In front of
us is a highly unique and divinely humble image of the ‘vanara devata,’ the
monkey god Hanuman. One of the central characters of the epic Ramayana, part of
the divine group of Chiranjivis or the group of immortal beings that shall
remain alive until the end of the Kali Yuga, and son of the wind god Vayu –
Hanuman’s imagery is presented in the bronze ‘panchaloha’ manner of
‘madhuchista vidhana’ or lost wax technique. Seated on a raised circular
pedestal, Hanuman is shown in a yogic semi-padamasana posture with a
‘yogapatti’ wrapped around his knees which supports his posture and allows him
to meditate for long. Hanuman’s tail is coiled over his head in a manner that
makes it a ‘prabhamandala’ or a hallowed circle of light, and his powerful
‘gada’ or mace is kept on the pedestal beside him,
significant interest is that his four-armed image here carries the Vaishnavite
symbols of the ‘shankh’ or conch and the ‘sudarshana chakra’ or war discus.
However, we must remember that given his association with Rama – an avatar of
Vishnu – this shouldn’t come as a surprise. In fact, an amusing incident
recalls how, when Krishan beckoned Hanuman to Dwarka, Hanuman, so as to not be
delayed, ate the chakra (which was in its anthropomorphic form, seen here) that was proudly guarding the
gates of the city as the mighty weapon of Vishnu. Hanuman’s act humbled the
Chakrathalvar into recognising the divine powers of our powerful god here.
WHAT IS PANCHALOHA BRONZE AND HOW TO TAKE CARE OF IT ?
Bronze is a metal alloy that has the primary composition of Copper and Tin. There is also an addition of other metals such as Manganese, Aluminium, Nickel, and some non-metals such as Phosphorus. This composition of several metals and non-metals makes Bronze an extremely durable and strong metal alloy. It is for this reason that Bronze is extensively used for casting sculptures and statues. Since Bronze has a low melting point, it usually tends to fill in the finest details of a mould and when it cools down, it shrinks a little that makes it easier to separate from the mould.
" If you happen to have a bronze statue, simply use a cotton cloth with some coconut oil or any other natural oil to clean the statue. "
A village named Swamimalai in South India is especially known for exceptionally well-crafted Bronze icons of Hindu Gods and Goddesses. The skilled artisans of this place use Panchaloha Bronze for casting the icons. Panchaloha Bronze is made of five metals; Copper, Zinc, Lead, and small quantities of Gold and Silver. Zinc gives a golden hue to the finished figure and Lead makes the alloy softer for the easy application of a chisel and hammer. The common technique for producing these statues and sculptures is the “Lost-wax” method. Because of the high durability of bronze sculptures and statues, less maintenance is required, and can still last up to many decades.
Exotic India takes great pride in its collection of hand-picked Panchaloha Statues. You will find the murtis of Gods (Krishna, Hanuman, Narasimha, Ganesha, Nataraja, and Kartikeya) and Goddesses (Saraswati, Lakshmi, Durga, and Parvati), and Buddha statues. You can also buy Ritual paraphernalia (Wicks lamp, Puja Kalash, Cymbals, and Puja Flag) on the website. All these statues and items have been made with a lot of care and attention, giving them a flawless finish. Their fine carving detail represents the rich tradition of India.
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