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The Jangam or Jangama are a Shaiva order of wandering religious monks. They are the priests or gurus of the Hindu Shaiva.[1] There is an age old debate and myth about calling Jangamas as 'Lingayath', but this is not correct. Jangamas are disciples of Lord Shiva. They are also the priests in all the twelve Jyothirlinga temples.


Jangam are basically from Karnataka, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Telangana and Andhra Pradesh. In Tamil Nadu they migrated from Karnataka and from Andhra Pradesh in order to propagate the Shaivaite cult and to act as priests for performing religious rites. Many Jangam live in Tamil Nadu, specifically, and in Virudhunagar, Sivakasi, Dindigul, Dharmapuri, Madurai, Theni, Krishnagiri, Namakkal, Erode, Tirupur, Villupuram, Arni and Coimbatore, Pudukottai, Salem, Kanchipuram, Thiruvellore, Trichy and Chennai (Madras) districts.[2]

The word jangam is derived from the movable emblem (linga) of Lord Shiva.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Russell, R. V.; Lal, Hira (1995). The tribes and castes of the central provinces of India, Volume 1. Asian Educational Services. p. 222. ISBN 81-206-0833-X. 
  2. ^ Reddy, S. S. (2004). "Jangam". In Singh, Kumar Suresh; Bhanu, B. V.; Anthropological Survey of India. People of India: Maharashtra. Popular Prakashan. pp. 830–838. ISBN 81-7991-101-2. 

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