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Sanatana Dharma - Aka Hinduism (2nd Bin)

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Sanatana Dharma - Aka Hinduism (2nd Bin)
<b>Kalimala Pilgrimage- Symbol of Hindu awakening</b>
4/28/2007 4:38:53 PM HK

Thiruvananthapuram: Holy pilgrimage to the famous Hill Temple at
Kalimala started started yesterday.The Temple is located at Pathukani
near Vellarada at the Kerala-TamilNadu border.

<b>Kalimala and the temple was grabbed by the Christian Missionaries and
named it as "Kurisumala" .The Land and Temple was originally maintained
by Hindu Tribals in the area.The land was given to them by
Marthandavarma to local Tribals in the area.Cunning Missionaries
captured this holy land of Sahyan as well.Thanks to the efforts of
Hindu awakening, after long legal struggle the Temple and land was
Restored to Hindus.</b>

On "Chitra Pournami" day of the Malayalam month of Medam, women
considered as part of the Devi herself, offer Pongal on Her Holy Earl.
With the Nilavilakku' s lighting, the NiraPara and the playing of the
Chenda the atmosphere turns into eternal blissfulness with the Devi
blessing her devotees as Sakthi, Vidhya, Sthithi and Smrithi. Scores
of ladies take part in this "Mathrupooja" that takes place once a
year.This years Chitra Pournami falls on May 2nd.

Elaborate arrangements are made to adreess the needs of lakhs of
Pilgrims who pay visit to this Holy Temple during this occassion by
the Temple Authorities.

As per Temple History Sri AgasthyaMuni, underwent Thapas( deep
meditation) at Kaalimala. Pleased with his devotion, Shree
DharmaSastha & Shree Durga Devi revealed their divine forms to him and
have ever since continued to shower their blissful blessings at
Kaalimala to devotees toiling in worldliness.

The devotees observe severe fasting and come for the blissful dharsan
with "Irumudikettu" . They offer ghee, symbolizing the power of their
soul to the idol and coconuts to the fire, to attain `Moksha'.

Kaalimala has Kaalitheertham situated near to a place where Sage
Agasthiya is said to have done his Holy Thapas. The Kaalitheertham
which never gets dried up is considered sacred, on par with the
Ganges. This water is used by thousands of women during the "Pongal

"Santhana Sowbhagya Pooja" is the most important pooja offered to
Shree Nagayekshi. Crowds of people from various states eagerly take
part in this auspicious pooja.

For More Details visit: http://www.kaalimal htm
May 06, 2007

Page: 23/33

Home > 2007 Issues > May 06, 2007

India’s Scientific Heritage-V

India’s view on logic and experiments
By Suresh Soni

For thousands of years, we, in India, have had complete freedom in education. No one was arrested or burnt alive because of his thoughts. Let us take an example. In India, we have always had sacred feelings towards the Vedas—the treasure of knowledge and their seers. About them and those who created them, the materialist Charvak has said, “Trayovedasy kartaarah bhandadhoortanishaacharaaha.” That is, those who created the three Vedas are hypocritical, cunning and evil. Despite such distorted statements, Charvak was never ill-treated. In fact, he was also accorded the status of a philosopher.

Let us see another example. In the Mundakopanishad, it is written that Shaunak, the head of a big gurukul went to Sage Angira and asked him that the knowledge of which element amounted to knowing everything? In reply, Sage Angira said, “There are two elements—one is the metaphysical, which gives us the knowledge of the ultimate (Para Vidya) and the second is the physical, which gives us worldly and heavenly happiness (Apara Vidya). However, comparatively speaking, metaphysical learning is better than physical learning.” Explaining physical learning, Sage Angira said, “The Veda and its subordinate branches are Apara Vidya, i.e. physical knowledge; still the society continued to honour him.”

For thousands of years, blind faith or proof of scriptures did not have the last say in India. Instead, logic and actual experience had recognition. Hence, in his lectures on Gita Adi Shankaracharya has said, “If hundreds of Shrutis (Shrutis of Upanishads are considered beyond logic as they are born out of solid experiences) say that fire is cool and a non-illuminator, they cannot be considered as evidence because it is in opposition to actual experience.” (Gita Adhyaya 18, Shloka 66 —Shankar Bhashya).

To know what India’s view on experiments was, one must note portions of Dr Murli Manohar Joshi’s speech at the golden jubilee session of the Indian Parliament—

1. “Today, we are told to look westwards for any scientific discovery. What is happening in the US and Germany, or in Japan or France? However, 200-250 years ago, circumstances were absolutely the opposite and 1000-1200-1500 years ago, things were even more reverse. Before I mention India’s ancient scientific traditions, I would like to say that what is told to us is really and illusion. We are told that experimental sciences were born in the west; that the west taught the world to experiment, that before that there was no experimental science and if there was any scientist in India, he was merely a theoretician, who had invented the zero, the infinite. That Bhaskaracharya brought out some mathematical formulae and that experimental sciences came from the west. All this is nothing, but an illusion. Famous Indian scientist Acharya P.C. Ray says—

“When the Royal Society, and important institution in the field of science, was established in 1662, philosophical experimentarians like Hobbes, Locke, etc. used to make fun of its founders Boyle, Hooke and Christopher and for hours, people used to discuss whether a dead fish was heavier or a live one.”

On the other hand, Acharya Ray gives an example of what the conditions were like in India. There are two books related to Hindus chemistry. One is Resendra Chintamani and the second one is Rasprakash Sudhakar. These were written respectively by Rasayan Shastri (chemists), Ramchandra and Yashodhar, who were born in the 13th century. In this Ramchandra says, “Whatever I have heard from scholars and read in the Shastras, but have not proved myself, have not been included in this book. On the contrary, I have written only what I have proved by experimenting, with my own hands under the able guidance of my teachers.”

Furthermore, Ramchandra says that a real teacher is one who can, through experiment, prove what he has taught and a scholar is one who can prove it again. Those who can do so are real teachers and pupils; the rest are like characters in a play.

Yashodhar, who was also born in the 13th century has expressed the same concept in his book, Rasprakash Sudhakar—

Swahasten Kritam Samyak
Jaaranam N Shrutam Maya.
Swahasten Bhavayogen Kritam
Samyak Shruten Hi.
Swahasten Krito Maya.
Drisht Pratyay Yogoayam
Kathitona Ch Sanshayah
(Rasprakash Sudhakar)

“I have not just heard of Jaaran (causing decay condiment, a digester, oxidising of metals), but have also done so with my own hands on the basis of the knowledge that I have heard of earlier. On the basis of that, I proved the creation of the third metal myself.”

2. All the musical instruments that were made here are examples of experimental science. These were not mere elemental or theoretical analyses, but were born out of examination, inspection and experimentation. Musical instruments are the sage of the analysis and the use of the creation of sound; its various forms and effects. Natyashastra, written by Sage Bharat, is an example of how it was created by experimenting. In the 33rd chapter of this epic, its author Muni Bharat gives a description of how the mridanga and the other instruments came into existence. A sage named Swati lived in a gurukul in ancient times. There was a holiday in the gurukul and scarcity of water. So, Sage Swati went out in search of water. He reached a water body where lots of lotuses were blooming. Their leaves were spread over the water in the pond. Suddenly, it became cloudy and, after a strong breeze, it started raining heavily. The water started flowing all over the land. A beautiful sound was heard when the water fell on the leaves. Sage Swati was amazed to hear the beautiful sound that was created by water falling on lotus leaves. When examined, he realised that the leaves were of different sizes—some big, some medium and some small. Because they were of different sizes, even the sound of water falling on them was varied. A deep sound was heard from big leaves, a soothing sweet sound from the medium ones and a touching, sentimental sound from small leaves. He merged with the scene and the sound; and in deep thought and feeling, returned to the ashram with the big, medium and the small leaves and started experimenting as to how he could create the same sound. At first, he experimented with water, then with other means. In this process, musical instruments like the mridanga, the panav and the dardur muraj, etc. were created.

These examples tell us that we in India always valued reasoning and proof more than blind faith. We have had the freedom of thoughts and experiments since those times, when the west could not imagine it even in a dream. Hence, acquainting and familiarising our present generation with the scientific tradition of our country will be a medium to free the country form its inferiority complex and develop the feeling of self-sufficiency and self-respect.

(The book is available with Ocean Books(P)Ltd.,4/19, Asaf Ali Road, New Delhi-110 002.)

came in email:
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Dharma Sun Media presents two new free YouTube feature videos on Yoga
Spirituality and Dharma.

Each of these videos consists of TV interviews with Dr. Frank Morales
(Sri Dharma Pravartaka Acharya) televised in March 2007 on New York
television. These videos serve as an excellent introduction to
Dharma Spirituality, and are designed to convey the depth of the
Dharmic spiritual experience in an easy to understand way. Enjoy!

The Way of the Rishi: OE

Experiencing Spirituality:
A trek to Mt. Kailash - from Tibet's side :

http://www.journals /2008/03/ 29/living/ religion/ doc47ed42c7851c6 414830327. txt

Hindu convert a spiritual teacher at temple in Omaha
By BOB REEVES/Lincoln Journal Star
Saturday, Mar 29, 2008 - 12:14:55 am CDT

OMAHA — When Frank Morales was only 10 years old, growing up in
Brooklyn, N.Y., he developed a strong interest in spirituality.

"I started reading the various scriptures of the world," he said. He
read the Bible, the Quran, ancient Buddhist texts. Finally, he read
the Bhagavad Gita, a short book that is one of the most revered of
Hindu scriptures.

"I felt I'd found what I was looking for," he said.

The Gita tells the story of Arjuna, a warrior in India, who is caught
up in a battle between members of his own family. In a crisis of
conscience, he turns to Krishna, an incarnation of God, for advice.
Krishna gives Arjuna instruction and answers his questions, providing
a clear and logical explanation of the three paths of yoga, or union
with God.

The three paths — karma yoga (action), gyana-yoga (knowledge) and
bhakti-yoga (devotion) — form the basis for the practice of Hinduism.
As a young boy discovering them for the first time, Morales felt that
they gave the most understandable explanation of the human situation
and human beings' relationship with God.

"I was searching for a truth that was universal, not just sectarian,"
he said. "I wasn't looking for faith; I was looking for philosophy.
It had to be universally applicable."

He went on to study more Hindu scriptures and soon discovered that
there are so many Hindu texts that probably no one person has read
them all.

"They were written over many hundreds of years. They're older than
the Bible. They're considered the oldest collection of writings known
to humanity."

At age 14, he made his first visit to a Hindu temple — in Queens,
N.Y. The temple was filled with beautiful artwork and statues
representing many Hindu deities, each of whom is considered a
different expression of God.

"It was absolutely stunning; I was overwhelmed, " Morales said. "I
felt I was leaving the world behind, entering a spiritual world. I
finally sat down in front of a statue of Krishna, and in my own mind I
said, `I'm home. This will be my religion for the rest of my life.'"

Morales went on to study philosophy and theology, eventually receiving
a doctoral degree with an emphasis on Hinduism and Asian culture from
the University of Wisconsin in Madison. He made several trips to
India, and in 1986, after living as a celibate monk for six years, he
was initiated as a Hindu priest.

Back in the United States, he became an acharya, or teacher of
Hinduism, and adopted the Sanskrit name Sri Dharma Pravartaka Acharya.
The word "dharma" means natural law; his name literally means "one who
sets the dharma in motion."

Morales has become a widely recognized Hindu teacher, especially
through his Web site, www.dharmacentral. com. He is president of the
International Sanatana Dharma Society.

Last fall, he became the resident acharya (spiritual teacher) at the
Hindu Temple of Nebraska in Omaha. He teaches several different
classes, including introduction to Hinduism, a study of the Bhagavad
Gita and a youth class. He gives a spiritual talk prior to Sunday
worship at the temple and also leads satsang (meditation and religious
discourse) sessions weekly in Omaha, and once each month in Lincoln.

Most of his students are people of Indian background who want to learn
more about their religion. But a growing number are people who come
from other religious traditions who want to learn about Hinduism. A
few of those have decided, like Morales did, to become Hindus themselves.

"Hinduism does not look for converts," Morales said. "But we do like
to teach. Anyone is welcome to come and learn."

Heather Mortensen is one of his students who considers herself a
convert to Hinduism. She grew up in an evangelical Christian family,
but said she had many doubts about the God of the Bible, who often is
depicted as angry and judgmental. She went to www.beliefnet. com to
learn about other religions. "I was super impressed with the Hindu
quotes," she said.

That led her to read the Bhagavad Gita and felt it answered her
questions about God and human destiny. "I was in bliss the entire day
while I was reading it."

Mortensen said she found the Hindu concept of reincarnation most
appealing, because it gives people a chance to keep striving, through
successive lives, to learn and grow closer to God.

She began studying with Morales in Wisconsin, and when he came to
Nebraska last fall, she moved to Omaha to continue taking classes from
him. Mortensen goes to the Hindu Temple regularly to meditate and
participates in Sunday services there with the Hindu community.

The temple serves about 1,000 families — predominantly immigrants from
India and their children — but there are a few converts, like
Mortensen, who regularly attend services.

"I'm getting to know them (the Indians)," she said. "They're usually
surprised at first — but I remind them I'm Hindu by telling them my
Hindu name." Mortensen took the Sanskrit name Tulasi in a ritual in
which she vowed to follow Hindu teachings and practices.

On May 29, Morales will lead a ritual in Council Bluffs for 20 or more
people who are becoming Hindus. He estimates that about 1.5 million
Americans nationwide have converted to Hinduism.

Stephanie Guilfoyle, another of Morales' students who lives in Omaha,
was raised Lutheran and converted to Catholicism when she got married,
but about 10 years ago began studying different forms of Buddhism.
That eventually led her to Hinduism, since the Buddha was himself a
practicing Hindu.

"I was searching for the truth — I was searching for the root of all
the traditions I had studied," she said. "When I read the Bhagavad
Gita, I felt, `This is what all the other religions are saying, but
it's in the purest form, the most undiluted.'"

In the Gita, Krishna teaches Arjuna about the nature of the soul and
about the difference between eternal reality and the changing world of
sensory experience. The ultimate destiny of all people, Krishna says,
is union with God.

She described Morales as a gifted teacher who helped the meaning of
the text come alive.

John Granger, who grew up in a Catholic family and attended a Jesuit
high school, became an agnostic at age 17 and didn't become a believer
again until he discovered Hinduism at age 44.

"Hinduism seems to fit my spiritual path, but it was a path I was on
anyway," he said.

Granger enjoys the richness of the Hindu tradition, which is reflected
in the many different deities represented in the Omaha temple. The
temple has 12 separate sanctums, or altars, each with one or more
statues representing different incarnations of God. People from
various parts of India have certain deities that they honor, so Hindus
of all backgrounds feel comfortable in the Omaha temple.

Ram Bishu, a University of Nebraska-Lincoln engineering professor and
chairman of the temple's religious committee, said the temple was
created primarily as a center of worship and teaching for people from
India who live in Nebraska and Iowa. But, he added, "We're totally
comfortable" with people of other religious backgrounds visiting or
participating in prayers and rituals.

"Hinduism is not a proselytizing religion," he said. "We have no
formal way of converting someone to Hinduism. It's a very
individualistic religion."

Bishu noted that many Americans practice yoga as an exercise
technique, or a way of calming their mind, but most are not aware of
the spiritual side of yoga as taught at the temple. Some people may go
to the temple because they're studying yoga and want to learn more
about its origins and deeper meaning, he said.

Many church groups visit the temple seeking to learn about Hinduism
and promote inter-religious understanding.

"Hinduism is a religion of tolerance," Morales said. His goal as a
teacher, he said, is not to preach but to explain the religion and
offer "a supportive environment" for individual spiritual growth.

Department of Justice
Office of Justice Programs
Bureau of Justice Assistance

Diversity Series: Religions, Cultures and Communities (NCJ 212664)

The Chicago Police Department

Disc 1: Religions (Disc 2: Cultures)

Part 7: Hinduism

There are 8 parts to this disc: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8

This item is part of the collection: Open Source Movies

Producer: Chicago Police Department
Audio/Visual: sound, color
Language: English

I was reading up on Kundalini. I had read about Gopi Krishna and his experiences. But this I had not:

Now what I am saying, and what has been revealed to me, is not what the intellect would presume. For instance, consider the nuclear weapons and the present political situation of the world. We would suppose that a war would annihilate all mankind or at least destroy a large part of the populations. <b>What is revealed to me is that natural events will coincide in such a way with our preparations for war or our actual conflicts as to minimize the destruction.</b> It may be, considering the whole bulk of humanity, only a superficial injury. It will not be a fatal injury. It will not be even a grave wound. But it will be enough to turn men from their present course.
It is surprising that Baba Ramdev has kept such "AchArya-s" in his Ashram! Or one hopes there is a larger purpose not meeting the eye.

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>If not Om, then Allah, God will also do for Ramdev’s yoga</b>

Dehradun, November 4 : In a bid to popularise yoga among people other than Hindus, Baba Ramdev has said one can initiate the exercise without pronouncing the word ‘Om’ and can substitute it with ‘Allah’ or ‘God’. Ramdev’s Haridwar-based Patanjali Yogapeeth has asked its Christian and Muslim followers to begin yoga with a prolonged utterance of Allah or God.

“Our aim is to connect science with yoga for the betterment of mankind. Why should anybody not enjoy the benefits of yoga because of reservation to utter ‘Om’,” said Acharya Balkrishan of Patanjali Yogapeeth.

“<span style='color:red'>Baba Ramdev believes that yoga might be a gift to mankind from rishis and yogis but it is not Hinduism</span>. It is meant for everyone. Yoga cannot be restricted on the lines or religion and community. It is meant to enlighten the entire humanity,” he told The Indian Express.

Acharya Balkrishan further pointed that the pronunciation of ‘Om’ causes positive resonance in one’s body and <b>‘Om’ itself is not connected to any faith or community. “None of the religious images come to your mind when you say ‘Om’. It’s universal. </b> Its prolonged utterance gives maximum benefit to scholars of yoga. However, it can be substituted with ‘Allah’ or ‘God’,” he said.

The Patanjali Yogapeeth has set up Yoga Samities in 560 districts across the country to propagate the ancient asanas and pranayaam techniques. “We have hundreds of yoga teachers in the country who are Muslims. They don’t have any opposition to the word ‘Om’. A large number of Muslim and Christian students are also learning various asanas and pranayaam in different states,” said Balkrishan.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
<b>Sri Siksastakam </b>

8 slokas composed by Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu before he left abode on 14th June, 1533.

Ceto-darpana-marjanam bhava-maha--davagni-nirvapanam
sreyah-kairava-candrika-vitaranam vidya-vadhu-jivanam
anandambudhi-vardhanam prati-padam purnamrtasvadanam
sarvatma-snapanam param vijayate sri-krsna-sankirtanam

namnam akari bahudha nija-sarva-saktis
tatrarpita niyamitah smarane na kalah
etadrsi tava krpa bhagavan mamapi
durdaivam idrsam ihajani nanuragah

trnad api sunicena
taror api sahisnuna
amanina manadena
kirtaniyah sada harih

na dhanam na janam na sundarim
kavitam va jagad-isa kamaye
mama janmani janmanisvare
bhavatad bhaktir ahaituki tvayi

ayi nanda-tanuja kinkaram
patitam mam visame bhavambudhau
krpaya tava pada-pankaja-
sthita-dhuli-sadrsam vicintaya

nayanam galad-asru-dharaya
vadanam gadgada-ruddhaya gira
pulakair nicitam vapuh kada
tava nama-grahane bhavisyati

yugayitam nimesena
caksusa pravrsayitam
sunyayitam jagat sarvam
govinda-virahena me

aslisya va pada-ratam pinastu mam
adarsanan marma-hatam karotu va
yatha tatha va vidadhatu lampato
mat-prana-nathas tu sa eva naparah

This is another sloka which is very popular

To avoid bad dreams Rama Skhanda - said before sleeping</b>

Rama Skanda hanumantam vaikadeyam vrukodaram
Sayane sa smaren nityam dus-swapnam tasya nashyati


Achyutham kaes(h)avam vishNum harim somam janaardhanam
Hamsam naaraayaNam krishNam japaeth duhsvapna s(h)anthayae
It seems that the fame of bhoja reaches upto Mongolia where he is a popular folk hero called "ArajI bUjI". It seems some of the stories about bhojadeva and thirty-two statuettes and vikrama and vetAla, are so popular in Mongolia that these are even transmitted from there to Russia and Germany. At least one or two of the tales as found in the telugu original are to be found even in Grimm's Fairy Tales. Looks like a bauddha/tantra transmission from India to tibet and mongolia.

And for all the discussion on Sun and female names on some other thread: It seems in Mongolia, Sun is revered as a devI and called "tngrI-yin keuken-naran-dAkini" literally meaning "Goddess Sun, the Daughter of heavens". (So it appears in a Mongolean recension of vikramArka-charita). Of course I know nothing more, HH might throw some light.
<!--QuoteBegin-Bodhi+Jan 5 2009, 07:28 PM-->QUOTE(Bodhi @ Jan 5 2009, 07:28 PM)<!--QuoteEBegin-->It seems in Mongolia, Sun is revered as a devI and called "tngrI-yin keuken-naran-dAkini" literally meaning "Goddess Sun, the Daughter of heavens".  (So it appears in a Mongolean recension of vikramArka-charita).  Of course I know nothing more, HH might throw some light.
[right][snapback]92718[/snapback][/right]<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->Might the Sun being considered a female divinity in Mongolia be an indigenous Mongolian tradition? I think in Japan, the Sun is a female Goddess also. Her name is Amaterasu or something. Yes, check:
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>The Japanese Shinto sun goddess,</b> ruler of the Plain of Heaven, whose name means 'shining heaven' or 'she who shines in the heavens'. She is the central figure in the Shinto pantheon and the Japanese Imperial family claims descent from her 1. She is the eldest daughter of Izanagi. She was so bright and radiant that her parents sent her up the Celestial Ladder to heaven, where she has ruled ever since.

When her brother, the storm-god Susanowa, ravaged the earth she retreated to a cave because he was so noisy. She closed the cave with a large boulder. Her disappearance deprived the world of light and life. Demons ruled the earth. The other gods used everything in their power to lure her out, but to no avail. Finally it was Uzume who succeeded. The laughter of the gods when they watched her comical and obscene dances aroused Amaterasu's curiosity. When she emerged from her cave a streak of light escaped (a streak nowadays people call <b>dawn</b>). The goddess then saw her own brilliant reflection in a mirror which Uzume had hung in a nearby tree. When she drew closer for a better look, the gods grabbed her and pulled her out of the cave. She returned to the sky, and brought light back into the world.

Later, she created rice fields, called inada, where she cultivated rice. She also invented the art of weaving with the loom and taught the people how to cultivate wheat and silkworms.

Amaterasu's main sanctuary is Ise-Jingue situated on Ise, on the island of Honshu. This temple is pulled down every twenty years and then rebuild in its original form. <b>In the inner sanctum she is represented by a mirror (her body). She is also called Omikami ("illustrious goddess") and Tensho Daijan (in Sino-Japanese pronunciation).</b><!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->More about Amaterasu

The Sun being a Goddess might be common to other E Asian countries as well, perhaps? Worth investigating.
<b>"Indian Shravan Kumar on pilgrimage in Nepal" </b>

Kathmandu, IANS:

Native of Wargi village in India's Madhya Pradesh state a devoted Indian son has been on a foot pilgrimage to Hindu shrines for 13 years, carrying his 83-year-old blind mother Kirti Devi on his shoulders.

A devoted Indian son, who hit the headlines in his own country for embarking on a 13-year pilgrimage carrying his blind mother, has now touched the heart of neighbour Nepal, where people are likening him to an epic character hailed as the perfect son.

"Indian Shravan Kumar on pilgrimage in Nepal," Nepal's Maoist-controlled official media said Sunday, carrying a front-page photograph of the native of Wargi village in India's Madhya Pradesh state who has been on a foot pilgrimage to Hindu shrines for 13 years, carrying his 83-year-old blind mother Kirti Devi on his shoulders.

The frail 36-year-old, wearing the saffron dhoti favoured by Hindu pilgrims, his torso bare and his long hair tied on the top of his head, has become an object of admiration and awe in Nepal's Janakpur town in southern Dhanusha district where he has arrived to offer worship at the famed Ram and Janaki temple.

Towns people, especially women, are flocking to see the Indian, who carries a bamboo pole on his shoulder from which are slung two wicker baskets.

In one of them, sits his mother Kirti Devi, clad in white and garlanded by people. In the other, to balance her weight, are the meagre possessions of the pair, topped by a photograph of his father Ram Shripal, who died when he was only 10.

His real name is Kailash Giri. But moved by his filial devotion, people call him the Shravan Kumar of modern times.

According to the Indian epic Ramayan, Shravan Kumar was a devoted son who carried his blind parents on his shoulders and tended to them selflessly. He was killed by the mighty King Dasharath on a dark stormy night when he had gone to fetch water for his thirsty parents and the king shot him with his arrow, mistaking him to be a deer.

"It is now 13 years, two months and eight days that I have been travelling with my mother," the Indian wayfarer told the state-run Gorkhapatra daily.

The seeds of the journey were sown when Giri, an eight-year-old, fell from a tree and broke his hand.

He says it was healed due to his mother incessantly praying for his recovery. As she pledged to the gods that she would offer her thanks at a holy shrine, Giri, when he became an adult, began carrying her to shrines all over India to make her wish come true.

Though the mother and son are penniless, wherever they go, villagers offer them food and shelter. Women come to touch the blind mother, in the hope that their sons would be as filial as hers.

After visiting the Ram and Janaki temple in Nepal, Giri will head for Sitamarhi in Bihar across the border to visit the Janaki temple there.

The journey of love and piety, the devoted son told the daily, would end after reaching the Dwarka temple in Gujarat.

Besides making his mother's wish come true, the son, who remained a bachelor to look after her, has another mission.

He wants to send out the message that parents are a son's gods and should be served to the best of one's ability.

At a time Nepal is angered by allegations of encroachment by India on its territory and the recent assault of Nepali students in a train in Bahraich in Uttar Pradesh, the Indian Shravan Kumar's humble visit goes a long way in creating camaraderie between the two neighbours.
^ So beautiful ^

Oh, what is this scion of RaghuRama doing wandering about the countryside with his beautiful irresistible heart all exposed? Doesn't he know some unscrupulous characters would like to pocket it? It's shining temptingly all the way to here. Oooh, it's just temporarily blinded me in one eye. Okay, in both now.
Illegal beauty.
Good that I can type without looking.... Someone better arrange security for him and his lovely mother to protect them from being nabbed by the ... uhhhh ... less than worthy.

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Besides making his mother's wish come true, the son, who remained a bachelor to look after her, has another mission.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->I'm sure Maithli herself would have incarnated again and awaits beautiful dutiful son Rama (aptly named Kailasha Giri now) at the end of his journey. May they together have many thousands of children just like my Gods and look after his Mother. Aashirvadam to all three

<i>Thanks</i> for posting, Bodhi.
Thanks for the link,

whats your opinion on him HH?

Isn't wool a natural fire retardant? Wool blankets etc...
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Isn't wool a natural fire retardant? Wool blankets etc...

I agree wool does not easily catch fire. I do not know much of this tAntrika except that he is from a lineage of respectable scholars from the mahAraTTa country settled in the Tamil country. Whether there is something more to the siddhi he is exhibiting in those videos needs to be looked at more thoroughly. I have heard from a reliable eyewitness that he performed a similar thing in Bangalore some time back.
Regarding beef eating that *may* have been the case as Alberuni says that it was allowed before Krishna's time & Sangam Tamizh literature has several references to it according to an article I read. Note that one has to be proficient in both languages to make any conclusive comment which I am not, here is the article for those interested.
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Beef Eating in the Ancient Tamizhagam

K. V. Ramakrishna Rao

A paper presented during the 57th session of Indian History Congress held at Madras from December 27-29, 1996.

Introduction: Eating of fish, mutton, beef, venison, meat in general is found in many references in the ancient Tamil literature, hereinafter mentioned as "Sangam literature" for convenience1. Though, emphasis has been given for food produced with the combination of water and earth and thus, rice eating or vegetarian food2, it is evident that a differentiation between vegetarian and non-vegetarian food was not made in those days. Surprisingly, there have been many references which reveal about mixing of both vegetarian and non-vegetarian food together and taking by the ancient Tamils3. This again goes to prove that religious restriction was not there or religion did not play any role in the food habits.

Though, scholars4 previously discussed about cattle-raiding / lifting vividly and compared with "gogharana" of Vedic / Sanskrit literature, the subject of beef eating has not been discussed by them. Definitely, they were perplexed by observing the contradictory habit of beef-eating by the so-called "cattle-protectors". They have dealt with the subject on the basis of so called "Brahmanical interpretation" or "Sanskrtic interpretation" and perhaps, thus totally missed the significance or prevalence of beef-eating in the supposedly "Aryanized" Tamil / Dravidian society.

The transition from beef-eating to cow deification leading to banning of the former must have taken place during the complete change over of the social factors with the strong religious and political conditions and compulsions, that too within a short period, as it could not have been implemented immediately. Then, the society should have been conducive and favourable enough to accept such change.

Man has every right to eat anything. He can eat beef, mutton, pork, fish, venison or meat of any animal or bird. If he wants, he can eat man also, as history is replete with many such examples. During food shortage, the concept of "survival of the fittest" works faithfully according to the principles of natural selection and evolution. Then, when he must have shunned a particular flesh for eating? Why he should have stopped eating man at a particular time? Why vegetarianism should be advocated against non-vegetarianism? The answers to these questions should be found only in the cultured, refined, advanced and civilized society. When the ancient Tamils stopped beef-eating, shunned meat and advocated vegetarianism, definitely such exigency could have arisen due to well planned design to change.

Different words used for meat: Many words have been used in the literature to denote meat of different varieties5. They are Un (meat), Thu, Thasai (flesh), Thadi, Ninam (fat), Pulal (dried meat with smell / dried salt-fish), Vidakkudai, Muri (removed flesh) characteristically.

References found about Beef-eating: The specific references found in the Sangam literature about beer-eating are mentioned and discussed.

Mazhavar ate the flesh of a fatty cow in the palai (desert) region (Agam.129:12).

The place where Mazavar killed a calf and ate its flesh was filled with the bad smell (pulal visum) of meat, again in the palai region (Agam.249:12-13).

A fatty cow was sacrificed at the bottom of a neem tree where a God resided, its blood sprinkled and then its flesh cooked by the Mazhavar – Vetch virar – warriors who captured cows during their raids from the depradators – Karandai, again in the palai region (Agam.309:1-5).

A Panan, with the instrument "Tannumai" killed a calf, stripped off and ate its flesh, in the marudha region (Nat.310.9). As the instrument is mentioned along with his act of killing a calf, it may be implied that the leather used for it might be that of a calf. Tannumai is a leather instrument, used to beat to drive away cattle lifter and Aralai kalavar or to warn about their presence and attack. Here, the irony is the "Tannumai" made of calf-leather is to be used to drive away the "cattle-lifters", though, the "Tannumai"-player happened to be – not only a beef-eater, but also not a "cattle-protector". Therefore, from the above references, Mazhavar, Aalai kalvar, Panar resorted to beef-eating.

Leather usage and Cattle-killing: Leather usage implies obtaining such leather from the dead or killed cattle. References are there how leather was obtained after the death of bull / ox. Agananuru and Purananuru6 refer to it: In a bull fight, the victorious bull is taken and its leather is used for the manufacture of Royal drum / tabour, implying the skin of fallen bull / or ox after killing is used for the purpose mentioned and the flesh for eating. Accordingly, it is evident that bull / ox was killed wantonly for the purpose mentioned. But, again there was no evidence for killing a cow in the context.

The references found about the usage of such leather for drums / tabours are as follows:

ó  The skin of an Ox, which was without any blemish and not used in any other work, was used to cover the drum (Madu.732-733).

ó  The skin of a beautiful Ox, which daringly killed a tiger, was selected for covering the drum (Agam.334).

ó  Two Bulls were selected and made them to fight. Of which, the winner's skin was used for the drum (Puram.288).

Why Beef should be eaten? Eating of flesh of cow or for that matter any animal, that too raw with blood, shows the status of the evolutionary man at lower pedestal determined by archaeological factors. Then, justification of beef-eating based on the following arguments put forward by advanced, civilized and scientific man do not hold water:

Beef is nutritious, cheaper, easily available, and digestible – cow-protection can thus be controlled effectively. Cows are bred and protected for their value.
Scientific and rational – though sanctioned in a particular religion etc., there is no meaning in continuance of keeping the aged cattle.

Therefore, if the ancient Tamils were eating beef, mutton, meat, fish etc., singing Sangam poems, then, their status should be carefully assessed. Again, it may be noted that beef-eating in such an advanced, civilized and refined state would not deprive their status.

How were cows available for killing? Was there any organized cow killing during Sangam period for beef-eating with abattoirs? The answer is definitely not, as we do not come across breeding of cows, capturing cows of others – using, buying cows from others for the purpose, milking till they last and then killing for beef and leather. The act of Mazhavar / Kalvar / Panar shows their barabaric, uncivilized and uncultured nature, as there are references, where they used to kill travelers also irrespective of their status and hide their bodies covering7. Again, it is not specifically mentioned in the literature as to whether they were keeping the human bodies for concealing from others to hide their inhuman crime or for other purposes to suspect cannibalism. Then, one cannot become wild, when it was prevalent in the golden age of Sangam literature or "Aryans" cannot be blamed for.

If the "Aryanization" had been complete and total or the influence of Jains and Buddhists was so predominant, then, the ancient Tamil literature should not have given a mosaic food habit of the Tamils.  Archaeological evidences of megalithic culture8, which have been compared with the Sangam, period as depicted by the literature itself give such mosaic picture with contradicting food habits. The main problem is due to the clear mixing up of poems together belonging to different periods under the category of "Sangam literature" restricted it to c.500 BCE to 500 CE or 300 BCE to 300 CE. Therefore, the issue should be analyzed without racial and linguistic bias, prejudice and bigotry.

Beef-eating and Priests: Whether the "priestly class" of the Sangam society ate beef? Did "Brahmans / Brahmins" stop meat-eating to project themselves as superior to ahimsa preaching Jains? These are the interesting and crucial questions to be covered in the context.

The presence of a priestly class in a society should be a normal indicator for an established religion or popular religion acceptable to the majority of people, so their influence could create an impact on the fellow members. However, such a priestly class of the Sangam society should only be "Brashmans / Brahmins" as has been popularly believed is not supported by the Sangam literature, as no "Brahman / Brahmin" word is found.

Though, P. T. Srinivasa Iyengar discussed about "Brahmans" eating meat quoting Kapilar, but he was silent about his reference about rice-eating (Puram.337:13-15). Kapilar addresses to a Chera king, "Your hands have become hard due to warfare and giving alms to poets, whereas, the hands of poets have become soft, as they used to sing about you and eat smelling meat, seasonings of food, curry and boiled with rice with meat" (Puram.14:12-14). Again, at another place, when he leaves Parambunadu, he praises it, "You used to provide us opened jars filled with liquor, slayed rams, boiled rice and curry with friendship. Now, as Pari was dead, I am going away from you ………(Puram.113:1-3). Taking these references, P. T. Srinivasa Iyengar interprets that Kapilar himself as desiring them as reward of his poems. However, none has pointed out significantly that they ate beef also. The famous and favourable argument put forward by some scholars is that the meat / beef-eating Brahmans suddenly stopped it to promote cow-protection to project themselves to superior to ahimsa-preaching Jains or they had to fight the atheistic Jains and Buddhists were preaching and practicing non-violence, they should and could not have been so cruel to meat / beef eating, so that the Brahmans could found an ingenous trict to take over them.

The glaring example of Kalabras and their attitude towards Tamils, in spite of their Jaina or Buddhist religious affiliation is a clear mark of contradiction. So also the contradicting position of the meat eating Buddhists, as they were preaching love, ahimsa etc., at one side and eating meat at another side. Definitely, this must have created a strong impression upon the minds of the men and women of Sangam society. If we take the example of Kapilar, it can be said that only certain Parppar ate meat, but not all Parppar. Moreover, nothing is mentioned to prove that Andanar, Aruthozhilalar, Aravor, Maraiyavar, Muppirinulor, Pusurar, Vedhiyar, Mudhalvar, Kuravar and other classes of Sangam society, who are also considered as "Brahmans / Brahmins" ate meat. As the Vela Parppar were cutting conch shells and manufacturing bangles, there might have been some Parppar eating meat as referred to by Kapilar.

Incidentally, the conch-shell bangle manufacture involves removal of fleshy material from inside, cleaning it and then used for further processing. A Brahman by nature might not be accustomed to do such undesirable act. Therefore, a question arises as to whether he himself does such work or the Vela-Parppan group received cleaned conch-shells for cutting, sawing, polishing and painting completing the process of manufacture.

Therefore, as for as Tamizhagam is concerned, the argument that "Brahmans / Brahmins" ate beef or stopped beef eating to browbeat Jains and Buddhists in their maneuvers has no basis at all, as nothing is mentioned in the Sangam literature. The failure of Jainism and Buddhism in Tamizhagam proves the impossibility of co-existence of contradictory precept, preaching and practices. Therefore, if beef-eating Brahmins were performing yagnas or cow were sacrificed during yagnas, definitely, they would have been opposed by the public for their contradiction or totally wiped out from the society or they would not have been recognized and respected. What had happened to Jains and Buddhists should have happened to them also. But, that the atheist groups dwindled down proves the minimal acceptance of such contradicting practices. If general public had hated anything against their culture, tradition and heritage, definitely, such practices could not have been imposed on them, whether such method of imposition was carried out overtly or covertly with authority or submission.

When Cow was deified? The cow protecting communities were living in the Mullai region of the Sangam geography, Mayon (the Black one) or Tirumal (sacred mountain, ancient mountain, Black) or Nediyon (the Lengthy / Tall One, Great) was their God, who is identified with Vishnu or Krishna. Though, Indra Vizha (festival of Indra, the god of Marudha nilam) is mentioned, deification of cow or festival of cows is not found. Neither he nor Mayon is implied as "Govindan or "Gopalan" (= protector or saviour of cows). As Krishna stopped the celebration of festival meant for Indra, after his victory over him and advised their followers to celebrate the same in the his name, there should have been some "Vizha" commemorating him, but we do not find any festival meant for Mayon, except "Tainniradal" by women. The name "Kannan" equivalent to of "Krishna" has been so popular in the literature, as even pots have it as suffixes. As he is the god of mullai region, automatically, the cow should have also received due respect theologically. As Pongal festival has closely been associated with cow deification and the culture of the ancient Tamils, it is implied that such deification of cow might have begun, as supported by the Neolithic / megalithic cattle keepers, periodical burning of cow-pans etc. however, deification of cow is also not found in the Sangam literature, in spite of many references about cow and cattle-raidings and this, again clearly proves the independent food habit of the ancient Tamils or non-infiltration of the so called "Aryan influence" or principles of the Tamil society.

The different words used for cow in the literature are – a, an, aninam, aniral, avinam, anirai etc. The Vedic names for cow are aghnya, ahi, aditi etc. In fact, they mean aghnya = not to be killed, ahi = not to be slaughtered, aditi = not to be cut into pieces. Therefore, it is evident, that the Tamil words used to denote cow also started to convey such meaning and thus, they were to be protecxted by Kings and others.

Protectors of Cows: Though, Kovalar, Idaiyar, Kongar, Ayar, Andar and other communities specifically lived depending upon cattle with Mayon as their God, it could not prevent Mazhavar / aralai kalvar of Palai from preventing killing of cows and beef-eating, even though, they were also supposedly worshipping Kotravai, who is nothing but sister-in-law of Mayon, according to the interpretation of the commoners. On the other hand, the cattle lifters were Kalvar, Mazhavar, Panar, Maravar and Vadugar. And all were part of the Sangam society and considered "Dravidians". But, how then certain groups of "Dravidians" had been "cow-slaughterers" and some others "Cow-protectors" is not known.

Protection of Cows: the emphasis is given in the literature for the protection of cows is also noted9. Netrimaiyar (Velalar by caste), a Tamil poet records that cows having the character of weak should be protected, by grouping such categories – cow, women and the sick. Another poet, Alattur Kizhar (Vellalar) notes that the crime of cutting off of a udder of a cow tops the list of heinous crimes committed by anybody. Then comes the destruction of foetus of pregnant ladies and crime committed against "kuravar", implying priestly class. Tiruvalluvar10 also emphasizes in more or less in the same way. He says that there is redemption for any sin / crime committed against good act, but not against ingratitude. Again in another place, he points out that if ruler does not rule or protect properly, the fruits of cows would decrease and those with six duties (Arutozhilalatr) forget their books / scriptures. Therefore, it is evident that the respect for cows and its protection got importance in the Sangam society. Moreover, another important point should be noted is that why Velalar should advocate cow protection, while Anthanar / Parppar poet Kapilar was aping for meat, if not for beef. Tiruvalluvar is quoted here, as he has been totally against flesh-eating of anykind.

Yagnas and Cows: Vedic infiltration has been detected at many places, because of the performance of yagna by the Tamil kings and so on. Palyagasalai Mudhukudimi Peruvazhudhiyan, as his name connotes a Pandya King, performer of many yagnas with lengthy tuft, but not in a poem referring to his yagnas records about the cow sacrifice. Rasasuyam was also performed by a Chola King by earning name "Rasasuyam Vettiya Perungilli". But, no reference of sacrifice of "horse" in Rasasuyam is there, though goat was sacrificed repeatedly by Velan to please Murugu / Muruga / Murugan during Veriyadal. If beef-eating was so intimately connected with or mandatory for yagnas, then, definitely, it should have been mentioned to record its performance.

Sanction and Prohibition of Beef: Sanction or prohibition of eating anything starts from the association of it with God, Prophet or religion itself. Ample examples can be seen in the world religious literature about such evolution as pointed out by Frazer, Blavatsky and others. Depending upon myth, theology and social necessity, such evolution mostly embraces economic factors. That is why economic or social necessity gets sanctified with religious order or political dominance with authority enforced. So also prohibition starts for producing counter factors. Thus, what is sanctioned in one religion is prohibited in another religion and vice versa. Thus, beef-eating, pork-eating, carrion-flesh eating, fish eating etc., are sanctioned and prohibited in the world religions.

Beef eating and yagna practices were definitely prevalent among the ancient Tamils. Therefore, if combination of such could have been effected, had they been really any such affinity between and necessity for them. Even, the invading, alien culture imposing or "dominating Aryans" could have manipulated it seizing the wonderful prevailing opportunity. But, neither the Aralai kalvar stopped their beef-eating without yagnas nor the "Aryanized kings" performed yagnas killing cows. Here, the "Aryan-Dravidian" interpretation falls down completely.

Chronological Puzzles: Moreover., the Jaina and Buddhist infiltration could have been taken place during 3rd. century BCE. But, their scholarly works, mostly covered under Padinemkizhkanakku, which strongly advocate non-abstinence from meat, praise of vegetarianism etc., are dated to 1st to 8th cent. CE. Therefore, if the priestly class was already sacrificing cows in the yasgnas and eating beef, why they should have started to write against it later period? Why their persecution should start in the 8th cent. CE, when they were already supporting vegetarianism, non-eating of meat etc?

It is also intriguing to note the Neolithic and megalithic Tamils with Iron technology were composing Sangam literature and leading refined, cultured and advanced social life as depicted in the literature itself, but historians dub them as living in "barabaric condition" or in a "tribal state" without any "state formation".

Archaeological Evidences: There are many archaeological evidences found at Neolithic and megalithic burials prove the mixed food habit of the ancient Tamils11. Lower Neolithic people were leading pastoral life heavily depending upon cattle and agriculture, tallying with the depiction of mullai region. Upper neoloithic people were practicing mixed farming, a combination of fishing  (hooks found), hunting (different hunting implements, charred bone showing roasting of meat, cut marks on the bones proving the extraction of marrow from them etc) and gathering (deer, squirrel, tortoise, udumbu = guna lacerta ignana etc), domestication of animals (cattle, sheep, pigs, fowls – Gaudhar = patridge, kadai = quail etc) and agriculture (growing rice, ragi, maize, millets, horse gram etc).

The nature of settled life led is proved by the megalithic evidences. Food habits show more or less the same pattern as that of Neolithic culture with more refined implements. Use of ferrous and non-ferrous technology was however prevalent with both the cultures. As the archaeological evidences of both cultures overlap or exhibit almost similar structure and carbon datings have extremities of c.3000 to 300 BCE, a thorough study in consonance with literary study may reveal further interesting details about the Sangam society.

Conclusion: Based on the above discussion, the following conclusions are arrived at:

È  Sangam society as depicted in the Sangam literature adated and adopted mixed food habit.

È  Beef-eating was prevalent in the Sangam period without any religious compulsion or restriction.

È  Aralai kalver / Mazhavar / Panar etc., ate beef. Some of the Parppar might have eaten meat, but not beef and such Parppar did not belong to priestly class or engaged in the performance of yagnas.

È  Yagnas were performed, but no cow, horse or any animal was sacrificed.

È  Mostly goat and cock were sacrificed during veriyadal and other occassins and cow in few occasions to please nature, but such sacrificial rites cannot be considered yagnas. Similarly, "Kala velvi", the so called yagnas conducted at the battle fields as depicted by the poets, is nothing to do with "velvi".

È  Chronologically, nothing could be specifically mentioned about the starting and introduction of beef-eating in the Tamizhagam based on the evidence of religion and theology.

È  Racial and linguistic interpretation does not help to find facxts about the Sangam society.

È  The exact penetration of "Krishna myth" and worship of cow as "Goddess" into the minds of the ancient Tamils must had taken place, if Mayon is a "Black Dravidian God", since time immemorial based on the literary evidence.

Notes and References

1.    In Pattuppattu and Ettuttogai, as there have been hundreds of references about the topic and sub-topics dealt with in this paper, for the sake of convenience and sace constraint only selected poem references are given.

Venison = meat of deer (Puram.33: 1-6; 152.26).

Fork (Puram.177:12-16; 379:8; Porunatru.343-345; Malai.175-177).

Elephant (Agam.106:10).

Tortoise (Puram.212:3).

Porcupine (Malai.176).

Fowl (Puram.320:11; 324:2).

2.    Puram. 18: 19-24: 186:1.

3.    Mixing of vegetarian and non-vegetarian food together:

Puram. 14:13 - Meat with rice and vegetable curry.

Venison with butter – 33:1-6

Milk with the flesh of deer – 168:12-16

Chicken, bird and fish with millet – 320:10-11.

Mutton with rice – 366:16-18

Pork roasted in ghee and mixed with rice 379:8-10.

Meat with rice mixed with milk, jaggery etc – 381:1-3.

Roasted meat in ghee mixed with rice – 382: 8-10.

Meat with rice – 391:3-6.

Rabbit meat with old rice – 395: 3-5.

Flesh of rabbit with rice – 396:12-13.

Venison with rice – 398: 13-14,

Meat, fish with fruits – 399:1-6.

Malai. 422-425; 563-566.

Agam. 60:3-6.

Natri.41:8; 45"6; 60:6; 281:6.

4.    P. T. Srinivasa Iyengar, History of Tamils from the Earliest times to 600 A. D., C. Coomarasamy Naidu & Sons, Madras, 1929, Madras.

      He, while discussing about meat-eating by Brahmans, wonders as to when and why South Indian Brahmanas (part of ancient Tamil society) gave up meat-eating being an interesting problem. He concludes that with the rise of Bakti cult and teaching kf Jainas, theyt gave up meat = eating to become first teachers of Vaishnava and Saiva Agamas (pp.121-122). Though he quiotes Kapilar to prove that Brahmans ate meat, he has not specifically noted that they ate beef also. In fact, Kailar talks about eice eating in a poem (Puram 337:14).

N. Subramaniam, Sangam Polity, Ennes Publications, Madurai, 1980.

M. G. S. Narayanan, Social History from the Text Book of Poetrics in The Sangam Age (A Study of Tolkappiyam – Section IV. Porulatikaram), Proceedings of Indian History Congress, Calcutta, 1990, p.96.

      He wonders about the cow protectors becoming cow sacrifiucers and eaters. He comments: "The cow protectors of Prof. Subramaniam appear in fierce light as cow sacrificres and cow eaters in another song in the same collection".

      He again accuses him for interpreting vetchi as the opening in war, meant for protecting the valuable life of the cows which could not protect themselves. "However, the present writer found a group of poems in Purananuru which gave an entirely different picture, singing the praise of the warrior chiefs who would go to neighboring villages, plunder the cattle and make a grand feat with meat and drink or distribute them in gifts to their followers. These poems received the true nature of the tribal practice".

But, he is totally wrong as the reference is found in Agananuru and not in Purananuru. Moreover, the so called warriors are "Mazhavar" who are in the habit of committing heinous crimes including killing the travelers as pointed out above.

C. E. Ramachandran, Ahananuru in its Historical Setting, University of Madras, Madras, 1974, pp.72-74.

      Though, references about beef-eating are available in Agananuru, he is conspicuously silent about it in his work, while discussing about food habits of the ancient Tamils.

F. R. Allchin, Neolithic Cattle Keepers of South India, Cambridge University Press, London, 1963.

      He records that the bones recovered almost all from living areas wewre mosytly cut up as if purposes of food (p.174). though over 200 specimen of cattle bones were identified, he opines that it is not clear whether this indicates the presence of two separate breeds one milch variety and the other used for transport and ploughing purposes (p.45). in introduction, he mentions about the western attitude towards cows, cowdung, cow worship, gosalas etc., (pp.ix-x).

5.    Un              Puram.14.13; 96.6; 381:1-3; 382:8

Thu            Padit.51:33.

Dhasai      Puram.14:12-16, 64:3-4; 74:1-2; 168:6-10; 235:6-7; 396:15-16;

                  Pernatru. 336, 343-345,

                  Malai. 175-177, 422-426, 563-566.

                  Agam.60:3-6; 193:6-10; 265:12-17;




Ninam        Puram.150.9; 152.26; 325:9; 396:12.

Vidakkudai Natri.281.6.

Muri          Puram. 391:5. 

6.    Agam. 334:1-3; Puram. 288: 1-4; Madurai.732-733.

7.    Nat. 252:2-3.


Agam.113:18; 161:2-4; 175:1-6; 313: 12-132.

8.    S. Gurumurthy, Archaeology and Tamil Culture, University of Madras, Madras, 1974, p.25.

      He asserts that megalithic people were living during the Sangam period and it can be put within 1000 to 500 BCE and the Sangam literature shows their cultural traits.

9.    Puram.9:1-2; 34:1.

10.  Tirukkural.110, 560.

11.  A. Ghose (Ed.), An Encyclopedia of Indian Archaeology, 2 vols.,, Munshiram Manoharlal, New Delhi, 1989.

K. S. Ramaschandran, Neolithic Cultures of India, Department of Archaeology, Madras, 1980.

B. K. Gururaja Rao, The Megalithic Culture in South India, University of Mysore, Mysore, 1982.

S. B. Deo, Problem of South Indian Megaliths, Karnatak University, Dharwar, 1974.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
I have cross checked the Purananuru reference since it's online about the fight between two bulls & it tallied.

Those who can read Sangam Tamizh may check the other references.

Now even if it was allowed that doesn't mean anything because a lot of things change with time, a long time ago & maybe even today in remote parts cannibalism was widespread ...
Interestingly when moghals were forced to become musalmAn under alA-ud-dIn khaljI, they set two conditions for their conversion, one of which was to be allowed to follow their tradition of not eating beef.
Does anyone know when tALi/mangalasutram is first mentioned in Sanskrit texts in context of the marriage rituals.

I am asking because in his translation of Silappathikaram VRR Dikshitar says that this may have been a Southern custom originally as there is no mention of it in Valmiki Ramayana during the marriage of Rama & Sita. I checked the online version & he seems to be correct about it being not mentioned:

He then says that sUtram in the sense of tALi occurs in later Smritis.

I used the Telugu pronounciation tALI, think it's tAli in Tamizh (that's what he uses in the translation).
to me ma~NgalasUtra seems to be either SI in origin, or tradition somehow preserved only here and lost out in rest of the AryAvarta, since it is not as prevalent elsewhere, and even where it is, like in North, it certainly does not have the same stature within the symbolisms, that it enjoys in the south. also dont recall coming across its mention in sources, though I could be wrong.

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