[Advaita-l] Temple Worship by all

Ramakrishna Upadrasta uramakrishna at gmail.com
Thu Jun 3 02:52:16 CDT 2010

2010/6/3 S Jayanarayanan <sjayana at yahoo.com>:

>> > There are specific rules laid down in the Shruti and
>> Smriti that only
>> > Brahmins should officiate as priests in Yajnas and
>> Homas. But are there
>> > similar commands laid down in the scriptures (in the
>> Agamas for instance)
>> > that only Brahmins can perform priestly temple
>> worship?

> For one thing, it was a theoretical question - whether or not temple worship in the physical sense of Abhishekam, Aradhana, etc. was forbidden to castes other than Brahmins as per the scriptures. I still haven't received an answer for this.
> Secondly, there are many temples where priests are not Brahmins that even I personally am aware of (surmise there should be dozens if not hundreds of such temples in reality). There are Shiva linga shrines around the Arunachala mountain where the priests are not Brahmins. I also know of a Vishnu temple in South India where the priest is not a Brahmin. I was wondering what the scripture says about priestly worship in such temples.


In this aspect, I would also like to know when are the murti's in the
sanctum-sanctorum allowed to be touched by everyone, while in some
places, they are not.

I remember being told by vidvaan that the answers to the original
question and the above one vary depending on (i) AchAra of the
specific place, (ii)  initiation rites used and (iii)
persons/devataa-s who installed the main-murti, (iv) purpose of
original installation. I do not have more details on this.


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