In the Hindu pantheon of gods and goddesses, the goddesses have always commanded devotees as numerous and as loyal as that of their male counterparts. Kali, one of the most important among the goddesses, is considered to be embodiment of power and strength in all their raw glory.
The picture is taken from the dance - Poothanamthira - performed as a ritual offering to Goddess Kali in many places of South Malabar. One person is dressed up as Kali or the Thira and the others as her accompanying spirits or the Poothams. The spirits were created to assist Kali in destroying the evil demon, Daarikan. While the Pootham wears a mask, the thira don semi-circular wooden crowns. The dancers go from house to house and also perform on the premises of village shrines between the months of November and May every year.
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