Cow protection in other cultures

Following info I gained from a FB conversation.

  • “The Zoroastrian religion forbids cow flesh for consumption. The cow also figures symbolically in several aspects of that religion, and cow urine is drunk at the Navjote sacrament. It is another matter that Westernized Anglophile Parsis have ignored the dietary laws among many other things. … even until recently, cows were not a part of regular diet in Iran. It was during Westernization under the Qajar dynasty that the Brits & French introduced beef eating big time (which is now widespread in Iran). That shift was a traumatic cultural change, especially in the countryside. Watch the Persian movie “Gaav” (Cow) [YT1], which depicts the attachment an Irani peasant has for his cow, and how the new beef industry sponsored cattle mafia snatch his kine from him, causing him to have a nervous breakdown. Khomeini, who was initially against film as a medium was convinced to allow the film industry to continue to operate after he watched that movie.” [AG12]
  • Pakistan has banned female animal slaughter since 1963 – reinvigorated even in 2015 – DA15.
  • Among the masai, cattle is slaughtered only in times of great need (eg – famine). [MAL]
  • Japan
    • Emperor Shomu (8th ce) had banned cow and horse slaughter. This was one of the justifications used by Toyotomi Hideyoshi to expel Jesuits. For centuries, it was taboo in Japan to kill cows (and more broadly other domestic animals) – wild game was allowed. [B]
    • “Tsunayoshi’s “Laws of Compassion” are most closely associated with the protection of dogs, but as Tsukamoto points out, the laws he enacted regarding the abandonment of sick cattle and horses were, in fact, both stricter and further reaching.” [B]
    • Yet, almost as soon as the new “treaty port” of Kobe was opened to Western settlement in 1868, it began to develop a reputation for its meat. The Tokugawa continued this ban. [B]

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