In Pictures: Colombo Aathi Parashakthi Mandram observes “Aadi Pooram”

by Dushiyanthini Kanagasabapathipillai

“Aadi Pooram” fell on August 15th 2007, which was a special day for Goddess. It’s believed that, the Goddess attained puberty on this day. The special day was celebrated by Hindu devotees in Colombo by carrying milk pots from one temple to another; temples and neighbourhoods were filled with various religious ceremonies. Carrying of milk pots was a telling ceremony in the city amidst the peak hours of the morning that began at day beak. There were 340 women carrying pots of milk for the Goddess on her special day.

Pots of milk were carried by women from Melmaruvaththoor Suyambu Arulmigu Aathi Parashakthi Mandram in Colombo 3 to Naattukottai Nagaraththaar (New Kathiresan) temple. Most of the women were dressed in red sarees, matching blouse, red flower garlands on the hair and glass bangles on wrists. Garlands of Margosa leaves worn on waists.

The colourful procession paraded from School Lane in Colpitty through Duplication Road, Dr. Lester James Peries Mawatha (Formerly Dickman’s Road) and Galle Road. Six men dressed in red carried the portraits of Melmaruvaththoor in front. The carriage was decorated with flower garlands and shaded with an elegant umbrella, followed by pots of milk on their heads carried by beautifully dressed women while chanting “Om Shakthi Parashakthi-Aath Parashakthi”. A ghee lamp was carried by a female devotee, and another carried the Kumbam. Devotional songs dedicated to the Goddess were played a trishaw, which was painted in red.

The procession reached the Naattukottai Nagaraththaar (New Kathiresan) temple, and priests showered the Goddess with milk, followed by a special pooja.

Milk shower for the Goddess

Colourful pageant paraded on Galle Road

Temples are sarced and meaningful form of worship

Hinduism is one of world’s oldest religions

A female devotee collected contributions while in procession

The Sun in inviting lustre

Most Hindus believe that the spirit or soul of the true self of every person is eternal

Women with dark red attire and Margosa leave garland around their waist

Limes filled with Kunkumam, which were squeezed to to drive away the evils and forces

Temples were brimming with worshippers

Feet washed with saffron water, before entering the temple

Sprit swept the surroundings

Number of women continuing to participate in carrying pots of milk is growing

Devotees worship the Panchararththi

A fleet of silver pots shone in the sun shine

An ash pumpkin filled with Kunkumam smashed on the ground by an eldrely devotee to drive away the evils

Email: dushi.pillai@gmail.com

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