The Great Goddess and the demon Mahishasura, (Detail) Sri Veerama Kaliamman Temple, Serangoon, side facing Belelios Road.
This tableau re-enacts one of the most invoked myths about the Great Goddess' encounter with the buffalo-headed, human-bodied demon Mahishasura (who appears at the lower right of the photograph). Here the multi-armed Goddess rides a lion and with a trident destroys the demon who threatened the celestial world. An early text which recounts stories about the Goddess is the Devi Mahatmya ("The Glory of the Goddess"), a Sanskrit text dated c. 5th-6th century, which is read at the Temple.
Caption by Medha Malik Kudaisya; photograph by George P. Landow (April 2001).