An Ethnographic Account of Sudalai Cult, Tamil Nadu, India

Worshipping of Demon plays a significant role in the folk religious practices of Tamil Nadu, South India. Sudalai – a male folk deity is considered as a chief of all evil spirits by the people in that region and hundreds of temples for Sudalai exist in the southern region of Tamil Nadu. Several rituals, beliefs, customs, oral narratives etc are associated with this religious practice and an annual worshipping festival is celebrated in order to appease the malevolent deity. This descriptive paper is an attempt to document the living folk tradition associated with Sudalai through fieldwork in the natural context in order to understand how oral myths form the rituals and in what way myths are ritualized.