Rath (Odia surname)
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Rath or Rathasharma (Odia: ରଥ, ରଥଶର୍ମା, Sanskrit: रथ, रथशर्मा) are Utkala Brahmins having Atreya or Krishnatreya gotra. The surname in ancient days were given according to gotra and the speciality of the job done by Brahmin scholars. They especially specialise the Vikriti Paatha of Shukla Yajurveda and Rigveda which is Ratha Patha. The Veda can be recited in eleven different ways among which three are Prakruti and remaining seven[clarification needed] are Vikruti. These are Samhita (Richa), Pada, Krama (3 Prakruti) and Jataa, Rekha, Maala, Dhwaja, Shikha, Danda, Ratha and Ghana (Vikrutis). So the surname holders once mastered the Ratha tradition of chanting Veda. Sometimes they are called Rathatreya(रथात्रेय).
These group of Brahmins have Harihara worship and Bhuvaneshwari worship as family tradition. Goddess Bhuvaneshvari is regarded as their Kula devi. Many Odia Devi Mahatmya Pandits also belong to this sub group. The revival of Utkala Brahmins is attributed to Pandit Shri Sadashiva Rathasharma who in mid 20th century re-established the Sanskrit education in around Odisha. The Sadashiva Parishad is established in Puri to keep Sanskrit education alive.
Ātreya (Sanskrit: आत्रेय) Gotra: Generally belonging to the lineage of Maharṣi Atri, seer of the 5th maṇḍala of the Ṛk Veda. Specifically, they are the direct descendents of Maharṣi Rathātreya (रथात्रेय) one of the seers of this maṇḍala.
- Torch Bearers of Vedic Traditions : Brahmin Sasan Villages in Orissa by Nityananda Patnaik. Vedam Books, New Delhi, Classical, 2002, ix, 227 p. ISBN 81-7054-346-0