Gadhimai sacrifice in Nepal – A Hindu right

I have said it before and will say it again. Animal sacrifice is not alien to our Hindu ethos. If slaughter of animals and meat-eating caused pollution and thereby gave rise to untouchability, it is not Hinduism that should be blamed. We should look elsewhere for cause.

If any Hindu wants to sacrifice animals in order to propitiate his Gods and Goddesses according to his tradition, he must retain the right to do it. It is not the business of the State and other busy-bodies to lecture him about the rights and wrongs of his manner of worship.

It is more than ridiculous that the very same people who accuse the Hindus of practicing untouchability will do everything in their power to enforce rules, laws and notions that will perpetuate this heinous practice and alienate our people even more.

Some Hindu castes already wage battles for their religious right to sacrifice animals in Hindusthan. Ironically here’s what happens when governments ban animal sacrifice to please the so called animal lovers amongst Hindus and their enemies. Hindu society gets blamed for being casteist! And yet look at who’s opposing the Hindus’ sacrifice in Nepal.

If there was some way I could contribute an animal or monies for Gadhimai now, I would.

– Namaste


Palahalli S – Here’s a more detailed piece on the controversy.

A reader responds –

First & foremost my subsequent comment is only from a curiosity perspective (notwithstanding if it’s right or wrong)…with that said: What do you mean by having to propitiate/conciliatory offering to a god/act of placating a said God/Goddess “by sacrificing animals for him/her and distributing meat to her devotees” as a potential act of redemption? Do you mean that atonement for a sin can come at such a cheap and dispensable price (as sacrificing meat), without having to go through the course of often steep/long process of redemption,Salvation, realization and subsequent cleansing of oneself, before the “Divine one” forgives in his/her mercy & magnitude???

The history of human beings and their transition from the erstwhile barbaric rituals to the current day sanity & compassionate coexistence as i know, “sacrificed” animals for atonement only in “mythological history” (almost all
religions included).  Are you and your statements proposing to go back to the dark ages???

Please Clarify???

My reply –

Let me respond; Some Hindus are being denied their right to worship their Goddess as per their traditions. Assorted animal-rights activists, Buddhists including the actress Bridgette Bardot and I should add those “Hindus” who see themselves as having somehow attained a higher plane simply because they don’t sacrifice animals for worship and/or
don’t consume meat.

So you see, your not alone in your conclusions or doubts.

I believe all acts for human redemption save one’s own death for a just and righteous cause, is “potential” and temporary. It should be understood that the possibility of one going back and doing wrong always exists.

The act of animal sacrifice should be seen in similar light. Why is it being viewed differently? What is so barbaric about it? Is the act of slaughter barbaric? If so then I should say there is nothing more truly barbaric than industrial scale slaughter of animals on a daily basis. Why is that slaughter not seen as barbaric? Because it is meant for human consumption? Albeit via departmental stores? (I have a theory and an idea about this that I shall share shortly)

The sacrifice for Devi Gadhimai is comparatively very benign. It is held once in five years. About 200,000 animals are sacrificed. The meat from slaughter is distributed to devotees and the hide sold to tanners.

Now my theory and idea – I believe in the sanctity of life. I also believe that there are no greater believers in the sanctity of life than these and such devotees of Devi Gadhimai.

Let me explain.

Today, when I want to eat meat for a meal all I need to do is walk into a store and buy the meat like I buy some coke or chocolate. I don’t rear the animal, witness the process of slaughter, the slaughter itself and the carving of the slaughtered animal that I or someone else reared. Today’s urban meat eaters are sham artists who cannot actually
bear the sight of blood. Impotent and shallow.

Here’s my idea emanating from this theory. Why not make all acts of meat consumption a sacrifice to our God/s? This way the procedure of slaughter will be adhered to. The rearing, the slaughtering (perhaps taking it to the abbotoir) and the consuming will be limited to the needs of the family’s worship. Therefore limited in time and scope – more meaningful too. Best of all this will stop the daily slaughter of millions upon millions of animals headed for the department stores.

Don’t you think this is true value for life?

Come to think of it – the devotees of the Devi are teaching the so called more civilized and more evolved a lesson of their lives.

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