Mother Cows – Respected And Protected Since Ancient Times

Importance of Cows

Cows hold an important part in the food chain. From producing milk to getting sold in the form of beef, a cow holds importance for humans in each phase of its life cycle. Cows are considered to be in existence since 8000 BC. Surprisingly, traces in India were found much later. It is an animal considered sacred by Hindus and there are many Indian places or rivers named after cows. For example – Godavari, Goshal, Gowardhan and so on. The significance of cows is briefly described in below sections from different angles.

Excerpts from early civilization – The first traces of domesticated cow, in Indian history were in 2000 B.C in Northern India. It was also the time when Aryan nomads had arrived. Also, the traces from Vedic civilization (1750 BCE to 500 BCE) holds more information about domesticating the cows. It shows how heavily the earlier people relied upon the cows for their basic food needs. That is why our Vedas mentioned cow as a sacred animal and an animal worthy of being worshipped.

As mentioned that ancient Indian civilizations worshipped cows since the agriculture was majorly dependent on cows at that time. There was a pure and natural way of doing agriculture with no use of chemical fertilizers, pesticides etc. Cow urine was the best pesticide while dung was used as natural manure. Also, Krishna (Hindu lord) used to herd cows and was given the name Gopala (cowherd). Guru Nanak Dev (Sikh Guru) could also be seen spending his time herding the cows.

The Vedic cows have a hump on the back which means the cow is having the Surya Ketu Nadi (Surya ketu vein) on the body. This vein is considered to absorb special salts from the sunrays. It thus has these salts mixed in her blood which consequently also gets mixed in her milk and other fluids of the body. This milk and other products thus have exceptional healing powers as per this theory. Even the scientific observations and studies have supported this fact.


Jersey Cow

Desi Cow


Bos Taurus

Bos Indicus

Hump and Horns

No hump and horns

A high hump and big horns

Milk quality



Number of calves

Less than desi cow

10-12 averagely

Microbes in dung



Scientific Research about cows – Science holds strong facts about favoring the strength of cow’s milk. Desi cow’s milk has A2 type of protein which is also found in a mother’s milk. This scientific study further supports the fact of desi cow being considered as Mother cow by majority of Indians. Scientific research proves that desi cow milk is capable of curing diabetes, heart diseases, arthritis, and gout. It can also improve the immunity system, provide proteins for heath and development and so on.

Cow milk has a total of 25 minerals and vitamins. This list includes zinc, folate, vitamin C, iodine among others. This also includes other nutrients like calcium, iron, magnesium, and phosphorus.

Cow dung has anti radioactive, anti-thermal, and anti-septic properties. It also has disinfectant properties. It works as an insect repellant too. The burning of cow dung using cow ghee, as done in Hindu ritual Yagya, helps in lessening the effects of radiation at that place. The fumes containing ghee when goes up in the air absorbs all the dust particles which helps in cleansing the physical atmosphere of the place where Yagya is being done.

Cow dung has a great anti-radiation potential. This is one of the reasons why floors and walls of houses are still coated with cow dung cakes in Indian villages. Also, researchers have found the event of Yagya as an anti-bacterial event for the environment. Certain facts regarding cow dung’s effectiveness relate to the studies done by Dr. Shirowich, who is a Russian scientist.


Significance of Cows in Religious Books – The sacred cow is also mentioned in Bhagwat Gita (Holy Book to Hindus), Quran (Holy Book to Muslims), Bible (Holy Book to Christians), and other holy books of different religions. In Bhagwat Gita, Shri Krishna has mentioned “the cow has come directly from heaven and has spiritual powers. She is here specially to serve all the creatures. He also added to it by saying – “Cow is mother of all the creatures and should be served with all respect. It is human’s duty to care for the cow with all their heart. It also mentions that a person should never even have a thought of harming the cow or eating its flesh. Nothing is superior to the cows.”

The Mughal period called for a ban on cow slaughter across the length and breadth of the Mughal kingdom. King Babar gave this instruction to Humayun, it was followed by all Mughal emperors except Aurangzeb. Babar stated the ban on cow slaughter to respect the belief of Hindus residing in his kingdom and asked his successors to follow the same.

Significance of cows is also mentioned in the holy books of Christians, Jains, and Buddhists. We have such a rich history of protecting and respecting the cows, in present times it is both our responsibility and duty to protect the cows.


The importance of cows is not a matter of just traditional sentiment but it is something which gives life to the whole human population. It nourishes humans like a mother i.e., like a mother gives food to her child and doesn’t ask for anything in return. Cow is considered mother for doing just like this. It is a calm, humble, and loving creature on this planet Earth. 

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