Question 1: What is the evidence of word Aghanya for the cow in Vedas?

  • The word Aghanya is referred to the cow in many mantras of Vedas. The meaning of this word means, “not to be killed under any circumstances”.
  • All the world languages bear three types of words – Rudhi or orthodox words, Yogic or literal words and Yogrudha words. Rudhi are those words, which has no meaning they are only assigned to name anything. These words do not say about qualities of the object to which they denote.
  • Second word category is Yogic. They are based on qualities and the word itself denotes function or attributes. For e.g. take the word protector, it means those who protects- a protector can be a man, a dog, a horse anyone like them. This is yogic word as the word denotes its function.
  • With the passage of time the yogic word is fixed means they become partially rudhi and partially yogic then they are called yogrudha. For e.g. word jalaj means anything originating in the water like fish, aquatic animals, plants etc. this is the yogic word. With the passage of time this word is now used for lotus this is yogrudha word and if someone names his son by name jalaj then it becomes rudhi.
  • A similar pattern is seen with word aghanya also which literally means not to be killed under any circumstances. It can be a cow, horse, our parents etc. as it becomes yogrudha is now used for the cow, as she is considered as most sacred or holy.
  • Someone will now ask a very simple question that why do you consider cow as sacred or holy. The answer is also very interesting. Although none of the animals should be killed as all have the right to live in this world. We borrow milk from her as we borrow from our own mother. So, we should have love and affection towards her as we have towards our own mother.
  • The cow status is even above an ordinary mother. If we watch the birth of calf from a cow we will realize why cow status is above from an ordinary mother just after the birth cow forgets all her pain and bleedings and first starts cleaning her newborn calf dirt, secretions, blood etc with her own tongue so that he must stand as early as possible. And then feeling that calf is hungry she starts her feeding as early as possible. There is only own thought in her mind that to save the calf in any way. Even if we see her later in life that she becomes restless to feed her calf at the time of feeding and does not sits quietly until her calf is hungry.
  • Every one clears dirt by hands or limbs but none uses his tongue as the cow to clear the dirt. If we see ordinary mother they are laying in a semiconscious state after birth and her relatives take care of the baby. She is not so eager to feed her baby or clean her baby. In this whole world, we will never find such an example of love and affection.
  • This noble relationship is also said by almighty God as supreme example in the mantra of Atharva Veda 3/30/1 as “I remove all your jealousness and prejudices, unite your hearts. May you love each other as a cow loves her newborn calf”
  • We should understand the great message of Vedas that God says all human beings to remove all dirt i.e. sufferings, hunger, pain etc. of each other and feed each other with happiness, prosperity, wealth etc. and this noble work should be done following the best example of a mother cow and her calf.
  • Mother cow gives us the message of bondage and affection. She gives us the solution to end all sufferings of the world and that why she is known as aghanya or never to be killed under any circumstances.
  • The word Aghanya is referred to the cow in many mantras of Vedas. The meaning of this word means, “not to be killed under any circumstances”.

Question 2.What is the evidence of word Aghanya for the cow in Vedas?

1. (Atharv 7/73/11 or Atharv 9/10/20)
  • In this mantra, cow addressed as Aghanya have been enjoined to keep themselves healthy by use of pure water and green gars so that we, who drink their milk, may be endowed with dharma, knowledge and wealth.
  • Fortunate mayst thou is with goodly pasture, and may we also be exceeding wealthy. Feed on the grass, O Cow, through all the seasons, and coming hitherward drink limpid water.
2. (Atharv 9/10/5)
  • Cow or Aghanya is responsible for health and prosperity.
  • She, Lady of all treasures, hath come hither, yearning in spirit for her calf, and lowing.
  • May this Cow yield her milk for both the Asvins, and may she prosper to our high advantage.
  • Source- Hymns of the Atharva Veda, by Ralph T.H. Griffith
3. (Atharv 30/3/1)
  • Almighty gods remove all your jealousies and prejudices and unite your hearts. He says us to love each other as the cow loves her newborn calf. Freedom from hate I bring to you, concord and unanimity.
  • Love one another as the cow loveth the calf that she hath borne.
  • Source- Hymns of the Atharva Veda, by Ralph T.H. Griffith
4. (Rig 4/1/6)
  • In this mantra, cow milk is compared with the splendor of god Excellent is the glance, of brightest splendor, which the auspicious God bestows on mortals- The God's glance, longed-for even as the butter, pure, heated, of the cow, the milch-cows bounty.
  • Source-Rig Veda, tr. by Ralph T.H. Griffith
5. (Rig 7/68/9)
  • It is stated to get up before dawn, entertain noble thoughts and drink the milk of the cow to strengthen you. With his fair hymns this singer, too, extols you, waking with glad thoughts at the break of morning.
  • May the cow nourish him with milk to feed him? Preserve us evermore, ye Gods, with blessings
  • Source-Rig Veda, tr. by Ralph T.H. Griffith
6. (Rig 9/1/9)
  • It is stated that cow milk is of special benefit for children.
  • Inviolable milch-kine round about him blend for Indra's drink, The fresh young Soma with their milk
  • Source-Rig Veda, tr. by Ralph T.H. Griffith
7. (Rig 9/93//3)
  • It is stated that cow milk is for learned persons endowed with great intellects.
  • Yea, swollen is the udder of the milch-cow: thither in streams goes very sapient Indu.
  • The kine make ready, as with new-washed treasures, the Head and Chief with milk within the vessels Source-Rig Veda, tr. by Ralph T.H. Griffith, [Mahabharata- Shantiparva 262.47 Cow is called ‘Aghanya’ and thus non-killable]

Addendum on 14 April 2010

  • After this article, there was a severe reaction from various sources who cannot live with the fact that Vedas and ancient culture of our nation could have been more ideal than their current communistic ideals. I received several emails that tried to refute the articles by citing additional references that support beef-eating. These include 2 mantras from Rigveda and some Shlokas from Manu Smriti and a few other texts. An example is a comment from Avtar Gill on this page itself. On these, I have to say the following:
  • The article has given evidence from Manu Smriti itself which states that even one who permits killing is a murderer. Thus all these additional shlokas are either from adulterated Manu Smriti or misinterpreted by twisting of words. I recommend them to read Manu Smriti by Dr. Surendra Kumar which is available from http://vedicbooks.com
  • A typical example of foul play by those hell-bent on justifying their obsession with beef in ancient texts is to translate Mansa as ‘meat’. In reality, ‘Mansa’ is a generic word used to denote pulp. Meat is called ‘Mansa’ because it is pulpy. So mere presence of ‘Mansa’ does not mean it refers to meat.
  • The other texts referred by them are among dubious ones not considered authoritative evidence. Their modus operandi is simple – state anything written in Sanskrit as Dharma and translate the way they want to prove whatever they want. This is how they have been fooling us all by filling our textbooks with all unverified demeaning claims.
  • With regards to Vedas, they could come up with two mantras that supposedly justify beef eating. Let us evaluate them:
  • a. Claim: Rigveda (10/85/13) declares, “On the occasion of a girl’s marriage oxen and cows are slaughtered.”
  • b. Fact: The mantra states that in winter, the rays of sun get weakened and then get strong again in spring. The word used for sun-rays in ‘Go’ which also means cow and hence the mantra can also be translated by making ‘cow’ and not ‘sun-rays’ as the subject. The word used for ‘weakened’ is ‘Hanyate’ which can also mean killing. But if that be so, why would the mantra go further and state in next line (which is deliberately not translated) that in spring, they start regaining their original form.
  • How can a cow killed in winter regain its health in spring? This amply proves how ignorant and biased communists malign Vedas.
  • a. Claim: Rigveda (6/17/1) states that “Indra used to eat the meat of cow, calf, horse, and buffalo.”
  • b. Fact: The mantra states that brilliant scholars enlighten the world in the manner that wood enhances the fire of Yajna. I fail to understand from where did Avtar Gill and his friends discover Indra, cow, calf, horse, and buffalo in this mantra!
  • In summary, I continue the challenge to everyone – cite one single mantra from Vedas that justify beef-eating and I shall be eager to embrace any faith that he or she may decide for me. If not, they should agree to revert back to the Vedas.
  • The word Gou which means a cow in Sanskrit is derived originally from the verb Gama, which is, To Go. Gati in Sanskrit means speed, or also wealth, or salvation. The mother Earth is also called Gou in Sanskrit, and the earth is the place where all the living beings reside, including the peculiarly shaped Cow, which is the source of life and nutrition for many types of living beings.
  • According to American research, cow’s stomach is a rich source of vitamin B, and her milk, as well as urine, contains rich nutritional values. Her feces are rich manure for agriculture. In the Atharva Veda, the cow is described as the mother of Adityas, daughter of Vasus, and the very soul of the people. She is the belly button of Amrut and the Madhukasha that produces Havisya replete with golden colored ghee. A Yajna is performed with the sacrifice of the cow and it produces clouds and rains which produce grains which living beings live on.
  • There is a description of the cow in a Mantra in the RigVed, which says that a tame, innocent cow should not be killed, she is the mother of the Rudras, daughter of Vasus, and the sister of the Adityas. She is the belly button of Amrut and the center of immortality.
  • All dark or black colored things are said to be inauspicious and a bad omen, but the sight of a black cow, as well as her milk, is very auspicious.
  • The Vedic tradition prohibits and abhors the killing of a cow.
  • Veds command that anyone who kills a cow should be driven out of a state.
  • The YajurVed considers a cow as incomparable, meaning that she has unlimited qualities and virtues. The cow is considered to be the mother of all. There is no concept of eating a cow’s meat in the Veds. In fact, the Holy Koran says that eating cow meat brings many kinds of illnesses and diseases.
  • Cow milk enriches the generative powers of man or woman. If a woman is given Ayurvedic herbal powders mixed with cow’s milk during her menstrual periods, she produces a son. This has been my own experiment which I performed. In the epic Raghuvansh written by the great poet Kalidas, Emperor Dilip had served Nandini the divine cow. He served her for 21 days and he, with his wife Queen Sudakshina, drank the milk received in blessing, which enables them to produce Raghu, their son. The cow power is divine, it resides in the Golok, which is higher even then Vaikunth. Its shadow envelopes the earth. The VrajMandal where cows reside is also a piece of the Golok. Cow’s feces and urine contains tremendous curing properties. A man who worships cows does not have to bear the torture of Lord Yama after death.
  • One of the names of Lord Krishna is Gopal, which literally means a cowherd. He is always beneficent for his devotees.
  • The cow was born before the universe. It is the duty of the Indian people to protect cows.
  • What more proofs does one need to understand the high esteem in which not only the cow but each living being is held in the Vedas.
  • The learned audience can decide for themselves from these evidence that the Vedas are completely against any inhuman practice… to top it all the Beef and Cow slaughter.

There is no Beef in Vedas.

  • Everyone should ensure that cows are free from miseries and kept healthily.
  • God blesses those who take care of cows.
  • Even the enemies should not use any weapon on cows.
  • No one should slaughter the cow.
  • Cow brings prosperity and strength.
  • If cows keep healthy and happy, men and women shall also keep disease free and prosperous.
  • May the cow eat green grass and pure water. May they not be killed and bring prosperity to us.

Bibliography

  • RigvedaBhashya – Commentary on Rigveda by Swami Dayananda Saraswati
  • YajurvedaBhashya – Commentary on Yajurveda by Swami Dayananda Saraswati
  • No Beef in Vedas by BD Ukhul
  • VedonkaYatharthSwaroop (True nature of Vedas) by PtDharmadevaVidyavachaspati
  • All 4 Veda Samhita by PtDamodarSatvalekar
  • Pracheen Bharat me Gomamsa – EkSameeksha (Beef in Ancient India – an analysis) by Geeta Press, Gorakhpur
  • Hymns of Atharvaveda – Griffith
  • Sacred Books of the east – Max Muller
  • Rigveda translations by Williams/Jones
  • Sanskrit English Dictionary – Monier Williams
  • Commentary on Vedas by DayanandSansthan
  • Western Indologists – a study of motives by PtBhagvadutt
  • SatyarthPrakash by Swami Dayananda Saraswati
  • Introduction to Vedas by Swami Dayananda Saraswati
  • The Myth of the Holy Cow – by DN Jha
  • Cloud over an understanding of Vedas by BD Ukhul
  • The Myth of the Holy Cow – by DN Jha
  • Shathpath Brahman
  • Nirukta – YaskaAcharya
  • The Myth of the Holy Cow – by DN Jha
  • Dhatupath – Panini
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