Swami Vivekananda heralded the grandeur of Indian wisdom base in the famous Chicago speech on September 11, 1893. The yoga-spiritual lore based on consciousness-based approach for which Indian wisdom is known the world over should be re-established in India in contrast to matter-based paradigm. As proclaimed by Swamiji, India will be raised not by mere economic resurgence, skyscraper buildings and technological marvels but by resetting the values of economy as the lone goal of life towards the holistic value system of economics based on renunciation and service.
India is the land of villages even today and its reconstruction is the key need which is realised by all. But often we hasten to urbanise the rural sector through wealth and comforts forgetting the basic values. These values of India are contained in yoga-spiritual lore which can be verified by modern scientific research. Hence, yoga as a tool has to be brought to greater heights even in rural areas for achieving these goals. Yoga, not mere asanas, but as a science of holistic living featured by health, wealth and growth in tune with environment leading to harmony, happiness and peace. The cow as a symbol of these holistic values was used as a turnkey in rural Indian economy and a life of fulfilment and peace in ancient India to build ideal, social orders. Adopted, this yoga way of life symbolised by cow-based agriculture as a lifestyle can achieve vishwa mangala in the global resurgence taking place in the modern era of science and technology.
Panchgavya research is vital to understand the holistic dimensions of rural life to bring prosperity. We need to move from matter-based paradigm used in cow-breeding and dairy industry which essentially emphasises the quantity of milk and its calorie values rather than the real quality of the same. The second dimension is the new experiment in USA by setting up dairy industry for large-scale milk production on one hand and to use the male ones for beef production, on the other hand. The hazards of such a matter-based pragmatic approach without understanding the holistic dimensions of dairy industry coupled with agrucultural farming have brought such widespread hazards as increased cholesterol leading to heart attacks on one hand and colon cancer due to beef consumption, on the other hand. Similarly, the associated large-scale chemical fetilizer-based agriculture approach and use of chemical insectisides have made the agriculture land bereft of its quality leading to lesser yields year-after-year until the land becomes un-cultivable. Further the use of such agriucltural produces has shown deteriorating health standards and the organic farming has started becoming more popular. The use of tractors for large-scale cultivation and agricultural equipment for harvesting them to save human labour in a country where there was acute shortage of man-power was understandable. A blind application of those glittering results leading to green revolution in our country is showing the other face of the coin today. Now the chemical-based farming is proving to be problematic in many ways. First, it is becoming very expensive for the government to provide subsidies for chemical fertilizer. Secondly, soil fertility is degrading every year and bringing less profit, farmers often carry increasing burden of agriculture debt. Thirdly, the food that is being produced is contaminated with various carcinogenic chemical residues causing public health concerns. Fourthly, chemical farming is polluting surface water and ground water resources.
We need to move out of this matter-based mindset of looking at life as merely driven by economy which is rooted in the wisdom that matter is primary and consciousness including mind, intellect, are all off-shoots of matter, and more towards a holistic consciousness-based approach. In dealing with dairy industry and agricultural farming our ancient seers looked at life holistically made out of three gunas and the quality of cow products was emphasised. Can we produce milk for food and good health? Ghee produced of quality milk has shown that it will not increase cholesterol. Can cow urine—gou mutra—be an effective medicine for prevention of diseases and for tackling some of the modern diseases? Can applications of panchgavyas be used for organic farming for producing quality agricultural products without jeopardising the quantity? Many researchers brought out these distinct possibilities of resurrecting cow-based agriculture, milk production and panchgavya research in their presentations last year in our first interrnational conference on “Yoga, Cow and Rural Reconstruction” orgnaised at our Prashanti Kutiram campus. We bring out the highlights of the same below.
Cow, health and cancer
Govigyan Anusandhan Kendra, started in 1996 at Devalapar, has now grown and is motivating farmers to take up go adharita krishi—cow-based farming. The organisation has obtained two US patents on application of gou mutra in the field of agriculture and medicines in collaboration with reputed CIMAP and NBRI. The first patent is for a “pharmaceutical composition comprising an antibiotic and cow urine”, the second one is “use of bioactive fraction from cow urine distillate (gou mutra) as a bio-enhancer of anti-infective, anti cancer agents and nutrients”. More are in the pipeline. Till date nearly 1000 cancer patients have been treated using gou mutra arka of Indian breed cows, showing very encouraging results depending upon the stage of the disease (which has no significant side effects).
Dr RS Chouhan from the Centre of Animal Disease Research Centre in Uttar Pradesh has shown the immuno-modulation effect of cow urine distillate (Kamdhenu ark) to increase immunity in mice. It also increases the phagocyte activity of macrophages and secretion of interleukin 1 and 2. The increasing resistance in bacteria has led to modern anti-biotics, as per an estimate made by WHO by the year 2020, to be no more wonder drugs. Then panchgavya will probably play a major role in prevention and control of infections in man and animals.
This indeginous cow urine has immense potential of being used as an immunomodulator particularly with antibiotics and/or vaccines in order to enhance their activity. However, its palatability in crude form, as it is being prepared and marketed by several organisations, is not much accepted in the society. Therefore, the efforts are being made to prepare the dry form of cow urine without losing its effectiveness but changing the delivery system. The scientists of JD Lab, at CDDL, IVRI have got preliminary success and their research has shown encouraging results, which will be further strengthened. In future, it can be given as ‘biovaccine’ or universal vaccine to protect animals and man from various diseases
Scientists of New Zealand found that the milk of western breed cows is found to have a compound called ‘beta caso morphin’ which causes many diseases like Alzheimer’s, Parkinsonism, etc.
Natural curd, butter and ghee
Prof Alex Hankey, a famous scientist from University of Cambridge, UK, who got his PhD from MIT now at S-VYASA, has brought out the magical qualities of natural and traditional cows of India. Traditional ghee is regarded as a magic food, conferring vitality, good health and long life. Why? It is made of traditional curd from traditional cows. And what could be so special about that?
Only the traditional yoghurt—made of unpasteurised milk from traditional cows, in the traditional way where the natural bacteria from the cow’s udders have fermented the milk—contains the magic foods that everyone treasures—the poly-unsaturated fatty acids. Only butter and ghee made of this source contain these essential nutrients, and not that from modern, unfermented alternatives.
Cow ghee, dung and urine
Prof Selvaraj from Institute of Commercial Horticulture, Ooty, has brought out the usefulness of dung and urine in organic farming. The organic products derived from cow dung and cow urine like panchgavya, dasagavya, cow pat pit (CPP manure), cow horn manure (BD 500), bio-dynamic compost, vermi-compost, water hyacinth compost, vermiwash, agnihotra, amrutpani, beejamrut, jeevamrut, ghana jeevamrut, brahmastram, agnistram and plant extracts were tested on vegetables, cut flowers and medicinal plants. The actual quantity of application of theses products were standardised for cabbage, carrot, cauliflower, potato, celery, beans and garlic and cut flowers like carnation and gerbera and medicinal plants like rosemary and thyme. The yield increase through the convention farming system was found to be higher, i.e. 25-35 per cent in vegetables, 20-30 per cent in cut flowers and 30-40 per cent increase in medicinal plants. Besides yield, the quality increasing the resistance against pests and diseases was recorded in plants applied with dasagavya, i.e. the late blight in potato, leaf spot and root rot of cabbage and other fungal diseases in rosemary and thyme. Spraying agnihotra ash (200 gram agnihotra ash soaked in one litre cow urine for 15 days and diluted in 10 litres of water before spraying) three times on plants was reported to control the incidence of late blight of potato. Seed treatment of cabbage seeds with cow pat pit solution @ 3 g in 1 litre of water for 24 hours was found to be effective.
Cow, energy and economics
Our country spends around Rs 80,000 crore on pesticides and fertilizers. We can save this money by using gou mutra and cow dung to manufacture organic fertilizers, which can be manufactured by the farmers in their farms. The money from the sale of these organic fertilizers will directly go to farmers. A bench of Supreme Court of India has given a verdict that the cow dung is more precious than the Kohinoor diamond. Only with the help of cow-based agriculture can we achieve prosperity.
The cow-based rural economy is vital to safety and breeding of Indian natural cows in the country. The Centre for Rural Development and Technology in Delhi has pioneered in bottling the enriched biogas from goshalas. This can be a good alternate source of energy to reduce the needs of power by petroleum products.
The muscle power of the bull has been used to generate electricity by Bouin Rl electrical generator in Mysore. In Kanpur at Kanpur Goshala Society, Shri PL Toshirwal has developed a bull/bullock-driven energy devices. It is interesting to note that six bullocks can replace a tractor. Bullock carts are well known for transport and are the major sources of transport in rural areas.
Cow and sustainable agriculture
The investigations by Dr CS Nautiyal at NBRI, Lucknow, has clearly indicated the usefulness of Kamdhenu products as viable alternatives for sustainable agriculture—application of urine and dung as manure treating seeds. His objective was to look for novel microbes from a hitherto uncharacterised ecological niche. A consortium of three bacterial stains was isolated from Sahiwal cows’ milk, which gave better biological control and plant growth promotion, which has been published in international journals and patented in USA and several European countries
Adarsh gram based on cow-based lifestyle
Few years back, Government of Gujarat and Gujarat Ayurved University took a noble initiative and realised a dream of starting a Niramaya Gram Yojana—an indegineous cow-based experimental rural development project in the village, named Aishwariya, in Jamanagar District of Gujarat state. Aishwariya at that time did not have social infrastructure and December 2007 figures point out that Aishwariya is completely disease-free except for age-related degenerative disorders. The same is achieved by systematic planning and thorough implementation of the aforesaid programme.
These scientific explorations were presented at the first international conference on yoga, cow and rural reconstruction in December 2008 in Prashanti Kutiram. S-VYASA University has set up the Kamdhenu Anusandhan Kendra (KAK) in its campus to network and synergise the efforts of researchers in the field of panchgavya all over the country and to pave the way for cow-based rural life.
India believes in the prosperity and betterment of the entire world. So to have a strong nation, a respectable India, we should have strong, healthy, prosperous and happy villages. This is based on the survival of gou mata. But in the recent years, the ratio of cow has fallen from 430 cows to 110 for 1000 people The number of Indian breed species has decreased from 75 to 32. Total number of some of the species like venture, sindhi, malnadu gidda is around 100. As there is chromosomal difference between Bos Taurus (western breed) and Bos Indicus (Indian breed), cross-breeding is not at all advisable.
We invite all sections of Indian youth, women, elders, professionals, mediapersons, saints and sadhus to come and join this Vishwa Mangal Gou Gram Yatra led by honorary president Dr Pranav Pandya and supported by all top leaders of yoga and spirituality such as Baba Ramdev, Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, Maa Amritanandamayi, Swami Dayananda Saraswati and others.
(The writer is a former NASA scientist and is Vice-Chancellor of S-VYASA University, Bengaluru. He is also the working president of Vishwa Mangal Gou Gram Yatra and can be contacted at [email protected])