Real Name: Shri Ganehsa (Ganesh and Ganesha are alternate spellings)

Identity/Class: Hindu god

Occupation: God of wisdom, obstacles and beginnings, patron god of elephants

Group Membership: The Hindu Gods (Devas)

AffiliationsThe Man-Elephant (possibly)

Enemies: The Rakshasas (demonic enemies of the Hindu Gods)

Known Relatives: Shiva (father), Parvati (mother), Skanda (brother, alias Kartikeya), Kâli (sister), Siddhi, Buddhi (wives), Ksema, Labha (sons), Dharma, Padma, Vach, Daksha, Kama (cousins), Lakshmi, Sarasvati (aunts), Vishnu, Brahma (uncles), Visvarupa (father-in-law), Himavat (grandfather), Gaea (grandmother, alias Ammavaru)

Aliases: Ganapati, Gajendra, The Great Ganeesh, Elephant-God

Base of Operations: Kailasa in the dimension of Nirvana

First Appearance: She-Hulk II#25 (March, 2008)

Powers/Abilities: Ganesha possesses the conventional physical attributes of the Hindu gods, such as superhuman strength, superhuman stamina, endurance, resistance to injury and an enchanted longevity; he is not immortal like the gods of Olympus. He also has certain undefined mystical skills. One of his gems united the Man-Elephant with his battle suit. Ganesha resembles a huge pink-skinned humanoid male with the head and tusks of an Indian Elephant (at least in one fresco). In Hindu Myth, Ganesha is an extremely wily yet beneficent deity who rides upon a giant rat.

History: (Hindu Myth) - Ganehsa (Ganesha) is one of the Devas, an extra-dimensional race of beings worshipped as gods by the people of India. Descended from the old Adityas or Vedic gods, Ganehsa is one of the most important gods of the modern Hindu religion.

Parvati had given birth to Ganesha to be a countenance against good and evil deeds and altered his appearance that he would be too handsome to marry or take a wife. However, because of her spell, Shiva could not recognize his son when the young god was guarding her bed chambers as she took a bath. Not realizing the young god was his son, Shiva ripped Ganesha's head off of his body as he cast him aside to be with Parvati. Ganesha's death shocked Parvati and all the gods, but Shiva rectified the matter by promising to restore him to life with the life-force of the first living thing he found. His servants quickly discovered Airavata, the elephant-mount of Indra the thunder-god, and took it from him as penance for Indra's slaying of Vritra, one of the Naga-gods, allies to the Devas against the Rakshasas. Possibly as some required side effect of the spell, Ganesha began to resemble a elephant with the body of a man. (According to later myth, Shiva had simply just replaced Ganesha's head with that of the elephant.) Parvati was not satisfied with this accomplishment of repentance and wanted more. Shiva then granted Ganesha himself a boon and promised him that all Hindus on earth would acknowledge his existence before starting any task or undertaking. The wise elephant-god was soon called upon by all his worshippers for any mortal endeavor they started.

Ganesha was the older brother of Skanda, the war god, and they decided to compete between themselves for wives. They chose to race around the world to decide who was worthy to marry, and Skanda set off to race around the world. Ganehsa, however, proved much more the wily god in his brother's absence by circling his father, Shiva, who under Hindu religion represented the epitome of all creation. He debated the feat with his father by holding up the veracity of the Vedas and the Sastras, the two most holy tomes of the Hindu gods, and Shiva praised him for being clever and intelligent. Ganesha took the sisters, Siddhi and Buddhi, daughters of one of the Vedic gods, to be his wives, and they each granted him a son. 

(She-Hulk II#25) - Ganehsa was well worshipped among the Hindu gods for centuries and still has countless worshippers today. In the African city of Timbuktu, one of his priestesses encountered Manfred Ellsworth Haller, the former Man-Elephant. Haller's business had been dissolved through the actions of his competitor, Tony Stark, and he wandered to Africa with his old Man-Elephant armor as his last possession. Seemingly impressed by his dedication to the elephant and maybe Ganesha, the blind priestess showed Haller the Seetorak emerald in the head of a fresco of Ganesha which began to glow. It's mystical energies made Haller's Man-Elephant battle suit real and a part of his body, transforming him into the Behemoth.

Comments: Adapted by Peter David (writer), Adriana Melo (penciler), Mariah Benes (inks), Chris Sotomayer (colors) and Dave Sharp (letters).

Ganesha also appeared in Wonder Woman II #149 (DC Comics). He also has a  bio along with more detailed profiles of the other Hindu Gods at the Guide to the Mythological Universe website. 

It is unsure if the Seetorak gem is connected to the Cyttorak crystal of the Juggernaut. The possibility is there; the word "juggernaut" comes from Jagannath, a powerful half-brother of the Hindu hero Rama, one of the avatars (incarnations) of Vishnu. 

This is the only place I've read where "shri" is used for Ganesha/Ganehsa. Shri is one of the names of Lakshmi, the love-goddess, and wife of Vishnu.

The behemoth, along with the leviathan, was the name of a large unidentified creature identified from Africa before European invasion. It was first named in Job 40:15-24,41. Modern biologists believe it refers to the hippopotamus or elephant while leviathan refers to the whale or saltwater crocodile.

Profile by WillU

CLARIFICATIONS: Ganesha is not to be confused with:

She-Hulk II#25, page 35, middle panel

She-Hulk II#25 (March 2008) - Peter David (writer), Adriana Melo (penciler), Mariah Benes (inks), Chris Sotomayer (colors) and Dave Sharp (letters)

Last updated: 03/02/08

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