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In the West, India's Kama Sutra most often evokes an exotic bible of sexual positions regularly consulted for blush-inducing tips in glossy magazines.The Kama Sutra looks at the third of four pillars of Hinduism that correspond to the different stages of life. Having learned ethics, and attained success, one can focus on Kama, or desire, not just sexually, but in drawing pleasure from the arts, music and the enjoyment of life.The book suggests both men and women study the 64 arts, anything from how to make a bed to the art of war, magic and teaching parrots to speak.Images and sculptures of the gods Shiva and Parvati – the idealized couple – scenes of childbirth and erotic reliefs often seen on ancient temples take their place beside objects of devotion, such as the phallic lingam.Sculptures of women sneakily having sex with a man other than her husband, or a man with a courtesan, show the forward-thinking parts of a book that even mentions techniques of homosexual lovemaking.
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