by A Total TaiTai Tale
Yesterday was Thaipusam, a Hindu festival. I hadn’t planned on going but since I was up early to take my daughter to school at 6 am (!) and hubby was going to have a look before going to work I decided I may as well tag along for a little while and see what it was. I ended up walking the whole route between the 2 temples: Sri Thendayuthapani Temple and Sri Srinivasa Perumal Temple (It took mere a little more than 39 min. I was there for almost 4 hours 😉
So What is Thaipusam?
Thaipusam or Thaipoosam (Tamil: தைப்பூசம், Taippūcam – Malayalam: തൈപ്പൂയം,Thaippūyam) is a Hindu festival celebrated mostly by the Tamil community on the full moon in the Tamil month of Thai (January/February). It is mainly observed in countries where there is a significant presence of Tamil community such as India, Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Mauritius, Singapore, South Africa, Guadeloupe, Réunion, Indonesia, Thailand, Myanmar,Trinidad and Tobago, Guyana, Suriname, Jamaica, and other parts of the Caribbean.
The word Thaipusam is a combination of the name of the month, Thai, and the name of a star, Pusam. This particular star is at its highest point during the festival. The festival commemorates the occasion when Parvati gave Murugan a Vel “spear” so he could vanquish the evil demon Soorapadman. It is commonly believed that Thaipusam marks Murugan’s birthday; Some other sources suggest that Vaikhasi Vishakam, which falls in the Vaikhasi month (May/June), is Murugan’s birthday.
Photos (not for the fainted heart) to follow….