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Lord Shiva in Indian Art

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© K. L. Kamat
Bust of Shiva from a temple in Goa
Shiva from Mangeshi Temple in Goa

Lord Shiva (a.k.a. Siva), the destroyer of the evil is also known as Ishwar, Shambhu, Shakta and a number of other names and is widely worshiped in India. An especially partial God (he is known even to relinquish his own powers (to Rawana) when pleased with the sacrifices and offerings of his devotees), Hindus believe that he resides in the great Himalayan mountains, wearing only ash.

Shiva is depicted in ancient Indian art carrying the sacred river Ganga (the Ganges), romancing with wife Uma (at Badami), punishing the evil and  most commonly,  performing his powerful cosmic dance.

The Shiva-Linga, in which the cosmic powers of Shiva and Uma are symbolized in a radiant union, Shiva's vehicle, the Nandi bull, and his other mystical powers have influenced thousands of years of Indian art, thought, and faith.

Depiction of Lord Shiva at Kamat's Potpourri

 

See Also:

  • Goddess Parvati -- Shiva's wife, also referred as mother goddess
  • God of Beginnings -- Ganapati is a very popular deity among Hindus and is worshipped all over the world as the God of beginning.

 

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