Shiva is the creator, sustainer, dispeller of ignorance, the grantor of solace, and destroyer. These five essential acts are called Shiva panchakrityas. The destruction by Shiva, according to Shaiva Siddhanta, is both the end and the beginning. Nataraja is the depiction of Shiva as a cosmic dancer. He performs tandava, a vigorous dance that is the source of the cycle of creation, preservation, and dissolution. In this cosmic dance, Nataraja trampled Apasmara Purusha a demon representing ignorance. It is believed that Shiva always remains in his Nataraja form suppressing Apasmara for all eternity. He did not kill him to maintain the balance of knowledge and ignorance.
Presented in memory of Bai Dossibai and Seth Cawasjee Clubwala by their grandson Nariman
18th century CE