What is the History of sex in India - Kamasutra and Khajuraho
Khajuraho and Kamasutra
While reading and understanding the history of sex in India, the two most important things, which hit my mind, are the erotic sculptures of Khajuraho temple and Kamasutra., so lets understand what is the significance of Khajuraho temple and what part it plays in the history of sex in India. I also want to discuss what is the purpose of depiction of sexual images on the facade of Khajuraho temple? What is the purpose of Kamasutra and its sex positions and why western countries are highly attracted towards Kama Shastra?
What is the significance of our logo?
The significance of the logo a question, requires deep understanding of not only culture, but also the traditions depicted vividly on the facade of the Khajuraho temples from where the icon has been selected. When one looks deeply at these sculptures, one does not become erotically excited as one who would expect. The Deva Kanyas, Sura Sundaries, Aalasya Kanyas or the Apsaras as these female figures are nomenclatured, simply depict the daily life sequences of the ladies, applying Sindoor to her parting while looking into a mirror is a normal daily activity of Indian women and there is nothing erotic about the action. Even the most prudish would recognize this. However though I appreciate the sentiments pervading over the purpose by which we castasize prudish people of the west and their thoughts about our culture, we must give them credit to a extent that its them who have given us a purpose to set the matters right before the world.
Before, setting about this purpose we must thrash out the question as the necessity of adorning the Khajuraho temple so vividly with erotic sculptures. What was the need? Do they leave a message for the world? Are they just magical motifs, or alankars as Devangana Desai labels them to be in her monumental research volume?
The significance of the Logo will remain undefined if cannot arrive at a proper and substantial conclusion about the portrayal of these sculptures.
After the end of Harshavardhan's reign, the political condition of Northern India was chaotic. During this period five clans came to the fore, they were, Pratiharas, Chalukyas (not the southern namesake) Parmars, Chandela and the Kalchuris. A few subordinate clans such as the Kachhapgahatas, and other subsidiary clans became active. These clans were believed to be Rajputs and were said to be born from the fire of yagna kunda. The Khajuraho temples were built starting from the 950 AD and the last modification were done somewhere in the 1200 AD when the Muslims took over the control from the indigenous rulers. Chandels were Rajputs and as the first temple Lakshmana Temple was built by Lakshman Verman, we can safely state that Khajuraho temples were indeed built by the Rajputs.
Kamasutra and Kaam Shastra
I think everyone knows that Kama means sexual pleasure and Shastra means specialized technique or knowledge so when both words are combined, it becomes Kamashastra which means specialized technique of providing sexual pleasure.
In Kamasutra, the word sutra means literary composition so Kamasutra is a literary composition providing special knowledge of sexual pleasure.
Pick up the Kamasutra book, read it not with the perception of being excited to erotic experience, for you will be disappointed while reading it, you will every details except erotism. It is an informative discourse more educative than anything else. In this book, you will find the references to what you think is ghastly. Don't be surprised that even today in most of the civilized world such practices are on. In the army all over the world, such incidents have been reported and are viewed seriously. Its long separation from the women folks, the tension of continuos war, prolonged brushing of shoulder with death, never sure what the next moment will bring prey heavily on a human brain. If you did not know, Sex helps to reduce mental tension, relaxes the tension stretched nerves, but to have sex one needs a partner, and during war the ready partner available is you fellow buddy, if he is inclined, or the beast which never protests. There are other reasons, which induce humans to indulge in these practices, but expansion on these would make this a lengthy note, which is not an intention. Now at Khajuraho if you note the tiers of sculptural display are more on echelon type, the lowest depiction illustrates the lowest life on earth, the next series is the Grihasta ashram stage which includes the, tutor and shishya sequences and war sequences where one usually finds such animal human sex scenes. The next in series are the terrestrial sequences which are inter-spread with orgies, and maithuna figure. The entire sequence from bottom level to the highest level depicts the struggle of human to reach the ultimate source, God.
Now tell me who feels excited seeing a human copulating with an animal? How could anyone relate this with ecstatic release of pent up emotions, which would lead one take his partner to bed, for a quick exchange of affection? Think it over, deliberately, don't be hasty, Like I state we have first to understand the reason of this vivid display of so called erotic art, its purpose, the message it gives out?