Every we time go to a temple, when the priest performs archana, he asks us our Gotra. Gotra states our lineage from the sages.
In some states of South India, Brahmins and Gouds have the same gotra like Koundinya gotra, Bharadwaja gotra. See this page.

What I want to ask is,

  • How is this possible that two different varna have the same gotras when no other varna or community have the same gotra as the Brahmins?

  • Is there any story related to this topic?

  • 1
    It is extremely rare for people from different castes to have the same gotra. Unless they belong to different castes within the same categor. For e.g., different sudra castes may have the same gotra. In the event that a brahmana and a kshatriya have the same gotra, then the former may be construed as putra parampara (patrilineal origin) and the latter sishya parampara (origin founded in discipleship). Not sure how gouds (who are basically sudras if I understand correctly), can have brahmin gotras.
    – user1195
    Commented Apr 4, 2016 at 14:41
  • @moonstar2001 Yes.Brahmanas and Gouds(who are sudras by varna) have the same gotra.I was also surprised when one of my friends said so.If you are not still clear, visit this page-goudcommunity.com/gouds-gotras Commented Apr 4, 2016 at 17:40
  • pl provide a working link. The goud community link you gave gves only error message Commented Jun 2, 2020 at 1:04

1 Answer 1


Gotra means clan.Say if some one's Gotra is Bharadwaj; than that means he is a descendant of sage Baradwaj. Google defines Gotra as

In Hindu society, the term gotra (Sanskrit: गोत्र) means clan. It broadly refers to people who are descendants in an unbroken male line from a common male ancestor or patriline. Generally the gotra forms an exogamous unit, with the marriage within the same gotra being prohibited by custom, being regarded as incest.

People of different caste may have same Gotra.

Caste system is recently introduced by human society. Earlier there was Varna system.There are 4 Varnas(Brahmins, Kshatriya, Vaishya,Shudra). Since different offspring of 1 person may belong to different varnas(although that was not very common in ancient times); it is possible that these different people of different varna , over a time got scattered and now began to be identified by different castes. i.e say some descendants of Atri sage became Brahmins, other kshatriyas and so on over a period of time. But now we started mis-classifying these Varna systems as caste system and as it appears now that these people now belong to different castes but have same gotra.

You can read more here.

  • 1
    Caste is not an Indian thing. Caste is from Portuguese word 'casta'. We had jati which is derived from Sanskrit root 'जा' (to born). Jati only means the community to whcih one was born into. Commented Dec 14, 2016 at 8:55
  • @VineetMenon Thanx for the info. Commented Dec 14, 2016 at 9:22
  • @Vishalprabhulawande- How did you arrive at the conclusion that ‘different offspring ofone person may belong to different varna’??? Kindly cite non-hearsay-anecdotal evidence that this indeed happened from a pramanic scripture Commented Jun 2, 2020 at 1:10
  • @9bilvapatra ... I know people with kashyap gotra both in vaishya and Brahmin varna . Commented Jun 15, 2020 at 15:30
  • @Vishalprabhulawande pl read my question again..ur talking something different Commented Jun 16, 2020 at 21:03

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