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On Cows and Baladev-Tattva

His Divine Grace Om Vishnupad
Srila Bhakti Nirmal Acharya Maharaj
Kolkata-Worldwide, 2 August 2020, part 3


Question: Could you please explain the meaning of cow seva? Why do we keep cows at the ashrams and why is this service meaningful to you and Srila Gurudev?

Actually, there are many reasons why we do cow seva. Krishna always likes cows, and if we can make cows happy, Krishna will always be happy. Another thing is that you know that when Brahma hid all the cows of Govardhan in a cave, Krishna created all cows again from His bodily hair—so, the cows came from Krishna's body. Also, if you worship and serve cows, it means you automatically worship all 330,000,000 demigods because all demigods reside within the body of a cow.

Also, the situation in India is like that. Why do I keep cows in all our branches? I have left the Nabadwip temple, but I arrange cow seva in all our branches, all our temples. There are cows even at the ladies' ashram (ladies serve the cows there), there are new cows even at Nrisingha Palli now, and so on. One more reason for this is that we need milk for sweet rice, we need milk to make paneer, etc., but the milk they sell here in India is called 'white water' or 'lime water.' So, if we serve cows and can get pure milk, we can make sweet rice, etc. with it. Devotees also must always take protein food, and you all know (science tells it) that cow's milk contains not only protein, but also six kinds of vitamins.

For all these reasons, we should serve cows if it is possible. Not everybody has such an opportunity because there is often no space or devotees do not get time to serve cows, but those who have an ashram and some land, they can keep and serve cows and use the milk for the Deities, that is good.

Question: What is the significance of the dream where Nityananda Prabhu and Balaram fought, and Nityananda beat Balaram?

Sachi Mata saw that dream. Nityananda Prabhu is non-different from Balaram. The significance of this is found in Sri Chaitanya-charitamrita. It is said there,

sankarsanah karana-toya-sayi garbhoda-sayi cha payobdhi-sayi
sesas cha yasyamsa-kalah sa nitya-nandakhya-ramah saranam mamastu

"May Sri Nityananda Rama be the object of my constant remembrance. Sankarsan, Sesa Naga and Visnus lying on the Karana Ocean, Garbha Ocean and the ocean of milk are His plenary portions and the portions of His plenary portions."

(Sri Chaitanya-charitamrita, 1.1.7)

This shows that Nityananda Prabhu is Balaram, Baladev, Balabhadra, Sankarsan, and we pray to Him who appears as Laksman in Treta-yuga, as Baladev in Dvapara-yuga, and as Nityananda Prabhu in Kali-yuga. Sachi Mata understood that Nityananda Prabhu was non-different from Baladev—that Baladev Himself had come as Nityananda Prabhu. This is the meaning of this sloka. There is also another sloka,

halayudha namo stu te namas te musalayudha
namas te revati-kanta namas te bhakta-vatsala
balinam srestha namas te dharani-dhara
pralambare namo stu te trahi mam krsna-purvaja

"Obeisances to You, O holder of the plough! Obeisances to You, O wielder of the mace! Obeisances to You, O beloved of Revati! Obeisances to You, who are very kind to Your devotees! Lord Balarama, the best of the strong and the support of the earth. Obeisances unto You, O enemy of Pralamba! Please deliver me, O elder brother of Krishna!"

'Halayudha' means He does not hold sankha, chakra, gada, padma (conch, disc, club, and lotus)—He takes up a plough. He is Krishna Himself, He is Jagannath, He is Jagadish—He is Balabhadra. We sing this Dasavatara Stotram, and we find it written there,

vahasi vapusi visade vasanam jaladabham
hala-hati-bhiti-milita jamunabham
kesava dhrta-haladhara-rupa jaya jagadisa hare

O Hari! O Kesava! O Lord of the universe! You have assumed the form of Balaram! All glory to You! On Your white body You wear garments the colour of clouds and the River Yamuna when she is frightened by the striking of Your plough.



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