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Love: Stories in Pictures

Divine Couples in Vajrayana Buddhism

There are two schools in Buddhism: Mahayana and Theravada. The essence of Buddhism in Theravada school is the perfection of meditation through monastic life and the knowledge of the Pali canon. In Mahayana Buddhism, the perfection of meditation is achieved through self-discipline. There are many disciplines in Mahayana Buddhism, Vajrayana is one of them. The essence of Buddhism in Vajrayana discipline is tantric rituals.

There are numerous deities in Vajrayana Buddhism, worshiped in single form or couples like Vajradhar-Shakti and Chakrasamvara-Vajravarahi. In Vajrayana School, Vajradhar-Shakti and Chakrasamvara-Vajravarahi symbolize erotic sentiments.

Shiva Parvati

Shiva and Parvati: Contemporary lithograph photographed by Vinaya Ghimire

Shiva and Parvati: Contemporary lithograph photographed by Vinaya Ghimire


Contemporary lithograph photographed by Vinaya

Contemporary lithograph photographed by Vinaya

The Legend of Shiva Parvati

Shiva, one of the Gods in Hindu Triad, is the God of death and destruction. But ironically, he is also remembered for his eternal love. According to the Shiva Puran, Hindu Scriptures dedicated to Shiva, Shiva was married to Sati Devi. One day when Sati Devi's father belittled Shiva, the Goddess was so much upset that she threw herself into the fire. She was dead but her body did not burn. Shiva, overcome with eternal sadness, carried his wife's body and traveled in the sky. Vishnu - another God in Hindu Trinity responsible for maintaining the world order - hurled his weapon that began to chop Sati Devi's parts. The organs fell on earth. The places where Sati Devi’s parts fell are revered by the Hindus in Nepal and India. By fragmenting Sati Devi’s body, Vishnu was able to mitigate Shiva’s sorrow.

When the body was gone, Shiva was pacified. He sat on penance. And then Sati Devi was born as Parvati. Since Sati Devi had incited sorrow in Shiva, he began to play games with Parvati. The legends of Shiva and Parvati are very popular in Nepal. It was in Kathmandu, capital of Nepal, where Parvati sat on penance to have Shiva as her spouse and Shiva played games with her.

Another popular legend about divine love in Hinduism is the legend of Radha-Krishna. Lord Krishna did not marry his love interest Radha, however, Hindus always associate Radha with Krishna. In Hinduism, Radha is as much revered as Lord Krishna.

Love and marriage

Hindu calendar marks the auspicious days for wedding beginning from third week of November that ends in July. The rituals of Hindu marriage are said to be thousands of years old, as old as Veda. There is no general agreement about when the Vedas, the most sacred scriptures in Hinduism, were composed, but many believe that it was during the period of 1500–1200 BCE. Hindu Priests sing the verses from the Vedas while conducting marriage.

Hindu marriage is all about connecting two souls with God through body. Hindu mythologies brim with love, raising questions such as: Has anyone loved his wife more than Shiva, who carried Sati Devi's corpse for eons? Can you be more playful with your love-interest than Shiva with Parvati? Who loves his/her girlfriend/ boyfriend more than Radha and Krishna?

Love does not need language

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Animals, of course, have language. Obviously not developed like ours, but it is enough to convey basic emotions such as love, hate, anger, jealousy, hunger. Their speech consists of different pattern of sounds. Like us, they love, betray, forget or hate their lovers. Like humans, animals do things to lure their love interests, and they fight for the sake of their lovers.

Based on my observations of animals’ behavioral patterns, I can say that love we receive from our animals is not less than that we receive from human beings. To be more precise, human love many times stems from their brain. They ruminate and weigh their heart, listen to their palpitation before they say: I love you. But animals don't have developed brain. They have heart and tender feelings seep through it.


Sunil Kumar Kunnoth from Calicut (Kozhikode, South India) on June 09, 2013:

Excellent illustration and fascinating pictures. Your hub will attract anyone who loves the topic. You are taking lot of efforts to make your hubs colorful as well wonderful. No doubt you lure visitors. Thank you for sharing a good knowledge here. Keep on. All the best.

Vinaya Ghimire (author) from Nepal on February 15, 2013:

Hi Vellur,

Thanks for reading/viewing/commenting.

I hope you had a wonderful Valentine's Day


Nithya Venkat from Dubai on February 14, 2013:

A great write and wonderfully showcased. Voted up.

Vinaya Ghimire (author) from Nepal on July 12, 2012:

Hi acaetnna, thanks for your visit and likes!

Have a wonderful day!

acaetnna from Guildford on July 12, 2012:

I loved it - thank you again.

Vinaya Ghimire (author) from Nepal on July 09, 2012:

acaetnna, thanks for visiting this page.


acaetnna from Guildford on July 09, 2012:

Wow - brilliant!

Vinaya Ghimire (author) from Nepal on April 30, 2012:

Hello Christy,

thanks for stopping by and talking time to comment.


Christy Birmingham from British Columbia, Canada on April 29, 2012:

The line 'love does not need language' is great! So beautiful with the photos too.

Vinaya Ghimire (author) from Nepal on April 23, 2012:

Dear Angel, you are a wonderful community member. Thanks for always supporting me.

Angelme566 on April 22, 2012:

this hub deserve umpteen visits because so many input you gave in here..

Vinaya Ghimire (author) from Nepal on April 15, 2012:

Dear Angel,

You are blessing my evening with your wonderful comments on my hubs.


Angelme566 on April 14, 2012:

Wow so beautiful photos here.. Photos alone can satisfy a reader .

Vinaya Ghimire (author) from Nepal on April 13, 2012:

Dear lovedoc,

Thanks for coming back.


lovedoctor926 on April 12, 2012:

Thank you for the honorable mention and for your support. much appreciated. Love Doc.

Vinaya Ghimire (author) from Nepal on April 12, 2012:

I recommend these wonderful hub authors to the hub community.

Thank you very much for your wonderful comments.


Aurelio Locsin from Orange County, CA on April 11, 2012:

I guess love knows no boundaries among cultures or species. Voting this Up and Beautiful.

Karen Silverman on April 11, 2012:

i'm sorry i missed this. You 'enlighten' me, V! I'm feeling very meditative - having just gotten back from 90 minute silent hot yoga...Ohm..Denying sex is just...wrong - and no god who cares about his/her/it's followers - would insist on something so...inhuman. i like your way much better! lol

lovedoctor926 on April 11, 2012:

These are lovely paintings and images. While I was reading, I couldn't take my eyes off of them. My favorite ones are #1 and #2,in the mood for love. After reading this article, these are my observations. Strong values and traditions are important to the Hindu, which is why they value love and marriage. I really enjoyed reading the Legend of Shiva and becoming acquainted with Buddhism and tantric rituals.

Vinaya Ghimire (author) from Nepal on March 11, 2012:



Thank you for appreciating my works.


Natasha from Hawaii on March 11, 2012:

Wow, really cool stuff. Thanks for taking the time to put this together. Voted beautiful and up.

SanneL from Sweden on March 11, 2012:

What an interesting, beautiful and educational hub. . . but then again, all your hubs are interesting, beautiful and educational! Lol! However, I now found out you are also a talented painter. You never ceases to amaze me! I learn so much about your country through your hubs, and I thank you for that. Voted up and sharing!

Vinaya Ghimire (author) from Nepal on February 22, 2012:

Hello Audrey, thanks for your sincere follow.


Audrey Howitt from California on February 22, 2012:

not to repress sex but recognize it as an occasion of the greatest of human illumination.

Such an important distinction!

Vinaya Ghimire (author) from Nepal on February 14, 2012:

Hello Sheila, you are the only one who clicks my link on RG.

Thank you very much

sheilanewton from North Shields, UK on February 13, 2012:

Oh - so amazing, Vinaya. Found this one on RedGage.

Vinaya Ghimire (author) from Nepal on December 21, 2011:

Hello girltalksshop, thanks for your appreciation.

girltalksshop on December 21, 2011:

Awesome, I love the photos and depiction of culture. You are right, love needs no speaks for itself. Great hub! : )

Vinaya Ghimire (author) from Nepal on December 20, 2011:


Thanks for your appreciation.


Martie Coetser from South Africa on December 19, 2011:

Interesting background and heart-touching message. And what a beautiful bride!

Vinaya Ghimire (author) from Nepal on December 15, 2011:

Dear SpiritLeo

Thanks for stopping by.

SpiritLeo from Europe on December 15, 2011:

Love is Life! Great post! Thank you for sharing!

Vinaya Ghimire (author) from Nepal on December 06, 2011:

Epi, you are a wonderful man. Thanks for sharing and taking time to comment.

I'm listening to Amy Winehouse tonight.

22:26 PM, Kathmandu

epigramman on December 05, 2011: will see this posted to my FACEBOOK page with a direct link back here ....thank you for this spiritual enlightenment and a hub presentation worthy of being framed in a museum ....... lake erie time ontario canada 1:24 am sending you good energy and positive thoughts and as I have often enjoyed what you are listening to:

my list tonight:

Cuban music

Leonard Cohen

The Gun Club

Dexter Gordon

The La's

Muddy Waters

The White Stripes

Herbie Mann


Django Reinhardt

Vinaya Ghimire (author) from Nepal on December 02, 2011:

Hello lyns

Thanks for coming back

Happy Holidays!

Lynn Jones from USA on December 01, 2011:

Hi Vinaya Ghimire, I'm glad I could warm you up lol, I see it's not only cold here in the U.S., it is so cold and windy it's blowing over trees on cars. Happy Holidays


Vinaya Ghimire (author) from Nepal on December 01, 2011:

Hello lyns,

thank you very much for your appreciative comment. Your warm words are warming me up in a cold morning in Kathmandu.

Lynn Jones from USA on December 01, 2011:

very interesting story, Thanks for sharing your country and pictures behind what they represent for each. I always said words are like a picture telling a story, you have done an excellent piece here in pictures and the story,especially like the animals and the love part of this story. thanks for sharing, voted up, interesting. lyns

Vinaya Ghimire (author) from Nepal on November 30, 2011:

@Rosemary, perhaps your observation can be a poem or even story. Thanks for sharing this beautiful love story. Thanks for appreciating this hub.

@thelyricwriter, when you say 'you are growing with each one' I think you are right, because every day I get to read and hear from accomplished writers like you. Thank you very much.

Richard Ricky Hale from West Virginia on November 30, 2011:

Up, useful, and interesting votes Vinaya. Very interesting. Your articles are well written with quality information Vinaya. I see you growing with each one. Seems like I always learn something new from you. Love is funny sometimes, a boat load of feelings and emotions. Some animals are partners for life, imagine that. How they share their feelings toward one another, it really is crazy that they show their love in this manner. It was fun to read and learn this article Vinaya. Well done. Beautiful pics.

Rosemary Sadler from Hawkes Bay - NewZealand on November 30, 2011:

These are wonderful photos Vinaya, but then you always have interesting photos to show us. I love that you included animals.

I once had little male pony that fell in love with a big Clydesdale mare, he followed her like a shadow and it was so funny to watch his frustration when she came into season. Even when they were in separate padocks they would stand at the fence together and nuzzle.

Vinaya Ghimire (author) from Nepal on November 29, 2011:

Ardie, I'm dying to see your dog wearing ballerina dress.

I think bribing will really be fruitful.

Sondra from Neverland on November 29, 2011:

Sometimes the oddest pairings make wonderful couples, such as your parents cat and dog :D

Do you want my dog to wear a ballerina dress? He might do it if I bribe him with a treat!

Vinaya Ghimire (author) from Nepal on November 28, 2011:

Dog and cat having tryst could be great idea, but I can let it go this time. (My father's dog (male) and mother's cat (female) were so much friendly that my parents thought they are not dog and cat)

Ardie, thank you very much for your offer. This year I'll be getting my first Christmas present. LOL

Sondra from Neverland on November 28, 2011:

Well then Vinaya, I will take the pictures and send them to you! However, I will NOT be taking pictures of their trysts! ;)

Vinaya Ghimire (author) from Nepal on November 28, 2011:

Dear Ardie, I need lots of money to come to your place to take pictures of your pets. LOL

Thank you very much for coming back.

Sondra from Neverland on November 28, 2011:

Vinaya, that's so funny. I have a dog AND a cat who both love when I get out the camera. You can come take their pictures! But they tend to be a little hammy

Vinaya Ghimire (author) from Nepal on November 27, 2011:

Sueswan, thanks for your sincere follow and appreciative feedback.

Sueswan on November 27, 2011:


Vinaya Ghimire (author) from Nepal on November 27, 2011:

Dear jenubouka, thanks for your sincere follow and appreciative feedback.

jenubouka on November 27, 2011:

Another great piece with a wonderful backstory and starred photo's.

Vinaya Ghimire (author) from Nepal on November 24, 2011:

Eddy thanks for your visit and appreciative comment.

Eiddwen from Wales on November 24, 2011:

Very beautiful and I have to vote up up and away.

I wish you a wonderful day.

Take care.


Vinaya Ghimire (author) from Nepal on November 23, 2011:

@Flora, I wanted to use my new painting but it did not reproduce well so I used the old one. You remember my painting and my old avatar, you are one of my loyal followers I'll ever have.

@Ardie, I always struggle to photograph birds and animals. They don't want to come into limelight. LOL

@always exploring, thank you, thank you very much.

Ruby Jean Richert from Southern Illinois on November 23, 2011:

You always bring interesting stories and pictures. I'm learning great history from you.Thank you..

Sondra from Neverland on November 23, 2011:

I love love :) Its funny the chickens were having a tryst until you came along and ruined that for them!!! You and your camera tell quite a story

FloraBreenRobison on November 23, 2011:

These are beautiful. I have seen your painting and the picture of what was briefly your avatar before. I love how you were able to get the chickens photographed before they hid.

Vinaya Ghimire (author) from Nepal on November 22, 2011:

Hypenbird, I love Happuboomernurse's interpretation and I'm loving your interpretation regarding the painting. Yes, art is exactly that way. Thanks for leaving engaging comment.

Brenda Barnes from America-Broken But Still Beautiful on November 22, 2011:

This is a beautiful Hub. I saw the painting entirely different. Isn't art that way? I see the man leaning close for a sniff of her hair. He carries a secret love for her.

Vinaya Ghimire (author) from Nepal on November 22, 2011:

@Dear Frank, I love adjectives. LOL Thank you very much

@Happyboomernurse, I loved your interpretation of my painting. Thanks for your appreciative comment.

Gail Sobotkin from South Carolina on November 22, 2011:

Very interesting hub and I like that you included the animal kingdom in your stories and illustrations of love.

My favorite illustration was the "In the Mood for Love" painting done by you! The man's eye is wandering even as he holds a different woman close. That painting says quite a story.

Voted up.

Frank Atanacio from Shelton on November 22, 2011:

Words I'll choose for this hub: Very artful, delicate, sweet, and natural thumbs up my friend

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