Tag Archives: prajapati

Reader’s Question on Caste and Deities

Prajapati - a Caste Deity?

I have received an email from a reader asking about caste and preference for certain deities. Before I answer it I should point out that I don’t believe that hereditary caste is part of Hinduism. I wrote a post “The Caste System” where I discussed this issue .  The Hindu American Foundation’s statement “Not Cast in Caste” also makes it clear that caste and Hinduism are not necessarily linked.

The pertinent part of the email I received  is as follows:

My name is Jason and I am a student at Western Michigan University studying Religions of The World. My explorations in religions of India have lead me to the following question about Hinduism:

Preference for certain deities is somewhat caste and profession-linked among Hindus. When matching up the deities with the Indian social divisions, which deities do might go with which groups, and why?

Mainly I am concerned with the Brahma, Vishnu, Shiva, Kali, and Lakshmi.

Thank you very much for taking the time to read and respond to my message. I look forward to hearing your response.

I decided to respond to this email in a post because though I can give a reasonable theological answer I am sure that some of you reading this know a lot more about the day-to-day practices than I do. Any comments will be most welcome.

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