I've read that Hinduism respects cows since they are considered to have holy Gods. I was curious to know if Hindus also worship cows in some way? I'm really ignorant in this theme, so I'd like to understand exactly the relation (regarding worship) between the Hinduism beliver to the cow.


1 Answer 1


Hindus worship Brahman in the form of a cow. The cow is a very useful animal for humans. Also the Chandogya Upanishad says that all is Brahman. So in this spirit Brahman is worshipped through a cow. An person not aware of this subtle distinction may very well conclude that a person is worshipping a cow.

Goddess as a cow

May that goddess, who is here manifest as the cow and who residing in the gods, beams through the bloom and beauty of all sentient creatures, grant me peace. May that goddess who dwells in the vital principle of man and is known as Raudri the beloved wife of Sankara and who has now assumed the shape of a cow, absolve me of all impieties. May the goddess who lives in the bosom of the god Vishnu as her own beloved Lakshmi and who is but another manifestation of the goddess Svaha, the wife of the god of fire, grant me boon. May the goddess, who guised in different shapes and as their own loving wives, leads the Sun, the Moon and the gods of asterism in the paths of their heavenly duties, grant me boon. May the goddess who has assumed the shape of a cow and who embodied as an idol of beauty and love augments the connubial bliss of such gods as the four-faced deity, the patron god of wealth and the Lokapalas and forms the fountain source of their respective divine splendours, grant me boon. Oh, cow, as you are Svadha to the Pitrs and did represent the goddess of fire (Svaha) who makes her lord carry the libations of sacrifice to the gods who drink them, give me peace.

Agni Purana 210.23-28

Goddess as cow

Thereafter Brahma went on meditation. He saw the excellent cow of the Great Lord. In her universal form it had come out of his mouth. It had four feet, four faces, four hands, four udders, four eyes, four horns, four teeth and four mouths. The cow as goddess Herself who had faces all round and who possessed thirty-two qualities.

Linga Purana I.13.5-7

Kine – rays of the sun

In respect of the prosperity and the growth that kine confer, in the matter also of the protection that kine grant unto all creatures of the earth, kine are equal to the very rays of the sun that fall on the earth. The word that signifies the cow stands also for the rays of the sun. The giver of a cow becomes the progenitor of a very large race that extends over a large part of the earth. Hence, he that gives a cow, shines like a second sun in resplendence.

Mahabharata, AnusasanaParva, Section LXXI

The sun could be interpreted to stand for Brahman.

  • Can you please add more about the process itself, of worshiping the cow? (like Prostration or bowing or incense offering etc.) and I'm talking about worshiping a physical cow rather than sculpture etc. For example, can a cow be brought to a temple? Sep 28, 2021 at 5:02
  • 1
    I don't know the details of the process. You need to consult a priest. I am also talking of a physical cow. In India cows are everywhere and so a cow can be brought to a temple. Sep 28, 2021 at 5:05

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