesha and Kartikeya, that the fruit of knowledge would be given to the one who circumambulates the earth 6 times. While Lord Kartikeya set off immediately on his peacock, Lord Ganesha knew his mouse would never be able to match the peacock. He went round his parents 6 times, since Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati were manifestations of the universe. The moral of the story is thinking out of the box. Even in the stock markets, solutions are never discrete choices. There is always the third choice you must look for.
As India comes out of a difficult year, may the blessings of Lord Ganesha be showered on all investors.
Here is wishing you a happy Ganesh Chaturthi. “Ganpati Bappa Morya”