Sweet notes from the alluring flute echoes nectar from his
His restless eyes glance, his head sways, earrings play at his
My heart recalls Hari here in his love dance,
Playing seductively, laughing, mocking me.
--- Gita Govinda.
Krishna here strikes his familiar stance with the right leg crossing the
upright left leg. While the left foot is placed flat, only the toes of the
right touch the lotus base. This posture is known as the 'svastika,' or
auspicious pose. This stance is most commonly associated with Krishna.
The bodies of both Radha and Krishna tilt similarly. This particular posture
of the body where the head, torso, and legs slant in contrary directions is
known as tribhanga. The legs and hips jutt to the right, the trunk to the
left, and the neck and head then again gently to the right. It is a lyrical,
dreamy, very graceful pose. The three curves formed by the body symbolize
the three worlds, upper, lower and middle, better known in Sanskrit as
triloka. This is also popularly known as the posture of three bends.
The divine couple stand on a lotus pedestal, attired in similar dhotis, held
in place by elaborate girdles. Radha supports Krishna's flute. Both are
heavily bejewelled, being adorned with numerous necklaces, bracelets and
anklets. A cow peeps from behind the duo. The cow has been since time
immemorial an important auspicious animal in the annals of Indian thought.
But surprisingly, its representation has been rare and far between in the
art of the subcontinent. The answer lies in the fact that it is not
associated with any deity in the form of its vehicle, as compared to the
bull of Shiva or eagle of Vishnu. Nonetheless, India being a primarily
agricultural economy, this animal is much venerated, and ascribed
wish-fulfilling attributes. Indeed the cow is the national animal of Nepal,
the world's only Hindu kingdom. Krishna is naturally associated with the
cow, he having spent his childhood as an ordinary cowherd in Vrindavan,
where he enchanted the cowherdeses of Vrindavan with the sweet sound of his
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