from the river ghat to the temple is filled with a long procession of devotees, attired in
their peculiar manner, with reeds, baskets of flowers, and garlands in their hands, round
their heads, and round their necks.
They have fasted
the whole day, and have not had even a drop of water to moisten their lips, but repeat as
usual, in loud voices, the various names of the great deity and scatter flowers over the
pat; here and there one sees solitary Bhaktas not walking on foot but rolling on the
ground towards the temple.
Later on, the pathway is illuminated, not by oil lamps or
candles, but by numbers of female devotees carrying on their heads earthen pots filled
with burning charcoal, kept alive by pouring powdered resin over it. As night advances,
the crowd gradually withdraws, and only a few spectators remain to pass the night in the
Among other ceremonies performed in the darkness, which
follows, a great fire is lit, which is said to be an imitation of the cremation of a Sati
or virtuous wife with the corpse of her husband, the ceremony being therefore called