Gau Mata

The sanctity of cows and bulls is a frequently misunderstood tenet of the Vedic tradition. This tenet is not grounded in mythology or sentiment. Adherents of the Vedic culture appreciate the valuable service cows and bulls render human beings by providing milk and tilling the land, and they know that, of all animals, cows and bulls are especially dear to Lord Krsna, who is also known as Govinda, or "one who gives pleasure to the cows."

Gita-nagari, a farm community of Krsna devotees in central Pennsylvania, is home for around 150 cows, bulls, and calves. These animals will never see a slaughterhouse, even when they are old and unproductive, for the devotees at Gita-nagari will not forget the service the cows once rendered and Lord Krsna's fondness for them.

The Gita-nagari scenes on these pages are accompanied by texts, sometimes paraphrased, from the writings of His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. Srila Prabhupada mentions cows and bulls many times in his books, sometimes indirectly, as in analogies, and other times directly, in explaining the practical functioning of an ideal agrarian community.