Documentary Review Essay

This essay has a total of 626 words and 3 pages.

Documentary Review



The documentary I watched is about Thaipusam festival. I watched it on National Geographic
Channel and was amazed to discover the meaning, the process and the traditions and
practices of Thaipusam. It was interesting to watch the procession yet at the same time
learn more about it in detail.

Every January/February, depending upon the lunar month - on a full-moon day in the Tamil
month of Thai, the Hindus will celebrate Thaipusam in honour of their Hindu God, Lord
Subramaniam (sometimes referred to as Lord Murugan) who is a son of the Hindu God Shiva.
He is believed to represent virtue, youth and power.

As mentioned in the documentary, Thaipusam is celebrated in Singapore and also in
Malaysia, although it does not occur in India, which is rather strange to me. Thaipusam is
important to the Hindus, as they believe that it reinforces the solidarity of the minority
Hindu community and symbolises the eternal struggle between good and evil. This festival
is known for the devotees who fulfil vows by shaving their heads bald or performing
rituals. Some have their cheeks, chest and tongue pierced with flesh hooks or thin sharp
spear like metal rods that looks more like skewers. Personally, I find the piercing ritual
rather horrifying as it was a gory scene with lots of blood. Some of the devotees carry
milk pots, while some carry a 'Kavadi'. The ‘Kavadi’ is a large festive structure, made of
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