Project Description

Shiva as Nataraja

Shiva as Nataraja is lost in his ecstatic dance, anandatandava, as he destroys a weary universe before it is regenerated by Brahma, the Creator, and protected by Vishnu, the Preserver, in the cosmic cycle of eternal creation, struggle, destruction and rebirth.

Nataraja in Sanskrit is; Natya (dance) and Raja (Lord), and in this piece Shiva is Lord of Dance, forever young, lithe and powerful in his ecstatic dance of destruction. As he swirls and turns he blesses and assures us with his right hand (abhyamudra), while offering enlightenment, salvation and protection with his left (dandamudra). Shiva’s rear right hand (damarumudra) beats the heartbeat rhythm of the cosmos, while his left rear hand (ardhacandramudra) holds the flame (agni) of purifying destruction. His right foot crushes Apasmara, the dwarf of ignorance and illusion.

Surrounding Nataraja is a circle of fire (prabhamandala) representing the cosmos and Wheel of Time. Early images of Nataraja show a simple ovoid archway surround with single flames, but in the 11th and 12th centuries the prabhamandala became more elaborate.

Shiva’s adornment (alankara) is appropriate for the Auspicious One. He wears a dancer’s bells around his ankles, as well as bracelets, rings, necklaces and armbands. A jewelled belt around his waist secures a tiger-skin. A simple headdress of crane feathers crowns him, while at the nape of his neck, a disc of egret feathers (siraschakra).Within his flying dreadlocks, tipped with poisonous datura blossoms, is a figure of Ganga, the goddess who in time of drought was brought gently from heaven to earth, breaking the river’s fall in the Great God’s hair. Also in his hair is a skull (kapala) symbolizing both Shiva’s immortality and the transient nature of all things  A crescent moon (Chandra) shows us Shiva as omnipresent even if not always visible.

Inquire about this beautiful, handmade, solid bronze 48″ high Nataraja statue. Satisfaction is guaranteed. Shipping and insurance are free of charge. 

48 in / 122 cm
194.67 lb / 88.3 kg
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