The Dancing Shiva
The statue of the God, Shiva performing the cosmic dance, is one of the most iconic and enigmatic symbols of Hinduism. Symbolically, the ‘Nataraj’ represents enlightened persons that have mastered their emotions, nurtured a balanced personality and understand the True Self.
The dance the Gods are performing is a form of hatha yoga. Ha means Sun, Tha is Moon and yoga means union. In ancient symbolism, the sun represents the power of fire in masculine energy and the moon represents the soothing waters of the female energy.
On a deeper level, the sun and the moon represent life, or creation of life on earth cannot exist without the power of the sun, and all life is born from water. The gravitational pull of the moon keeps the Earth balanced and stable.
In the cosmic dance of shiva we find the concept of balancing male and female qualities. This is defined by sun and moon symbolism (fire and water) so that we are better equipped to create the things we want in life.
The goal of hatha yoga is to bring balance to the physical, emotional, and spiritual aspects of the self. It is a discipline of self-control, perseverance, and strength. All these qualities are reflected in the dance of Shiva and Shakti.