I have myself observed it, all the things b/w north and south are very different, may it be the language, eating habits and in terms of religion both consider themselves as Hindu but have different ways of expressing prayers.

Certain observations: 1. In south temples the prasada is different (mainly rice). 2. The deities are avatars of same God but quiet different like venkateshwara, tirupati which are not famous in north. 3. Eating habits(religious) like non veg is mainly eaten in south and rare in north. 4. in south temples everytime someone offers prasada to God, they lit the diya and ring bells and do short aarti.

There is a vast difference b/w the festivals, even same festivals are celebrated in completely different ways.

Marriage: In north people don't marry there cousins.

Kundali matching technique and precautions also different in north/south(not sure)

There is much more then this , mainly in north tulsidasa scriptures are preferred over old Sanskrit ones I think because it's close to Hindi, where as south Indians have different languages like Kannada, Tamil etc.

Tamil and Sanskrit both claims to be oldest languages of world.

4 Answers 4


All the differences you observe are superficial, local customs that have developed over many ages. In their essences they remain the same. See Swami Vivekananda's lectures entitled "Aryans and Tamilians" and "Reply to the Madras Address". You can read here - http://cwsv.belurmath.org/volume_4/vol_4_frame.htm - Both lectures are under the section titled "Writings: Prose". The second one, "Reply to the Madras Address" is the most relevant.

  • 1
    It is absolutely wrong to isolate only tamil or tamilians because the entire south inluding Kerala, Andhra, tamil nadu. Karnataka and some parts of maharashtra , together is considered Dravida desa mostly. Also, the our national anthem echoes the same. But, totally agree there are many locally developed customs which have developed over ages.
    – user808
    Jun 8, 2015 at 13:10
  • Infact, the vedic culture is still preserved in India only because of south India, because, north India was subjected to more foreign invasions than south India. If you look at North India, it is mostly influenced by muslim practices even in hindu rituals like marriage etc, because it was constantly under strain from muslim invasion compared to South India.
    – user808
    Jun 8, 2015 at 13:11
  • yup I agree with krishna's first comment related to dravida
    – Friendy
    Jun 8, 2015 at 13:42

The language Tamil was originally given to the people of the south by Lord Shiva himself and the Sanskrit is 100% preserved in the south and in Thailand as well.

Some of the difference in the north is due to invading Mongols, British, etc.

  • Why this answer is given down vote.?
    – SibiCoder
    Apr 16, 2016 at 4:12
  • any sources for tamil given by shiva plz
    – Friendy
    May 24, 2016 at 7:47

North-west India like Himachal, jammu & uttrakhand are kinda similar in culture to southern India unlike nuclear North Indian states.

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    Aug 21, 2023 at 21:16

North Indian Hinduism is the original - it was in Aryaavarta that the canonical Sanskrit scriptures were written. All the primary Sanskrit Samskaras were developed in the North (seemantam, birth, upanayanam, marriage, death etc.).

Hinduism was transported to the South by Brahmins from the North. When they saw the dark skinned natives of the South - Brahmins collapsed the caste system into just Brahmins and Sudras. Because of the profound difference they perceived between them and Southern natives, Brahmins allowed only the basic Hindu Samskaras to Sudras. Sudras developed their own Hinduism built on the Brahmanic core. South Indian lower caste Hinduism is almost orthogonal to North Indian Hinduism. For example, after the Tali (mangalsutra) is tied during the wedding, a few days later it is re-tied again - to reinforce its power.

As exiles from Sanskritic Aryaavarta, South Indian Brahmins, to this day, have a profound love for Sanskrit and the Samskaras - something largely gone from the North. The difference in quality of Vedic recitation in the South and North is like the difference between a mountain and a valley.

North Indians were profoundly affected by the Muslim invasions - they got Mughlai cuisine, women started wearing a head-covering and so forth.

There is now a movement to eliminate Sanskrit altogether from Tamil Hinduism. On Sun TV, when they depict Samskaras, a TamBrahm actor intones Sanskrit mantras - but his voice is muted, and Tamil versions of the mantras are overlaid on his voice in the broadcast.

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