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AP via Yahoo:  Fate of sacred bull before Welsh court

LONDON - Those caring for him at a Hindu monastery in Wales say he symbolizes the sanctity of all life and is an inspiration to temple-goers. Officials say he could have a contagious disease and should be put down.

Now the fate of Shambo the sacred bull is in the hands of Welsh justice.

The 6-year-old Friesian bull tested positive for bovine tuberculosis in April. Under British law, animals suspected of carrying the disease must be slaughtered. But Shambo's caretakers at Skanda Vale Hindu monastery near Carmarthen, in southwest Wales -- backed by worldwide supporters -- say Shambo is not sick and have been fighting to save him.

The temple brought its case before the Cardiff Civil Justice Center on Thursday, arguing that their religious rights were being violated. Judge Gary Hickinbottom said he would rule on Shambo's case on Monday.

"Both sides put across very strong arguments," said Sanjay Mistry, a spokesman for the Hindu Forum of Britain, one of the groups lobbying to save Shambo. "I think the judge acknowledged that he's got a difficult decision to make, and we're hopeful that he'll come (down) on our side."



Maybe we can eventually make language a complete impediment to understanding. -Hobbes
by Izzy (izzy at eurotrib dot com) on Sat Jul 14th, 2007 at 02:19:31 AM EST
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This story has been in our local news nearly every day for the last month or so. It's amazing how it has escalated, Assembly Members have been involved, it's gone to court... incredible.

I'm probably missing something in my ignorance of Hinduism, but I don't know why it has to be this bull, can't they replace it?

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sat Jul 14th, 2007 at 05:00:26 AM EST
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But this bull is sacred!

Can the last politician to go out the revolving door please turn the lights off?
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sat Jul 14th, 2007 at 05:03:17 AM EST
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What makes it scared? can't another bull be sacred? Aren't all cows sort of sacred anyway?
by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sat Jul 14th, 2007 at 05:22:35 AM EST
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Ah, typo... but a fairly apt one. Scared and sacred.
by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sat Jul 14th, 2007 at 05:23:28 AM EST
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I don't know what makes it sacred, but once it's sacred I suppose it's not right to kill it. And to revoke its sacred status in order to kill it is cheating.

Clearly, if the goverment comes and kills the bull, they'll get a new sacred one, but I wouldn't expect them to kill it or give it up voluntarily.

Ah, the wonders of multiculturalism.

Can the last politician to go out the revolving door please turn the lights off?

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sat Jul 14th, 2007 at 05:33:46 AM EST
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Nandi bull - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Nandi/Nandhi (Sanskrit: नंदी), a hindu god, is the bull which Lord Shiva rides and the gate keeper of the Shiva according to Hindu mythology. An idol of Nandi facing the main shrine will be seen in every Siva temple . There are also a number of temples dedicated solely to Nandi.

Comments on: Shambo: temple cow on death row

Brothers and Sisters Om Namaha Shivaya It appears to me the dwellers in Skanda Vale seek your support. They are truly prepared to stand up for the tenets of Prem, Shanti and Ahimsa. They do not wish to seek conflict with the authorities but have had this calamity forced upon them by the authorities (and the divine mother in her divine leela). Make no mistake friends this a conflict on par with any of those in the Mahabharata, a pivotal moment in the history of Hinduism in the west. If the Judge finds against the community on Monday they are prepared to offer passive resistance in the form of conducting puja around the bull when the vets come. It is not the mere physical bull which is the problem but it's symbolic significance as a temple animal. Are you prepared to stand together with the skanda vale brothers and sisters. I am. I do not encourage mindless martyrdom, but with cool heads and hearts burning with devotion I implore you to journey and physically be there and show peaceful solidarity so that dharma may be upheld.

Ahimsa - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Ahimsa (Devanagari: अहिंसा; IAST ahiṃsā) is a Sanskrit term meaning non-violence (literally: the avoidance of violence - himsa). It is an important part of Buddhism, Hinduism, and especially Jainism appearing within the Hindu scriptures called the Upanishads[1], the oldest of which date to about 800 BCE. The concept is detailed in the Bhagavad Gita and the Puranas, as well as Jain and Buddhist texts.

In its Eastern form the principle of ahimsa was significantly promoted in the West by Mahatma Gandhi, whose non-violent resistance movement, satyagraha, influenced various civil rights movements led by others, such as Martin Luther King Jr.

Ahimsa is part of the 5 principles called yama, which together with the 5 niyamas build sort of like th 10 commandments.

by Fran on Sat Jul 14th, 2007 at 05:27:29 AM EST
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I do quite admire the approach they have taken in trying to defend the symbolism of the bull. Thanks for the info, Fran.
by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sat Jul 14th, 2007 at 05:46:58 AM EST
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