Idiom question

chuck grandgent chuck at CHUCKG.COM
Fri Jan 21 21:54:27 UTC 2000

"sacred Hindu bovines" is a purely Western perception of the "Hindu"
treatment of cows.
The premise (scriptural references available on request) is that a culture
can in large measure be judged to be either civilised or uncivilised based
on its treatment of cows.
The reasoning is that from the cow you get so many good things like milk,
cheese, butter, yogurt, ice cream, etc..
That which provides milk to Man must be considered as Mother.
Therefore, how "uncivilized" the culture that insists on killing same, and
of course "ahimsa", non-violence, is another tenet of the Hindu and
Buddhist (who draw heavily on Hindu scripture).
Therefore "cow protection" is highly esteemed and "slaughterhouses" seen
as an indication of a not-really-civilised culture,
and the cow is seen to be emblematic and symbolic of this value set.

So many Western perceptions of India are based on India as seen through
the eyes of the British colonials, including even the city names, which is
why "Bombay" within the last ten years has reverted to its true name of
"Mumbai", "Bombay" being an erroneous British mutilation of the name.

   Chuck Grandgent

Kathleen Miller wrote:
> Interesting tidbit from Laurence Urdang's Picturesque Expressions says that
> holy cow (similar to holy mackerel and a no-meat-eating-catolic-Friday's
> origin) has something to do with sacred Hindu bovines.

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