Sunday, February 26, 2017

Wikipedia: Hindu Festivals to the Batu Caves

I'm having so much fun reading the Wikipedia Trails that people do for class that I've decided to start doing Wikipedia Trails of my own!

Today, I'm starting with the List of Hindu festivals. This is nowhere near a complete list, but it contains a good list to start from with a summary of each festival and an image, like this image of a Murugan from the festival of Thaipusam.

So from there of course I went to the article about Thaipusam, a Tamil festival that celebrates the weapon that Parvati gave to her son Murugan so that he could defeat Soorapadman, a wicked asura. This image shows a Thaipusam festival in Singapore:

That made me curious about the weapon, Vel, which is a spear-like weapon, and it is especially associated with the worship of Murugan (Kartikeya). This is a statue of Murugan in Malaysia holding a vel:

That statue is at the Batu Caves in Malaysia, so that is where I went next. A nineteenth-century Indian trader thought the cave entrance looked like a vel (!), so he decided to create a shrine dedicated to Murugan. Here is the cave interior; it looks amazing!

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