Batu Caves of Malysia….
It takes its name from the Sungai Batu or Batu River, which flows past the hill.
Batu Caves is also the name of the nearby village.
Beware of Monkeys at the top !
The limestone forming Batu Caves is said to be around 400 million years old. Some of the cave entrances were used as shelters by the indigenous Temuan people ,A LOCAL Tribe. Batu Caves was promoted as a place of worship by K. Thamboosamy Pillai, an Indian trader. He was inspired by the ‘vel’-shaped entrance of the main cave and was inspired to dedicate a temple to Lord Muruganwithin the caves. In 1890, Pillai, who also founded the Sri Mahamariamman Temple, Kuala Lumpur, installed the murti(consecrated statue) of Sri Subramania Swamy in what is today known as the Temple Cave. Since 1892, the Thaipusam festival in the Tamil month of Thai (which falls in late January/early February) has been celebrated there.
Hindus all over the world consider Thaipoosam,a Fullmoon day in the month of Thai(January/feb)a very sacred day as on this day Lord Subhramanya is supposed to have destroyed the Evil Asuras..A Faith which makes them to do all sorts of things..like
1)Walking barefoot for 200 KM to Palani in Tamilnadu..
2)Pulling carts with the Lord’s Picture in a Palanquin with chains hooked to their skins!
3)Piercing their tongues and cheeks in various ways that one wd wonder how they are able to be alive..but also Faithfully walking upthe hill of Batu Caves,which is 100 Mt heigh with 272 steps upthe Hill..
Many millions congregate on this day at various shrines of the Lord and Batu attracts nearly 1Million..One must admire the way Malaysian Admin has maintained this unique temple.. The largest Thai Pusam celebrations take place in Singapore Mauritius, and Malaysia. It is a public holiday throughout the whole Malaysia.
Thaipusam is also increasingly being celebrated by the ethnic Chinese in Singapore and Malaysia.
n Singapore, Hindu devotees start their procession at the Sri Srinivasa Perumal Temple in the early morning, carrying milk pots as offerings or attaching “Kavadis” to their bodies. The procession travels for 4 kilometres before finishing at the Tank Road Temple. The devotees are usually accompanied by supporters who cheer to keep their morale high.
In Nallur, Jaffna, Sri Lanka, Thai Pusam festival is conducted at Nallur Kandhasamy Temple. Many Tamil devotees irrespective of religion take part in celebrations. Even Tamils from Roman Catholic faith and Muslims take part in Thai Pusam celebrations and take Kavadis
Thaipusam is also celebrated at another cave site, the Sri Subramaniar Temple in Gunong Cheroh,Ipoh, Perak and at the Nattukottai Chettiar Temple along Jalan Waterfall in Penang. Nearly 250,000 devotees participate every year in this festival, which includs 300 kavadi bearers, while 15,000 come with milk offerings.