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SPL Hand Coloured Rare Book Collection Featuring Norman R Bobins

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Shilpashastra-Architecture

Shilpashastra-Architecture

It is classed as one of the crafts (shilpa), and is specifically referred to as Sthapatya, a science first revealed to mankind by Vishva Karman, builder of the universe.

The methods of compiling shilpa shastra or craft manual were rigorously laid down for each profesion. These are 1) self control and strength of character 2) powers of concentration and meditation 3) a native inherited ability has comes from being born in a particular artisan class 4) clarity of observation and discrimination 5) theoretical and practical knowledge of the basic rules of balance, harmony, proportion, colour and shape 6) a knowledge of forms, vegetables, animal. 7) technical skill acquired through long practice.

There are traditionally nine basic handicrafts, believed to have been originated by the divine artisan Vishva Karman who laid down their principles and expounded their techniques for the nine kinds of artisans. There were of course many more classes of artisans, based on caste considerations, who usually formed guilds, were extremely wealthy and played a prominent part in the life of the community, making contributions to the building of shrines and temples. The nine major categories are:

1)svarnakara — 'gold worker'

2)shankhakara — 'shell worker'

3)Mritpacha, 'earth paper', who uses clay and other such substances, shaping and then hardening the product in the sun or fire.

4)Kuvindaka — 'weaver', who used thread of cotton, silk, wool or gold.

5)Kandakara — 'stem worker', including garland maker'.

6)Charmakara — 'leather worker'.

7)Pratimakara — 'likeness maker' including the Chitra-kara, Picture-maker.

8)Sutradhara, 'string-holder, a wood worker or carpenter.

9)Karmakara, or smith, working with baser metals.

Vaastu Shastra, an ancient art and science of Indian architecture, explains the practices of constructing buildings which ensures a harmony between man and the five elements and thereby bring all round peace, health, wealth and prosperity. Vaastu Shastra is a Sanskrit

name, where `vaastu' means nature, surrounding or environment, and `shastra' means science. Vaastu Shastra evolved during Vedic times in India.

Vaastu Shastra describes that everything in the universe is constructed by the five elements called Panchamabhota (earth, water, fire, air and space) and that gravitational and magnetic effects and rotational influences of planets and other celestial bodies with cosmic rays, affects us and controls the way we live. Vaastu Shastra, considers where the building spot is located, the spot's shape, the building's shape, the direction the building will face, the location of gates, entry doors, room doors, windows, placement of the furniture, colours, storage systems, the building's general design, plants and trees etc.