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THE COW IN INDIAN MYTHOLOGY

Ancient Vedic texts abound with mentions of the significance of the cow and the spiritual rewards of serving her (Gau sewa and Gau daan).

The cow is a symbol of the Earth, the nourisher, the ever-giving, undemanding provider. The cow represents life and the sustenance of life. Just as a liberated soul gives freely of his spiritual knowledge, so too does this gentle and generous animal who takes nothing more than water, grass and grain, and gives unstintingly all through her life. The cow is vital to life and sustenance. She is a symbol of grace and abundance, and embodies the virtues of gentle selflessness.

Krishna, one of the most revered forms of the Divine (Avatar), tended cows.

Hindu astrology recommends offering fodder and service to cows as the best way to propitiate planet Mercury and the Sun. The Lal Kitab of astrology suggests that Gau Sewa can decrease the malefic effects of planets.

COW PROTECTION IN SANATAN DHARMA ( HINDUISM) ~ the eternal code :

Sanatan Dharma is a divine code of conduct established by the Lord. It includes various Shrutis Smritis Dharma Shastras that celebrate the divinity of cows and the fruits of serving them. Cows are a symbol of abundance and all sanctity of life on earth. She is to be revered like a mother who asks nothing for herself in return for all she gives. Naturally, it is considered a sin to partake of her flesh and , traditionally, no Hindu will eat beef.A cow is said to be the abode of all the Gods. Every atom in a cow's body houses a sacred part of India's 33 crore Gods. All the 14 mythical worlds exist in her limbs.

Brahma and Vishnu reside at the root of two horns. § All the sacred reservoirs and Vedavyasa sit on the tips of the horns. § Lord Shankara presides over the centre head.§ Parvathi reclines on the edge of head.

Saraswathi resonates in the sound of the cow.§ The Sandhya goddesses kiss the lips and Indra embraces the neck.§ The Raksha Ganas cling on the hanging under the neck.§The Sadhya Devas blossom in the heart.

Dharma holds onto the thigh.§ The Gandharvas burrow in the gap of the hoofs, Pannaga skim the tips, the Apsaras flank the sides.§ The Eleven Rudras and Yama ride on the back, Ashtavasus hide in the crevices.

Pitru Devas protect the sides of umbilical joint, 12 Adityas sprawl across the stomach.§ Soma swishes on the tail, Sun rays gleam on the hair, Ganga flows in the urine, Lakshmi and Yamuna purify the dung, Saraswathi sweetens the milk, Narmada thickens the curd, and Agni strengthens the ghee § 33 crore Gods shimmer in the hair § Prithwi rests in the stomach, the oceans course through the udder, Kamadhenu fills up the whole body

Three Gunas kneel at the root of the brows, Rishis suffuse the pores of hair, and all the sacred lakes billow in the breath. § Chandika pouts on the lips and Prajapathi Brahma glistens on the skin § Fragrant flowers ornament the nostrils § Sadhya Devas snuggle in the arm-pit § Six parts of Vedas embellish the face, four Vedas touch the feet, Yama straddles the top of the hoofs, Kubera and Garuda take the right, Yakshas the left and the Gandharvas inside

Khecharas points the fore of the foot, Narayana is coiled in the intestine, the mountains tower in the bones, Artha, Dharma, Kama and Moksha rest at the feet. § Four Vedas hum in the Hoom sound

THE COW AS MOTHER

The cow is listed among the 7 mothers enumerated by scriptures as follows:

adau mata guru-patni, brahmani raja-patnika dhenur dhatri tatha prthvi saptaita matarah' Meaning:

Real mother; Guru-patni or the wife of spiritual master or teacher; Brahmani, the wife of a brahmana; Raja-patnika or the queen; Dhenu, the cow; Dhatri or nurse; and finally, the Earth.

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