Ioni, female sexual symbol, associated with the goddess Sati (India)
Sexuality has been assumed, valued and represented in different ways depending on the dominant religious and cultural context. In India women celebrate rituals in honour of the goddess Sati to request a happy marriage and long life. The ioni, a pot which represents the female sexual organ, was used as a recipient for ritual libations and symbolises life and fertility in Hinduism. The corresponding rites for men are carried out around the linga, which represents Shiva’s sexual organ.
According to Hindu mythology, Sati, wife of Shiva, immolated herself for love on the pyre where her husband’s body was burning. The word sati expresses the immolation by women on their husband’s funeral pyre, a custom which was banned in 1829 by the British during the colonial period.
Photo Arantxa Boyero Lirón