“Staying away from worshipping Kuladeivam is like keeping a vessel with a hole. Nothing will stay on the vessel with a hole. Likewise, no good thing will dawn on the person who does not worship his Kuladeivam.” – Kanchi Periyava.

Kuladeivam, or family deity worship, holds profound significance. Initiated by our ancestors, this spiritual practice becomes a cherished family tradition carried through generations. Typically, the temple dedicated to the Kuladeivam stands in one's ancestral village or town, with the main deity in the Sanctum Sanctorum and other Gods in the periphery. The Kuladeivam may manifest as a formless entity, fostering a deep connection among the community members who share the same deity.

The Kula Deivam itself can manifest in two distinct forms—AYYA (Male) or AMMA (Female). This duality mirrors the multifaceted nature of familial spirituality, acknowledging and venerating both masculine and feminine divine energies.

Despite the steadfast belief that Kuladeivams safeguard families from hardships, it's not uncommon for individuals or families to inadvertently forget or discontinue these traditional practices.

Several proven methods exist for rediscovering one's Kuladeivam, including:

1. Horoscope Reading: For male children in a family line, consulting horoscopes can reveal details about the Kuladeivam.

2. Prasanna Jothidam: Seeking guidance through Prasanna Jothidam, an astrological practice, is another avenue for identifying the Kuladeivam.

Additional methods that may offer insights include:

- Turmeric and Kungkumam Ritual: Combine turmeric, kungkumam, and optionally, a coin. Tie them in a piece of yellow cloth, knot it, and place it in front of the entrance.

- Prayer Altar: Utilize a small prayer altar designed for a single photo frame. Illuminate a vilaku (oil lamp) and offer aarti with lit suudam and saambrani.

- Maintain a Clean Entrance: Keeping the house entrance clean is believed to create a conducive environment for spiritual connections.

It is commonly believed that a revelation about the Kuladeivam may occur through dreams, trance experiences, or other divine interventions. If destined to know, the connection with the family deity will unfold in due course, rekindling a profound connection with ancestral roots.

Importance of worshiping your Kuladeivam (family deity)

Worshipping the Kuladeivam holds immense significance, acting as a powerful practice to connect with family heritage, invoke blessings from ancestors, and strengthen familial bonds. Specific benefits include:

- Protection: Kuladeivams are believed to protect devotees from harm, negativity, and obstacles.

- Blessings and Good Fortune: Kuladeivams bestow blessings for health, wealth, relationships, and overall prosperity.

- Peace and Harmony: They promote family unity, resolve conflicts, and foster peace within the household.

- Spiritual Guidance: Kuladeivams provide spiritual support, helping individuals understand their purpose and live in accordance with their dharma.

- Healing: Believed to possess healing powers, Kuladeivams aid in physical, mental, and emotional well-being.

Let’s have a look at the difference between a Kuladeivam and a Ishta Deivam:


The Kuladeivam represents the deity traditionally worshipped by one's family through generations. This revered entity becomes a sacred focal point, with the male child of each generation preserving and passing down this cherished tradition. The Kuladeivam holds a unique and paramount place in the spiritual heritage of every family. It is only after paying homage to the Kuladeivam that one may proceed to visit other forms of Gods in temples.

Ishta Deivam

In contrast, the Ishta Deivam is a deity worshipped at one's own discretion and will. Individuals have the autonomy to choose their Ishta Deivam based on personal comfort, compatibility, satisfaction, interest, or under the guidance of a Guru or Elders. Unlike the Kuladeivam, one has the flexibility to change their Ishta Deivam over time. Within a family, different members may choose to worship different Ishta Deivams, allowing for a diverse array of spiritual connections. However, the Kuladeivam remains a constant, uniting all family members under a shared spiritual legacy.

Source : Kumbakonam , Sharmalan Thevar, Aalayam Selveer
Image Credit: Sharmalan Thevar , Mahi Mahendran X