Originally, it was just another one of my citizen journalism video outing. However, when I discovered the real story behind goddess Durga through Demotix, I was so captured with it.
Goddess Durga represents a united front of all Divine forces against the negative forces of evil and wickedness. The gods in heaven decided to create an all-powerful being to kill the demon king Mahishasura who was ready to attack them. At that very moment a lightning bolt dazzled forth from the mouths of Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh and it turned into a beautiful, magnificent woman with ten hands. Then all the gods furnished her with their special weapons. The image of Durga, the Eternal Mother destroying the demon, Mahishasura is symbolic of the final confrontation of the spiritual urge of man with his base passions.
I went to the Sri Mariamamman Temple and took a bunch of photos as well. Check out the photo with the bullock cart wheel. Notice they place two long winter melons on the wheel? I didn’t manage to ask them what it symbolise.
The other interesting shot was the breaking of coconuts. The coconut shells flew all over the place and the coconut water splash onto our cameras as well. No wonder I didn’t see many photographers crouching there to capture the effect lah. Only I bodoh-bodoh go stood so near and kena coconut shells splinters. Another lesson learnt from CJ-ing.
The more I learn about others’ religions, the better I understand my own religion. When we do not have hang-ups about how others worship, we have attained enlightenment. When we can see similarities between our own religion and others’ religions, we are truly one.The Navarathiri or Nine Nights is when Hindus celebrated the three goddesses, i.e. Durga, Lakshmi and Saraswathy. It falls on the same day as the Nine Emperor Gods and end on the same day as well. However, this year, Kew Ong Yeah is delayed by a month.
The procession left Queen Street for Esplanade where bows and arrows will be shot into the sea, signifying triumph over evil. Do go over to the Demotix site and read the whole story. The site talks about Durga. The procession from Penang here is goddess Saraswathy (I think LOL) I love the empowerment of female’s power over evil. Yay to females! We are God’s gift to men. We have many arms, you know?
This is one of my favourite video journalism project because when I embrace in all the sights, colours and sound, I feel so thankful living in Penang. The sight of the Masjid Kapitan Keling during dusk was so beautiful, I stood there at the corner of Queen Street/Pitt Street for several minutes. One mental beggar came, stood beside me, looked into my video cam and started shouting. Lucky he didn’t grab hold of my cameras (both video and DSLR). I cabut fast fast.