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The Eternal bond of Cow and Hinduism

Uploaded on 26 Apr 2023

The cow is not just an animal for the people of India. It is a symbol of wealth, prosperity, nourishment and sacredness. The cow has been revered and respected in India since ancient times, and its importance is deeply rooted in the culture, religion and history of the country. In this blog post, we will explore some of the reasons why the cow is so important in India and how it has shaped the Indian way of life.

The bond between humans and cows is considered to be eternal in Hinduism. It is believed that cows provide nourishment and sustenance to humans, and in return, humans provide them with love and care. The relationship between humans and cows is not just about economic benefits; it is a bond of love and respect that is deeply rooted in Hindu culture and traditions.


Desi Cow and Hinduism
Hinduism is the dominant religion in India, with about 80 percent of the population following it. Hinduism has a rich and diverse tradition of scriptures, rituals, gods and goddesses, ethics and philosophy. One of the common themes that runs through Hinduism is the respect for all forms of life, especially the cow.

The cow is considered sacred in Hinduism for several reasons. One of them is that the cow is associated with many Hindu deities, such as Lord Krishna, who grew up as a cowherd and played with cows; Lord Shiva, who rides on a bull called Nandi; and Goddess Lakshmi, who is often depicted with a cow as a symbol of abundance. The cow is also seen as a manifestation of the mother goddess, who provides nourishment and protection to her children.

Another reason why the cow is sacred in Hinduism is that it provides many useful products that are essential for Hindu worship and daily life. The cow gives milk, which is used to make dairy products such as yogurt, butter and ghee (clarified butter). These dairy products are offered to deities as sacrifices, used as part of Hindu penance and rites of passage, such as weddings, and consumed as food. The cow also gives dung, which is used as a fuel source and fertilizer for farming. The cow's urine is believed to have medicinal properties and is used in some Ayurvedic treatments. The cow's horns, bones, skin and hair are also used for various purposes.

The cow is also revered in Hinduism because it represents some of the highest values and virtues that Hindus aspire to. The cow is gentle, peaceful, generous and selfless. It gives without expecting anything in return. It does not harm anyone or anything. It tolerates pain and suffering without complaint. It symbolizes ahimsa (non-violence), karuna (compassion), dharma (righteousness) and moksha (liberation).


The Cow in Indian History and Culture
The importance of the cow in India is not only religious but also historical and cultural. The cow has been a part of Indian civilization since the Vedic period (1500 - 900 BCE), when it was regarded as a symbol of wealth and prosperity. The Vedas, the oldest Hindu scriptures, praise the cow as "the real life substratum of the goods of life". The Vedas also correlate the cow with the earth itself, as both are "the nourisher", "the ever-giving and undemanding provider".

The cow was also central to the economy and society of ancient India. The cow was the main source of sustenance for farmers, who depended on its milk, dung and labor for their livelihood. The cow was also used as a unit of exchange and measurement for trade and taxation. The cow was also a symbol of social status and prestige, as owning more cows meant having more wealth and power.

The cow has also influenced various aspects of Indian culture, such as art, literature, music and festivals. The cow is depicted in many forms of Indian art, such as paintings, sculptures, carvings and coins. The cow is also mentioned in many Indian literary works, such as epics, poems, stories and proverbs. The cow is also celebrated in many Indian musical genres, such as bhajans (devotional songs), ragas (melodic modes) and folk songs. The cow is also honored in many Indian festivals, such as Gopashtami (the birthday of Lord Krishna), Pongal (the harvest festival) and Gau Pooja (the worship of cows).


Social and Cultural Significance:
In India, cows are considered to be a symbol of wealth and prosperity. They are used for dairy farming, which is an essential source of income for many farmers. Cow milk, ghee, and curd are also essential ingredients in many Indian dishes and are used in various festivals and rituals. The cow is also regarded as a symbol of purity, and many people in India consider cow urine and dung to be sacred and use it for various purposes, including religious rituals, agricultural practices, and medicinal purposes.


Cow Protection:
The protection of cows has been a significant issue in India for a long time. In 2017, the Indian government passed a law banning the sale of cows and buffaloes for slaughter. The law was met with mixed reactions, with some people supporting it as a step towards protecting cows and others opposing it as an infringement on their food choices. Cow protection has also led to various incidents of violence, with people taking the law into their hands and attacking those who are suspected of cow slaughter.

The cow, or Gaumata, holds immense significance in Hinduism and is considered to be the base of Hinduism's existence. It is revered and respected in India and is an essential part of Hindu culture and traditions. However, the protection of Gaumata has also become a controversial issue, and it is essential to balance the cultural and religious significance of cows with the rights of individuals and their food choices. It is crucial to protect Gaumata, but it is equally important to promote peace, harmony, and respect for all living beings.

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