The one-of-a-kind Ardhanarishvara iconography is a blend of the two. Lord Shiva merges into Devi Parvati, resulting in an image that contains the two in equal form and proportion. The father-mother confluence has been projected by the sculptor with perfect precision and symmetry. The raised-hooded snake on His angular torso, to the gold necklaces that are layered over the pallu drawn over Her soft curves; the tilaka on His forehead, to the gold natha (nose-ring) pierced into Her nose; and His jatamukuta, to Her ornate gold crown.
While Lord Shiva wields the damroo and the trishoola (trident) in His hands, She holds up a lotus and metes out blessings with Hers. There is Nandi on His side, while Her simhavahana is at Hers. The pedestal upon which stands Ardhanarishvara resembles a Himalayan rock arrangement, within the rigours of which is the home of Shiva-Parvati.
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