Several RSS leaders have floated the ‘baby by choice, not by chance’ theory. The proponents of the theory include luminaries like Dr. S.K. Pandey, Auryvedhacharya in RML Institute of Medical Sciences in Lucknow, Dr. Neeraj Singhal, Dr. Neeraj Singhal, and Vinod Bharati. They have set up how-to-do institutions to teach interns ‘Garbh Sanskar’ procedures. The ‘Garbh Sanskar’ prescribes an ancient esoteric process, symbolized by, to ensure women give birth to ‘Sanskari’ (bright and smart) children. It is understood that the doctors are familiar with ancient and modern research in the field.
RSS leaders have set up ‘Garbh Vigyan Anusandhan Kendras’ (ayurvedic ante-natal centers) in Gujarat. These centers even claim that this ‘course’ can ‘upgrade’ and repair hereditary dysfunctional genes.
Garbha Sanskar in Hinduism
The Sanskrit word Garbh means fetus in the womb and Sanskar means educating the mind. So, Garbh Sanskar essentially means educating the mind of the fetus. It is traditionally believed that a child’s mental and behavioral development starts as soon as he is conceived. His personality begins to take shape in the womb. And, this can be influenced by the mother’s state of mind during pregnancy. This knowledge can be traced back to ancient scriptures and is included in the Ayurveda.
Garbha Sanskar can be traced back to ancient Hindu texts like the Vedas which date to 1500-500 BC. It also finds a reference in the Mahabharata which was written roughly around 400 BC. It finds a place in traditional ayurvedic medicine as a guide for pregnant women in prenatal education.
Communication with the Unborn
Although it may sound strange and weird, your bond with your child starts right from the time you conceive. It is not that when the child is born you know him. The baby listens to you and feels your feelings even when it is developing in your womb. You can shape up your baby’s first impressions by listening to good music, visualizing, massaging gently meditating and of course, with the help of positive thinking. Garbh Sanskar music is available online.
Benefits of Garbh Sanskar
The advantages of Garbh Sanskar are not only that you educate your child and there is the development of a bond between the mother and the child. In fact, this has a great impact on the health of the mother also. The positive thinking and attitude promote the physical well being of the mother.
Ancient Indian medicine has recognized the need for the mental, spiritual and physical preparation of the mother-to-be for the momentous event of childbirth. Ayurveda describes this theory as “Supraja Janan” or EU-maternity This “Supraja Janan”, as conceptualized in Ayurveda, involves the preparation of the couple planning pregnancy, three months prior to conception.
Pregnancy should be by Choice
The beginning is by pinda shuddhi or the purification of the gametes (sperm and ovum). If the couple is not in a state of mental stability and calmness, even if they are physically fit, they cannot give birth to a healthy child. This mental calmness and stability (“Sathwa Guna”) of mind is closely related to one’s food habits and many other factors. Abstinence from spicy foods and addictive substances is advised.
Mother and Child Bonding
The mother’s bond with the child starts right from the time of conception. The mother can shape up baby’s first impressions. The positive thinking and attitude promotes the physical wellbeing of the mother and the baby throughout the pregnancy and after. The advantages of Garbh Sanskar are not only that you educate your child but there is the development of a bond between the mother and the child.
Effect of Music
Chants, Meditation, and Mantras are most important during the process of Garbh Sanskar. From the seventh month, the foetus can hear the sounds from the mother’s womb and from the surroundings of the mother and also responds to them. Sound of mother’s heartbeats is the first and nearest sound heard by the fetus and hence when the mother takes her crying child close to her the child stops crying and becomes calm.
The extremists would lynch or demonize Muslims on other excuses like reason when a Muslim marries a Hindu sweetheart, or simply because a Muslim voyeur stares at a Hindu woman, sharing a seat with him in an omnibus.
It is possible to give energy for the development of the body, mind, and soul of the child in the womb by listening to special kind of music. For example, the sound of the veena, flute and Samaveda mantras gives health to the pregnant woman and the child within. There are various music cassettes and CDs of “Garbha sangeet” available in the market.
Mythological Stories about Garbha Sanskar
Indian mythology teems with stories that illustrate the power of Garbha sanskar_ Abhimanyu, Prahlad, Lord Hanuman, Ashtavakra, and others.
Cow Excreta Benefits
The `genetic theory’ is adjunct to the theory of cow-excreta benefits. Outlined in Rajasthan high court judge Mahesh Chandra Sharma talked in detail about the benefits of the cow in his 193-page judgment. His judgment, a mélange of scriptures and law, glistens with hijinks like ‘Peacocks Don’t Have Sex’, ‘Cow is a Surgeon’, `a complete pharmacy’, and Cow is a ‘National Animal’. Later, in an interview with CNN & News18, the judge said, “The peacock is a lifelong Brahmachari (celibate). And, a cow could suffice for doctors and surgeons because cow’s milk is medicinal in nature, and cures all kinds of ailments (malaria, dengue, smallpox, Ebola, and AIDS) except insanity. Dung bunker withstands atom-bomb radiation
This topic was vehemently discussed, inside and outside India’s House of People (Lok Sabha). One is shocked to read that chief minister Yogi Adityanath of India’s Uttar Pradesh state equated cows with human beings. In over ebullience to show veneration to cows, Rajasthan Bharatiya Janata Party’s president Madanlal Saini even distorted history. He said that `a dying Mughal emperor Humayun told his father Babur that he should respect cows, women, and brahmins if he wanted to rule India’. We know Humayun was Babar’s son, not his father. Babur was Humayun’s father who died in 1531. Humayun breathed his last in 1556, 25 years later.
🔸Old age cows
🔸1000s helpless cows
are being served by Sant Shri Asaram Bapu Ji at Many of Gaushala's in all over India; Giving Clear massage to society:
— Nomi Ahuja (@AhujaNomi) October 4, 2019
Some political wizards have even tried to distort religion. They say it is a sin under various religions to eat beef (Islam and Christianity included). A Goa legislator complained that cow vigilantes (gau rakhshak) intercept beef trucks into Karnataka and put phenyl on it to make it unfit for eating.
High-Court Judgment on Cow Issue
Judge Mahesh Chandra Sharma says in his verdict: “Nepal is a Hindu nation and has declared cow as a national animal. India is a predominant agriculture country based in animal rearing. As per Article 48 and 51A (g) it is expected from the state government that they should take action to get a legal entity for the cow in this country.” His verdict relates to a Public Interest Litigation by an organization that sought steps for the protection of cows.
Later, in an interview with CNN-News18, the judge said, “The peacock is a lifelong Brahmachari (celibate). He never has sex with the peahen. The peahen pecks on the tears of the peacock to get pregnant. That’s how she gives birth to a peacock or a peahen.
This is why Lord Krishna also wears the peacock feather. This is why the peacock feather is used by sadhus.” The judge revealed that when Lord Krishna came to earth, he brought down a cow with him to Vrindavan. And he knew that the cow could suffice for doctors and surgeons because cow’s milk is medicinal in nature, and cures all kinds of ailments (except insanity).
The judge’s reflections are not the first-ever `scientifically inaccurate and outright asinine’ outbursts. Earlier, Rajasthan education minister Vasudev Devnani proudly proclaimed, defying all boundaries of human knowledge about mammals, that the holy cow is the only animal that inhales as well as exhales oxygen. Speaking at the Hingonia Goshala during an event organized by Akshay Patra foundation on January 14, the minister said, “Gai Ek matra prani hai jo oxygen grahan karta hai, aur oxygen hi chhodta hai (The cow is the only animal that takes in oxygen and also releases oxygen).” “It increases religiousness and piousness. This is what makes cow’s milk so important”
Mob mentality created in the name of tradition is just jaw dropping in its idiocy. Smearing scared kids in cow dung to secure their futures? pic.twitter.com/XVeYu0oGi3— Sangita (@Sanginamby) September 30, 2019
It is repugnant to common sense that cow milk alone could cure malaria, dengue, smallpox, Ebola, and AIDS.
Could lynching stop if beef-eating stops? Even if the Muslim gives up dairy farming and eating beef, about 12.5 million Hindus would continue to do so. The extremists would lynch or demonize Muslims on other excuses like reason when a Muslim marries a Hindu sweetheart, or simply because a Muslim voyeur stares at a Hindu woman, sharing a seat with him in an omnibus. When Rahul Gandhi met some Muslim intellectuals in New Delhi, he was dubbed pro-Muslim and his party `a haven for the Muslim’
Real Issues Ignored
A bird’s eye view of India’s real issues is given in Burkha Dutt’s book, This Unquiet Land: Stories from India’s Fault Lines. In the chapter “A Society in Flux”, the writer pointed out that `seven out of ten households in India live on less than Rs. 200 a day’ (page 271, ibid.). India is home to the world’s poorest 1.2 billion people and 1.4 million children die before their fifth birthday’ (page 290, ibid.). The book also recounts violence in Indian society (Samjhota Express Blasts 2007, Malegaon blasts 2008, anti-Sikh riots 1984, anti-Muslim riots 2002, and lynchings by cow guards (gao rakhshak).
RSS’s Influence and Outreach to the World
Breaking its isolation, Rashtryaya Swayem Sevak Sangh, RSS (BJP’s militant wing) held a conclave (Sep. 16-18, 2018) in New Delhi. The RSS has also invited heads of religious organizations, including Muslims, Christians, Sikhs and other sects. Stung by the aggressive attack led by Rahul Gandhi for the past few months, its game plan was to elaborate its stand on contentious issues such as cow vigilantism and lynching, occupied Kashmir, Ayodhya, Article 370, women’s empowerment, education, culture, and also the Modi government’s mark sheet.
Since the RSS has been the whipping boy of sections of the foreign media. To shore up its image, it invited heads of over 100 foreign missions in New Delhi to their meet.
It is strange that the `status of cow’ has overshadowed all other issues in India. This topic was vehemently discussed, inside and outside India’s House of People (Lok Sabha). Politicians misinterpret Article 48 of India’s Constitution. The article (Organisation of agriculture and animal husbandry) simply states to outlaw beef-eating. The innocuous article simply states
`The State shall endeavor to organize agriculture and animal husbandry on modern and scientific lines and shall, in particular, take steps for preserving and improving the breeds, and prohibiting the slaughter, of cows and calves and other milch and draught cattle’.
Ten thousand full-time pracharaks (preachers) are active in politics, culture and various cow think-tanks at home and abroad
The article is not confined to cows but it includes other milch, draught cattle and calves. It is not enforceable through courts. Ignoring real issues, India’s Uttarakhand assembly has passed a resolution for `declaration of cows as Rashtra Mata, national mother’ (Hindustan Times Sep. 20, 2018).
According to the National Sample Survey Office more than 80 million Indians consume beef, of which Hindus account for 12.5 million, the rest belonging to various other communities, including Muslims and Christians.
Moreover, according to 2015 figures, India has been the largest exporter of beef since 2014 and has been outpacing Brazil in that department steadily over the past few years. India’s Al-Dua is a leading exporter of halal/kosher meat to Arab nations. It is a pity that a lot many rich Hindus have a dual face. For instance, according to the Registrar of Companies Sangeet Som is a big beef exporter. Yet, he is simultaneously an anti-beef crusader from Uttar Pradesh. He is an accused in the Muzaffarnagar anti-beef riot. The pinnacle of irony is that he later became a BJP member of the legislative assembly.
India is the second biggest beef exporter. Not sure how the sacred thing help really also India has huge leather exports and a massive dairy and egg consumption. pic.twitter.com/HVp1DPVKEE— #AnimalrightsIⓋY 🌱🐽🐾🦋🌊 (@AnimalrightsIvy) October 5, 2019
Goa allows beef consumption as does the Northeast. Both, Union Minister of State for Home Affairs Kiren Rijiju and Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Pema Khandu have openly admitted being a beef eater. Yet none of the vigilantes in their constituencies spare beef eaters.
To escape vigilante’s wrath, Samajwadi Party leader Azam Khan abandoned his cow farm and switched to a buffalo farm. He exhorted his followers to give up dairy farming to escape lynching.
It was attended by over a thousand intellectuals from all walks of life. Change in RSS’s outlook is understandable. It has grown phenomenally during the past five decades. Its swayam sewaks now hold the top four constitutional posts of India’s president, vice president, Prime Minister, and Lok Sabha (house of people) speaker. They occupy 20 Raj Bhawans. Eighteen of them are chief ministers. Half the Union Cabinet comprises RSS members. The political initiation of over 1,000 members of legislative assemblies and 250 members of parliament has been through the RSS.
About a million Indians daily attend over 55,000 shakhas (lectures) across the country. Its 500-odd frontal organizations manage colleges, schools, media, hospitals, and tribal and Dalit non-governmental organizations. Ten thousand full-time pracharaks (preachers) are active in politics, culture and various cow think-tanks at home and abroad: `Liberals; were stunned when chief minister Yogi Adityanath of India’s Uttar Pradesh state equated cows with human beings.
They expressed similar reactions when Justice Mahesh Chandra Sharma of Rajasthan High Court told reporters (May 31, 2018) `All doctors are frauds and we could have all been cured of diseases with nothing more than cow’s milk.’ He `urged the Centre to declare cow as India’s national animal and recommended life imprisonment for cow slaughter’. Physicians must have smiled at his assertion that `cow inhales and exhales oxygen’, and `a peacock is a lifelong celibate like Krishna’.
At the conclave a Muslim wing of the RSS distributed a pamphlet echoing Sharma’s sentiments. The RSS’s rising influence among all strata of Indian society cannot be ignored. Huffington Post dated August 3, 2017, published a detailed report on benefits of cow-and-dung recipes like (a) A cow-dung-and-urine beauty soap could stall aging. Krishna looked like a 12-year-old as he used such soap. (b) Cow dung and urine (gao mutra and gau gober) could prevent radiation when used to construct a bunker or rubbed on a mobile phone. This compound can defuse even an atomic bomb. (c) Pregnant women should have cow dung-urine derivatives for normal delivery.
India’s prestigious `Institute of Technology has received about 50 proposals from top research institutions across the country to explore the benefits of panchgavya (a mixture of cow urine, cow dung, milk, ghee, and curd). India’s Union Ministry of Science and Technology has constituted a 19-member panel to conduct detailed research on cow derivatives and their benefits.
Cow Slaughter and the Constitution
The government has imposed a new set of rules under the guise of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Regulation of Livestock Market) Rules. These rules prohibit the sale of cows and buffaloes for slaughter at animal markets. They amount to an indirect beef ban. As such, they triggered protests in Kerala and Tamil Nadu and drew ire of West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee. The Madras High Court had to stay the enforcement of the rules lest they flare up into massive riots.
However, legal dispute dates back to the founding of the Republic. During the framing of the Constitution, the subject of cow slaughter was a contentious issue. Seth Govind Das, a member of the Constituent Assembly, framed it as a “civilizational [problem] from the time of Lord Krishna”, and called for the prohibition of cow slaughter to be made part of the Constitution’s chapter on fundamental rights, on a par with the prohibition of untouchability.
The bitter truth is that the Supreme Court’s orders make no mention of cattle slaughter and a reading of the Act demonstrates clearly that it does not contemplate prohibiting animal slaughter per se.
In this, he was supported by other members of the Constituent Assembly, such as Shibban Lal Saksena, Thakur Das Bhargava, Ramnarayan Singh, Ram Sahai, Raghu Vira, R.V. Dhulekar and Chaudhari Ranbir Singh. Proponents of a cow slaughter ban advanced a mix of cultural and economic arguments, invoking the “sentiments of thirty crores of the population” on the one hand, and the indispensability of cattle in an agrarian economy on the other.
There was one tiny snag. The fundamental rights applied to human beings, not animals. After much debate, the Constitution’s Drafting Committee agreed upon a compromise: prohibition of cow slaughter would find a place in the Constitution, but not as an enforceable fundamental right. It would be included as a “Directive Principle of State Policy”, which was meant to guide the state in policymaking, but could not be enforced in any court. Furthermore, in its final form, this Directive Principle (Article 48 of the Constitution) excluded the thorny question of religious sentiments.
It fell short of calling upon the state to ban cow slaughter outright. Instead, under the heading “Organisation of Agriculture and Animal Husbandry”, Article 48 says the state shall “organize agriculture and animal husbandry on modern and scientific lines and shall, in particular, take steps for preserving and improving the breeds, and prohibiting the slaughter, of cows and calves and other milch and draught cattle.”
Members of the Constituent Assembly found these incremental compromises both unprincipled and unsatisfactory. Shibban Lal Saksena objected to such “back door” tactics, and asked why the Drafting Committee was “ashamed of providing for [the prohibition of cow slaughter] frankly and boldly in so many plain words”.
Z.H. Lari, one of the Muslim representatives in the Assembly, stated that his community would not stand in the way of the majority’s desire, but nonetheless asked that the majority “express itself clearly and definitely”, so that Muslims could know exactly what the position was on cow slaughter. However, Assembly steered clear of the issue of cow slaughter Article 48, a provision that was grafted out of a compromise that left nobody satisfied, came into being with the rest of the Constitution, on January 26, 1950.
In the Supreme Court Right from 1958, the Supreme Court was asked to adjudicate upon the constitutional validity of cattle slaughter bans passed by various States. Petitioners before the court argued that a prohibition of cow slaughter violated their rights to trade and business, and also their right to freedom of religion. The Supreme Court rejected these arguments and upheld the laws, but it did so by focusing its reasoning entirely on economic considerations. It stopped short of shattering the thin facade of secularism to which the Constitution remained committed.
To favor vigilantes, the Central government invoked a Supreme Court order on cattle smuggling across the Nepal border, as well as a 1960 law, the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, as its justification for indirectly banning cow slaughter.
The bitter truth is that the Supreme Court’s orders make no mention of cattle slaughter and a reading of the Act demonstrates clearly that it does not contemplate prohibiting animal slaughter per se. Not only does it specifically exempt slaughter of animals for food, but it also provides for advice on the design of slaughterhouses, so that “unnecessary pain or suffering, whether physical or mental, is eliminated in the pre-slaughter stages as far as possible.”
The executive notification cannot go beyond the specific terms and ambit of the parent law from which it derives its authority. The government’s new rules, nevertheless, prohibit the sale of cattle for slaughter at animal markets; they contravene the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act by specifically forbidding what that Act permits. There is a strong argument, therefore, that the rules are invalid.
While Gandhi was concerned greatly with Gauseva and cow protection, the Congress party slaughtered a cow on the streets of Kerala and consumed its meat. https://t.co/bm1MTCSL7i
— OpIndia.com (@OpIndia_com) October 6, 2019
There seems no basis for limiting the reach of an anti-cruelty regulation to only some animals (cattle, animals, and cows). At the very least, in law, this casts serious doubts about the government’s motivation and justification for its rules.
On the same day, a man was beaten to death by cow vigilantes, senior Union minister Venkaiah Naidu said beef-eating was unconstitutional. Naidu said, “One can eat his food of choice, but avoid eating that food which is prohibited as per our Constitution.” The Constitution does, however, mention the cow in article 48 which reads, “The State shall endeavor to organize agriculture and animal husbandry on modern and scientific lines and shall, in particular, take steps for preserving and improving the breeds, and prohibiting the slaughter, of cows and calves and other milch and draught cattle.”
Soon after a Muslim beef eater was killed, an RSS leader exhorted people to stop eating beef. He promised that if they forego beef, lynching in the name of the cow would stop automatically.
However, article 48 is part of India’s Directive Principles of State Policy which are non-enforceable and exist solely as a guide to India’s leaders. The prohibition of alcohol is also a directive principle and other than in a handful of states with explicit laws, drinking is perfectly constitutional across the Indian Union. Similarly, in states like West Bengal and Kerala, there is no prohibition on the slaughter of cows and beef is easily available.
The text of article 48 only talks of curbs on slaughter. The act of eating beef itself is not mentioned. In fact, far from certain meats being unconstitutional, successive court judgments have held that legal curbs on the food itself as unconstitutional. As recently as January 2017, the Bombay High court held that while cow slaughter could be banned, the act of, say, eating a beef steak itself could not be criminalized since it is a violation of the Right to Life, a fundamental right in the Indian Constitution.
Not law political expediency: Cow protection movements have gained in strength notwithstanding. This is, of course, simply because cow reverence is an article of faith with a large number of Hindus and, like all matters of religion, exists independent of facts.
Eating beef is not unconstitutional. Yet calling it so has political value. It panders to sentiments of the religious morals of many BJP supporters.
In 2005, the Supreme Court upheld a ban on cow slaughter enacted by the Gujarat legislature under the then Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi. Till then, as per a 1958 judgment, the state could only ban the slaughter of unproductive bovines not capable of functioning as milch or draught animals. The 2005 judgment, however, held that all cattle slaughter could be banned since even the dung of a single cow is worth “more than even the famous Kohinoor diamond”.
Inference: A Hindu India
With the rise of Hindutva, pseudo-scientific beliefs like fetal training have become popular in India. Preventing cow slaughter or the eating of beef has neither economic nor constitutional backing. It must be recognized for what it is: a quasi-religious demand that has taken center stage in Indian politics of the 21st century. Soon after a Muslim beef eater was killed, an RSS leader exhorted people to stop eating beef. He promised that if they forego beef, lynching in the name of the cow would stop automatically. But the issue now has gone beyond mere cow vigilantism. It is a ploy to polarize the Hindu and garner his votes. The portents are that the RSS would have a critical role in influencing 2019 general elections. And, by corollary, the ruling party would be the largest winner.
Where secular India is headed towards? If re-elected, which he is likely to be, Modi would amend India’s constitution to make India a Hindu republic and adopt cow as an equal citizen.
Mr. Amjed Jaaved holds degrees in economics, business administration, and law and his articles have been published in the leading dailies and magazines at home and abroad (Nepal. Bangladesh, et. al.). He is the author of seven e-books including Terrorism, Jihad, Nukes and other Issues in Focus. The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect Global Village Space’s editorial policy.