The beautiful Bengali decoration
surrounding the majestic warrior.
Sati, the consort of Shiva was the daughter of Daksha Prajaapati a
descendant of Bhrama. Sati had married Shiva against the wishes of her
father. Daksha was sponsoring a sacrifice and attendees came from various
parts of the universe. He invited all of the gods and goddesses except his
son in law Shiva. Against Shiva's wishes, Sati attended this sacrifice and
was insulted by her father. Unable to bear this insult, Sati immolated
Enraged at the insult and the injury, Shiva destroyed Daksha's sacrifice,
cut off Daksha's head and when pleaded by other gods, replaced it with that
of a goat and restored him to life. Still berserk with grief, he picked up
the remains of Sati's body, and danced the dance of destruction throughout
the Universe. The other gods intervened to stop this dance, and the disk of
Vishnu cut through the corpse of Sati, whose various parts of the body fell
at several spots all through the Indian subcontinent and formed the sites of
what are known as Shakti Peethas today.
Shiva was finally pacified when the last piece fell off from his shoulder.
Narayana revived sati as Uma for a new life. Ever since peace was restored,
Uma, with her children, Ganesh and Kartick, and with her two 'sakhis' - Jaya
and Bijaya, comes to visit her parent's home each year during the season of
'Sharat' or autumn when Durga Puja is celebrated.