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Thread: What is behind Shivas head/neck?

  1. #1

    What is behind Shivas head/neck?

    On Shiva Nataraja statues there are often something behind the head/neck of Shiva, which looks like "streams" or something.

    For example on this statue:

    Could someone tell me what this is supposed to be, and why is it there?

  2. #2
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    May 2012
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    Re: What is behind Shivas head/neck?

    Those "streams" are his hair. Remember, the ga~NgA is supposed to have flowed from his locks, so it makes sense for shiva (especially in naTarAjArUpa) to occasionally be depicted as having flowing hair resembling that of streams.

    vR^iShabhAsanamArUDha shashA~NkakR^itashekhara|
    jaya khaTvA~NgahastAya ga~NgAdhara namo'stute ||48.79||

    namo DamaruhastAya namaH kapAlamAline|
    smaradehavinAshAya maheshAya namo'stute||48.80||

    Last edited by Jaskaran Singh; 03 January 2014 at 06:05 AM.
    படைபோர் புக்கு முழங்கும்அப் பாஞ்சசன்னியமும் பல்லாண்டே
    May your pA~nchajanya shankha which reverberates on the battlefield, last thousands upon thousands of years...

  3. #3
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    March 2013
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    Re: What is behind Shivas head/neck?

    Agreed. Those streams are his matted hairs

    Matted Hairs of Shiva: The flow of his matted hair represents wind or Vayu, a subtle form of breath, Shiva thus being Lord of all living beings. Each strand of his hair, also denote desires, and he has knotted them together, keeping them in control, thus asking all his devotees to control their desires. As per legends, he has controlled the fiery water of Ganga in his matted locks. The three matted locks on the head convey the idea that integration of the physical, mental and spiritual energies is the ideal of yoga.

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