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The Body of GodAn Emperor's Palace for Krishna in Eighth Century Kanchipuram$
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D. Dennis Hudson

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780195369229

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2008

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195369229.001.0001

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 The Middle‐Floor Sanctum

 The Middle‐Floor Sanctum

The Sculpted Program of the Southern Path

(p.205) 9 The Middle‐Floor Sanctum
The Body of God

D. Dennis Hudson

Oxford University Press

There are four western panels on the Southern Path, and two eastern panels. The first panel is the murti Hrishikesha. The second depicts Vamana the Dwarf at Bali's Horse Sacrifice. The asura Bali, under his acharya Shukra, rules the three worlds and vows 100 horse sacrifices to secure his position. Vamana the Dwarf, a portion of Vasudeva, defeats him by taking three steps that cover the three worlds, and Bali goes to Sutala. Next, Narayana protects Bali (who represents Nandivarman) from Ravana by flicking the asura away with his toe. The eastern panels show first Krishna leaping up to slay Kamsa, whose death is the death of “This is mine” in the sadhaka. This is elaborated in the story of Bhima's slaughter of Jarasandha, setting the stage for the last panel, Yudhishthira's rajasuya, alluding to both events in the Mahabharata and Nandivarman's historical experience.

Keywords:   Southern Path, Hrishikesha, Vamana, Bali, Shukra, Vamana, Ravana, Kamsa, Jarasandha, Yudhishthira

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