Sunday, 15 March 2015

Book Review - The spiritual dimension of Indian classical dance - Padma Jayaraj


The Yoga of Indian Dance authored by Mandakini Trivedi is a booklet primarily on the spiritual aspect of Indian classical dance forms. The cover, done in linear drawing, carries the picture of Shiva, the archetypal dancer.  Quite human in proportions, Shiva carries his damaru and fire in two hands while the other two display dance mudras. The book is dedicated to her spiritual mentor, “Silent Master, the very form of Shiva Dakshinamoorthy.” We move on to the next page to see the profile of her guru superimposed on the figure of the artist in dance costume, with a footnote, ‘The Inspiration.’ The pictures speak in volumes. The words that flow in the following chapters are an enunciation of the illustration.
The Yoga of Indian Dance explores the aesthetic, the symbolic and the spiritual dimensions of classical dance forms of India. While the aesthetic and the symbolic are fairly known both to the artists and to the rasikas, the spiritual aspect that lends loftiness to art is highlighted in the book. Under four headings the essence of classical arts is distilled for the students and the lovers of art.

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