The word ‘panchamukhi’ is a portmanteau of ‘pancha’, which means five, and ‘mukha’, which means face. As such, ‘panchamukhi’ translates to the one possessed of five faces. The murti that you see on this page is of the Panchamukhi Vinayaka, whose each face pertains to a kosha or level of existence.
It is a murti of substantial proportions. Panchamukhi Vinayaka is seated on an upturned lotus on an engraved, many-tiered plinth. He is possessed of ten arms, the dashabhujadhari, and wears a fierce expression on each face. Clearly, this is a wrathful deity, in sharp contrast to the usual calm and childlike nature of Shiva-Parvati’s son.
Temple pillars on either side of the seated figure, borrowing heavily from the ancient South Indian temple aesthetic. The same goes for the ornate archway above the five heads of Vinayaka. A baked gold colour with the unmistakable sheen of panchaloha, and texture replete with the finest iconographical details.
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