A stage in the development of religious mindset of ancient India, following the Vedic religion and preceding Hinduism.  In its main features, Brahmanism formed in the period approximately from the VIII to the II centuries BC in the area between two rivers — Jamna and Ganga, as a result of Vedic religion of Aryans and local cults interaction.

By this time, the language of ancient Vedic texts had become obscure and philologically dead. There was a special class of people — brahmins, who were specialists in the interpretation of texts and rituals, in explaining the purpose and meaning of ritual actions. At the same time, the ritual and technique of its performance became more sophisticated, so also the pantheon, mythology, etc. became more complicated and modified. But all the changes occurred on the old foundation of Vedic beliefs.

The central moment of the changes was the gradual construction of the multiplicity of natural phenomena and the visible world to a single entity, as well as the ordering of cosmogony and theology. In the pantheon, Prajapati, God-Creator, who occupied a secondary place in Vedas, came to the fore. He becomes a personified creative force, the primary basis of all that exists, generating the whole world and preserving it.

This idea got further development in the concept of the Hindu trimurti. Prajapati is also conceived as a sacrifice from which the world has been created. As a result, the sacrificial action is comprehended as something more than one of the forms of ritual procedures, it acquires a cosmogonic dimension. In general, the ritual serves as a point of transition from the profane world of people to the sacred world of Gods, giving an opportunity to gain support in life. Thus, the knowledge of an extremely complex and intricate ritual made brahmins’ position very high in that epoch, equating them to the Gods.