Today I stumbled upon Thaipusam, a festival observed by the Tamil Hindu community here in Singapore and elsewhere around the world. Thaipusam commemorates the victory of the Hindu god Murugan (the patron deity of the Tamil people) over an evil demon. Tamils demonstrate their devotion to Muragan by making simple offerings to temples whilst others choose to show their devotion by self-mortification. I saw men carrying, what I now know to be called, kavadis, sort of ornate costumes but the pecularity is that they are held by pins pierced through the carriers body. It seems that the more the carriers suffer the greater will be Murugan's merit and after watching these carriers singing and dancing I can only hope that it's true.