Sunday, May 13, 2012

Thaipusam @ Batu Caves

 In Malaysia there are 4 dominant groups of people that make up the almost 29 million Malaysians. Malay 50.4%, Chinese 23.7 %, indigenous 11%, Indian 7.1% (and others 7.8%). All of the above are Malaysian citizens though many of them have emigrated from China, India and other countries. In February my friend invited me to go with him to the Hindu festival, Thaipusam celebrated by the majority of Indians around the world. He is a photographer and goes to many cultural events and festivals around the country to take pictures. In Kuala Lumpur the location of the festival is Batu Caves.

Foreground: a pilgrim with his offering of milk.
Background: statue of Lord Murugan next the 272 steps up to the cave.

Some have offerings of milk while others carry burdens and participate in "mortification of the flesh". Razors in the mouth, piercing of the tongue or cheeks and hooks in the back are all common.

Wikipedia reports over 1 million in attendance for this 1 day event.


The following photos were taken by my friend and neighbor, Jack, who invited me along that day. Check out his website for more of his work and professional advice on photography:

We arrived around 4am and had to park over a kilometer away because there was no parking. 

Thanks for showing me more of Malaysia, Jack!

No comments: