Meat Consumption and Animal Sacrifice Valmiki Ramayana


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Meat Consumption and Animal Sacrifice in
Valmiki
Ramayana
Muhammad Qasim
Al Hanafi

Meat Consumption and Animal Sacrifice in
Valmiki
Ramayana
Muhammad Qasim
Al Hanafi

Meat consumption and animal sacrifice in Valmiki Ramayana
The Valmiki Ramayana is one of the foremost 'Pramānās (Evidences)' for a Hindu. The epic traditionally ascribed to the Maharishi Valmiki. This epic is divided into seven kāṇḍas: the ayodhyakāṇḍa, the araṇyakāṇḍa, the kiṣkindakāṇḍa, the sundarākāṇḍa, and the laṅkākāṇḍa (also called Yuddhakāṇḍa). These five Kandas are unanimously accepted by Hindus, but they differ about the Uttarākāṇḍa & the Bālakāṇḍa. Though Bālakāṇḍa is sometimes considered in the main epic, according to many Uttarakanda is certainly a later interpolation and thus is not attributed to the work of Maharshi Valmiki. This is disputed issue among Hindu scholars.
But Geeta Press (Gorakhpur) seems to have accepted it wholly, without compromising on any part including Uttarakanda. So, I do build up my words relying on this version published by Geeta Press.
If we check on such authentic version of Valmiki Ramayana, there are several places which indicate that Rama, his wife Sita and his brother Lakshman would eat meat. Also it was common among them in their & other people's life in Ramayan Period.
Swami Vivekanand himself admitted the fact: "...Instances are found in the Râmâyana and the Mahâbhârata of the drinking of wine and the taking of meat by Rama and Krishna, whom they worship as God. Sita Devi vows meat, rice, and a thousand jars of wine to the rivergoddess, Gangâ!"
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Meat consumption and animal sacrifice in Valmiki Ramayana Source: https://en.wikisource.org/wiki/The_Complete_Works_of_Swami_Vive kananda/Volume_5/Writings:_Prose_and_Poems/The_East_and_The_ West/Food_and_Cooking
Due to controversy among Hindus regarding seven Kandas' authenticity, in beginning I will quote from authentic Kandas; and will quote from Uttarakanda & Balkanda in the end in following these reliable Kandas.

1. Ayodhya Kanda, Chapter: 50, Verses: 8-10

'Kosala (कोसल)' was one of the 'Solasa Mahajanapadas

(sixteen powerful realms)' in ancient India. According to the Ramayana, Rama ruled the 'Kosala kingdom (कोसल राज्य)' from

his capital, Ayodhya. In the verses, Rama bids farewell to his birth-place Ayodhya, this region is glorified in Ramayana as follows:
ततो धान्यधनोपेतान् दानशीलजनान् शशवान।्

अकु तशिद्भयान् रमयाांिैत्ययूपसमावृतान।् ।2 . 5 0 . 8।।

उद्यानाम्रवनोपेतान्

समपन्नसशललाशयान।्

तुष्टपषु ्टजनाकीर्ाान् गोकु लाकु लसेशवतान।् ।2 . 5 0 . 9।।

लक्षर्ीयान्नरेन्रार्ाां

ब्रह्मघोषाशिनाशदतान।्

रथेन पुरुषव्याघ्रः कोसलानत्यवतात।।2 . 5 0 . 1 0।।

(1) Word by word translation by IIT Kanpur: ततः then, पुरुषव्याघ्रः tiger (best) among men (Rama), धान्यधनोपेतान् rich in wealth and food-grain, दानशीलजनान् with charitable people, शशवान् auspicious, अकु तशिद्भयान् free from
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Meat consumption and animal sacrifice in Valmiki Ramayana
fear, रम्यान् charming, चैत्ययूपसमावृतान् surrounded by sacrificial
altars and posts, उद्यानाम्रवनोपेतान् filled with pleasure gardens
and mango groves, समपन्नसशललाशयान् tanks filled with water,
तुष्टपषु ्टजनाकीर्ाान् full of contented and well-nourished people,
गोकु लाकु लसेशवतान् with herds of cattle, नरेन्रार्ाम् for kings, लक्षर्ीयान्
fit to be seen, ब्रह्मघोषाशिनाशदतान् echoed with the sounds of Vedic
recitations, कोसलान् Kosala kingdom, रथेन by the chariot, अत्यवतात
crossed over. (Rama, the best of men, crossed the auspicious land of
Kosala which was worth seeing by kings. It looked charming with sacrificial posts and altars, pleasure gardens and mango groves and tanks filled with water. It was rich with herds of cattle, wealth and food-grains. It was inhabited by charitable, contented and well-nourished people free from fear from any quarter. And it reverberated with the sounds of Vedic recitations.)
Source: https://www.valmiki.iitk.ac.in/sloka?field_kanda_tid=2&language=dv& field_sarga_value=50

(2) Word by word translation by K. M. K. Murthy:

tataH = then; purushha vyaaghraH = that tiger among

men; rathena =

in

his

chariot; atyavartata =

crossed; kosalaan = Kosala territory; dhaanya dhanopetaan =

which was rich in grain and treasure; daana shiila janaan =

inhabited by men given to charity; shivaan

akutashchidbhayaan = benevolent and free from every

danger; ramyaan = pleasing; chaitya yuupa samaavR^itaan =

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Meat consumption and animal sacrifice in Valmiki Ramayana

full

of

temples

and

sacrificial

stakes; udyaanaamravanopetaan = adorned with gardens

and mango orchards; sampanna salilaashayaan = intersected

by ponds full of water; tushhTa pushhTa janaakiirNaan =

inhabited by well nourished people; gokulaakula sevitaan =

abounded in herds of cows; lakshhaNiiyaan = which deserved

to be seen by ; narendraaNaam = by all

kings; brahmaghoshhaabhinaaditaan = and which re- echoed

to the charity of religious texts.

(Then Rama, a tiger among men, in his chariot, crossed

Kosala territory, which was rich in grain and treasure,

inhabited by men given to charity, benevolent and free from

every danger, pleasing, full of temples and sacrificial stakes,

adorned with gardens and mango-orchards, intersected by

ponds full of water, populated by contented and well

nourished people, abounded in herds of cows which deserved

to be seen by all kings and which re-echoed to the chanting of

religious texts.)

Source:

https://www.valmikiramayan.net/utf8/ayodhya/sarga50/ayodhya_50_

frame.htm

(3) Translation by Manmatha Nath Dutt: "Then that powerful one mounted on his car left behind
him Koçala abounding in wealth and kine, inhabited by charitable people, auspicious, free from every kind of fear, charming, containing altars and stakes, with gardens and mango groves, furnished with tanks teeming with burly and

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Meat consumption and animal sacrifice in Valmiki Ramayana
contented people, filled with kine, worthy of being protected by monarchs, and resounding with the sounds of Vedic recitations."
[Vol. 2, Pg. No. 327, Published by Girish Chandra Chakravarty Deva Press, Calcutta (1891)]
(4) Translation by Hari Prasad Shastri: "Proceeding on his way, Shri Rama beheld prosperous
towns and villages full of men of charitable, righteous and fearless disposition evidenced by the abundance of temples, and sacrificial pillars, of their cities. The garden filled with mango trees were enriched by pools of translucent water with carefully tended highways and herds of cattle grazing here and there. Everywhere the recitation of the Veda could be heard."
[Vol. 1, Pg. No. 267, Printed by Burleigh Press, Bristol]
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Meat consumption and animal sacrifice in Valmiki Ramayana
(5) Confusion innovated by Geeta Press: Verse no. 8 is mentioning very clear word 'चैत्ययूपसमावृतान'्
which means 'surrounded by sacrificial altars and posts'. But Geeta Press is confusing the readers by ambiguous words: 'यज्ञसमबन्धी यूपों से व्याप्त थे'.
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Meat consumption and animal sacrifice in Valmiki Ramayana
2. Ayodhya Kanda, Chapter: 52, Verse: 89
On reaching the middle of the stream, Sita promises Ganga (the deity presiding over the stream according to Hindus) to offer prayers after returning from forest:

सुराघटसहस्रेर्

माांसिूतौदनेन

च।

यक्ष्ये त्वाां प्रयता देशव पुरीं पुनरुपागता।।2.52.89।।

(1) Word by word translation by IIT Kanpur: "देशव O Devi, पुनः again, पुरीम् Ayodhya, उपागता having
reached, प्रयता purified by austerities, सुराघटसहस्रेर् with a
thousand pots of nectar, माांसिूतौदनेन च food in the form of
meat, यक्ष्ये offer you and worship you."
[O Devi after my return to Ayodhya purified by my austerities, I shall worship you by offering a thousand pots of nectar and food in the form of meat.]
Source: https://www.valmiki.iitk.ac.in/content?language=dv&field_kanda_tid= 2&field_sarga_value=52&field_sloka_value=89

(2) Word by word translation by K. M. K. Murthy: "devii = "Oh; goddess! Upaagata = after reaching; puriim =
the city (Ayodhya); punaH = again; yakshhye = I shall worship (you); suraaghata sahasreNa = with thousand pots of spirituous liquor; maamsa bhuutodanena cha = and jellied meat with cooked rice; prayataa = well-prepared for the solemn rite."
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Meat consumption and animal sacrifice in Valmiki Ramayana
[Oh, goddess! After reaching back the city of Ayodhya, I shall worship you with thousand pots of spirituous liquor and jellied meat with cooked rice well prepared for the solemn rite.]
Source: https://www.valmikiramayan.net/utf8/ayodhya/sarga52/ayodhya_52_ frame.htm
(3) Hindi Translation by Dwaraka Prasad Sharma: "अयोध्यापुरी में लौट कर, मैं एक सहस्त्र घडे, सुरा के , और माांस युक्त िात स,े तुमहारे
शनशमत्त बशलदान देकर, तुमहारी पूजा करां गी."
(4) Further distortion by Geeta Press: Verse no. 89 is clearly saying 'सरु ाघटसहस्रेण', which means 'with
a thousand pots of wine' and 'माांसभतू ौदनेन', which means 'food in the form of meat'. But trial of concealing the truth is carried on by Geeta Press.
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Meat Consumption and Animal Sacrifice Valmiki Ramayana