Please Please Please Read This Rant About Symmetra
This started out as “What Indian Mythological Figures are Considered Appropriation” after seeing someone ask for Blizzard to do a rakshasa Symmetra skin and it sort of turned into a different sort of rant…
Unfortunately in India mythology and Hindu religious lore often are tightly intertwined. So it’s hard to tell sometimes even for natives what figures are considered real and what are just tall tales. After all, there isn’t an official religious book for Hinduism. Only Vedas and word of mouth.
So it’s tough to say. Some people might say an interpretation is offensive, others may not. By not including part of a culture in a character it is insulting but when the culture is used they then say it was misrepresented, which may or may not be they case. It’s tricky and problematic.
In relation to Symmetra I know there are parts of her that I don’t have a problem with but others on tumblr do. I do believe Blizzard is trying their best to be inclusive and it can get hurtful when I see people throw insults and harass people online at the company. It scares me because I get worried that they might decide Symmetra is more trouble than she’s worth. That they shouldn’t bother with her because no matter what they do people are going to be angry.
Satya Vaswani is the only Indian video game character I’ve ever really came in contact with. She’s from an extremely famous video game and she’s a main character who keeps her culture. She’s a woman. She’s smart and beautiful and has an interesting background. She just wants to do good and doesn’t realize she’s being manipulated. But hell hath no fury when she does. She reminds me so much of myself. She REPRESENTS me.
So what I’m trying to say is there will be some hiccups along the way. But I want to have faith that Blizzard is doing their best with her character and they have plans for her in the future.
Iconometry and Proportions of Gautama Buddha, 1974.
Buddhist artistic traditions of the Himalayas, Tibet, and Central Asia are following established guidelines for determining body proportions in figurative art. This is called Iconometry.
The theory of Iconometry is based on taking measurements of the various parts of the human body - head, torso, limbs, fingers - and comparing those measurements to create guidelines for standardized codes for use in art. The measurements can vary greatly according to the different body types, such as Buddha figures, or peaceful and wrathful Deities. The earliest code of Iconometric measurements used in Himalayan art came from an Indian cultural aesthete, though there are many Indian textual sources which helped to create an early pan-Indian figurative aesthetic. This was naturally adopted by the Buddhists and eventually made its way to the Himalayas and Central Asia.
Some early Buddhist textual examples for the study of Iconometric proportions include the Manjushri Mulakalpa, Samvarodaya, Krishna Yamari, and Kalachakra Tantras. In practice, Iconometry functions as a grid of horizontal and vertical lines with accompanying numerical notations. They are used for both marking the measurements of the figure and also for arranging the posture of a figure within a composition. These grids guide all different variations: seated or standing postures, placement of hands and arms, even the direction of the head. In depicting Deity figures there is the added complexity of multiple heads, arms, and legs.
Hi, I’m Natasha! I’m a proud bi/pan and poly Indian. Figuring out my identity wasn’t the hard part for me - the hard part was accepting it. Living in a culture where I am entirely invisible and unrepresented made me often feel the same way - unwanted, alienated, nonexistent. It was only through support and acceptance (especially from those online) that I learned to break away from shame and instead be proud of who I am. Our aim with DFSD, and our blog, is to provide the support, representation, and love for LBTQIA+ desi women that is so lacking in our every day lives.