I stumbled upon interesting arguments between pro and anti cow slaughter view, and am too happy that Pro cow slaughter guy couldnt survive too long....
here go the aruments :
what do you think about banning cow-slaughter in India? Swami Ramdev has been consistently rallying against cow-slaughter in India. He explains it well, "These politicians have no limit of wickedness. They ban the slaughter of tigers (which are carnivore), and allow free killing of cow (which are herbivore, and which have been considered as mother since ages). No animal should be allowed to be killed in Bharat Varsha, for all of them have the right to live."
He emphasizes the importance of cow not merely on the religious basis, but on moral and well as scientific grounds. Moral ground: They provide us milk. Until we are a certain age old, our biological mother breast-feeds us. And after that age, our cow feeds us with milk. So, they are are second-mother, and deserve to be respected. Scientific ground: Cow manure has been used as a beneficial fertilizer in farms. Cow urine helps us cure many diseases of the body. For example, the pH value of cow urine is 8-10 so it is a sure shot medicine for indigestion. Cow urine is anti-neoplastic which helps to cure cancer. These are just a few of the many benefits. Thus, cow should be given better if not less importance.
This, I strongly believe, is a legitimate reason raised by Swamiji. I fear we might not be on the same page, so far as this matter is concerned. Note that this has to do least with "organized religion," for conscience surely dictates that ALL beings have the right to live.
My view is very simple. The cow is food in all parts of the world (except for a few Hindus and Jains in India), and Hindus ate the cow for thousands of years till the influence of the Jains made them change their mind.
Regardless of that, I don't expect the state to dictate what food a person may or may not eat. I don't expect it to create a law that you SHOULD eat beef, for instance.
The ONLY reason the state can impose its views on such matters is if you harm others in this process, or if doing so will harm the environment.
The cow is not a scarce animal. Plenty of cows exist and plenty more can be produced as needed. The tiger is a genuine scarce animal and being at the top of the ecological food chain of the jungle, the dying out of tigers can severely damage the natural environment. For instance if tigers die then all forests will be ravaged and destroyed by plant eating animals. Hence for tigers a different policy applies.
But the policy on tigers (see my article on the environment) does not ask that you don't kill tigers. It asks for tigers (indeed jungles) to be privatised and reared just like any other animal. Wherever wildlife has been privatised (Coase theorem will show you how it works), it has flourished.
There are innumerable instances of the truth of this theorem. There is, for instance, no threat of extinction of crocodiles in Australia since crocodile farms are licensed to grow them and sell their meat and skin. It is a highly profitable business. Eg. see this.
I respect yours or Baba Ramdev's right NOT to eat beef IF you so feel (on any ground, call it moral if you wish), but I REFUSE to have you impose your will through the state on this matter. That involves the TOTAL DESTRUCTION of freedom.
You will first have to prove to me that eating beef is harmful. The entire world except a few Hindus in India eats beef, and they haven't died. Note that Indians ate beef for thousands of years till the Jain influence grew strong. They didn't die. And I know of MANY MANY Indians who eat beef outside India. They aren't dying. So what's the problem? Food is supposed to nourish. What you or I or anyone else puts into our own mouths is none of the business of others.
If eating beef is not lethal and it doesn't kill others, then there is no cause to interfere in the freedoms of others to eat beef. I think Baba Ramdev is trying to impose HIS version of morality on the rest of the world. That amounts to dictatorship. Let him learn to respect others.
He is welcome not to kill cows for food. But let him please learn the basics of freedom.
Harsh Vora says:
August 15, 2010 at 12:18 pm
Sanjeev — I am glad you wrote this as a separate blog entry. This will create a proper ground for further discussion. Let me first humbly point out that you are misdirected. Let me start with this point you made: The cow is food in all parts of the world (except for a few Hindus and Jains in India), and Hindus ate the cow for thousands of years till the influence of the Jains made them change their mind. Here's where you are misinformed. Mr. Jha's Myth of the Holy Cow has been in controversy since it was published. After then, there have been numerous books countering the arguments that Mr. Jha has made. One such book is Steven Rosen's Holy Cow. While it is true that a few Brahmins (mainly, those who were worshippers of Kali) sought to animal sacrifices, most of them were strong adherents of vegetarianism. To write in brief, Mr. Rosen explains that in Satya Yuga, there were no animal sacrifices. Slaughter of animals began by a few Brahmins from Treta Yuga onwards. Even then, sacrifices were done ONLY after certain mantras were chanted to ensure near-painless death and after life (Rig Veda, 1.162.21) Kausheetaki Brahmana, 11.3; Shatapatha Brahmana, 11.6.1; and Jaimaniya Brahmana, 1.42-44; The Laws of Manu, 5.55 — all echo the fact that "the creature whose flesh I am eating here and now will eat me in next life." Hence, the notion that Hindus ate beef is entirely misinterpreted or misinformed. While a few Brahmins (and other demonic beings) sacrificed animals in Treta Yuga (after chanting mantras), most sattvic (in the mode of goodness) beings abstained from it. We must keep in mind that the Mogul and British invasions have increased slaughter in India. Before 9th CE, it was much, much less. Having quoted a few references, let me humbly ask you: Should freedom be limited to a certain part of creation only? Research shows that mother-cow feel the same psychological pain as humans when their calves are separated from them. They feel the same physical pain as humans when they are slaughtered. While plants are living-being as well, their structural built-up is much more different. One cannot deny the fact that there is a vast difference between slitting the throat of a cow (or goat or chicken) and chopping a tomato. Let me ask you a simple, logical question: If you can allow the slaughter of animals, then why don't you allow the murder of a man? As I said, most pains that we, as humans feel, are known to animals. Again, let me ask you: If you are willing to eat a cow, why not eat a dog, and other animals as well? Just because a dog is a domestic, pet animal in Australia and America, and a cow is not? This points out to the problem of Carnism: The inherent psychological behavior that allows us to eat some animals and not the rest. ANY meat is ultimately harmful for health — this, any doctor knows. Let me talk about one specific reason: When we kill an animal, it dies in fear. The subtle vibrations that emanate from the slaughtered animal when it dies in fear, enter our bodies when we eat them. This influences our mental and psychological structure. As a result, non-vegetarians are usually more violent in nature — they are much more short-tempered and restless in mind. It takes time for them to evolve in spirituality. (Please read Steven Rosen's Holy Cow for more such arguments) Before striving to make ANY policies for India, one should consider what the basis of Indian heart is (and has been). One must consider what the basis of Indian humanity and culture is. Our basis has been, and still is, non-violence. This non-violence, we prefer to extend not only to humans, but to ALL possible creatures, to the MOST possible extent. Only a person who understand this, truly deserves to transform India's map. If a policy-maker will not consider these points, then he will make India into another Australia, or America, or Japan. We want to progress, but by keeping our ancient culture (of peace and tolerance through non-violence) intact and thriving, not by dwindling them. For our Vedic culture is what makes us unique. And to ensure that these principles (essence of India) do not dwindle completely in a few hundred years, we have to formulate policies that protect them. That tigers need to be protected from extinction is an obvious fact, we all understand. But my point is, we, as Indians, shouldn't allow ANY slaughter — be it of tigers, or cows. We have stood as an example for the entire world — as epitomes of non-violence. And making policies that allow violence (for no valid reason but self-pleasure) is a grave mistake. This type of freedom is called "limited freedom" — limited only to humans, and not to ALL beings, for ALL have the right to live.
you may also want to see full conversation at