With an altogether different approach to Khajuraho from the usual one, which overemphasizes erotic sculptures, the present work highlights Khajuraho’s significant contribution to the religious art of India. The book presents an iconological study of the principal Hindu temples of this famous si9te in central India. It focuses on the divinities and their context in the major Vishnu and Siva temples. It discusses the cult of Yoginis, and the syncretic role of Surya in the Khajuraho pantheon. It offers fresh interpretations of many images based on textual evidence.
Questioning the acclaimed hypothesis of the outlandish Kapalika sect as influencing the art of Khajuraho, the author demonstrates the prevalence of moderate Tantric systems which incorporated Puranic elements and Bhakti (devotion).
The book provides an account of the topography of this religious centre, which flourished between 10th and 12th centuries, its patrons, the Chandella rulers, and the erudite court culture. Through the language of puns and enigma (sandhya-bhasha) revealed in sculptural art, the author interprets the significance of erotic sculptures which, though apparently sensual, actually conceal a deeper symbolism.