Śiva: nothing of him vanishes, he only transforms. Visual anthropology of urban mythological art

Reception: November 11, 2020

Acceptance: December 3, 2020


This essay seeks to show, through a singularity of images, how myths, in one of their many expressive ramifications, materialize in a narrative way in what we call plastic expressions of the good errant. Its minimal units operate with signifiers built on a multiplicity of objects that refer the errant to meanings linked to those beings of the universal endeavor. To demonstrate our plastic hypothesis, we will exemplify the mythological complex related to Śiva, one of the most outstanding deities of the Indian cosmogony, referring to various manifestations and presences of this god in the colorful streets of India.

Keywords: , , , , , ,

Śiva: nothing about him fades, it just transforms. visual anthropology of urban mythological art

This essay aims to show, using unique images, the way in which myths, in one of their multiple expressive ramifications, materialize into a narrative in what we call plastic expressions of the good traveler. Its minimal units operate with signifiers built on multiple objects that lead the traveler to meanings linked to the beings of the universal gestation. In order to prove our plastic hypothesis, we provide an example of the mythological complex related to Śiva, one of the most important deities of Indian cosmogony, by referring to diverse manifestations and presences of this god in the colorful streets of India.

Keywords: Śiva, mythology, Hinduism, rites, India, anthropology, visual anthropology.

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Hindu mythology
it's a banquet
maybe more appropriate
for the sweet tooth
than for the gourmet. "
Wendy doniger


The sacred pantheon of Hinduism is made up of the crossing of multiple gods, manifested in epics and deeds with particular characteristics that constitute a cosmogony; vision, we consider, sensual,1 that escapes positivist absolutism. Instead, we are inclined to think that Hindu mythology (and its society) operates, rather, in the manner of a rhizomatic thought2 (Deleuze and Guattari, 2016); their meanings depend on the context in which they appear and with whom they appear, achieving an infinity of fractal or hologram combinations3 without a definite beginning or end. They also have, as we will see, the ability to stimulate the senses of the faithful. Hence it is not simply a worldview but a sense-understanding (see image 1).4 Therefore, the functions of these deities correspond to the combinations that mythology performs, that the rituals confirm and that are transmitted to be absorbed by all the senses (see images 2 and 3). Our proposal is ascribed to the line of visual anthropology, because through a singularity of images we understand how myths (see image 4), in one of its multiple expressive ramifications, are materialized in a narrative way in what we call plastic expressions of the "good errant" (see images 5 and 6). Its minimal units operate with signifiers built in a plurality of objects that refer the andante to meanings linked to those beings of the universal deed (see image 7). We will exemplify this through the mythological complex related to Śiva, one of the most outstanding deities of the Indian cosmogony (see images 8, 9, 10). We will see him performing in the streets (see image 11), squares and gardens (see image 12), housing, markets (see image 13), stairways (see image 14) and temples (see image 15). We will track it in the cities of New Delhi, Vārāṇasī (see image 16), Khajuraho, Amritsar, Mumbai (see image 17), among other places.5 This visual tour was carried out in November-December 2018, within the framework of a future exhibition called The faces of the interior and the colloquium Spiritual traditions and contemporary world.

The three essences of the universe

Śiva (see image 18) forms a triad next to Brahmā and Viṣṇu. Each one personifies an action within the deed of the cosmos. Brahmā is creation (see image 19), Viṣṇu (see image 20) conservation and Śiva destruction. Furthermore, it concentrates existence in its aniconic form of phallus (liṅga) on a vulva (yoni) (view image 21). The regeneration of life is concomitant with destruction; the god annihilates so that the world can be created anew. The conflicting forces of these "essences" (creation, preservation and destruction) are the existing order and the future of a future cosmogram. Like other great cultures, where thought is at the same time action and reproduction, the Hindu pays homage to the founding forces through the plasticity of a microcosm or reduced model of the universe, such as temples (see image 22). They are constituted by units, such as the relationship of the offering with elements of nature or monumental sculptures, which keep and show the relationship between creatures (humans) and creators (gods) (Argullol and Vidya, 2004: 39), such as as Rabindranath Tagore puts it in a poem:

I often wonder where the limits of recognition lie between man and animal whose heart ignores all spoken language.
Through what original paradise on a remote morning of creation stretched the simple path by which their hearts visited?
Those traces of his constant passage have not yet been erased, although his kinship has long been forgotten.
However, with some wordless music, the vague memory is suddenly awakened, and the animal looks the man in the face with tender confidence, and the man looks down into his eyes with amused affection.
It seems that the two friends are masked, and that they recognize each other through their disguise.
(2006 [1913]: 99)

Image 23: Consecration. Arturo Gutiérrez del Ángel. Vārāṇasī, 2018.

Devotee making an offering with holy water from the Ganges river, leaves and flowers, to a liṅga-yoni protected by kuṇḍalinī, a serpent that is the source of spiritual energies.

Image 16: Gods guarding a portico. Arturo Gutiérrez del Ángel. Temple of Durgiana. Amritsar, 2018.

In the relief of the doors the contours of Ṥiva and Durgā are observed, in an embossing technique. In the upper frieze is Nara-siṃha, half man and half lion, avatar of Viṣṇu, emptying the intestines of a demon named Hiraṇya-kaṥipu (covered with gold). Brahmā is seen on the left and Ṥiva on the right.

Image 38: Cosmic orgasm. Arturo Gutiérrez del Ángel. Khajuraho, 2018.

Inside each being there are portions of cosmic energies destined to be awakened. Just as the creatures of Ṥiva seduce the Lord to come to meet them, in this case dialogue, certain rituals and meditations awaken that part of the gods within themselves. His presence is the very ecstasy of meditation and the tantric practices that produce ānanda, an experience of happiness, a cosmic orgasm ...

Image 40: Nandin, the joy. Arturo Gutiérrez del Ángel. Khajuraho, 2018.

Each deity has an animal that helps him to display the qualities that each one has on the cosmographic scene. The bull Nandin guards the liṅga of black stone on a yoni reddish stone. The devotees have left flowers as offerings. Nandin, like Ṥiva, has the powers of transformation, folding, contraction, multiplicity, and is the vehicle in which the god is transported.

Image 41: Nandin maṇḍapa (pavilion). Arturo Gutiérrez del Ángel. Khajuraho, 2018.

The temple room that houses Nandin or other deities is a place full of purity; no one can enter with shoes because otherwise they would be dirtying the room. The gaze on the deity is not free, but the orientation of the temple and the location of the figure make one have to walk in a clockwise direction, leaving the right side of the devotee towards the object of worship; a bow is made and the nose or legs, back or any part of the bull's body can be stroked to receive his blessing.

Divine seduction

Created creatures enter a game of seduction with their creators: they must fascinate them with what they like and attract them to the ancient traces of their passage on earth: their containers (see image 23, 24). For this purpose, it is necessary to display what most attracts them from their cosmography: flowers, colors, foods, smells, that is, exert the force of the ritual on them, seduce them with the flavors of their creation, with the colors that they invented and the waters that exist by the force of their will (see images 00 and 25). They want their creatures to summon them into relics, devices that convey their power; images animated by mantras, songs that insert vital elements. The forces of the relics act and respond to the intentions of the faithful (Gell, 2016: 189, 191), who ask them to intervene for them. The gods incarnate, manifest or materialize (marti) in the old footprints turned sculptures, drawings or songs (see image 26).

The phallic god: transfiguration and invocation

Indian mythology, always alive and changing, moves along two axes: one invariable and the other that transforms everything: “it remodels, remakes itself and recharges itself with new meanings” (Zimmer, 1997: 48) (see image 27). Thus, the depth of Śiva as deity confirms the greatness of his task, creation-destruction. Among the oldest phallic representations are those that have appeared in archaeological excavations of the Indus Valley civilizations (around 2500-2000 BC).6 Later, they have found erect penises carved in stone, which shows this early veneration to the forces of a nature that overflows in creation (see image 28, video 1). The significance of the phalluses did not disappear with the passing of time, on the contrary, it was transformed into the current devotion to the liṅga (view image 29), which coexists with another transcendental meaning, the yoni (view image 30). As you walk the streets of India and see the small picturesque temples on the corners, or under the trees in certain villages, Śiva's time is revealed in the relationship of the liṅga-yoni.

The age of the liṅga manifests itself with great significant force in myths that are still narrated today (see image 31). One of them relates that Brahmā and Viṣṇu were arguing over who was the creator of the universe and other beings. From the depths of the cosmic ocean rose a huge liṅga on fire. Brahmā mounted on his goose and flew up into the sky to see how far it went, while Viṣṇu became a boar to submerge himself and find the origin. However, the phallus continued to grow towards the ends. Some time later, one side of the liṅga opened and from a niche Śiva emerged as the supreme force of the universe (see image 28) (Zimmer, 1997: 126-128). Another version indicates that a voice was heard in the sky when the two gods were sitting arguing and said: “If the liṅga of the braided hair god is worshiped, he will certainly grant all the desires that are longed for in the heart. When Brahmā and Viṣṇu heard this, they and all the divinities worshiped the liṅga with devotion (Doniger, 2004: 119).

Video 2: Rudra abhiśeka. Greta Alvarado. Vārāṇasī, 2018.

Not only do the gods worship the liṅga about him yoni, also the devotees perform a pῡjā, a set of offerings that receives the name of Rudra7 abhiśeka, that is to say, “Rudra's bath” (see video 2). This consecration ritual and its devices vary according to particular traditions; can be led by a Brahman (priest) in temples, or by some devotee who worships the liṅga-yoni placed in the tīrthas, sacred places that are marked under a tree, in a corner, a significant cross (see image 32) or a place that has been designated as a pilgrimage point.

Tantra: eroticism and frenzy

The meaning of the term "tantra" is "spun" or "weft". The manuscripts are conceived in verses or dialogues between Śiva (masculinity) and Pārvātī (femininity, Śiva's wife), as if it were a theatrical script, with interventions by each of these two deities. The conversation between the two has the objective of raising divine perfection and the totality of the human being in an embrace that weaves the forces of the universe into a weave. Inside each being there are portions of cosmic energies destined to be awakened (see image 33). Thus, the union of the Cosmic-Person and Nature is represented by means of copulation between Śiva and Śakti. The principle called Śiva contains the totality of the procreative power found in the Universe. All individual procreation is a fragment of the following principle: "he who understands the divine embrace manifested in the hymn of the god of love8 (the igneous form of Śiva), is forged around the act of love that recreates itself in each copulation ”(Daniélou, 2009: 303-305).

This divine embrace can be seen in the reliefs of the Khajuraho temples,9 made up of mithuṇas, couples or groups that represent an eroticism in every imaginable way (see image 34, 35, 36, 38). From the point of view of Dr. Eva Fernández del Campo, the buildings are dedicated to Hindu and Jain worship. However, its configuration responds to the “rise of various tantric sects that, followers of the Agamas,10they influenced the iconography and the placement of the central image of each temple and the rest of the sculptures, which are considered as emanations of it ”(2013: 239).

As Rawson points out, in tantra the world is the result of the game (lilac) or entertainment of the deities (1992 [1978]: 40). Creation is described as sexual union through prakṛti, the feminine principle (Śakti), and puruṣa, the masculine principle represented in Śiva (Ibid, 122). Thus, we suggest that the male members of these reliefs can be read as Śiva and his powerful phallic masculinity (see image 37); Śakti is present in the female figures who adopt complicated sexual contortions for the satisfaction of both. Hands, legs, mouths, breasts, horses, elephants, sexes, they confuse each other, caress, penetrate, play, look at each other, and with all the senses they breathe and invent a cosmic eroticism, pure pleasure attended by the gods (Rawson, 1992 [1978]: 7, 9, 22) (see image 38). In the tantric ritual, the masculine and feminine essences are spun to stimulate the corporeal encounter of the assistants,
because they are the bodies in meditation and they are the gods within them, in a sacred fabric that produces ānanda, an experience of happiness and ecstasy, a tantric cosmic orgasm that, through the climax, reaches the understanding of life and creation of the universe.

In this way, eroticism is the thread between gods and humans that recreates the macrocosm in the microcosm, since the forces that govern the universe are also found in a web inside the organism itself. Tantric texts indicate that this sexual game is a knowledge of the true “I”, which is equal to pure and absolute consciousness, since “for a follower of the tantric path this consciousness is nothing but the divine essence that dwells within each individual ”(Muñoz and Martino, 2019: 234, 235). Octavio Paz celebrated these sculptures with a poem:

In the encounter of love, the two poles are linked in an enigmatic knot and thus, by embracing our partner, we embrace our destiny. I was looking for myself and in that search I found my contradictory complement, that you that becomes me; the two syllables of the word yours (2004: 36).

The reflection of Śiva in the mythological mirror

The anthropomorphic forms of Śiva travel throughout India in the form of sculptures, in temples or on posters that are placed in businesses, in houses, in rickshaws (motorcycle taxis) and in the actors who represent it in television series and movies. Śiva is a young man sitting cross-legged and straight back, a meditative technique that makes him the Lord of Yoga (see image 12). Candra (the shining one), the male lunar divinity who adorns Śiva's hair, shows his devotion to this god and does so when he indicates in the sky the auspicious days for the devotees of the phallic god to perform rites to please him. Like other Hindu gods, Śiva has two hands that are multiplied to emphasize the four cardinal points, thus showing his omnipotence. In one hand he carries a damaru, an hourglass-shaped drum that has boleadoras at the ends and, when shaking the handle, produces the heavenly sound (see image 8).

Various myths relate the characteristic aspects of Śiva. As Wendy Doniger points out, “Hindu mythology is perhaps a more appropriate feast for the sweet tooth than for the gourmet” (2004: 12). When Śiva is an ascetic, a small female figure with a waterfall flowing from her tangled hair is observed, which is the Ganges river itself, the anthropomorphized figure of the goddess Gaṅgā. Thus, goddess and Śiva make up the origin of the river Ganges (see image 12). Agastya, the solar energy, swallows all the ocean water with the intention of discovering the demons hidden at the bottom of the sea, but only manages to deprive the earth and its beings of water. Out of this drought survives the king named Bhagīratha, who lives in austerity to attract the heavenly river Gaṅgā (according to mythology, he lives in a kind of "milky way"), down to earth. Brahmā observes Bhagīratha's devotion, but indicates that he would enlist Śiva's help so that the water would not fall violently on the earth and cause floods. So the king resumes his austerity until Śiva agrees to help him and the knots in his hair cushion the descent of the river which, meandering through the labyrinths they formed, lost its strength, flowing gently towards the channel that forms the Ganges river (Vatsyayan , 2001: 97-99).

A snake is coiled around the neck of Śiva, allegory of the control of libido and the phallus (Muñoz, 2010: 241) (see image 8 and 12). On the brow of Śiva, a third eye is usually painted, marking the point where a flare was released to annihilate Kāma (god of desire), in punishment for shooting Śiva while he was in deep meditation. Kāma's goal was to awaken the god's desire for Pārvatī, the future wife of Śiva (see image 26).

In another narration Śiva is said to have his throat painted blue, a mark acquired by having drunk the poison of the cosmic ocean. In these waters the two substances were mixed: amṛta (elixir of life) and the deadly potion (see image 8). This mythological passage can be seen as a sacrifice of Śiva, because by consuming this drink he saved the creatures that he had created and the gods themselves. Since that day, he has been known as Nīlakaṇṭha, the one with the blue throat. Śiva does not die poisoned, adding to his identity a item more: that of death, so it rivals Yama, god of death and destruction (Kramrisch, 2003: 143-144). By adopting this identity, Śiva covers his body with the ashes of the dead who have been cremated in the funeral pyres of the crematoria (see image 39 and 48). And in a game of reflection, he returns to his creatures their own finitude, reminding them that immortality is proper to the gods, but that death is the ultimate reality of their lives.

Nandin, the joy ...

The multiple identities that Śiva presents, his folds, folds, his actions, epics and transformations, are driven by Nandin, joy. A zebu bull that accompanies him on his wanderings and transports him (see image 40). In Hindu thought, the vehicle (vāhana) of Śiva, Nandin, is one of the foundations that sustains the relationship with his god. The zebu bull is discipline, power, dharma,11 the cosmic order and the correct performance of duty (Kramrisch, 2003: 26). One story says that the god of dharmaCalled Dharmadevata, he was seeking immortality and knew that he would only find it if he was close to Śiva, so he decided to assume the form of a bull and presented himself before him to serve as his mount, but also to receive the protection of the god. Śiva agreed to Dharmadevata's request and accepted him as a companion.

In another story it is assumed that Viṣṇu turned into a bull when Śiva destroyed Tripura, a place where three cities populated by demons were located. Being a bull, Viṣṇu raised Śiva's chariot and managed to destroy the demons (Kramrisch, 2003: 377). In some in Hindu temples Nandin appears guarding the liṅga (view image 40). However, the bull has gained importance in popular devotion, it is the only companion of the gods that has its own room within the architectural complexes; this space is called Nandin maṇḍapa, i.e. the Nandin pavilion (see image 41). In the room where Śiva is worshiped a mound stands out, which is said to refer to the hump of his bull Nandin or Mount Meru, the peak that generates the expansion of the world.

Vegetable hierophanies

The tīrthas or bridges operate as transits between an empirical and sensible reality to another transcendental one. Their presences may go unnoticed by most people, but they are everyday places that have a particular and subjective beauty that devotees perceive. Each place is selected as a continent that will keep the figures of the gods and the offerings (Aguado et al., 2007: 6); are located at a crossroads or transit area, pilgrimage sites, river beds, tree roots or cavities (Kramrisch, 2003: 80) (see image 42). The tree is the center of the universe and the axis mundi through which runs the diversity of the forces found: connection of the earthly, the underworld and the celestial plane. They are, as Eliade says, "vegetal hierophanies", where the sacred is revealed through vegetation, the cosmic tree of life that gives rise to the most diverse myths that allude to this twisting of the plot between different planes of empirical existence. , but also its opposite (1981: 32).

When walking through streets, patios, forests, people perceive the propitious places to leave the offerings when they feel that an element refers to some deity. An example of this is a tree with exposed roots or if the trunk has a cavity; some images of different gods are placed there (see image 43), sculptures, framed posters or some iconographies such as Śiva's trident, one of the phallic expressions of the god. As can be seen in image 43, a trident is fitted in the groove of the trunk, outlined in gold, an action that recalls the relationship of the yoni and the linga. Around the trunks, the devotees tie fabrics or threads preferably red, a color linked to śakti, feminine energy, as an offering upon a specific request. As noted in an erotic verse from the Bṛahdāraṇyaka Upaniṣad: "Her belly is the trunks, the man's call is the smoke, the vagina is the flame, the embers are intercourse, the sparks are pleasure" (Calasso, 2016: 233). In addition, the trees are meeting places where the elderly spend a good part of the day chatting and sheltering from the sun; women often kick the trunk to obtain fertility, since “trees are a symbol of inexhaustible fertility” (Eliade, 1981: 244).

Vārāṇasī, the floating city

The geographical arrangement of Vārāṇasī 12 it was built according to the corporeal model of Śiva; the head is located in the south, on the limit with the tributary of the river Asī; the trunk is the ghāṭ Manikarmika and the feet to the north, where they converge with the waters of the Varuṇa (see image 44, Four. Five). Its outline is undoubtedly a cosmogram that is traversed like a mythical geography allowing the oscillation between relational loops (Morin, 1986: 144); sacred space loaded with all divine essences woven into the world of humans (Parry, 1994: 19). It is said that this city keeps the universe in motion, thanks to the complementary flow of life and death that meet there: life provided by the liṅga of Śiva; penis torn from the body of the god who fell in the city; death that permeates all the senses when walking among the smoking cremation pyres (Parry, 1994: 17).

Vārāṇasī exists because the river Ganges flows there (see image 47), city and river are the continuity of each other, continent and content unified as a mirror of the universe, an intermediate cosmos that operates as a web between the celestial and the terrestrial. Everyone wants to die with the dignity that this city gives when it turns you to ashes. By being thrown into those waters, you will become part of the Ganges. Pilgrimage to the city from anywhere in the world is to purify oneself in the waters of the river, which breaks the karmic chain of reincarnation. As you walk among the ghāṭs of Vārāṇasī (see image 46), the andante visualizes, amid the morning mist, the pilgrims immersing themselves in the river, some laughing and joking, others reciting prayers, meditating:

Taking a bath [in the Ganges] is neither a luxury nor a necessity, but a full-body ablution, an immersion in the flow of life, identification with the body of the goddess Gaṅgā and finally with the ocean, the infinite (Argullol and Vidya, 2004: 109).

The city is a memorial to Śiva and therefore it is full of temples for him. Some painted with drawings of liṅgas in the dome (see image 45). The sacred coexists with the groups of laundries that are concentrated in the Lali ghāṭ. Pilgrims' sheets, towels and saris are dried in the wind on clotheslines or on the steps. In this area, people do not dive, as the current carries remains of wood from the pyres, ashes and human remains.

Wandering presences and conquerors of death

Oral tradition attributes to Śiva the divine powers of transformation: he takes human form and walks through the ghāṭs of Vārāṇasī and appears before the ascetics called sādhus (view image 48, 49) to generate a divine connection through meditation, yoga practice or the ingestion of psychoactive substances present in the datura (Datura metel L) or cannabis (Cannabis sativa). Among the wandering of dogs, goats, cows, monkeys and buffalo, the sadhῡs, devotees of Śiva, renouncers of earthly life who meditate or rest on the steps. Some are dressed in saffron color (one of the manifestations of śakti), others cover their extremities with a cotton cloth and others go without clothes. It is said that Śiva descended to earth disguised as a yogi, naked and begging for alms. His body was painted with ashes, as the only belonging he had a bowl for water and food to be deposited.

Today some sādhus they braid their hair in knots and style it into a ponytail. Ashes of the dead are smeared, residues belonging to Śiva (see pictures 48, 49). These wandering presences possess "magical" qualities and in acts of alchemy they convert the mortuary remains into vital and procreative energy, as a continuation of death. They can even restore sterile women the power to procreate (Muñoz, 2010: 248, 249). The ashes are also relics that are scattered as an amulet in the homes of women in labor; They help women, by smearing them on their bodies, to achieve supreme ambrosia (Doniger, 2004: 125), restoring severed limbs, the return of life or some other miracle.

Cremation is the last sacrifice offered to the gods. Precisely, cremation is called dah sanskar (the sacrament of fire) or antyeshti (the last sacrifice) (Parry, 1994: 151). Thus, the body of the deceased himself is the last oblation offered to the sacrificial fire (Shastri, 1963; Aiyagar, 1913; Levin, 1930, in Parry, 1994: 178). After approximately three hours of the fire consuming the body, the Brahman collects water from the Ganges in a clay bowl; He approaches the pyre and with his back to her, he places the container of water on his shoulder and throws it into the sand so that it breaks. Afterwards, the relatives bathe in another ghāṭ, in order to eliminate any residue of the mortuary rite. They are purified to prevent the soul of the deceased from following them. The remains and ashes are carried in a boat to the middle of the river where they are thrown into the water. Śiva is the ferryman and is the boat that carries them to the other world (see image 46). To the dead a mantra of Śiva which is known as tarati, so that they can swim and obtain salvation. It should be noted that the body was cremated-destroyed with the fire of Śiva, but the remains of the deceased are returned to the water, that is, to Viṣṇu, to preservation-creation (see image 20). This god rests on the waters while creating the world. The act of cremating and diving into the river is itself a microcosm under the dualities of life and death (see image 50).


This transfer of images full of sensuality in their sounds and colors, flavors, shapes and smells, teaches us that the mythology about Śiva is alive and postulates a cosmogram that integrates and gives a sense of continuity to a dynamic and integrated nature in the organism shared between deities and humans: it is transformed through a rich plastic and contextual veneration (see image 00). A popular view that, on a structural axis, as Dumézil (2016) and Lévi Strauss (1971: 13-42) say, remains at the same time it changes: an oxymoron. In this visual essay we saw how these fractals fragment, if you will, the minimal units with which mythology operates, to postulate as urban expressive art and to convey a being that throughout the history of India has acquired various forms. We understood that Śiva is a god who manifests all his expressive power in mysterious and colorful silhouettes: a phallus (see images 9, 21, 28, 29, 31, 30, 40), erotic reliefs (see images 34, 35, 36, 37, 38), sadhῡs13 (see images 39, 48, 49), meditating bodies (see images 2, 48), iconographic objects: tridents, tiger skin; or anthropomorphic: the moon over his temple, the Ganges sprouting from his tangled hair, the blue coloration of his neck, a snake around his throat (see image 8, 12). At the same time, this god is given the ashes of the dead as an offering and it is the dead man himself (see images 48, 50). The manifestations of Śiva are transformed but, paraphrasing Shakespeare, we would say: "Nothing of him fades away, but undergoes a sudden transformation into something rich and strange" (2003 [1611]: 15). Each of their presences are echoes of divergent myths that recreate their glories through a great expressive plurality of rituals, lived devotions expressed for the good walker in the streets of India.


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Arturo Gutierrez del Angel He is a professor-researcher in the Anthropological Studies Program at El Colegio de San Luis. Member of the System of Researchers since 2008. His research has revolved around mythology, religions and rituals. He has specialized in visual anthropology, particularly in the relationship between photography and plastic expressions; and in western and northern Mexican groups, such as the Wixaritari or the Na'ayari. He has published five books and six books as a co-author, apart from publications in national and international magazines. He has exhibited his photographic work in museums and galleries, and has 20 photo exhibitions.

Greta alvarado lugo He is a doctoral student in the Anthropological Studies program at El Colegio de San Luis. Research topic: The Sikh diaspora: a study on the dynamics of their religious values in Mexico (in progress). Diploma in Asia, Universidad del Chaco Austral, Argentina (2020). Official Master's Degree in Advanced Studies of Art (2015-2017), Faculty of Geography and History of the Complutense University of Madrid. Title of Specialist in Art of India, Faculty of Geography and History of the Complutense University of Madrid. Since 2019 she has been a professor of the course India: art and society, in the Academic Coordination of Art and in the Department of Art and Culture of the uaslp.


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EncartesVol. 7, No. 13, March 2024-September 2024, is an open access digital academic journal published biannually by the Centro de Investigaciones y Estudios Superiores en Antropología Social, Calle Juárez, No. 87, Col. Tlalpan, C. P. 14000, México, D. F., Apdo. Postal 22-048, Tel. 54 87 35 70, Fax 56 55 55 76, El Colegio de la Frontera Norte, A. C.., Carretera Escénica Tijuana-Ensenada km 18.5, San Antonio del Mar, No. 22560, Tijuana, Baja California, Mexico, Tel. +52 (664) 631 6344, Instituto Tecnológico y de Estudios Superiores de Occidente, A.C., Periférico Sur Manuel Gómez Morin, No. 8585, Tlaquepaque, Jalisco, Tel. (33) 3669 3434, and El Colegio de San Luis, A. C., Parque de Macul, No. 155, Fracc. Colinas del Parque, San Luis Potosi, Mexico, Tel. (444) 811 01 01. Contact: encartesantropologicos@ciesas.edu.mx. Director of the journal: Ángela Renée de la Torre Castellanos. Hosted at https://encartes.mx. Responsible for the last update of this issue: Arthur Temporal Ventura. Date last modified: March 25, 2024.