Definition - What does Murti mean?
A murti is a humanized image or statue of a Hindu deity. The images or sculptures may be present inside or outside a home or temple, as part of processional festivities, or as a cultural landmark.
A murti is typically created in one of two forms. A raudra or ugra murti is designed to incite fear. A shanta or saumya murti is depicted as compassionate symbols of peace and kindness.
Yogapedia explains Murti
The Sanskrit translation of murti is “embodiment” and study of a murti is meant to inspire those that look upon its likeness. They are constructed with careful symbolism relating to the deity that they embody. Symbols present in the fearful raudra murti may include weapons or bones as adornment. However, shanta murti is representative of love and may contain icons of knowledge, music, wealth or flowers.
By constructing a murti as the visual embodiment of a profound being, it is believed qualities of that deity are emanated and transmitted to those who meditate upon it.