One reason I love Banteay Srei temple, -means the Citadel of Women in local language-, is the delicate carving of the reliefs. As shown on photo above, the decoration on one of the pediments, the goddess Lakshmi, –Hindu goddess of wealth and wife of god Vishnu-, is sitting on an opening lotus and two elephants purify her with holy water. If we notice further on the elephants, they’re wearing beautiful jewels. And at the bottom part of the pediment, Garuda takes the place that is usually reserved for Kala, the common image we see above a door of temple. We may overlook the jewels on the elephants and the position of Garuda but for me, they are parts of surprises from the past.
Banteay Srei temple is around 30km north east of Siem Reap, Cambodia. It is one of the most favorite temples because of the beautiful carvings.