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The Info List - Ambalavasi


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AMBALAVASI is a generic name for a group of castes among Hindus in Kerala
Kerala
who render temple services. Those that practise matrilineality share many cultural similarities with the Nair caste and are probably related to them, but some Ambalavasi groups instead practice patrilineality. Their ritual rank in Hinduism lies somewhere between the Brahmin
Brahmin
castes and the Nairs.

CONTENTS

* 1 Castes and professions

* 1.1 Chakyar * 1.2 Pushpakas * 1.3 Others

* 2 Notable people * 3 References

CASTES AND PROFESSIONS

The castes which comprised the Ambalavasi community each contained only a few members. They lived in villages either where the land was owned solely by one Nambudiri Brahmin
Brahmin
family or where the land was owned by a temple, the running of which was in the control of a group of Nambudiri families. The latter villages were called sanketams.

The temples in which they worked comprised four basic types:

* Those in sanketams were large and were dedicated to deities which were worshipped throughout India, such as Shiva
Shiva
and Vishnu . * Private temples, owned by Nambudiri families, which were the smaller versions of those found in the sanketams. * The private temples of the royal lines, feudatory chiefs and vassal chiefs of what is now Kerala, which were dedicated to Bhagavati ( Bhadrakali ) * Village temples dedicated t