From the Elephant in the Room to Ganesha

Something was Wrong

At the beginning of becoming aware of the spiritual sleep condition I lived in, I discovered that there was an elephant in the room. An unwelcome visitor. Have you heard that saying – the elephant in the room? Wikipedia states “the term refers to a question, problem, solution, or controversial issue which is obvious to everyone who knows about the situation, but which is deliberately ignored because to do otherwise would cause great embarrassment, sadness, or arguments, or is simply taboo”. That is a great definition and it certainly applied to the situations I lived with. In my case though, it also meant I needed to change. Of course, at the time, I thought it was everyone else that needed to change.

At this point I resist the temptation to go into detail. My goal is not to bring harm to those involved and not to get into the story of the issue. Rather, it is the experience of my journey with that elephant that matters.

I Needed Help

That elephant was dark, gray, and heavy. It grew into such a size that I could no longer ignore it. I tried looking around it, I tried looking under it, and even over it. But as Spirit would have it, all the denial about it exploded into a reality beyond my control. I suddenly realized it was too big to look under it, around it, or over it. Addressing the issue was the only way out. I had to learn to call it out by name and to educate myself about what it represented. I did not know what to do or how to proceed. Therefore, I needed help.

Taking Responsibility

The issue directly reflected my unhappiness. I was not happy with the life I created and there was a tremendous problem looking back at me that I was trying not to see. No longer able to ignore the issue, I sought wise counsel and learned all I could about it. That eventually led me to a supportive group of people who helped me claim the issue, reframe it, then change it. I took personal responsibility for my part in creating the situation in the first place. As I did that, the elephant started to shrink in size. Its color lightened, eventually it became pink. I could breathe again! The issue never went completely away, but it no longer affected me personally the way it had in the past.

Finding Ganesha

Through the continued journey with the support group I learned about prayer and meditation performed in a way I could appreciate. With my newfound ability to connect within, I worked with the energy of elephant and learned about the Hindu deity, Ganesha. He is often revered as the remover of obstacles. I made friends with this figure and I soon learned to recognize elephant as a messenger rather than a destroyer. I learned to call out the issues no matter how hard it is to do. If I don’t acknowledge the existence of a problem, I cannot solve it.

If you get a chance to see my office, you’ll see that Ganesha is displayed there along with some of his friends. Now you know why. He’s a constant reminder that I have mystical help in seeing the obstacles in my life and that I have the power to shift them. Is there an elephant in the room in your life?