Soulful Objects, Selfless Objects: The Nature of Figures and Images of Hindu Gods
Amy Hirtschtick (Visiting Assistant Professor, University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire)
Thursday, October 12, 2017
206 Ingraham Hall
Most devotees agree that the ātman (self) of a deity is present in his mūrti (sculpted figure). At the same time such forms are not and cannot be protected from the weathering forces they face outside the temple. Because of this, these forms are “selfless”: they do not embody the deity’s ātman. This talk compares Hindu perspectives on the presence of temple forms with the kind of “selfless” presence of mass-produced forms to illuminate the many ways divine presence manifests for Hindus.