Matters of faith?

The bleating continued, gradually increased, reached a crescendo – and then, it was all silent.
The devotees watched on, somewhat startled. The procession of goats continued. It was like an assembly line of death.

One of the red robed priests held the goat firmly, while the other red robed guy held the rope tied around the goat’s neck to keep it in position. The machete rose in the air and then – WHAACK!

A spray of blood.
Momentary silence. The priest tossed away the severed head nonchalantly into a heap of many severed heads. Next goat, please!

The sacrifice has been offered. The Goddess shall be pleased. The devotees shall have good fortune at a relatively nominal price – a goat’s life.

Nice start to my Sunday morning. I think I’ll have to give up coming to these temples at some point of time. I can’t bring myself to believe in a Goddess that is appeased by animal sacrifice.
Not anymore! I’m losing my faith.

Who is more guilty – the devotees who offer, the priests, or the Goddess?

This entry was posted in My take.

25 comments on “Matters of faith?

  1. soumyav says:

    sometimes the broken mended ways that the performers have adopted to fit in their own desires and then named it as a ritual are the ones to be blamed!

  2. gita4elamats says:

    Yuck! What goddess is that? Kali?

  3. Jessica says:

    Oh, Subh! It’s so interesting to learn about your faith! I couldn’t believe in a god who was pleased by goat’s lives, either… Then again, the God of the Old Testament asked for the lives of lambs… Some things just don’t make sense. What is special about Devi Kamakhya? What does she do?

    This was very well written. Thank you for sharing.

  4. Beechmount says:

    Being a westerner, it is very difficult for me to comment on Indian belief systems. I do, however, adhere to the idea that each individual person must decide what faith, if any, to adhere to. Animal sacrifices in different religions have taken place over several millennia and continues today. Some people have commented, there is little difference between a goat being killed for religious reasons or by a butcher for commercial reasons,. I can understand the latter, but fail to comprehend what good it does to sacrifice an animal in the name of some God. We are 13 years into the 21st century. Might it perhaps not be a good idea to update some people’s way of thinking, or is this an impossibility in some religious beliefs?


  5. More of an impossibility, I suppose.

  6. Governments would shudder to impose ban on animal sacrifice for the fear of losing Hindu votes. So the onus is on people. If THEY stop offering goats, buffalos, pigeons etc. no sacrifice would take place.

  7. Its our faith itself that is responsible. How can people be so idiotic to believe that a goddess will be pleased with animal sacrifices.
    But I would like a point here for those people who boldly order non-veg food at restaurants. Before making a shi at the goddess and priests, think once about how many chickens, goats every possible animal have you murdered before commenting here.

  8. Prateek, would you consider it a sin when a cheetah hunts a gazelle in Africa to stay alive? Or when the bird outside your window eats a worm to live another day?

    Killing another organism to fill your stomach is nature’s rule, I believe. Even if one is a staunch vegetarian, he is eating plants (which are living things, fundamentally speaking). It is just not possible to survive without killing another organism.

    Having said that nature has a wonderful balance. The food pyramid for example ensures that there are lesser organisms at each level as you go up the pyramid. Which means that even after the hunger of a level is satisfied, there will be enough organisms at the preceding level. There’s a wonderful system of checks and balances in nature.

    But killing for sport or for offering is breaking nature’s law, I believe.

    • See yaar, you call animal killing for appetite a biological cycle and killing an animal for goddess a sin. If killing them for making dishes doesn’t affect the biological cycle, then killing for sacrifice also must not be affecting the biological cycle. A point i can give here is every second person I see in my college is a non-vegetarian. But hardly 5 or 10 percent of them believe in sacrifices. So whom should we stop first. Non-vegetarians or those priests.

  9. Beechmount says:

    The hunter and the hunted is a chain that goes from one end of life’s spectrum to the other. Homo Sapiens are just a bit smarter than the rest of the animals on earth–they even kill ,animals (including humans) for pleasure.
    To survive, we must eat. Not everyone can be vegetarians (think of Eskimos) and even chimpansies, supposedly vegetarian by nature, will kill monkeys or their own kind-for a meal of protein.
    Without birds eating insects, the world would be knee-high in them.–I can keep going ad nauseum.

  10. This post made me sad 😦

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