Introduction / History
The Ayyanavar is a Hindu population of people formed by migration. It is said that the ancestor of Ayyanavar was the Eyinar clan who worshipped the Kali, the goddess of sex and violence. The Eyinar occupied a region of the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu. Malayalam and Tamil are the languages spoken by the members of the Ayyanavar caste in Kerala and Tamil Nadu. There are currently no known believers among the Ayyanavar
What Are Their Lives Like?
The Ayyanavar family structure is nuclear. The head of the family is the father. After the death of the father, the eldest son succeeds as the head of the family. The family looks after the other members. The women and men have equal status. Marriage proposals are initiated from the bridegroom's side. Most of the Ayyanavar work as laborers on plantations and in agricultural sectors. Animal husbandry is a subsidiary occupation. Only few who own land that they cultivate. They consume rice, vegetables, pulses, and tuber crops. Fish and meat are also popular food items. As Hindus, they will not eat beef.
What Are Their Beliefs?
The Ayyanavar practice Hinduism, the ancient religion of India. They worship and serve the gods of the Hindu pantheon. Hindus believe that by performing rituals and good works that they will attain "moksha" or freedom from the endless cycle of birth, death and rebirth. The Ayyanavar visit Hindu temples and offer prayers, food, flowers, and incense to their gods in hopes of gaining protection and benefits. They do not have a personal or familial relationship with their gods as Christians do. There are many forms of Hinduism, each with its own deities and beliefs. The main yearly holidays of the Ayyanavar people are Holi, the festival of colors and the start of spring, Diwali, the festival of lights, Navratri, the celebration of autumn and Rama Navami, Rama's birthday. The caste system divides Hindus into four main categories - Brahmins, Kshatriyas, Vaishyas and the Shudras. Dalits and tribal peoples are outside of the caste system. The Ayyanavar worship Lord Shiva, the destroyer god, as their patron deity.
What Are Their Needs?
The Ayyanavar need better education opportunities so they can obtain higher paying jobs. They need to learn new job skills. Most of all they need to hear and understand the message of Jesus Christ. He alone can forgive their sins and grant them eternal life.
* Scripture Prayers for the Ayyanavar in India.
* Pray for spiritual desire to come to the Ayyanavar so that they will seek and find the Holy One, Jesus Christ. * Pray for believers to go to the Ayyanavar people and help them with their physical and spiritual needs. * Ask God to raise up a disciple making movement among the Ayyanavar in this decade.