Friday, April 21, 2006

When Animals Suffer, So Do We



When Animals Suffer, So Do We (An article from the Washington Post).

"Do the animal rights nuts know something we don't?

As we observe the growing number of avian flu cases worldwide, bide time until the eventual large-scale outbreak of mad cow disease in the United States and hope what the world experienced in 2004 wasn't just a dress rehearsal for SARS, the time has come to reconsider humanity's treatment of nonhuman animals -- if only for the repercussions to our own health.

In past decades we have removed animals from pastures, sunshine and fresh air to stack them on top of each other in petri-dish-like buildings. As wild animals lose more and more of their habitats, they are forced to live on the perimeters of cities and towns and in a proximity to humans that increasingly appears to be detrimental not only to their health but also to ours..."

So what can we do as individuals? Okay, we can NOT eat meat, fish, or eggs, and minimize our consumption from commercial dairies to a cup or two a day. But what positive things can we do? One is to support Cow Protection programs.

"For the cowherd men and the cows, Krsna is the supreme friend. Therefore He is worshiped by the prayer namo brahmanya-devaya go-brahmana-hitaya ca. His pastimes in Gokula, His dhäma, are always favorable to the brahmanas and the cows. His first business is to give all comfort to the cows and the brahmanas. In fact, comfort for the brahmanas is secondary, and comfort for the cows is His first concern."

Srimad-Bhagavatam 10.8.16 Purport

Here are a couple of opportunities to help provide comfort for the cows. I am familiar will both and recommend them as worthwhile and sincere.

Care for Cows in Vrindavan

"Care for Cows in Vrindavan (India) maintains abandoned cows, bulls, retired oxen, and orphaned calves. We are international volunteers who offer our talents and resources to tend to the neglected cows living in Krishna's holy land. We provide stray cows hay, flour, fresh grass, medical attention and a place where they can recuperate from injuries..."

In America, there is:

The International Society For Cow PRotection

"Through their spiritual master's teachings, they have imbibed the practices and benefits, both spiritual and material, of lifetime cow protection. ISCOWP's primary concern is to present alternatives to agricultural practices that support and depend upon the meat industry and industrialized, petroleum powered machinery. To this end, ISCOWP trains oxen (male cows or steers) to replace farm machinery and thereby show an alternative to their slaughter. The tenets of cow protection and ox-power are universal and nonsectarian, available to all regardless of race, creed, or nationality..."

2 Comments:

At 11:15 PM, Blogger Rabindranatha Dasa Adhikari said...

You say that: "ISCOWP trains oxen (male cows or steers) to replace farm machinery and thereby show an alternative to their slaughter. The tenets of cow protection and ox-power are universal and nonsectarian, available to all regardless of race, creed, or nationality..."

Which also makes a lot of since to me, but how many male cows or steers are within ISCOWP and out of those, how many are actually replacing farm machinery?

Some people say in this day and age this is not possible, I don't necessarily agree with that, but as it is said: "example is better than precept"

--Rabindranatha Dasa Adhikari

 
At 10:04 AM, Blogger Madhava Gosh said...

Actually, I was quoting from ISCOWP's website. As for actual numbers, you would need to take the link to their site and contact them directly. They may have as many as 20 oxen.

It is not posible in this day and age to compete with fossil fuel driven equipment head to head economically. They are subsidized by the slaughter of their farm animals. That subsidy has to be replaced in order to exist. Either it has to be a hobby, or a religious duty, or have a market that is willing to pay a premium for protected cow milk products and oxen powered produce or grains.

ISCOWP is, IMHO, currently the best place for someone wanting to get training in ox driving in a devotee ambience.

 

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