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Khajuraho the Temple of Love. India. Photo 13



All Photos: Khajuraho
the Temples
of Love

Sexual and erotic sculpture, Photo 3. Khajuraho temples, India
"Temple of Love". The sexual and erotic art, that glorified Khajuraho temples


Khajuraho "the Temples of Love": Theories

Several theories, as to the origin and significance ... of mandir sculpture, prevail among Indian as well as Western scholars.

Francis Leeson in Kama Shilpa has summarized them briefly as follows :

(1) The mithunas are symbols of Shakti - both - sexes in one God - representing the oneness of God, or the spiritual syllable AUM.

(2) They are representations of supreme bliss, an attempt in earthly terms to convey the meaning of heavenly rapture.

(3) The mithunas are temptations to laud thoughts, but are to be overcome by the devout.

(4) They are just innocent depictions of a human activity in the same way as other sculptures show scenes of dancing, fighting, making music, praying, etc.

(5) The mithunas were intended as a protection against the evil eye, 'lightening" etc.

(6) They attract grosser-minded people to come to the mandir, if only for the initial pleasure of examining them.

(7) The mithunas are there for the sexual education of the young and ignorant, as a sort of illustrated Kama Sutra.

(8) They are straight forward representations of Yogic postures.


 ...near (Khajuraho) temples, which contain idols that have been mutilated by the Moslems, live a number of yogis whose matted locks have grown as long as their bodies. And on account of extreme asceticism they are all yellow in colour. Many Moslems attend these men in order to take lessons (yoga) from them.
— Ibn Battuta, about 1335 CE, Riḥlat Ibn Baṭūṭah, Translated by Arthur Cotterell16

 

The walls of the Khajuraho temples are richly decorated with elaborately carved sculptures. Whereas temples of Khajuraho are illustrious for the sex sculptures, sexual themes are covering less than 10% of the Khajuraho temples sculpture. Then, most erotic scene panels are in balance with the non- sexual scene panels. The arts cover numerous aspects of human life and values considered important in Hindu pantheon.
 

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