దేవాంగ అసోసియేషన్ అఫ్ నార్త్ అమెరికా
Nonprofit organization for the welfare of Weaving  Comminity 
 Chicago, IL USA

Sri Devanga Devala Maharshi



Devanga ( Devala Maharishi) is a sub-caste in Hinduism. They were one of the weaving castes in India.

 Devangas are Brahmanical origin. They are Prakrut Brahmins (meaning brahmins by birth). The majority of them are weavers of silk and cotton clothes. Devangas trace the origin of their weaving tradition to a sage called Devala Maharshi. According to tradition, Devala Maharishi was the first person to weave the

 the cotton cloth and to give it to Lord Shiva, who up until this time had been using animal skin. When Devala was taking the cloth to the king, demons came to attack him. Goddess Chowdeshwari (Chamundeshwari,a form of Durga,a warrior Goddess created by the Gods Brahma, Vishnu and Rudra, to fight the demon Mahishasura), perched on a lion, fought and vanquished the demons so that Devala Maharishi could give the cloth to the king.[citation needed].The woven clothes were taken to Lord Shiva. you can Check Devanga Purana. 

In India quite a many sectors of people are involved in the occupation of weaving, from North to South. They are denoted by different names as Devangas, Padmasalias, Sourahtras, Solias, Sengunthars, etc. People belonging to all these communities occupied the livelihood of weaving. But they speak different languages. Padmasalias speak Telegu, Sourashtras speak Sourasjtra, Solias, speak Kannada, Sengunthas speak Tamil and Devangas speak Telugu, Kannada and Tamil. Though they speak different languages their communal rites, Deity, and other aspects remained to be the same .

Sections : Devanga was originally divided into two groups, the Gandha and Nama. There were Saivite and Vaishnavite divisions among Devangas in the old days. Every one of the warrior sub sect have a sword in their homes. After the decline they settled in all parts of India..  Rigveda Devanga (Div am ga) was the first ever Bhramin who (OHM) comes to this world to give clothes to human beings Thiruvalluvar in his eighth poem says one cannot reach PARAMAPATHA until one surrendered to this Bhramin(OHM).

Now Devangas in weaving profession is  far down fall because of not sufficient  backing from the government.

(Adopted from web site of Devanga Sangam,Bangalore)

. Nowadays, people following this caste are mostly spread in southern Indian states of Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Orissa, Pondicherry and Tamil Nadu. The majority of them are weavers of silk and cotton clothes. They follow Veerashaivism or shivaite practices and also follow Lingayit practices and consider Viramustis as their traditional preceptors, from whom they take precepts and wear lingam. Devangas and Padmashalis, another weaving community were originally same community and later divided into two communities when Devangas started following Shivite practices and Padma Sale continued as Vaishnavites.

Devangas in defferent parts of India

In North Karnataka Devanga caste is divided into two groups - 1.Kulachaar Devanga 2. Shivachar Devanga. The difference between these two group is only in Wearing the yajnopaveetha (Janivar)by Kulachaar's and Shivadar with linga by Shivachars. Both groups worships goddess Banashankari of Badami.

Devangas of Mysore State are divided into several clans:1.Shivachar Devangas, 2. Kannada Devangas (comprising Seeryadavara or from Sira), 3. Telugu Devangas 4. Hatagararu. Some section of Devanga trace their ancestry to Brahmins and consider themselves as Deva Brahmans (Divine Brahmans) and this claim is based on a verse composed by a Devanga priest. Hatagararu are those who gave up lingayitism and started wearing sacred thread. In old Mysore, Lingayat Devangas are strict Shivites and other Devangs worship both Vishnu and Shiva.

In Andhra Pradesh, bulk of weavers belong to Devanga community, followed by Padma sale community and other communities.

In Telangana,  Devangas have 64  divisions and they were also called as Devangalu, Devra, Devanga Sale, Kodekul etc. in Nizam's Hyderabad. They were also divided linguistically as Telugu Devangas and Carnatic Devangas in Telangana. 

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