God Inside-Out
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God Inside-Out : Siva's Game of Dice

4.8 (5 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

This book offers a new exploration of the mythology of the Hindu god Siva, who spends his time playing dice with his wife, to whom he habitually loses. The result of the game is our world, which turns the god inside-out and changes his internal composition. Hindus maintain that Siva is perpetually absorbed in this game, which is recreated in innumerable stories, poems, paintings, and sculptural carvings. This notion of the god at play, argue Handelman and Shulman, is one of the most central and expressive veins in the metaphysics elaborated through the centuries, in many idioms and modes, around the god. The book comprises three interlocking essays; the first presents the dice-game proper, in the light of the texts and visual depictions the authors have collected. The second and third chapters take up two mythic "sequels" to the game. Based on their analysis of these sequels, the authors argue that notions of "asceticism" so frequently associated with Siva, with Yoga, and with Hindu religion are, in fact, foreign to Hinduism's inherent logic as reflected in Siva's game of dice. They suggest an alternative reading of this set of practices and ideas, providing startling new insights into Hindu mythology and the major poetic texts from the classical Sanskrit tradition.show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 232 pages
  • 139.7 x 210.82 x 15.24mm | 294.83g
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • halftones, line drawings
  • 0195108450
  • 9780195108453
  • 1,362,016

Review quote

This is a wonderful and instructive book and a must read for anyone with a serious interest in Indian religion. * Religious Studies Review *show more

Back cover copy

This book offers a new exploration of the mythology of the Hindu god Siva, who spends his time playing dice with his wife, to whom he habitually loses. The result of the game is our world, which turns the god inside-out and changes his internal composition. The notion of the god at play, argue Handelman and Shulman, is one of the most central and expressive veins in the metaphysics elaborated through the centuries, in many idioms and modes, around the god.show more

Review Text

Siva, a Hindu god, plays dice with his wife, to whom he habitually loses. The result of the game is our world, which turns the god inside-out and changes his internal composition. This book aims to show the logic implicit in this theology of play, fragmentation, divine self-knowledge and love.show more

Rating details

5 ratings
4.8 out of 5 stars
5 80% (4)
4 20% (1)
3 0% (0)
2 0% (0)
1 0% (0)
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