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Kuladeiva Worship is Not Part of Hinduism

prasad1

Active member
99




First off, there is no such thing as “Kuladeivam” (=குல தெய்வ) or “Kuladeivam worship” in Hinduism. It is an arrant superstition that has been spread by ignorant Tamil Hindus in India, and which has virally spread, especially, to Singapore and Malaysia.

Neither the four Srutis nor Upa-Vedas and Upanishads, and none of the hordes of Smritis, Puranas, Upa-Puranas, Tamil Puranas, the two Ithihaas has made any mention of “Kuladeivam” or “Kuladeivam worship”. Not even the Aimperumkappiyankaḷ, the five large narrative Tamil epics, have mentioned the practice of worshipping “Kuladeivam”.

Neither has the concept of Kuladeiva worship been mentioned by any of the 63 Nayanmars, 12 Alwars, 18 Siddars, four Santhanacharyas, four Kuravars, who are the bastions and stalwarts of Hinduism. Respected Hindu sages like Suyamprakasa Swamigal, Sadasiva Brahma, Ramalinga Swamigal, Ramana maharishi, Pampan Swami, Bothiran Swami, Kulandayanantha Swami, Ekothmma Swami, Kathirkama Swami, Thayumana Swami, Swami Sivananda (of Rishikesh), Paramahansa Yogananda, Ramakrishna Paramhamsa, Tapovan Maharaj, who appeared in the 19th and 20th centuries, did not make even an oblique reference to the existence of “kuladeiva” worship in their works and teachings.

In sum, “Kuladeivam”, as a god, deity, or devata, is not part of the Hindu pantheon, and its worship is not part of the voluminous 28 Saiva Agamas, 77 Shakta Agamas, and 108 Vaishnava Agamas (aka Pancharatra Samhitas), and innumerable Upa-Agamas.

How Kuladeiva Worship Popularised and Has Become Endemic

Kuladeiva worship is unknown in all parts of India except in Tamil Nadu, where it had its first outbreak, and soon became endemic when Tamil Nadu periodicals, which have always been known for their notoriety and vile sensationalism, misrepresented Sri Chandrasekharendra Saraswati Swamigal (aka Kanchi Periyavaal), a revered philosopher and spiritual leader who was the 68th pontiff at Kanchi Kamakoti Peetham, who had purportedly spoken about it to a poor uneducated peasant.

Latterly, owing to arrant misinformation purveyed by unenlightened media in India, and on account of uninformed people, who have been putting it about that Kuladeiva worship is part of Sanatana Dharma, a considerable number of innocent Hindus, not least the Tamils, have taken a warped and abnormal interest in the subject.

Etymology of Kuladeivam



Kuladeivam (loosely translated as “lineage deity” or “community deity”) refers to a patron deity or a tutelary, who is classed as a protector or guardian of a place, village, lineage, or even country, culture, and occupation, and who, as the Tamil folklore goes, guards and guides his votaries, generations after generations. The Tamil people call them by various names like Grama-devata (or “village deity”) or Kuladeivam (as it is referred to here in this article) “Kaval-deivam” (=” guardian spirit”). Almost every village in Tamil Nadu has more than one of these “deities”. In spite of their ubiquity, however, (as it had been proved in the foregoing paragraphs) Kuladeivams and their worship have no place in the Vedic scriptures and Agamic traditions of Hinduism. They have if we should trace their nebulous beginnings, grown more out of South Indians’ culture and customs than their having a genesis in the authoritative Vedic religion of the rishis.

Kuladeivam and Ishta-Devata are Different

The concept of what a Kuladeivam is in Tamil Nadu should not, however, be confused with the Ishta-devata worship practiced in Maharashtra, Gujarat, Kerala, Andra Pradesh, and Nepal, for instance, where certain manifestations of Vedic gods like Goddess Parvathi, Lord Shiva or Lord Vishnu, for example, are revered as the favorite forms worshiped by their ancestors.

E contra, in Tamil Nadu the Kuladeivam has nothing to do with any of the iconic gods and goddesses in the Hindu pantheon; rather they are the deified human ancestors of a clan, community, or family. [According to Kriya Tamil Dictionary (1994 edition), “KulaDeivam” refers to a “deified ancestor of a community”.]

Human Ancestors Are Kuladeivam in Tamil Nadu

To put in another way, the Tamils worship their human ancestors, who had led a virtuous or righteous life, or some elders in the lineage, olden society, gentes, confraternity, locality, neighborhood, colony, who had performed some meritorious deeds for the good of the village or community that has, as a result, flourished on that account.

In a word, what began as a mark of respect for an ancestor, as a form of reverence and deference, soon led the Tamils to deify them, giving them the status of god and even God.



Disinformation and Misinformation

Today, if one looks at Youtube, in particular, one will find (to one’s positive bafflement and dismay) an insufferable surfeit of disinformation (=false information deliberately and often covertly spread in order to influence public opinion) and misinformation (=incorrect or misleading information inadvertently sent in order to influence public opinion) concerning disreputable, un-Agamic, non-Vedic Kuladeiva worship. This has led to pernicious, damaging, and extravagant superstitions, confusing Hindus even further, taking them further from the true teachings of the Vedas, Upanishads, and Ithihaas. Many an astrologer, self-styled guru, spiritualist, religious advisor, teacher, and satsangist not only mislead people by purveying to the superstitions of the Tamils but also put around views and ideas that are completely at variance with the teachings of Hindu acharyas and the scriptures.



Indians’ Notoriety for Hyperbolic Adoration that Leads to Crass Superstitions

Indians in general and the Tamils, in particular, have earned the noxious and nauseous notoriety for deifying anyone and anything that seizes their imagination. For instance, one will (to one’s prize stupefaction and consternation) discover not one but innumerable temples dedicated and assigned to celebrities, Indian movie stars, and even politicians. Is it, therefore, a huge wonder to alight upon their worshiping their ancestors, who were in every way but mere mortals and humans like every one of us reading this article?

 
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prasad1

prasad1

Active member
Smarta Tradition:


Smartism is a sect of Hinduism that allows its followers to worship more than one god, unlike in sects like Shaivism and Vaishnavism, in which only Shiva and Vishnu are worshipped, respectively. Smartas, followers of Smartism, may actually worship one or more of the five main Hindu gods - Vishnu, Shiva, Ganesha, Surya, and Shakti - as they are all considered equal. This practice is called panchayatana puja in Sanskrit. Smartism was founded by the Hindu spiritual guru, Adi Shankaracharya. The idea behind the founding of Smartism was to do away with certain practices in Hinduism, such as animal sacrifice; and also because Adi Shankaracharya believed in the concept of Advaita Vedanta, in which Brahman is the fundamental and highest reality above all gods. Smartism follows the Vedas, the sacred Hindu texts, and abides by orthodox Hindu philosophy. The sect recognizes God as both Saguna and Nirguna. God as Saguna is a representation of infinite nature and traits such as love, compassion, and justice. God as Nirguna symbolizes pure consciousness, or Brahman, the creative principle and the key concept of the Vedas. Smartas worship the Supreme in one of five forms: Ganesha, Shiva, Shakti, Vishnu, Surya. Because they accept all the major Hindu Gods, they are known as liberal or nonsectarian. They follow a philosophical, meditative path, emphasizing man's oneness with God through understanding.

Iyengar:

They are supposed to only worship Sri Narayan.

There is no Vedic sanction of worshiping Kuladeviam.
 
Not true. Article looks like BJP propaganda to downplay Tamil culture.

First off, it is impossible for anyone to have gone through all the millions of lines of scriptures and arrived at this conclusion that Kula deivam worship is not sanctioned.

Second, Raman, Lakshmanan, Ravanan and Indrajit all pray to their Kula Deivam before they go the war. Raman worships Suryan and chants the Aditya Hridayam before his war with Ravanan. Mandodari worships the Kula Deivam to protect her husband and her clan. Sita worships Bhooma Devi to grant victory for her husband.

Third, all sects Shaivas, Smarthas, Vaishnavas, who base primacy on Vedas worship all God's except that they consider Shivan as supreme or Narayanan as Supreme.

Iyengars pray to Brahma, Prajapati, Rudra, Indran, Suryan, Agni, Varunan, etc...as part of the Vedic rituals. So not correct to say they are not supposed to worship other gods. But they consider Narayanan as Supreme like we Iyers consider Shivan as Supreme.

Kula Deivam is an integral part of Hinduism and was prevalent all across India in ancient times. Rajput Kings and queens worshipped Kula Deivam to protect their clans and kingdoms before the war.

Over time, this was lost and has remained predominantly with Tamils where we do annual piligrimages to our Kula Deivam.

Kula Deivam is almost always a Goddess Mother, (Devathai) who protects her children and their clan.
 

Suresh ente sure

Active member
Kula deivam is worship of ancestor . Because tamil hindus know vedic gods doesnt exist . Same as muslim goes nagoor darga. This certain ancestor deity have limited power due to pure energy . That why some can cured certain illness
 
Kula Deivam is not worship of ancestors. Kula Deivam is the gaurdian diety that protects the family and their members from war, diseases and natural disasters etc..

There should be no confusion in this, as all warrior Kings and their armies worshipped their Kula Deivam or Gaurdian diety to protect them before they went to war.

For the Mysore Maharaja and his family, Chamundeswari is their Kula Deivam.
 
The question should be - How can one not have a gaurdian diety to protect their family and clan that too with ancient kingdoms at war all the time ?

All the kingdoms and their people prayed to their gaurdian diety which is almost always the Godess Mother. For eg, Durgai was the gaurdian diety of Lanka, so Raman worships her for victory.

Others should adopt the Kula Deivam concept, instead of saying it has no sanction in hindusim.
 
All ancient Hindu kingdoms had gaurdian dieties that protected their kingdoms and their people. Royal priests performed annual pujas and prayed before any war.

Royal priests of Mysore Kingdowm pray to Chamundeswari for the well being of the kingdom and it's people to this date.

This was clearly lost as most Hindu kingdoms lost power over the millennia in other parts of India.

I vaguely remember reading sometime back, that Mumbai has a gaurdian diety Mumba Devi.

The Maha Brahmin Ravanan worshipped Shivan but he still prayed to his Kula Deivam before the final war.

In short, Hindus always worshipped multiple gods along with their Kula Deivam - the gaurdian diety that protected their kingdoms, families.
 

Suresh ente sure

Active member
Kula Deivam is not worship of ancestors. Kula Deivam is the gaurdian diety that protects the family and their members from war, diseases and natural disasters etc..

There should be no confusion in this, as all warrior Kings and their armies worshipped their Kula Deivam or Gaurdian diety to protect them before they went to war.

For the Mysore Maharaja and his family, Chamundeswari is their Kula Deivam.
Although my family doesnt pray our kula deivam periya karuppu and chinna karrupu anymore . Most likely they are ancestor or lineage of our clan because different kula deiva for different family
 
Although my family doesnt pray our kula deivam periya karuppu and chinna karrupu anymore . Most likely they are ancestor or lineage of our clan because different kula deiva for different family
You *may* be confusing Kula Deivam with grama devatha. Grama Devatha is the protector of that village and all families in that area including brahmins prayed to them.

But brahmin families have Kula Deivam handed over to them for generations. Same with kingdoms, they had their own unique gaurdian dieties.

Astrologers can help identify the Kula Deivam.
 
Some of the grama Devatha are ancient warriors who protected that village from local wars. So Brahmin families in that area could have adopted these grama devatha as their Kula Deivam.

But prior to that event, your ancestors would have had their Kula Deivam handed over to them for generations. This is what astrologers can help identify.
 
There are 2 parts to the Kula Deivam.

First is to identify the family gaurdian diety handed over to them by their ancestors, if not, they can be identified via astrologers.

The second is to identify which temple your ancestors prayed to. That requires a lot of investigation, tracing your ancestors, where they lived and which all temples they went to, etc..this can be tough to find if people have migrated to other states over time and don't remember their ancestors beyond their great grandfathers.

And some Brahmin families adopted the local grama Devatha as their Kula Deivam as that devatha - local village headmen diefied as god who would have protected them from local wars.

But families have had Kula Deivam worship as part their lives for generations prior to that. So one can choose to worship either of them.
 

Suresh ente sure

Active member
You *may* be confusing Kula Deivam with grama devatha. Grama Devatha is the protector of that village and all families in that area including brahmins prayed to them.

But brahmin families have Kula Deivam handed over to them for generations. Same with kingdoms, they had their own unique gaurdian dieties.

Astrologers can help identify the Kula Deivam.
I not aware gramata deivam or kula deivam. Only my patti and my periamma yhat kula deivam
 
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prasad1

prasad1

Active member
The village deities of Southern India are the numerous spirits and other beings venerated as part of the folk tradition in villages throughout South India. They are found in almost all villages in Tamil, Kannada, and Telugu-speaking areas. These deities, mainly goddesses, are intimately associated with the well-being of the village and can have either benevolent or violent tendencies.

These deities have been linked back to common Indus Valley civilization imagery, and are hypothesized to represent the prevailing Dravidian folk religion at the time. The worship of these gods at many times contradicts the common tenents of Brahminical traditions, especially in customs of animal sacrifice, the right of the priesthood, and iconography. Today these deities are worshipped by almost all non-Brahmins in the rural areas of Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, and Karnataka. Similar practices, more influenced by Brahminical practices, are still found in Indo-Aryan peoples, especially those of Maharashtra, West Bengal, and Bihar.

Most scholars see the village deities of South India as continuations of religious traditions followed in the subcontinent before the arrival of Indo-Aryans. In the early centuries BCE, village goddesses are represented with various symbols such as the chakra (wheel), srivatsa (an unending knot), and trishula (trident), all of which have parallels in the Indus Valley civilization. It thus seems likely that the worship of these village deities was also present in the Indus Valley civilization at some point. In the Deccan Plateau, the first art forms for the fertility goddess appeared between the 8th and 4th century BCE, before the recorded arrival of other traditions like Buddhism, Jainism, and Brahminism into the region.

Wikipedia.
 
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prasad1

prasad1

Active member
Relationship with Brahminical Hinduism
The Vedic and non-Vedic people assimilated from each other. Even though there are diversified characteristics between the Vedic and the folk tradition, various communities inducted these deities in their spectrum and created various sthalapuranas which emphasized the relation between these gods and goddesses from differing traditions. Often the Brahminical deities were invoked to "legitimize" the lineage of the deity. In northern Tamil Nadu for instance, For example, a male deity called Kuttandavar is worshipped in many parts of Tamil Nadu, especially in the former South Arcot district. The image consists of a head like a big mask with a fierce face and lion's teeth projecting downwards outside the mouth. According to legend the creation of Kuttandavar, the god Indra, is for the crime of murdering a Brahmin, became incarnated in the form of Kuttandavar, and a curse was laid upon him that his body leaving only the head. Another story, from Chittoor district in Andhra Pradesh, is about Gangamma, the daughter of a Brahmin who unknowingly married a Dalit. This Dalit had claimed Brahmin status in order to learn the Vedas from Gangamma's father but was unknowingly exposed by his mother who had visited. Ganga, distraught at being "polluted," burned herself to death, and her angry spirit cursed her husband and his mother to be reborn as a goat and sheep respectively and to be sacrificed to her for all eternity. A similar myth was recorded in Kurnool district in the early 20th century for a goddess there. This myth, by vilifying the Dalits as nothing more than animals and portraying the Brahmins as innocent victims, is meant to show the "disastrous consequences" of transgressing one's caste and upholding caste boundaries.

Brahminical deities and local village deities exist on multiple spectra, one of which is the Brahminical idea of pure vs polluting. However, the most important contrast is the spectrum ranging from "soft" to "fierce." The "softest" deities are the Brahminical deities: Vishnu, Siva, and others, who are worshipped via vegetarian offerings solely. The fiercest deities are worshipped only through offerings of meat and alcohol, both considered "polluting" in Brahminical scriptures. These are also the deities most commonly worshipped by Dalit communities, who often offer buffalos in Telugu and Kannada regions. Typically, the Brahminical deities, although revered are seen as "big deities," concerned with the wider universe and not with the common man. The village deities, on the other hand, are accessible and are more concerned with the day-to-day woes of the villagers. Therefore, in times of need, it is the village deities that are turned to rather than the major Brahminical deities. Therefore, their temples are usually maintained by donations from the people of the village and are in good condition, while Brahminical temples are either administered by the government or often neglected due to lack of worship.

Many deities have made the transition from being independent folk deities worshipped with traditional rites to being assimilated as an avatar of one of the Brahminical deities: it is believed that many of the most popular, such as Siva, had non-Vedic origins. This often happens when a Brahminical goddess (some form of Kali, Durga, or Parvati usually) gains significant popularity, and then all the grama devatas are conflated with her. This process has resulted in many grama devatas in the region around Hyderabad to be seen as avatars of Kali. Another way for the deities to make a transition is for a deity to gain significant popularity, thus ensuring they must be "legitimized." For instance, an army mason from Secunderabad became a devotee of Ujjain Mahankali and built a temporary temple for her. As the deity became more popular, she eventually got a permanent temple administered by his son and later a temple committee. During excavation, they found an image of Manikyamba and installed it. They hired a Brahmin priest, and the Vedic Chandi Homam was done occasionally to ensure she became a Brahminical deity who is largely peaceful. However she is also worshipped as a Neem tree in the temple courtyard and animal sacrifice is occasionally performed to her, showing her origin as a village deity. In addition, Yellamma is also worshipped here as a dasi (servant) of Mahankali, mirroring the relationship between Matangi and Yellamma. Yellamma, being a very popular goddess around Hyderabad, attracts many to the temple.[1]

These transitions are primarily driven by a desire to assimilate into the dominant culture due to increased affluence. Because Brahminism is the "high" culture, when many from non-Brahminical castes gain in affluence and status they start to distance themselves from the "fierce" origins of their deities and assimilate them into the "superior" culture. Furthermore, when villages become absorbed by a city their deities lose their agricultural significance and so Brahminic forms of worship are adopted. The form of the deity is also dependent on who are the main worshippers: for instance, Sri Durgalamma in Visakhapatnam has been Sanskritized: for instance, Brahmin priests preside, animal sacrifices are not done inside the temple and she is depicted with Brahminic iconography and is regarded as a peaceful avatar of Lakshmi. This is partly because the majority of devotees are middle-class housewives to whom the docile wife of Vishnu is more acceptable than the fearsome Durga.

The popular deities have evolved significantly over time. For example, Mariamman, another traditional folk deity, is highly influenced by the Vedic rituals. She is usually garlanded with skulls. But due to Vedic influence, the skull garland has been replaced by the lime garland and her poor outlook has been altered into a pleasant one. Sometimes these processes of assimilation lead to the degradation of the deities. When the Brahmins stressed the holiness of the Brahminical deities, at the same time they denied the holiness of the deities of the folk tradition. They described the gods and goddesses of folk tradition either as subservient to Brahminical deities or they venerated these deities as capable of curing the most potent contagious diseases.

The process of inclusivism can also be seen in popular temples dedicated to the deities of folk religion. For example, the Mariamman temples of Samayapuram, Punnainallur, Vazhangaiman in Tamil Nadu attract a large number of devotees. These larger temples for traditionally non-Vedic deities in fact have Brahmin priests, who perform rituals as per Brahminical customs: including turning Mariamman into a suddhadevata (vegetarian deity) and performing kumbhabhishekam. With regard to the temples of folk tradition Vinayakar, Murugan, Iyyappan, and others, Vedic deities are replaced by the deities of folk tradition such as Aiyanar, Madurai Veeran, and Karuppannasamy. Even the people of the folk tradition have begun to follow some customs and habits of higher castes in order to raise their social status.

Wikipedia
 
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prasad1

prasad1

Active member
There are two main types of deity propitiated in a village. Any of these deities can be considered a kuladevata.


Example of a fertility goddess, Chikkamma Doddamma, common in South Karnataka
All villages will have a fertility goddess. This goddess is believed to arise from the natural world itself and to be intrinsically linked to the ground of the village. She is a representation of the village itself, rather than simply a guardian figure. She often has the additional responsibility of overseeing rain, since, in the areas of South India east of the Western Ghats, the monsoon rains are the primary source of water for agriculture. She is the main protector of the village, especially against common diseases like smallpox or plague. Other goddesses preside over specific household objects or act as guardians of cattle or children.[1] Most of these deities are unique to their village and have their own origin stories, and many are worshipped only by members of a particular community. Mariamman is one of the most popular of this class of deities, worshipped throughout South India. She provides fertility and, in many places, protection against smallpox and other deadly diseases. Other popular goddesses include Pochamma in the Telugu region and Yellamma in northern Karnataka and western Telangana. Another common theme is the seven sisters, called saptamatrikas in Brahminical traditions. This collection of goddesses does not have a specific function but may be called upon if a disease is affecting the family. In the area around Tirumala, it is said that these deities can be seen as young girls wandering around at noon, dusk, or night. Village goddesses can have different personalities. Some are kindly and will shower blessings on those who worship them. Others are vengeful and angry and will unleash terror on the village unless they are propitiated. Many of these deities are especially worshipped by one particular community, for example, Yellamma is worshipped especially by two Dalit communities: Malas and Madigas. Some of these deities originated with tribal communities and became worshipped by wider society., such as Kondalamma in the hills of East Godavari district.

Villages, especially in Tamil and Telugu regions, will also have a guardian deity: a male deity who protects the village from harms like war or famine, or other evils. Unlike the fertility goddess, this deity is worshipped throughout a wide region and has less variety. In northern Tamil Nadu, this deity is called Aiyyanar, while in southern Tamil Nadu, he is known as Shasta. His name in Telugu is Poturaju and is the brother of the presiding goddess in those villages. A common origin myth for Poturaju is that he drank the blood of demons slain by amma. In Tamil Nadu, there are a host of other male deities, such as Karuppusami, who are either attendants to Aiyanar or guardians for the main goddess. Most of these gods are kula devatas for families in the village, especially for dominant castes who are patrilineal. In this context, guardianship has two meanings: either as guardian of devotees or the guardian of a greater village deity, subservient to them.

Wikipedia
 
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prasad1

prasad1

Active member
Mythology
The mythology surrounding these deities varies considerably by region and deity. However several basic trends can be established. For instance, most village deities are rooted in the idea that some form of Shakti is the primordial force in the universe, sometimes called Adi Shakti or Adi Mahashakti. From her arose all other deities, including the Trimurti of Brahminical traditions. The village goddesses are usually related as avatars of Adi Shakti. Each deity will have an origin story of some kind to explain why they do not appear in the Puranas. An example of this is Aiyanar, whose origin story in the Arcot region is related to the story of Padmasuran (also known as Bhasmasura), who was given a boon by Siva to turn anyone whose head he touched into ash. But Padmasuran attacked Siva himself, who became frightened turned into an aivelangai fruit. However, Shiva's brother-in-law Mahavishnu heard his plea for help and appeared as Mohini. Entrancing the Asura, Mohini said he had to take a bath in order to be hers. The Asura could only find a small amount of water and put it on his head, after which he burst into ashes. Vishnu then told Siva all was clear and after being told the tale, Siva wished to see Vishnu as Mohini. When he obliged, Siva became aroused and his semen came out. To prevent it from touching the ground Mahavishnu caught it in his hand and Aiyanar was born. This invention of tradition is a way to explain why these deities do not appear in the Puranic stories and to give them a sense of "legitimacy" in the greater tradition. Another myth from that same region about the origin of another popular deity, Muneeshwarar, claims he was created directly by Adi Shakti, before Siva or even Ganesha.

Occasionally, the fertility goddess or guardian deity can be the spirit of a historical figure. This practice has roots in ancient times: as early as the Sangam period, hero stones (natukal/viragal in Tamil, veeragalu in Kannada), stones erected to honor those men who laid down their lives for the village, were worshipped and propitiated. Similar to hero stones, sati stones honor women who sacrificed their life, especially for chastity and purity. The early Tamil poem Tolkappiyam gives a six-stage guide to the erection of such a stone, from a selection of a suitable stone until the institution of formal worship. In time, many of these spirits have merged into or become the local guardian deity. Examples of deified heroes include Madurai Veeran (from Madurai) and Kathavarayan (from Thanjavur). Oftentimes, these heroes are found as attendants to Ayyanar or a village goddess, especially in Tamil Nadu. The Paanchamman temples in north Tamil Nadu were built to worship widows who underwent Sati. Often, the deities are spirits who suffered injustice in their lives or deaths and must be propitiated to prevent their spirit from affecting the village. Several couples who have lost their lives due to caste animosity are worshipped as deities in several villages. Kannaki Amman is Kannagi from the Silappadikaram, whose husband was unjustly killed by the Pandyan king, is another widely-worshipped deity of this category. The Maachani Amman temple at Pollachi was built to worship a young girl who was killed by a Kongu king for unknowingly eating a mango from his garden. Oftentimes female spirits are merged into the main fertility goddess or are venerated as one of her attendants.

A few deities are less-venerated characters in the epics of the Ramayana and Mahabharata. For example, there are many temples dedicated to Draupadiamman (Panchali) and Dharmaraja (Yudhishthira) in northern Tamil Nadu, a tradition especially prominent among the Vanniyar community. Temples dedicated to Gandhari (mother of the Kauravas), Kunti (mother of Pandavas), and Aravan (the son of Arjuna and the serpent princess Ulupi) are also found in Tamil Nadu.

Iravan also known as Iravat and Iravant, is a minor character from the Hindu epic Mahabharata. The son of Pandava prince Arjuna (one of the main heroes of the Mahabharata) and the Naga princess Ulupi, Iravan is the central deity of the tradition of Kuttandavar which is also the name commonly given to him in that tradition—and plays a major role in the tradition of Draupadi. Both these cults are of Tamil origin, from a region of the country where he is worshipped as a village deity and is known as Aravan. He is also a patron god of well-known transgender communities called ThiruNangai (also Aravani in Tamil, and Hijra throughout South Asia).
 
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prasad1

prasad1

Active member
I want to make it clear that you can worship anything and everything. But you must know what you are doing. If it feels good please continue doing it. If it bothers you then stop doing it.
 
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prasad1

prasad1

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Iravan
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Not to be confused with Yerevan or Ravana.
Iravan
A big moustached male head, with big eyes, big ears and thick eyebrows. Fangs protrude from the sides of his mouth. The head wears a conical crown, with a cobra hood at the top. A floral garland and gold necklace are seen around the neck.
Aravan worshipped at Sri Mariamman Temple, Singapore. A cobra hood is sheltering Aravan's head.
Devanagariइरावान्
Sanskrit transliterationIrāvāṇ
Tamilஅரவான்
AffiliationNāga
WeaponSword, Bow and Arrows
ParentsUlupi (mother)
Arjuna (father)
ConsortKrishna in his female form

Iravan is also known as Iravat and Iravant, is a minor character from the Hindu epic Mahabharata. The son of Pandava prince Arjuna (one of the main heroes of the Mahabharata) and the Naga princess Ulupi, Iravan is the central deity of the tradition of Kuttandavar which is also the name commonly given to him in that tradition—and plays a major role in the tradition of Draupadi. Both these cults are of Tamil origin, from a region of the country where he is worshipped as a village deity and is known as Aravan. He is also a patron god of well-known transgender communities called ThiruNangai (also Aravani in Tamil, and Hijra throughout South Asia).

The Mahabharata portrays Iravan as dying a heroic death in the 18-day Kurukshetra War (Mahabharata war), the epic's main subject. However, the South Indian traditions have a supplementary practice of honoring Aravan's self-sacrifice to the goddess Kali to ensure her favour and the victory of the Pandavas in the war. The Kuttantavar tradition focuses on one of the three boons granted to Aravan by the god Krishna in honour of this self-sacrifice. Aravan requested that he be married before his death. Krishna satisfied this boon in his female form, Mohini. In Koovagam (கூவாகம்), Tamil Nadu, this incident is re-enacted in an 18-day festival, first by a ceremonial marriage of Aravan to ThiruNangais and male villagers (who have taken vows to Aravan) and then by their widowhood after the ritual re-enactment of Aravan's sacrifice.

The Draupadi tradition emphasizes another boon: Krishna allows Aravan to witness the entire duration of the Mahabharata war through the eyes of his severed head. In another 18-day festival, the ceremonial head of Aravan is hoisted on a post to witness the ritual re-enactment of the Mahabharata war. The head of Aravan is a common motif in Draupadi temples. Often it is a portable wooden head; sometimes it even has its own shrine in the temple complex or is placed on the corners of temple roofs as a guardian against spirits. Aravan is worshipped in the form of his severed head and is believed to cure disease and induce pregnancy in childless women.

Iravan is also known in Indonesia (where his name is spelled Irawan). An independent set of traditions have developed around Irawan on the main island of Java where, for example, he loses his association with the Naga. Separate Javanese traditions present a dramatic marriage of Irawan to Titisari, daughter of Krishna, and a death resulting from a case of mistaken identity. These stories are told through the medium of traditional Javanese theatre (Wayang), especially in shadow-puppet plays known as Wayang Kulit.


These are all superstitions (my view).
 
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Suresh ente sure

Active member
Relationship with Brahminical Hinduism
The Vedic and non-Vedic people assimilated from each other. Even though there are diversified characteristics between the Vedic and the folk tradition, various communities inducted these deities in their spectrum and created various sthalapuranas which emphasized the relation between these gods and goddesses from differing traditions. Often the Brahminical deities were invoked to "legitimize" the lineage of the deity. In northern Tamil Nadu for instance, For example, a male deity called Kuttandavar is worshipped in many parts of Tamil Nadu, especially in the former South Arcot district. The image consists of a head like a big mask with a fierce face and lion's teeth projecting downwards outside the mouth. According to legend the creation of Kuttandavar, the god Indra, is for the crime of murdering a Brahmin, became incarnated in the form of Kuttandavar, and a curse was laid upon him that his body leaving only the head. Another story, from Chittoor district in Andhra Pradesh, is about Gangamma, the daughter of a Brahmin who unknowingly married a Dalit. This Dalit had claimed Brahmin status in order to learn the Vedas from Gangamma's father but was unknowingly exposed by his mother who had visited. Ganga, distraught at being "polluted," burned herself to death, and her angry spirit cursed her husband and his mother to be reborn as a goat and sheep respectively and to be sacrificed to her for all eternity. A similar myth was recorded in Kurnool district in the early 20th century for a goddess there. This myth, by vilifying the Dalits as nothing more than animals and portraying the Brahmins as innocent victims, is meant to show the "disastrous consequences" of transgressing one's caste and upholding caste boundaries.

Brahminical deities and local village deities exist on multiple spectra, one of which is the Brahminical idea of pure vs polluting. However, the most important contrast is the spectrum ranging from "soft" to "fierce." The "softest" deities are the Brahminical deities: Vishnu, Siva, and others, who are worshipped via vegetarian offerings solely. The fiercest deities are worshipped only through offerings of meat and alcohol, both considered "polluting" in Brahminical scriptures. These are also the deities most commonly worshipped by Dalit communities, who often offer buffalos in Telugu and Kannada regions. Typically, the Brahminical deities, although revered are seen as "big deities," concerned with the wider universe and not with the common man. The village deities, on the other hand, are accessible and are more concerned with the day-to-day woes of the villagers. Therefore, in times of need, it is the village deities that are turned to rather than the major Brahminical deities. Therefore, their temples are usually maintained by donations from the people of the village and are in good condition, while Brahminical temples are either administered by the government or often neglected due to lack of worship.

Many deities have made the transition from being independent folk deities worshipped with traditional rites to being assimilated as an avatar of one of the Brahminical deities: it is believed that many of the most popular, such as Siva, had non-Vedic origins. This often happens when a Brahminical goddess (some form of Kali, Durga, or Parvati usually) gains significant popularity, and then all the grama devatas are conflated with her. This process has resulted in many grama devatas in the region around Hyderabad to be seen as avatars of Kali. Another way for the deities to make a transition is for a deity to gain significant popularity, thus ensuring they must be "legitimized." For instance, an army mason from Secunderabad became a devotee of Ujjain Mahankali and built a temporary temple for her. As the deity became more popular, she eventually got a permanent temple administered by his son and later a temple committee. During excavation, they found an image of Manikyamba and installed it. They hired a Brahmin priest, and the Vedic Chandi Homam was done occasionally to ensure she became a Brahminical deity who is largely peaceful. However she is also worshipped as a Neem tree in the temple courtyard and animal sacrifice is occasionally performed to her, showing her origin as a village deity. In addition, Yellamma is also worshipped here as a dasi (servant) of Mahankali, mirroring the relationship between Matangi and Yellamma. Yellamma, being a very popular goddess around Hyderabad, attracts many to the temple.[1]

These transitions are primarily driven by a desire to assimilate into the dominant culture due to increased affluence. Because Brahminism is the "high" culture, when many from non-Brahminical castes gain in affluence and status they start to distance themselves from the "fierce" origins of their deities and assimilate them into the "superior" culture. Furthermore, when villages become absorbed by a city their deities lose their agricultural significance and so Brahminic forms of worship are adopted. The form of the deity is also dependent on who are the main worshippers: for instance, Sri Durgalamma in Visakhapatnam has been Sanskritized: for instance, Brahmin priests preside, animal sacrifices are not done inside the temple and she is depicted with Brahminic iconography and is regarded as a peaceful avatar of Lakshmi. This is partly because the majority of devotees are middle-class housewives to whom the docile wife of Vishnu is more acceptable than the fearsome Durga.

The popular deities have evolved significantly over time. For example, Mariamman, another traditional folk deity, is highly influenced by the Vedic rituals. She is usually garlanded with skulls. But due to Vedic influence, the skull garland has been replaced by the lime garland and her poor outlook has been altered into a pleasant one. Sometimes these processes of assimilation lead to the degradation of the deities. When the Brahmins stressed the holiness of the Brahminical deities, at the same time they denied the holiness of the deities of the folk tradition. They described the gods and goddesses of folk tradition either as subservient to Brahminical deities or they venerated these deities as capable of curing the most potent contagious diseases.

The process of inclusivism can also be seen in popular temples dedicated to the deities of folk religion. For example, the Mariamman temples of Samayapuram, Punnainallur, Vazhangaiman in Tamil Nadu attract a large number of devotees. These larger temples for traditionally non-Vedic deities in fact have Brahmin priests, who perform rituals as per Brahminical customs: including turning Mariamman into a suddhadevata (vegetarian deity) and performing kumbhabhishekam. With regard to the temples of folk tradition Vinayakar, Murugan, Iyyappan, and others, Vedic deities are replaced by the deities of folk tradition such as Aiyanar, Madurai Veeran, and Karuppannasamy. Even the people of the folk tradition have begun to follow some customs and habits of higher castes in order to raise their social status.

Wikipedia
It is brahmin deities which first invoked with local deities to legalize vedic god and thus by accepted tamils according to sugi sivam. Rudran and shiva is different . Kaala , kaal or kaali means pitch dark in sanskrit and hindi. It baffles me how kaali is painted blue across india. It most likely adopted from south by brahmin and north indian . I alway doubt about existence of vedic , puranas and vedas. When i am saying this not out of blue. I have been reading vedas and manu translation in my free time. As i said above folk religion exist because some deities have limited power to cure some illness, or to guard place from bad soul. It is prevalent in malaysia and singapore , chinese have madurai veeran deity to ward of bad soul from their place . You can go to youtube to check it out. I didnt get your point on following custom and habit to raise to higher social status. As human i only do thing that benefit me . Yes i agree folk religion deity are not god . Somewhat they functioning than vedic god.
 
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prasad1

prasad1

Active member
I want Hindus to live life without guilt and superstitions.


Another superstition:

Where can I find Kuladevata in astrology?​

If you know your native place properly and only dunno which God / Goddess, then we can find that out with the help of Horoscope. If your chart is a rectified one (Birth Time Rectification), then your 9th CSL will indicate your Kula Devatha. To verify that, all the charts in the family should be rectified ones.

If this was true then everyone in the family must have the same 9th house CSL. Then again I have no faith in Horoscope of Horrorscope either.
 

Suresh ente sure

Active member
I want Hindus to live life without guilt and superstitions.


Another superstition:



If this was true then everyone in the family must have the same 9th house CSL. Then again I have no faith in Horoscope of Horrorscope either.
Everthing in hinduism have superstition be it folk religion or vedic religion. Up to themselves to accept or not . But horoscope have certain truth in it. I dont know whether it science or not from my personal experience .
 

renuka

Well-known member
I want Hindus to live life without guilt and superstitions.


Another superstition:



If this was true then everyone in the family must have the same 9th house CSL. Then again I have no faith in Horoscope of Horrorscope either.
Why do you want Hindus to live without guilt and superstition?
Most Hindus who worship deities or kula deivam or any other form do not feel guilty when they do so.

They do their prayers with a sense of dedication and feel its their culture.

So why do you feel they feel guilty?

Or are you guilty because somehow all these traditions do not really " fit in" Advaita philosophy which you adhere to?

Sometimes when we can not find answers as why there can never be a fixed state in any religion or philosophy we start to feel anything that does not match our perception can not be " true" and its merely superstition.

Why worry about what another prays to?
Even if its tribal or village culture or vedic or tantric or Abrahamic, everything has its rightful place in existence.

We only need to align ourselves to what allows us to empty our mind and let our heart connect to THAT ONENESS which we can call by many names.
 

Suresh ente sure

Active member
Why do you want Hindus to live without guilt and superstition?
Most Hindus who worship deities or kula deivam or any other form do not feel guilty when they do so.

They do their prayers with a sense of dedication and feel its their culture.

So why do you feel they feel guilty?

Or are you guilty because somehow all these traditions do not really " fit in" Advaita philosophy which you adhere to?

Sometimes when we can not find answers as why there can never be a fixed state in any religion or philosophy we start to feel anything that does not match our perception can not be " true" and its merely superstition.

Why worry about what another prays to?
Even if its tribal or village culture or vedic or tantric or Abrahamic, everything has its rightful place in existence.

We only need to align ourselves to what allows us to empty our mind and let our heart connect to THAT ONENESS which we can call by many names.
A very great example is adi shankara . He debated with jain and buddhist monk to upheld hinduism and believed in vedic ritual and expounded advaita vedantam later stage in his life which discarded vedic god and ritual except brahman sole god and reside in everyone
 

kamu

Active member
All the various arguments - for and against - the existence or otherwise of the "kuladeivam", in Hinduism was very interesting to read ! But everybody forgets the fact that the Sanatana Dharma allows Man the freedom to choose what / who / and why he wants to worship anything / or not conduct any worship at all !!
Of course, not all are spiritually mature enough to choose what they really need / want in their path towards the Ultimate , and have to have a hold somewhere - astrology steps in there , and tells you what may be done to mitigate your sufferings, etc. - even though a competent astrologer has to be very very intuitive in interpreting all the nuances present in a horoscope.
It has to be one's own choice, and where a whole family and a couple of generations of old people / children are involved, it might be worthwhile to go along with the flow and not strike out against it.
The evolution of worship of the main deities of the Hindu pantheon, like the Sanatana Dharma itself, seems to me, leaves it to each person to deduce what they want or do what they want. But Society will disintegrate if the Personal Will of each person is imposed on all, and a middle path has to be observed.
The term " Mythology " - a creation of the Western thought and philosophers, is better avoided, and the term of "Stories" or some such may be used. Glorification of a valiant man or woman, is essentially hyperbole, and need not descend to a " myth". And WIkipedia is notorius for calling everything a "Myth" !
 
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