There are many religions that are followed in Rajasthan. Listed below are some of them :
Hinduism is the major religion in Rajasthan. The desert state has its own set of folklore and myths as far as Hinduism is concerned. The rituals have kept alive the customs, which have their roots in social welfare – these practices still have their ardent followers in the biggest Indian state.
Rajasthan has plenty of folk heroes and it is fairly common to see hundreds of shrines in villages where people paint stones and worship them close to wells or in little temples that are set up under trees.
Some of the most revered folk heroes of Rajasthan are Pabuji, Harbhuji, Gogaji, Mehaji and Baba Ramdeo. The state also follows one ancient Aryan custom – worshipping various forms of nature. Every area in the state has its presiding deity.
Pushkar, Desknok, Nathdwara and Ajmer are the hubs of Hinduism in the state with some of the most prominent religious centers and important temples. Some of them may be mentioned as below:
- Brahma Temple, Pushkar
- Eklingji Temple, Udaipur
- Kaila Devi
- Govind Devji Temple, Jaipur
- Shrinathji Temple, Nathdwara
- Kali Temple, Amber
- Ganesh Temple, Ranthambor
- Bijolia and Menal
Hindus in Rajasthan are mainly Vaishnavites but Goddess Durga and her other incarnations are worshipped throughout the state. There are followers of both Hinduism and Islam in the state’s Jat community.
The Meena community of the state strictly adheres to a Vedic form of Hinduism – their major deities are Bhainroon or Lord Shiva, Goddess Durga and Lord Krishna. The Rajputs are worshippers of Sun, Lord Shiva, Bhavani or Goddess Durga and Lord Vishnu.
The Gurjar community has several deities – Sun God, Lord Shiva, God Devnarayan, Goddess Bhavani and Lord Vishnu.
Rajasthan has some of the finest Jain temples in Ranakpur, Osian, Mount Abu, Jaisalmer, Shree Mahaveerji and Chittaurgarh. Some of them may be mentioned as below:
- Dilwara Temple, Mt. Abu
- Rishabdo Temple, Dhulev
- Parsvanath Temple, Nakoda
- Bhandasha Jain Temple
- Shri Mahavirji Temple
The Osval community is one of the biggest followers of Jainism in the state but a small number of Osvals also follow Vaishnavism.
Ajmer in Rajasthan houses the shrine of celebrated Sufi saint Khwaja Moinuddin Chisti. Atarki Dargah, which is Hamiuddin Nagori’s tomb, is a major tourist attraction and important Islamic monument. It is located in Nagaur.
Muslims in Rajasthan primarily belong to the Sunni sect. They can be mainly divided into the following sub-sects:
- Muslim Rangrez
Historically followers of Islam in Rajasthan had converted to the religion by choice and otherwise. However, some communities still follow the practices and rituals that were in vogue prior to conversion. This shows the strong cultural connect of Rajasthani people as opposed to a religious one.
Rajasthan has its fair share of followers of Dadupanthi. The main figure in this sect is Dadu, who was an advocate of principles such as equality of every man, complete restraint with regards to alcohol, total vegetarianism and celibacy throughout life.
Sikhism and Christianity
Sikhism and Christianity are followed in Rajasthan as well but the number of followers is small compared to other religions. However, in recent times Sikhism has experienced an increase in following. The state also has a smattering of people who practice Buddhism and the Parsi religion.