Why Is The Cow Sacred To Hindus? – 4 Logical Reasons

There is no doubt that cow is considered as holy and sacred by the Hindus. However, most people are unaware of the fact that how did cow become sacred to the Hindus. It is a puzzle not just for foreigners but for most Indians as well. As per the Hindu beliefs, the sacredness and holiness of the cow are crucial. The cow is known as Gaumata (Cow- the Mother) and Aditi (Mother of Gods). It is considered as the living symbol of Mother Earth.

The Origin

In the earlier ages, for the nomads, the cow was a vital member of the family. As agriculture was the major occupation during those times, the cow provided milk and its byproducts such as curd, honey, etcetera and other requirements of life such as fuel, manure for the farm.

It was the time of Aryans reign.  Aryans worshiped their Gods through ‘yagna’. Initially, this was a private from of worship but gradually became public in character and involved invoking the fire-god, ‘Agni’. The fire had to be kept kindling which was done through constantly feeding it with melted ghee and butter. It was through the Holy cow that these supplies could be offered to the Gods. Therefore, this association soon made the cow sacred.


Cows are greatly respected in India, Nepal and even Burma for the following reasons:

  1. During the Vedic period, cow dung was one of the main fuels in rural India which also served as a fertilizer. Even today, cow dung and cow urine is considered as a disinfectant and used to clean up home. Thus, cow provided the milk, fuel, fertilizer, and disinfectant for the Vedic people.
  2. The byproducts of cow’s milk such as ghee, butter are used for  This further adds to the religious significance to the sacredness of cow.
  3. A cow is a calm and non-threatening animal. Despite being big in size, it roams around quietly. Thus, cows stood for the goodness of Hindu religion and considered a representative of Dharma.
  4. Cow’s milk is believed to have a great calming effect and improves meditation.
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