A Thaipusam procession

Thaipusam is a Hindu festival dedicated to Lord Subramaniam, also known as Lord Murugan, the deity of youth, power and virtue. The festival is celebrated every year on the full moon day in the month of Thai (usually between January and February). Some devotees, like the men in the photograph, carry "kavadis" over the burning coal to show their devotion. A kavadi (meaning "sacrifice at every step") is a symbolic heavy object like a jar filled with milk or a large, ornate chariot.