International Journal of Scientific and Research Publications

IJSRP, Volume 3, Issue 4, April 2013 Edition [ISSN 2250-3153]

Yellamma Cult and Divine Prostitution: Its Historical and Cultural Background
      Arun Jaganathan V.R
Abstract: The worship of Renuka, the mother goddess can be seen in many places of India. In the southern parts of India, Renuka is worshipped in the name of Yellamma or Mariamma. Renuka, as mentioned in Puranas is the mother of Parasurama who according to Indian mythology is considered as the incarnation of Visnu and his cult also can be seen in many parts of India. But in the regions of Vindhya Mountains, worship of Renuka gets predominance. Although Renuka is considered as the mother of Parasurama in epics and Puranas, there are mythical stories, which made her a mother goddess. The rise of Renuka as a mother goddess was perhaps the result of a complex process including the merges of numerous personalities and myths. In south Indian regions like Andhra and Karnataka, there are many stories related to Renuka and she is being worshipped as Yellamma or Mariamma. The main thing to be noted in this cult is that Renuka has been more popular among the lower castes rather than among the Brahmanical groups. This may be due to the reason that the development of this cult largely occurred in the regions dominated by pastoral communities, who have several other deities with similar mythical structures. One of the interesting features in southwestern India is that the ritual performed by the community of Devadasis is associated with Renuka shrines. In this study an attempt is made to analyse how Devadasi system/prostitution is connected with the Renuka/Yellamma cult in and around Soundatti. The historical and cultural background of prostitution becoming divine in nature also will be examined.

Reference this Research Paper (copy & paste below code):

Arun Jaganathan V.R (2018); Yellamma Cult and Divine Prostitution: Its Historical and Cultural Background; Int J Sci Res Publ 3(4) (ISSN: 2250-3153).
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