Monday, 22 October 2012

64 Yoginis at Hirapur, near Bhubaneswar, Odisha

64 Yoginis at Hirapur, near Bhubaneswar, Odisha

Krishna in the Entrance


The 9 Katyayanis

The 2 Dwarapalas

The 60 Yoginis from Left to Right

Yogini 1- Maya/Bahurupa/Chandika
Four-armed, standing on a straight-lying corpse. Braid of hair over her head, adorned with ornaments like armlets, anklets, girdle, necklace and kappa (ear-ornament). These ornaments are adorned by most of the Yoginis, and in some cases, there is little variation.

Yogini 2 – Tara
Two-armed, mounted on a corpse, braid of hair to the left. Various ornaments for the head and other ornaments like in Yogini 1.

Yogini 3 – Narmada
Two-armed. Stands on an elephant, and wears a garland of skulls and various ornaments. She holds a skull-cup near her mouth, appearing to be drinking blood. Braid is to the right of her head.

Yogini 4 – Yamuna
Four-armed, mounted on a huge tortoise. Her curly hair is not braided, and is depicted above her head. A skull-cup is seen in her upper right hand.

Yogini 5 – Shanti/Kanti/Lakshmi/Manada
Two-armed, standing on a full-blossomed lotus with buds. Braid is over the head. Has a cobra as armlet (Naga Keyura) on each arm.

Yogini 6 – Vrddhi/Kriya/Varuni
Two-armed. Braid is to the left of her head. Being Varuni, she is mounted on water that is sculpted as lines of waves. Adorned with various ornaments on the head and body.

Yogini 7 – Gauri/Ksemankari
Four-armed, standing on an alligator. Braid is over the head. She wears a girdle, necklace, armlets, anklets, and various ornaments on the head.
Yogini 8 – Aindri/Indrani
Two-armed, mounted on an elephant. Braid  over her head.

Yogini 9 – Varahi
Four-armed, with the face of a varaha (boar), hence named Varahi. Mounted on a buffalo, adorned with kirita and mukuta. She holds a skull cup and a bow.

Yogni 10 – Ranavira/Padmavati
Two-armed, fierce-looking, standing on the body and the hood of a snake. Braid is over the head. Adorned with a garland of sklls, and alakaa (a head-ornament). She holds a khadga in her right hand.

Yogini 11 – Ostrarudha/Vanaramukhi
Four-armed, monkey-faced (hence named Vanaramukhi). Mounted on a camel (hence named Ostrarudha). The camel’s long neck is curled.

Yogini 12 – Vaishnavi
Two-armed, with a graceful face, with curly hair over her head. Wears usual ornaments. Mounted on Garuda (mount of Vishnu), hence named Vaishnavi

Yogini 13 – Kalaratri/Panchavarahi
Two-armed, graceful figure mounted on a boar (hence named Panchavarahi), beautiful braid over her head.

Yogini 14 – Vadyarupa
Two-armed with braid over her head. Mounted on a drum, hence named Vadyarupa.

Yogini 15 – Charchika
Two-armed. Mounted on a male figure (believed to be demon) with curly hair and holding a lotus stem in his right hand. A katari (dagger) is seen on the waist of the demon.

Yogini 16 – Marjari/Vetali
Four-armed, mounted on a fish. Braid over her head. Only a portion of the garland of skulls is remaining. Standard ornaments such as mukuta, necklace, armlets, girdle.

Yogini 17 – Chinnamasta
Four-armed mounted on a severed human head, hence named Chinnamasta. Braid over her head. She holds a bow in her lower left hand.

Yogini 18 – Vrshabhanana/Vindhyavasini
Two-armed, mounted on a series of flat-roofed houses or caves (hence nemed Vindhyavasini) with a hole in the middle. Buffalo-faced (hence named Vrshabhanana) with a fierce look and disheveled hair.

Yogini 19 – Jalakamini
Two-armed, mounted on a huge frog. Braid to the right of the head. Wears a lower garment and decorative waist-ornaments.

Yogini 20 – Ghatavara
Two-armed, mounting on a lion. Lifting an elephant by both her strong hands, she presents a terrible sight.

Yogini - 21

Yogini - 22

Yogini - 23

Yogini - 24

Yogini - 25

Yogini - 26

Yogini - 27

Yogini - 28

Yogini - 29

Yogini - 30

Yogini - 31

Yogini - 32

Yogini - 33
Yogini - 34

Yogini - 35

Yogini - 36

Yogini - 37

Yogini - 38

Yogini - 39

Yogini - 40

Yogini - 41
Yogini - 42

Yogini - 43

Yogini - 44

Yogini - 45

Yogini - 46

Yogini - 47

Yogini - 48

Yogini - 49
Yogini - 50

Yogini - 51

Yogini - 52

Yogini - 53

Yogini - 54

Yogini - 55

Yogini - 56

Yogini - 57

Yogini - 58

Yogini - 59
Yogini - 60

The 4 Yoginis at the Central Chandi Mandapa

Yogini -61
Yogini - 62

Yogini - 63

Yogini - 64

The 4 Bhairavas

Bhairava - 1
Ekapada Bhairava

Bhairava - 2

Bhairava - 3

Bhairava - 4

I first visited 64 Yogini Temple on 3rd June 2005, as the photographs show. My feeling was that of WOW. I had only 36 exposures in my non-digital camera. I photographed two Yoginis in each exposure. Subsequently I have supplemented the photographs. The WOW feeling was not there second time. I have refused to photograph them again. The above photographs are my personal treasure. It took 7 years to reach you all.

Work in Progress


  1. I many times thought of going there. Thank you for giving the names and their descriptions with photos. If I watch without any information about the yoginis, then it would be watching just another idol of stone. There are also other beliefs like animal sacrifices associated with this place, because of which I was reluctant to go there.

    1. No Dear,

      I have been there many a times. These photographs are all clicked by me in a non-digital camera, when I first went there in 2005. I have not photographed after that deliberately. I make it a point to show the place to all my friends who come from outside. Our delegates who come for our National Conference also make it a point to visit the place.

      Nowadays, there is Odissi Dance Festival in December-January every year.

      Do visit the place, there is no animal sacrifice. We are all civilised people.


  2. Buddha at top of temple? That's Lakulisha both an avatara of Lord Shiva, and founder of Pasupatha sect, from Karvan, GUJ.

    1. Where is Buddha at the top of the temple ?

      It is an open-air circular place, with no covering on top at all.

  3. Where is Buddha at the top of the temple? It is an open-air place.

    The top is uncovered and is open to the sky, like in all Tantrik temples.

  4. Thank you for sharing. I just returned back from my visit to Odisha.
    Your posts are detailed and descriptive.
    I would like to discuss more with you about the temples in Odisha.

  5. Thank You....WOW is how I feel after discovering your photos.
    Sushila Singh

  6. Thanks for sharing and all the hard work to bring this to public attention and appreciation.

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