Near the Khmer temple of Banteay Srey at Angkor, “sacred dancers” study the ancient ritual art of Cambodian dance at NKFC’s school.
Set like a gem among fertile ricefields, the 11th century Rajarani Temple is a breathtaking example of of Orissan style. It is also an immediate architectural predecessor of the Khmer Empire’s greatest monuments.
Just one hundred miles to the south, the Khmer civilization sanctified thousands of female images on the walls of their most important temples, both Hindu and Buddhist. But here, in what is now modern day Thailand, only two devata remain, fulfilling a mysterious spiritual mission long since forgotten.
The small, elegant Khmer temple of Thommanon is located just outside the Gate of Victory that gives access to the ancient walled city of Angkor Thom from the east. Directly to its south is the small temple of Chau Say Tevoda, currently under restoration.
Like most Khmer temples, Ta Som is filled with standing female images called devata (or tevoda, tevada), and flying or dancing female divinities called apsara (or apsarases, apsaras). Ta Som temple devata goddesses depict Sacred Khmer women in Cambodia
These Angkor Wat documentary videos unveil the massive Hindu temple that–since it was built in the 12th century–has been the largest religious structure in the world. Angkor Wat documentary videos
Today acolytes are few, but sacred images of Khmer women still abound, protecting the temple with their auspicious presence.
An ancient Khmer image of a Tantric yogini –beautiful, wildly fierce sacred women– is a clue to Tantric rituals in Cambodian and Thailand.
The ancient queens of Jayavarman VII, Indradevi and Jayarajadevi, guided the Khmer civilization bringing education, health, spirituality and enlightenment to 12th century Southeast Asia.
Yogini, devata, goddesses…or goblins? Ancient Asian religions worshiped women in many forms. How do the sacred women of India’s famous Chaunsat Yogini Temple and the Women of Angkor Wat compare?