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The Oracles Of Kodungallur

A frenzied mob of devotees, led by komaram (meaning oracles),clad in red robes, brandishing traditional swords with bells on them, blood dripping from their sandal and turmeric paste-smeared foreheads, storm the temple, making the atmosphere electric and delirious, all at once. They time their steps to a divine rhythm, egged on by devotees who chant ‘thannaro thannaro’. The oracles, still in trance, walk around the temple three times while the members of their retinue pay tribute inside the sanctum sanctorum; they hurl abuses and profanities at the deity who, they believe, accepts them with a benign motherly ardour. It is a celebration of raw energy and fierce devotion, an expression of ‘tamasic’ power. This spectacle is enacted annually at KodungallurKurumba Bhagavathy temple in Thrissur District of Kerala during the Bharani festival.

by G Sreedathan in Outlookindia.com

(VIEWERS DISCRETION IS ADVISED AS SOME IMAGES OF SELF MUTILATION MAY BE DISTURBING )






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