Saivism in Maharashtra

Bapat Jb Jayant.B.Bapat at
Thu Dec 14 14:08:30 UTC 1995

Dear all
There was little response to my request a few days ago about the 
spread of Non-Lingayat Saivism in Maharashtra. Someone has just 
pointed out to me that my mail was too vague. So let me spell out 
exactly what I am looking for:
My e-mail re. Saivism was deliberately vague. I thought that that way 
the responses will not be limited. I see two kinds of Saivas in 
Maharashtra: the Lingayats and the others. The latter include 
Brahmins, the Gurav and non-Brahmins such as the worshippers of 
Khandoba etc. It is this non-Lingayat Saivism that I am interested 
in. It is not at all clear to me as to which brand of Saivism the 
Marathi brahmins for instance represent. They show no Agama tradition 
like the Southerners and they do not have any oral  or textual 
traditions to put them into any category of Saivism. How did this 
come about in Maharashtra? How did Saivism spread in there?
I am well aware of the work of Lorenzen and also the works on 
Lingayats which are quite a few. However there seems to be virtually 
nothing on the non-Lingayat Saivism of the Deccan. Some are said to 
belong to the Nath tradition but once again, we suffer from the lack 
of concrete information. The late Gunther Sontheimer did publish 
quite a bit on village Saivism such as the Khandoba cult. But where 
did the middle-class and Brahminic Saivism come from?
I would be most grateful for any help.
Jayant Bapat
Dr J.B. Bapat                                     Phone (03)9054510
Chemistry Department                              Fax   (03)9054597 
Monash University           e-mail:jayant.b.bapat at
Clayton, Victoria


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