The nine-day Navaraathri festival (Sept 29 – Oct 8) is a clear indication of the reverential position accorded to the feminine factor (Shakti) in Indian culture.
The scenes above shot in the Thohayadi Vinayagar Temple in 2 1/2 miles Cheras Road in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia will surely quash the hype of Western me dia and Indian anglophiles who claim that women are not safe within Indian culture.
On each day of the Navaraathri puja to worship the three aspects of the Divine Mother, Durga, Laxmi and Saraswathi, little girls from among the families in attendance at temples are honoured by being shown aarathi and showered with flowers.
One has just to observe the happy glow on the faces of these little girls dressed in paavadai and ravukai (traditional Indian long skirt and blouse) adorned with earings, pottu (dot on forehead) and neatly braided hair, to see the divine spiritual self.
This is just one example of how little girls and young women are raised with full love and respect in traditional Indian families all over the world.