Godaan has been practiced since ancient times when the Kings and nobles donated cows to Brahmins and others. It is said that a person should donate at least one cow in his lifetime as the benefits of donating a cow are numerous. No other donation can be compared to that of donating a cow and the one who practices a godaan receives eternal bliss as he is blessed by all the Gods.
Human Responsibility for Protecting the Cow
Protection of Cows is the single-most important principle towards saving the whole world from both moral and spiritual degradation. Simply by protection of Cows all the wonderful benefits of religiosity and piety will be automatically achieved without any separate endeavor. This is because Cows are as beloved to the Supreme Personality of God.
Our Responsibility: Human society must, therefore, maintain bulls and cows carefully. But, unfortunately they are being slaughtered in large numbers. These greatly sinful acts are responsible for so many troubles in present society. To kill cows means to end human civilization. People do not know what harm they are doing in the name of economic development. They do not realize that only by seeing that bulls and cows are happy in all respects, human society can be happy. This is a FACT by the LAWS OF NATURE.
Goshala means a shelter for cows or the house of cows (‘Go’ or ‘gau’ means cow and ‘shala’ means shelter). Until recent times every village in India had a goshala. Even today every villager who can afford it, keeps at least one cow. Some have related the high suicide rates among Indian farmers to the fact that cows are no longer kept by them.
Goshalas are also known by different names such as gau sadans, panjara pols etc. Goshalas are different from dairy farms as they house even the non-milking, old and sick cows. They survive on donations from people and are known to lovingly take care of cows till they are alive. Giving a Cow to a Goshala along with donation for its upkeep to save it from being slaughtered or left on the road to fend for itself is the best form of Godaan.
Hindus consider the cows to be sacred and its sanctity has a sentimental and spiritual connection to them. Ancient Indian scriptures portray the cow to be a gift from the Gods and the holy cow Kaamdhenu was born from the churning of the celestial ocean. The cow is believed to have the all the pilgrimage inside her, and hence serving a cow means serving the Lord Himself.
Lord Shree Krishna was called Gopal as He used to take care of almost 900000 cows by himself. It is said that its four heels represents the four Vedas, the Trinity of Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh reside in the horns and Goddess Lakshmi in the cow dung. The cow symbolizes the 33 crore Gods and Goddesses of the Hindu mythology. This is the reason why several religious ashrams have goshalas in them.
According to Hindus, donating a cow is auspicious and hence several pujas services are available for the same. We have expanded our service to 90 Goshalas (caring shelters for cows) in the state of Rajasthan.
Lord Krishna states in Srimad Bhagavad-Gita: chapter 10, verse 28 "dhenunam asmi kamadhuk dhenunam" ("Among cows I am the wish fulfilling cow.") "One who gives in charity a bull becomes famous even in Swarga."- The Mahabharata
"One who donates a cow (or bull) becomes free from sin and achieves liberation for himself and 14 generations of his family members". - The Mahabharata “The cows are the mothers of all living beings and the givers of all earthly pleasures.” - Atharva Veda
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