Identified as Bhairavanatha, the lithe form of this ascetic is seated in the lotus posture on a large scorpion, which itself likely signifies a yoga asana.

The almond eyes and upraised eyebrows on his face are reflected in his whimsical smile, instantly engaging the viewer with their warmth and amusement. The delicate oval face is framed in a radiating, double-layered fan of jata locks and the large earrings characteristic of the nathas.

The slender torso with its metal necklace band is slightly asymmetrical – this offset adds to the liveliness of the sculpture.

Bhairavanatha’s tubular arms are bent outwards and resting on his thighs, and his legs are interlocked in a tight padmasana.

The monumental scorpion on which he is seated has a ridged carapace, the convex cross-ridges dissected by a unifying longitudinal ridge. The scorpion’s sting is upraised and the poison-gland hovers dangerously close to yogi’s right thigh. This is a lyrical composition of rhythms, the rhythms of the scorpion carapace resonating with the rhythms of the natha’s locks.


Description - On a pillar in the mandapa is this animated, gem-like middle relief sculpture of a Natha seated on a scorpion.