Beef Eating (2)

Sun Mar 2 21:04:51 UTC 1997

            Re: Beef in the Veda

Because cow slaughter was prevalent in other Indo-Iranian cultures
and Vedas and post-vedic literature attest to it, after reading 
the informative postings, I believe that beef was eaten by
Aryans. When a lady in a Wendy's TV commercial asks:
"where is the beef?", we can confidantly say "In the Vedas!"
Is it not our time-tested Indian tradition to claim that everything
comes from Vedas?

May be vegetarianism is a Pre-Vedic concept. Jainism and Buddhism
start re-emphasizing vegetarianism. In the South, there was intense
competition between Hinduism vs. Jainism/Buddhism. Land owning
Vellalas and Smarta Brahmins formed a strategic alliance in 6-9th
centuries and finished off Jainism/Buddhism from Tamil lands.
The great Bhakti literature is a product of that period.

The pattern of eating meat and its socilogical dimension interests me. 
It has a lot to do with castes, origins of pollution/purity, hierarchy, 
discrimination of people. In India, vegetarianism does not stop
with personal preferences; it is an effective weapon to achieve

An example from tamil nadu from bottom up,

Those who eat anything beef, pork,poultry, goat --> 
             Tirukkulattaar/Harijan/Adi Dravidas/Dalita etc.,

Those who eat any meat except beef, but including pork -->
             Vanniyar, etc

Those who eat poultry, fish, goat (but not beef or pork) -->
             Many non-brahman castes

non-brahman castes who are vegetarian -->
              Saiva vellalas, etc.,

Top of the Pyramid,

However - in the about 20 centuries old tamil sangam literature, there is
evidence that many of today's high castes ate beef.

1) kozhuppu Aa tinRa kuurmpaTai maRavar - akanaanuuRu, 309.5
(maRavar warriors who ate fat cow.)

2) mazhavar naaku Aa viizhttut tiRRi tinra - aka: 249.13
(mazhavar chieftains eating the tendet beef from a young calf (= veal))

In the natioanl struggle for independence, the Hindu/Hindutva leaders exhorted 
people to make beef-eating, barbaric mlEcca colonizers quit India.

N. Ganesan

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