in the scriptures, attains to high prosperity (here)
and great honours in Heaven. Such a man causes
both his paternal and maternal ancestors to the tenth
degree to attain to regions of great felicity, and
sanctifies his whole race. Kine are sacred.
They are the foremost of all things in the world.
They are verily the refuge of the universe. They
are the mothers of the very deities. They are
verily incomparable. They should be dedicated
in sacrifices. When making journeys, one should
proceed by their right (i.e., keeping them to one’s
left). Ascertaining the proper time, they should
be given away unto eligible persons. By giving
away a Kapila cow having large horns, accompanied
by a calf and a vessel of white brass for milking
her, and covered with a piece of cloth, one succeeds
in entering, freed from fear, the palace of Yama that
is so difficult to enter. One should always recite
this sacred Mantra, viz
of beautiful form. Kine are of diverse forms.
They are of universal form. They are the mothers
of the universe. O, let kine approach me!—There
is no gift more sacred than the gift of kine.
There is no gift that produces more blessed merit.
There has been nothing equal to the cow, nor will there
be anything that will equal her. With her skin,
her hair, her horns, the hair of her tail, her milk,
and her fat,—with all these together,—the
cow upholds sacrifice. What thing is there that
is more useful than the cow? Bending my head
unto her with reverence, I adore the cow who is the
mother of both the Past and the Future, and by whom
the entire universe of mobile and immobile creatures
is covered. O best of men, I have thus recited
to thee only a portion of the high merits of kine.
There is no gift in this world that is superior to
the gift of trine. There is also no refuge in
this world that is higher than kine.’
“Bhishma continued, ’That high-souled
giver of land (viz., king Saudasa), thinking these
words of the Rishi Vasishtha to be foremost in point
of importance, then made gifts of a very large number
of kine unto the Brahmanas, restraining his senses
the while, and as the consequence of those gifts,
the monarch succeeded in attaining to many regions
of felicity in the next world.’"
“Yudhishthira said, ’Tell me, O grandsire,
what is that which is the most sacred of all sacred
things in the world, other than that which has been
already mentioned, and which is the highest of all
“Bhishma said, ’Kine are the foremost
of all objects. They are highly sacred and they
rescue men (from all kinds of sin and distress).
With their milk and with the Havi manufactured therefrom,
kine uphold all creatures in the universe. O
best of the Bharatas, there is nothing that is more
sacred than kine. The foremost of all things in
the three worlds, kine are themselves sacred and capable
of cleansing others, Kine reside in a region that