Creator, preserver, destroyer, concealer, and revealer ... Nataraja, Lord of the Dance
Statue depicting Shiva dancing as Nataraja (Lord of the Dance). The rhythm of dance is a metaphor for the balance in the universe which Shiva is believed to hold so masterfully. His most important dance is the Tandav. This is the cosmic dance of death, which he performs at the end of an age, to destroy the universe.
According to Hindu mythology, Shiva’s Tandava is a energetic dance that is the source of the cycle of creation, preservation and dissolution. While the “Rudra Tandava” (Dance of fury) depicts his violent nature, first as the creator and later as the destroyer of the universe, even of death itself; the “Ananda Tandava” (Dance of Joy) portrays him as cosmic energy.