Photographer's Note

This is a photograph from my archives, the quality is not great and I would love to have the opportunity to shoot it again (I think most of us can relate to that). We were visiting the Angkor Complex and as we rounded a corner this beautiful Cambodian girl appeared standing in a doorway. I think she was taking a break from rehearsals as each evening during a short period each year there is a show performed by dancers. It tells the story of the 19th century ‘discovery’ of the complex and the history of the temples and the legends of the Khmer beginnings.
This dancer is dressed as an Apsara, over 1800 of which are depicted on the wall of Angkor Wat.
According to Hindu legend the “elixir of immortality” was lost in the mythological Ocean of Milk and the gods went looking for it. It is said that these Apsara goddesses were born from the ocean of milk; water nymphs that were pulled from the ocean by the Hindu Devas (gods); Visuki, the god of serpents and a group of morally corrupt demons, the Asuras.
The sultry adventures of the nymphs are recounted in the Mahabharata, in which they are described as having ultimate power over both mortal and immortal males due to their unsurpassed beauty and elegance.
These divine creatures are said to have the ability to change their forms and as the willing servants of Indra they used their seductive charms and beauty to seduce mortals, kings and wise men who may have threatened Indra’s power. The goddesses would appear to men with their torsos bare and their wrists and ankles adorned with gold.

This photograph is copyright of Rosemary Walden - © Rosemary Walden 2012. All rights reserved.
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Additional Photos by Rosemary Walden (SnapRJW) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2818 W: 85 N: 6957] (31629)
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