He was preparing when I arrived at the temple. I saw him from the beginning until leaving the temple with hooks pierced through the skin of his back. To me it is interesting to see non-Indians follow this Hindu ceremony.
It was interesting to see how he was almost in a trance-like state. With loud traditional music playing non-stop, and incense smoke all around the temple I fell I was almost in a trance for the time I was there.
The man in the back was shouting loudly in the guy’s ear as part of the preparation of getting his forearms pierced. He later asked the guy if he also wanted to have his chest pierced, but the guy declined.
When all the skewers are inserted and the kavadi is complete, I feel it is almost modern art how the skewers intersect and pierce the flesh.