Lingayats(redirected from Lingayatism)
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adherents of a Shivaist sect in India.
The Lingayat sect apparently arose in the western Deccan in the 12th century. The Lingayat doctrine served as the ideological foundation for a popular movement whose followers were for the most part members of the urban trade and artisan strata of the western Deccan. The founder of the sect, L. Basava, made use of the ideas of Bhakti; he called for simplification of the cult, criticized certain tenets of orthodox Hinduism, and demanded the elimination of Brahman supremacy and, to a certain extent, the equalization of the castes. According to legend, during the Lingayat uprising in the 12th century, the city of Kalyan was destroyed. The Lingayat sect later spread throughout almost all of southern India.