Heramba (Sanskrit: हेरम्ब, Heraṃba), also known as Heramba Ganapati (Heraṃba-gaṇapati), is a five-headed iconographical form of the Hindu god Ganesha (Ganapati). This form is particularly popular in Nepal. This form is important in Tantric worship of Ganesha. He is one of the most popular of the thirty-two forms of Ganesha.
The Mudgala Purana mentions Heramba Ganapati as one of the thirty-two names of Ganesha. The Skanda Purana lists that Heramba Vinayaka as one of the 56 Vinayakas in the vicinity of Varanasi. Heramba also figures in the lists of Ganesha's names in the Brahma Vaivarta Purana (8 names), the Padma Purana (12 epithets) and the Cintyagama (16 Ganapatis). Heramba is also used as an epithet of Ganesha in the Ganesha Purana. The Brahma vaivarta Purana explains the meaning of Heramba: the syllable he denotes helpnessless or weakness, while ramba is protection of the weak, to save them from harm; thus Heramba means the "Protector of the weak". The god rides his vahana, a mighty lion. The lion, represents the deity's royalty and fierce nature. The lion is said to be inherited from his mother Parvati, who often rides it. Though the lion primarily appears as the vahana of this aspect, the usual vahana of Ganesha - a rat or a mouse - may also be included in the depiction. In an 11th–13th-century depiction in Odisha, the rat is depicted on a pedestal besides the seated Heramba. In a depiction in Bhaktapur, Nepal; Heramba stands on two rats. In Nepal, Heramba is generally depicted with a lion as well as a rat.
Heramba has ten arms. As per descriptions in iconographical treatises, he holds a pasha (noose), danta (his broken tusk), akshamala (rosary), a parashu (battle-axe), a three-headed mudgara (mallet) and the sweet modak. Two other arms are held in Varadamudra (the boon-giving gesture) and Abhayamudra (a gesture denoting protection of the devotee). Other descriptions add a garland and a fruit to the attributes in his hand. He may be depicted in sculpture holding a ankusha (an elephant goad) in one of his hands. Sometimes, a consort may be depicted seated on his lap and one of Heramba's arms cuddles her. 🐘✨🕉