Sri Veeramakaliamman Temple
This temple was built as early as 1855 and newer extensions were added in 1908. Dedicated to Kali, the Goddess of Power and ferocious incarnation of Lord Siva’s wife, this Hindu temple is believed to be the first one of its kind in Singapore to venerate her.
Many temple devotees use the aluminum enclosures located near the doors to break coconuts, symbolic of revealing their pure and kind inner-selves. You may also notice that in counter-clockwise fashion, they encircle the temple halls an odd number of times for good luck.
Devotees entering the temple ring the many bells on its door, hoping to have their requests granted. Inside, the ceiling is rimmed with statues of Hindu gods. And of course, at this temple’s main shrine is a jet black statue of Kali, flanked by her sons Ganesha and Murugan. The many-armed Kali carries many weapons too. Namely, weapons of destruction. Ganesha, the elephant god, is the Remover of Obstacles, while Murugan, often depicted riding a peacock, has his birthday marked by the festival of Thaipusam. At other shrines, elephants flank the staircase, while the steps are covered by intricately-worked silver.
Veeramakaliamman means ‘Kali - the Courageous’. And during World War II, the temple courageously offered refuge to many.
Tuesdays and Fridays are the holy days when the temple is abuzz with religious fervour; a sight to behold. You’re welcome to visit then, or at any other time (the temple is closed 12.30pm to 4pm daily) but please enter barefoot.