Holy Cow: The Hare Krishna Contribution to Vegetarianism and Animal Rights

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Lantern Books, 2004 - Religion - 222 pages
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Hinduism scholar Steven Rosen explores the world of the Hare Krishna movement, which has been instrumental in raising awareness of vegetarianism and the plight of animals in the United States. Holy Cow begins by introducing the Hare Krishna movement and of its colorful singing and dancing, its book distribution program, and especially its restaurants, sacred food distribution, and delicious vegetarian cuisine.

Rosen returns to the early days of Indian culture, to a time when daily life was based on Vedic principles and scriptural wisdom, and shows how vegetarianism and animal rights were endorsed by the Vedic texts. Rosen reveals how a tension was created by a concomitant endorsement of animal sacrifices in ancient Indian culture, a tension that led in part to the beginnings of Jainism and Buddhism.

Rosen then examines the rise of Vaishnavism--the worship of the god Vishnu, or Krishna--and how Vaishnavites were sympathetic to vegetarianism and animal rights, showing the link between the contemporary Hare Krishna movement (ISKCON), founded in the 1960s, and the ancient Vaishnavaites and all that they have accomplished in between. Rosen looks at the "Food for Life" program, the restaurants and cookbooks, and the various forms of writing about vegetarianism and animal rights. The book also includes recipes for those who wish to taste Krishna.

In conclusion, Rosen illustrates how deeply Hare Krishna devotees have influenced the contemporary vegetarian movement and its call for ahimsa, or nonviolence, toward all living beings.

 

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Contents

Introduction
1
The Origins of the Hare Krishna Movement
3
The Movements Philosophy in Relation to Vegetarianism and Animal Rights
5
Aesthetic Ascetics
8
The Importance of Prasadam
12
A Brief History of Vegetarianism in India
17
Animal Sacrifices
19
Vegetarianism and the LongTerm Vedic Restoration Paradigm
22
Kill Versus Murder
87
Do Animals Have Souls?
103
Killing Plants Is Still Killing
109
The Ethical Implications of Vegetarianism
110
Food for life
113
The Distinguishing Quality
115
ISKCON Food Relief Origins
117
FFL Success Stories
120

Looking at the Sacrifices More Closely
24
For the Good of All Creatures
27
Vegetarianism and Nonviolence
30
The Lords Mercy
33
Indias Sacred Cows
35
Krishna the Blue Cowherd Boy
37
Mother of Mankind
44
Mother of Necessity
47
ISKCON and Cow Protection
54
Ayurveda and the Three Modes of Material Nature
59
A Closer Look at Ayurveda
61
The Personal Approach
63
Back to ISKCON
65
The Yoga of Balance
66
Doctors of the Soul
69
The Three Modes of Material Nature
71
Thou Shalt Not Kill
75
Analysis of the Sixth Commandment
84
Victory in Chechnya
124
What the Future Holds
127
Restaurants and Cookbooks
129
The Next Phase
132
Govindas Restaurants et al
134
Jerry Abrams Prasadam Cart
139
Books That Cook
142
Adiraja and The Higher Taste
143
Yamuna Makes Waves
145
Kurmas Culinary Conquests
151
Recipes for the Soul
157
The Taste of Krishna
158
The Real Ingredient
170
Afterword
175
Notes
183
Appendix
195
Index
215
Copyright

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About the author (2004)

Steven Rosen is the author of some twenty books on Hindu-related subjects. He is an initiated disciple of Srila A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada and the editor-in-chief of the Journal of Vaishnava Studies, a peer-refereed academic journal focusing on the culture and philosophy of Vaishnava-Hinduism. He lives in upstate New York.

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