Thaipusam in Malaysia


What is Thaipusam Day 

Hindus in the Tamil community celebrate Thaipusam or Thaipoosam on the full moon in the Tamil month of Thai (January/February). Thaipooyam is the name of the celebration in the Malayalam language. 

Many Tamil people live in places like Mauritius and the Indian diaspora communities in the US, Canada, Singapore, Réunion, Indonesia, Thailand, Myanmar, Trinidad & Tobago, Guyana, and Suriname. However, the majority of Tamil people live in the Caribbean.

In honor of the day, more than one country has made it a public holiday. For example, the Indian state of Tamil Nadu is no longer open for business. Some parts of Malaysia, Sri Lanka, and Mauritius also have government and bank holidays.

Thaipusam comes from the words "Thai" for the month and "Pusam" for the star (Tamil word for Pushya; Malayalam word - Pooyam). During the party, this star is the one that shines the brightest. With the help of the "divine spear" that Parvati gave him, Murugan (also known as Kartikeya) beat the evil demon Soorapadman and his siblings. Thaipusam is often thought to be Murugan's birthday, but other sources say that Vaikhasi Vishakam, which takes place in the Vaikhasi month (May/June), is a better time to celebrate. This festival celebrates that moment. 

Thaipusam Day - All Quick Overview

  • Time / Date: 5 February 
  • Category: Religious
  • Where It’s Marked: Globally 
  • Why It’s Marked: This day is the time to ask Lord Murugan, the son of Lord Shiva, for good health, prosperity, and forgiveness in the new year.

History of Thaipusam Day

In 1888, Batu Caves was the first place to hold the festival. Because of its significance to Malaysians of Tamil-Indian descent, it has grown to be Malaysia's largest and most visible Hindu public exhibition.

While fighting between the Asura and the Devas, Soorapadman is said to have invented this festival (as well as many others). The latter were repeatedly beaten by the former at one point. Finally, the Asura armies overwhelmed the Devas' defenses. In desperation, they went to Shiva and pleaded with him to provide them with a capable commander whose courageous leadership they could rely on to defeat the Asuras. Shiva agreed. They offered themselves entirely to Shiva in prayer. Achintya Shakti, Shiva's force, was used to create the legendary warrior Skanda in their honor. Thaipusam, a Hindu festival commemorating the day when he took control of the heavenly powers and conquered the Asuras, was born out of his victory.

Murugan's narrative and Thirupugal, the religious poems on Murugan, correspond to Shaivam principles, according to the Hindu Purana Skanda Puranam. Deviants pray to Murugan, Shiva's manifestation of light and intelligence since he is Shiva's divine vanquisher of evil. The purpose of Thaipusam is to seek God's grace so that one's negative tendencies might be banished. 

How to Celebrate Thaipusam Day

On the day of Thaipusam, worshippers exhibit their devotion in many ways.

In the scorching heat, some pilgrims choose to march up 272 stairs to Lord Murugan's shrine and offer their prayers there.

To symbolize their dedication and affection to the god, some people wear "paal kudam" on their heads.

"Kavadis" are complex structures on their shoulders with chains hanging down and hooks pressed into their backs. As well as in honor of Murugan, kavadis can be carried in honor of other deities.

Many of these pilgrims get their tongues and cheeks wounded with two skewers (or'vels,' symbolic spears).

Countries that Observe Thaipusam Day

Thaipusam Day is celebrated globally.

Interesting Facts about Thaipusam Day

  • The 10th month on the Tamil calendar is called "Thai," and a star in the Cancer constellation is called "Poosam." At this event, the star is expected to shine brightest.
  • Legend says that Lord Shiva called upon Murugan to protect his followers from demons. He looked victorious in front of his followers with a golden spear and a silver carriage. This event is called "Murugan" in honor of the Hindu god Murugan.
  • Tamil Hindus in India, Singapore, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, and Mauritius, where there are a lot of Tamil Hindus, celebrate it.
  • During this festival, people give thanks to Lord Murugan and show their faith by making vows and giving up things they like.
  • During this celebration, people are asked to carry the "kavadi," a prominent, semicircular structure that men usually take. It is attached to the men's bodies with hooks and chains. For the same reasons, women in the area have their flesh pierced and wear body jewelry like silver milk containers called "paal kudam" for the same reasons.
  • A metal kavadi is decorated with a picture of Lord Murugan's face and colored peacock feathers. The kavadis can grow 3 to 4 meters tall and weigh 30 kg. On the other hand, the people carrying these structures don't feel any pain because they are trance.
  • People follow the kavadi path because they want to help loved ones who have been sick for a long time get better.
  • The person who carries the kavadi must be celibate for the ceremonies. Sattvik foods are those that don't have any stimulants in them, like coffee and chocolate. On the night before Thaipusam, they don't drink or do drugs and fast for 24 hours.
  • Yellow and orange, Lord Murugan's colors, are worn by those who participate.
  • Two skewers are stuck into the pilgrim's tongue and cheeks as a sign of the gift of speech being given up. Many people shave their heads and walk long to get to the temple.
  • During the Thaipusam festival, more than a million worshippers and tourists visit the Batu Caves in Malaysia. A Hindu temple is inside the cave, but you have to climb 272 stairs to get there.
  • Thaipusam is a festival in Singapore that lasts for two days. People can see the celebrations between the Sri Srinivasa Perumal Temple on Serangoon Road and the Sri Thendayuthapani Temple on Tank Road.

Thaipusam Day Quotes

  • Don’t kill your soul but kill the evil thoughts.
  • It's a time to celebrate the victory of good over evil. Let us continue the spirit, Happy Thaipusam.
  • I wish you beauty, color, and bliss on this auspicious day of Thaipusam.
  • Let all your ego, hatred, and anger within you go away on this special day. Happy Thaipusam.
  • Converting evil thoughts into good is all about Thaipusam.
  • The only fact we have learned from the story of Thaipusam is always on the right side.
  • Thaipusam teaches us that victory will be on our side if we are united.


1. Who is worshipped in the Thaipusam festival?

Believers worship Lord Murugan.

2. Places where the Thaipusam festival is celebrated?

It is mainly celebrated in Malaysia, Sri Lanka, and Mauritius.

3. What is Kavadi?

Kavadi   is mainly any physical burden. Devotees ask Murugan for help by carrying the kavadi. It can be done on behalf of a loved one who needs healing or fulfilling a spiritual obligation. Pilgrims have these things as they travel along a pilgrimage path.

4. Where is Lord Murugan’s shrine located?

Lord Murugan’s shrine is located amongst the ruins of Gandhamadana Parvatam or Santhanamalai on the seashore near Thoothukudi. (Sandal Mountain).


Thaipusam Observances

YearWeekdayDateNameHoliday Type
2022Tue18 JanThaipusamPublic
2023Sun05 FebThaipusamPublic
2024Thu25 JanThaipusamPublic
2025Tue11 FebThaipusamPublic
2026Sun01 FebThaipusamPublic

We constantly update the dates of holidays that keep changing every year. However, while we revise and change some dates to be accurate, if you find any errors, kindly inform us . That will mean a lot to us.

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