Monday, October 17, 2011

theemithi : hindu fire walking festival

theemithi is an event where hindu devotees follow in the footsteps of their goddess draupadi, who proved her innocence by walking barefoot on burning coals.

it was at the sri mariamman temple in chinatown.

there were lots of beautiful jewel-toned outfits. i waited and watched the procession into the temple by this sweet woman.

then took my shoes off and went in the back entrance

navigated my way through all of this

found a tiny spot with a birds-eye view and saw a little bit of smoke from the main fire.

then went home because i couldn't see any of the event. i remember some friends went the year before really late at night, so decide to go back at 1am. the festival was still going full-force, even that late. i got a much better view! :)

men waiting their turn at the door to the temple. music rang through the air the entire time.

sleep, worshiping and ceremonies.

when the coals started to turn "cool"... with rakes would come in and toasty it on up.

a fisheye view

cooling goat's milk at the end of the fire pit

lots of different approaches. slow and calm.

quick as you can.

there were people to help - just in case. a woman i talked to said that they stopped allowing women to walk on the fire pit because too many fainted during the process. interestingly enough, she was waiting for the end of the procession, to see if they would let her attempt it.

yellow powdered tumeric covered the temple grounds. it stained my feet for days.

my favorite photo of the night which is technically horrible, but i just loved his expression.

this experience leaves me in awe with how devout these people are to their religion. it is inspiring to help me examine my own beliefs and how to become more devout myself. i'm loving this singapore life!


Flora Moreno de Thompson said...

Wow, I am sad I missed this. What a beautiful sight.

I love your photos.

JCV said...

Awesome pictures!! I am sad I passed that up.... Next year!!

Athimoolam Raja Rajan said...

Your photos are fantastic. It actually explains everything but your captions were very specific.