Scientists of the University of Bristol found 13th century Kama Sutra in library archives. The book was designed for kings. The richly illustrated ancient edition contains descriptions of love making, including with the use of instruments of torture. According to the scientists, the book was very popular among the European noblesse during the Dark Ages.
In India, where Kama Sutra was written, many temples are for adults only.
Why are the temples 18+ only?
How did snakes help an ancient Indian philosopher create Kama Sutra?
Why some Indian shrines are hidden in impenetrable jungle?
There is a so-called Temple of Kama Sutra in a small Indian town. Thousands of pilgrims and tourists come to this town. Tourists come to stare at sculptures and bas-reliefs. For local people, the temple is one of the country’s holiest places.
We can call the Temple of Kama Sutra the most “romantic” temple for the variety of extremely naturalistic scenes depicted on its walls.
The temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva or even Shiva linga.
It took almost thousand years to build the temple. According to historians, the temple looked quite modest in the beginning. Erotic scenes appeared as late as in 14th century.
In this way, Indian ruler Ramachandra and his wife monumentalized their marriage.
To fulfill the vow of his father, Ramachandra was exiled for fourteen years to Dandaka forest. Sita was stolen by Ravana — a mighty demonic ruler. When Rama found Sita’s location, he fought a huge battle with an enormous army of Ravana.
Later, when Rama became king, he could have married millions of beautiful women but he remained faithful to his wife who had not left him during his exile.
For this reason, most temples dedicated to Rama were built in the jungle.
In the middle of the 19th century, a British military commander decided to pave a new road via the jungle and accidentally found the temple. He felt righteously indignant with the sculptures that seemed so unchristian to him. Anyway, he left military service very soon.
On the walls of the temple, almost all scenes of Kama Sutra are depicted. According to a legend, Vatsyayana — Indian philosopher and author of Kama Sutra — invented the unusual sex positions when observing snakes during their coupling. That is why snakes are considered a symbol of energy and sexuality in Indian mythology. Indians even believed in a serpent race – Nagas, inhabitants of the underworld.
Surprisingly, interior decoration of the temple is very modest. Stone erotica at the entrance was supposed to remind adepts that all worldly interests had to be left outside the temple.
According to one version, sensual satisfaction will make soul free faster than prohibitions. For example, in Tantra, sexual act has a sacral meaning and imitates the cosmic act of the primary divine couple Shiva and Shakhti. And the esoteric tradition of Tantra sought reaching a transpersonal state.
Some scholars believe that such temples were built to improve the demographic situation in the country. This theory is supported by the fact that, traditionally, all newly wedded couples make a pilgrimage to the Sun Temple at Konark which was built in the 13th century. This temple also has a lot of erotic carvings and sculptures. They show couples in different phases of intimate relationship and even coital scenes.
Indian philosophy always considered sex as pleasure, kama, not necessarily for procreation. And despite the fact that it is prohibited to kiss or embrace anyone in public in India, temples with detailed erotic carvings may be regarded as an embodiment of the Indian spirit. Through ages, these exciting stone images help us better understand the history of this wonderful and passionate land.