On Sunday, the 5th of February, all Hindus around the world will celebrate Thaipusam. The day is so important for the Hindus that it is declared a public holiday. Not just that, it is reported that two million people will come to Batu Caves on this date.
The name Thaipusam is derived from the word Thai, which signifies the Thai months between January and February. Meanwhile, Pusam or Poosam represents the brightest star of the month.
Why is this day such a big deal for the Hindus? While some said that it is Lord Muruga’s birthday, it is also the day when Goddess Paravati endows Lord Muruga with a spear to get rid of Soorapadman’s tyranny.
When we talk about Thaipusam, we will associate it with kavadi and sacred piercing.
So, what is kavadi?
Citing from South Tourism, Kavadi (sacrifice every step) is a bow-like structure adorned with peacock feathers, glassworks, or other ornamental things. The devotees will carry this Kavadi on their shoulders to the temple as an act of pilgrimage.
Let’s move on to sacred piercing.
Scared piercing is an offering by the devotees to show their gratefulness for getting their prayers answered. They will pierce sharp vel in various parts of their bodies, like their backs, cheeks, and more.
Furthermore, 48 days before Thaipusam arrives, devotees will start fasting by only eating vegetarian food. They also have to live a disciplined life.
Also, on this day, Hindus will have to wear yellow or orange attires.
To all Hindus in Malaysia, we wish you a Happy Deepavali, and we hope everything goes smoothly on the sacred day.