Current context: 

On February 25, thousands of women devotees have made the annual Pongala offering to the presiding deity of the Attukal Bhagavathy Temple at Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, India.

  • This ten-day celebration, predominantly led by Malayali women, culminates in a grand offering to the revered Attukal Bhagavathy

The Sabarimala of Women

  • Attukal Pongala is often referred to as the “Sabarimala of women.”
  • It holds the Guinness World Record for being the largest congregation of women during a religious festival. 
  • The festival centers around the Attukal Bhagavathy Temple, where devotees gather to express their devotion and seek blessings.

The Ritual of Pongala

  • The heart of Attukal Pongala lies in the preparation of Pongala, a special rice pudding. Women from all walks of life come together, armed with earthen pots and brick hearths. 
  • As the sun beats down, they cook the Pongala, infusing it with love and prayers. 
  • The sweet aroma fills the air, symbolizing unity, faith, and community spirit.

 The Significance:

  • The Attukal Bhagavathy Temple, home to the goddess Attukalamma, becomes a sacred space during this festival. 
  • The divine energy envelops the city, drawing thousands of devotees. In 2009, the festival etched its name in history by gathering an unprecedented number of women—a testament to their unwavering faith.

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