By Swami Harshananda
Gaṇapati or Gaṇeśa is an extremely popular deity. He is worshiped at the inauguration of all the ventures whether being sacred or secular.
Out of the 32 forms described in the iconographical works, ‘Dhvaja-Gaṇapati’ is the one. He is depicted as a fierce deity of the full-moon color, with four heads and four hands. In these four hands he is carries:
- A book
- A rosary
- A water pot
- A flagstaff (daṇḍa with dhvaja)
The name is probably derived from the last item.
- The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore