[Singapore Literature]

Detail of Sri Mariamman Temple, Singapore

Medha Malik Kudaisya, Assistant Professor, University Scholars Programme, National University of Singapore

Cow, Sri Mariamman Temple, Singapore

Gopuram, Sri Mariamman Temple, South Bridge Road, Singapore.

The gopuram celebrates different manifestations of the Goddess, along with important deities, animal mounts, musicians and temple guardians. The Goddess can be seen in her more gentle manifestations as Saraswati, the Goddess of Learning and Music, as Lakshmi the Goddess of Prosperity, as Mother-Goddess who cares for the well-being of her children, and in her more awesome manifestation in which she annihilates demons who threaten the cosmos.

On the first panel can be seen the Goddess riding a lion and a buffalo, surrounded by female attendants. Notice the trishul (trident) and the brightly inscribed sacred symbol Om, in Tamil on top of the gopuram. Also notice Ganesha, the elephant-headed God of Beginnings and Remover of Obstacles whose image is prominently placed on the second panel.

Photograph Jay Rosenthal may be used without written permission for any educational purpose. Any commercial or other use requires prior written permission from .

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