Why is Ganesha called Vinayagar? Our 'Nayagar' - 'hero'? The question
arises as to why Lord Ganesha was installed in a space dedicated to Lord
Vishnu. Sri Muralidhara Swamigal says he does this entirely by
intuition, and he does what he is instructed to do, no matter that such
instruction may go against the established practices of tradition and
There is another way in which the concept of Lord Ganesha is connected to the concept of Lord Danvantri; read the following Tamil saying:
Vinai Theerpavar Vinayagar; Pini Theerpavar Danvantri - Vinayagar removes obstacles and Danvantri, disease.
This energy space is unique in as much as both Vinayagar and Danvantri, facing opposite directions, have been carved from a single stone. Vinayagar has the disc and the conch in His upper hands, and He rests on a lion, not on his normal vehicle, the mole. He also has the writing instrument and the modhakam in His lower hands. His face appears to be smiling - like the welcoming smile of a receptionist!
The Vinayagar shrine is open 24 hours - as a hospital should be! A unique feature of this "V" nayagar is that He adorns the thirunamam. In this energy space He is depicted as Thumbikai Azhwar.
The Danvantri idol which rests back to back with the Ganesha idol has Goddess Lakshmi in His heart symbolising a doctor with a heart of abundance. In His upper hands He holds the conch and the disc. He holds a seendhal kodi (Pergularia daemia) in His lower left hand, the amruta kalasam (the pot of the nectar of immortality) in His lower right hand. Also in His left hand is a leech, which is used in Ayurveda and other medical disciplines as well to suck out impure blood, especially in treatment of skin ailments.
People may come at any time of night or day to seek these energies. "Who are we, mere mortals, to stop another from addressing these energies in their time of distress?" opines the Swamigal. At night, people can state their intention to the presiding energy by themselves. They may also drop a note with their problem written on it and the next day, the centre conducts a special chanting for their good health.
On the day of the Thiruvonam star, individuals can undertake a special abhishekam. They use gingelly (sesame) oil to anoint the idol and that is given back as a massaging agent. Sri Muralidhara Swamigal has denoted the Thiruvonam star in the Tamil month of Chithirai (April - May) as a special day for doctors; he refers to it as the Doctors' Mela day. These are the people who offer us solace from pain and fear; how about a thought for their well-being?
You can designate a service to invoke Lord Danvantri's healing energies for your doctor. In this space, there is a bowl of black and red berries (kundumani) representing rahu and ketu. Make your intention with the utmost sincerity and it will be addressed - that is the belief.