Do you drive or wish to drive a BMW?

Image information: BMW M3                                       Image information: Lexus LFA
... Or maybe a Lexus like this one? 

As you ride with style in your new BMW or Lexus, do you wish that they were some kind of animal instead of a machine? What if you were given a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to trade in your luxury car with a mouse, snake, or an eagle as your vehicle?

Lately, I have noticed that many of my fellow Boomer Sooners have been driving in various luxury cars. Walking to school at 8:30 AM, I see guys driving their new BMWs. Going back home for lunch around noon, I see girls carpooling in their Cadillacs… Being an environmentally-friendly person, I cannot help but think, “Increased pollution!”  Now, human beings used to ride horses, elephants, or maybe even a tiger (if you are Mowgli from the Jungle Books). Why did we stop riding on animals? Perhaps they are too slow, or less multi-functional compared to cars? What if there are animals that have superpowers? These animals are a billion times faster than any car on earth, and could help you accomplish many goals such as defeating your enemies or helping you to better humanity.

There are many animals that have divine power in Hindu stories. In the Ramayana, for example, there was one memorable animal with divine powers – Hanuman the monkey. He summoned an army of monkeys and helped Rama, who was the God Vishnu in human form, to defeat the demon Ravana. In fact, in the Hindu culture there are many examples of animals being helpful to different Hindu Gods. Some of these animals, in fact, are vahanas of the Gods, the “vehicles” that the Gods travel on. In this storybook website, you will find four different stories about Hindu Gods and their vahanas.

For example, you will be learning about Ganesha and his ride – the mouse. As I looked into vahanas, I asked many of my Indian friends why Ganesha rides on a tiny rodent. One friend of mine told me that it was because elephants are afraid of the mouse. Another told me that riding on a mouse shows how humble Ganesha is… Upon hearing these stories, I was both curious and skeptical so I looked more into it. Turns out, this little rodent used to be a God himself! An interesting story went down at Lord Indra’s assembly that caused this God to be turned into a rodent by another God…

Also, I will be telling the story of Shiva and his ride Nandi - the white bull next to Shiva. Nandi is said to represent loyalty and bravery. One time, Nandi had to make a tough decision. He had to announce the final winner for the game of dice Shiva and Parvathi were playing. Even though Parvathi won the game, Shiva is Nandi's rightful owner. What would Nandi do? Who would he announce as the winner? And what were the consequences faced by Nandi?

Find out more about these interesting stories by clicking the links under the navigation panel! I hope that you will continue to check back on my website as I will be adding new stories throughout this semester! 

Thank you!