WSE Travel - Day 3 of Thaipusam - Cheek Piercing Removal - Flowers

The rod slid out of his cheeks incredibly fast! So fast, that in changing my lens I missed the whole process in photographs. Flower petals were placed over the holes afterwards.

WSE Travel - Day 3 of Thaipusam - Cheek Piercing Removal - Banadages

Bandages are tied around his head with the petals still in place underneath.

WSE Travel - Day 3 of Thaipusam - Cheek Piercing Removal - Ashes

In this ritual, ashes are then placed over the bandages.

WSE Travel - Day 3 of Thaipusam - Cheek Piercing Removal - Head dress removal

Once all tending to his cheeks is complete, his head dress is removed.

WSE Travel - Day 3 of Thaipusam - Cheek Piercing Removal - Pooja on forehead

Finally, the holy man leading the ritual of the removal blesses the man by placing pooja on his forehead. The man falls back as if being released from a curse.

WSE Travel - Day 3 of Thaipusam - Kavadi chains at Thaipusam

This man’s representation of Kavadi burdens comes in the form of being wrapped in heavy chains.

WSE Travel - Day 3 of Thaipusam - Hindu Festival - Leaving Batu Caves

Having been in the caves witnessing many rituals for several hours now, it was time to start heading out. Daylight had long since been upon the world.

WSE Travel - Day 3 of Thaipusam - Kavadi all day at Thaipusam

It seems that Kavadi burdens continued to be carried all day at Thaipusam, on the third and final day.

WSE Travel - Day 3 of Thaipusam - Thaipusam Holy man arriving

It is now late morning and Thaipusam Holy men continue arriving, and the rituals are just commencing for some of them!

WSE Travel - Day 3 of Thaipusam - Thaipusam Hindu Festival at Batu Caves

Although we’d have liked to stay all day to continue watching the devotees, 3 days and an all nighter were certainly enough for us, and we left to go back for a midday nap.

Well – that’s pretty much Thaipusam in a nutshell for you. A very BIG nutshell!! Don’t forget to check out the specific details on Thaipusam, as well as all my photos from Day 1’s opening ceremonies , and Day 2’s beginning of the pilgrimage.

Have you ever been to a festival of this size or religious significance? Have you ever witnessed acts of self mortification in the name of a religion? Where were you and what were the details surrounding the event?

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WSE Travel - Thaipusam – Rituals with Hooks

I almost felt this guy deserved his own post. This is just madness. I guess size DOES matter.