By Rayaramananda Das 24 January 2012
NEW GOSHALA OPENING IN SOUTH INDIA
Devotee serving at Sahyadri Sri Krishna Balarama Ksetra (SSKBK) in South Karnataka, the rural base for the ISKCON Daiva Varmasrama Ministry (IDVM) conducted the long awaited opening at their new goshala today, January 24, 2012, naming it SAHYADRI SURABHI GOSHALA.
With the kind donation from congregational member Sri Kanthji and assisted by Govinda prabhu, the 1500 square feet goshala can accommodate up to 30 cows. The construction was carried over a long 6 month period due to various unexpected delays and interruptions caused by scarcity of labor.
Special features of the goshala include the natural ventilation made possible by restricting the height of the surrounding wall to 4 feet and by keeping open spaces in the upper portion of the wall making for a good air flow as well as easy supervision of the cows. The stone flooring has been laid with a gentle slope allowing the “elexir of life”, GO-MUTRA (cow urine), to flow through a specially designed canal that will carry the cow urine to its designated area outside the goshala. Cow dung will be more easily collected & used for the kitchen Gobar Gas, the main cooking medium at SSKBK. Six large neatly built stalls to keep grass, each having six large iron rings make it convenient for feeding and tying the cows and bulls. An additional feature is the back section of the goshala which will become the new Panca Gavya Office storing various Sahyadri Surabhi Products produced by devotees. Dry grass for cows will be stored in a specially constructed false ceiling atop the Panca Gavya Office making it especially convenient during the heavy monsoon season at SSKBK.
The breed of cows maintained at SAHYADRI SURABHI GOSHALA is known as MALANADU GIDDA, some of whom are of the Kabethi type from Udupi with special eyes. “Malanadu” refers to mountain range with heavy rains and “gidda” refers to their small size. These cows easily graze in the local forests and thus can more easily be accommodated and cared for than larger cows. Their milk is of such high quality that Udupi Krishna accepts only milk from this particular breed. At present SSKBK protects 18 such cows along with a pair of Hallikara ox team, Bala & Krsna, who are the main tillers for six acres of paddy land at SSKBK which covers, in total, close to 15 acres.
The devotee served the cows with fresh laddus made from muri and jaggery, followed by an abundance of grass. As the cows entered their new home amidst the chanting of the holy names, Sucaru prabhu from Indonesia who came to attend the Varnasrama College smeared their bodies with the auspicious hand mark of turmeric mixed with water. All the cows also received a new bell placed around their neck. Mahaguna prabhu, another student from Indonesia, performed the aratika and Bhakta Miho from Bulgaria joined in the kirtan with all the resident local devotees. The cows appeared happy and content on this auspicious opening of their new dwelling.
Readers interested to know more about the ongoing developments at SSKBK or who wish to help expand the cow protection taken up at SSKBK may visit the following website: www.sahyadriksetra.com. Devotees visiting the Udupi Krsna Math in South Karnataka are invited to take darshan of the cows at SSKBK, a short distance of 30 KM from Udupi.
The resident Sannyasi at SSKBK, H.H. Bhakti Raghava Svami, was present for the occasion and expressed his satisfaction and gratitude for the successful completion of the goshala project.
Sahyadri Surabhi Goshala
Maledadu Gidda Breed – Laksmi
Gobar Gas with Hallikar breed in background
Feeding stalls inside the gohala