SHAKTI: An Exploration of the Divine Feminine

Book number: 94172 Product format: Hardback Author: NILIMA CHITGOPEKAR

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Bibliophile price £9.00
Published price £25

A lavish heavyweight Dorling Kindersley visually impactful publication about the earliest signs of feminine worship in the Indian subcontinent and early goddesses seen in the Indus Valley civilisation. Archaeological excavations have yielded hundreds of enigmatic female figurines which have been widely interpreted as having religious relevance. They have elaborate headdresses, prominent eyes and thick lips. The breasts are separately moulded and attached to the body, and the navel is deep. They show complex arrangements of hair and flowers and rarely nude; clothing includes short skirts, belts and necklaces and bangles often in semi-precious stones. The volume offers a different perspective from votive offerings and cult figures from Mohenjo-Daro 2700-2100 BCE which is about 90" in height and the black residue suggests that these sculptures may have been used to burn oil or some sort of incense and of religious significance. She is benevolent and nurturing, fierce and terrible, a warrior and a lover. She creates and gives life, is death personified, and the one who grants eternal salvation. She is the ultimate form of reality, the cosmos. The Goddess inspires deep devotion and has been worshipped and revered across homes in India. Shakti delves deep into her fascinating mythology and rituals and unravel the philosophy and adaptation within many belief systems. From the origins of the Goddess in the ancient civilisation of Harappa to her evolution and changed character in contemporary times, the narrative brings together the diverse threads from different cultures, regions and traditions. Stunningly beautiful colour photography throughout, many full page including the famous image by the Indian artist Raja Ravi Varma's rendition of Kali with his blue skin trampling on Shiva to invoke fear. 392pp, 24.2 x 28.4cm.
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ISBN 9780241531341

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