The Hindu Temple: Deification of EroticismPaperback
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- Publisher: Inner Traditions Bear and Company
- Format: Paperback | 152 pages
- Dimensions: 211mm x 249mm x 13mm | 363g
- Publication date: 31 March 2001
- Publication City/Country: Rochester, VT
- ISBN 10: 0892818549
- ISBN 13: 9780892818549
- Edition: 1
- Edition statement: American ed
- Sales rank: 876,612
Danielou's masterpiece on the erotic nature of the sacred symbolism of the Hindu temple. - Includes stunning photographs from the major temple complexes of India. - By Alain Danielou, one of the greatest authorities on Hinduism. Ancient Indian architectural treatises state that a temple lacking erotic imagery would be ineffective and maleficent. The erotic statues and representations that cover the outer and inner walls of the Hindu temple serve both a magical and an instructional purpose. Through the power of the "yantras"--the magical diagrams created by the placement of the erotic imagery--the architect made the temple a faithful reflection of the divine. At the same time this imagery educated the faithful about the fundamental aspects of the Hindu religion, wherein the union of opposites in the sexual act is the perfect image of the creative principle, and erotic enjoyment is a reflection of divine bliss. Alain Danielou's masterpiece on the Hindu temple, now translated for the first time into English, provides a stunningly illustrated tour of the major temple complexes of India. The erotic sculptures that cover the walls of these temples are not merely symbolic portrayals of voluptuous acts but serve as profound reminders that man is closest to the divine during the instant of sexual transcendence.
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Alain Danielou spent twenty years in India studying music and philosophy with eminent scholars of the Hindu tradition. He is the author of more than thirty books on the religion, history, and arts of India and the Mediterranean, including "While the Gods Play, The Myths and Gods of India, Yoga: Mastering the Secrets of Matter and the Universe," "and The Complete Kama Sutra."
"Danielou writes with great clarity and authority, and his understanding of the ancient Hindu religious aesthetic is nothing short of breathtaking. Highly recommended."