Sunday, November 3, 2013

'Katina Pinkama' Perahera, Avissawella, Sri Lanka.

The beginning of the procession.


Fire dancers.

'Kandyan dancers.

Acaprisoned baby elephant in the procession.

Female dancers and masked dancers.
'Katina' is a day in the life of a Buddhist monk at the end of the rainy season ('vas'). The Lord Buddha instructed that pieces of clothe used on corpses should be retrieved from the cemetery. These pieces were sewn together in the shape of the 'liyaddhe' of a paddy field. This material was then washed, dyed by immersing in specified boiled roots and leaves. The robe was then dried and at the end of the day was worn by the Buddhist priest. The priest then gave a sermon to the assembled helpers. In present Sri Lanka the material of the robe is bought. It is then taken in procession and handed over to the priests. This latter is called a 'Katina Perahera'.
The word 'Katina' means difficult or arduous. This is equivalent to the Tamil word 'kadhinam'.