Catherine McMaster attempts to determine whether and to what extent the unique lifestyle of the Todas has been affected with the influx of modernity and how the Toda people themselves react to these inevitable changes.
To a westerner, some of the forms of ‘kavadi’ followed by the devotees of Lord Murugan to gain his his favour may seem ‘extreme’ due to physical nature of the practices, says Catherine McMaster, who was witness to the Thaipiusam festivities at Thiruparankundram, one of the six main abodes of the god.
One of the many attractions in India are the festivals. One cannot come to India and not be a spectator or involved in some type of festivity.
First impressions are very important. To describe my first impressions of India I will use three words; dirty, noisy, smelly. Such a description hardly lends itself to an appealing image. But as usual with first impressions, they can often be misleading.