Wednesday, 7 December, 2022

Why do we worship crows and dogs?

Photo - Sujan Gurung/TRN

Kathmandu, Nov. 3:  Tihar festival, known as Deepawali or Yamapanchak, has begun today with the celebration of Kaag (Crow) and Kukur (Dog) Tihar.

It is believed that Tihar is called Yamapanchak, as Yamaraj stayed for five on his sister’s house, Yamuna, during five days of Tihar. The festival is generally celebrated for five days across the country.

Kaag and Kukur Tihar are being observed today. On this day, crows are worshipped as messengers of death and dogs as protectors of the house as well as agents for log life.

Tihar is not only the celebration of lights but, also celebrates Mother Nature and animals. Crows and dogs which come in service of humans in other times are worshipped as a protector and messengers.


Reason behind celebration of Kaag Tihar

According to Prof. Dr, Bina Poudel, a Cultural Expert, Kaag is being considered as a messenger, both negative and positive messages, since the traditional times of God and Goddess.

As per the Hindu Tradition, Yamraj maintains a schedule of death of humans, and crow sends the message on earth saying Ka.., Ka.., Ka.. in front of the house where the human sorrow is to happen. Therefore, Yamraj takes crow as his messenger as it can travel fast between earth and beyond.

“While exploring the social aspect, Kaag (Crow) eats all the insects eating crops, which in turn helps to enhance production ”, She added.

On the religious side, it is believed that Kaag had taken some nectar, during “Amritmanthan,” so, the crow is worshipped in the name of immortality as well.

Therefore, nationwide Kaag Tihar is celebrated by feeding delicious food to crows in the hope that it will take not bring any news on human sorrows.


Kukur Tihar

Dr Poudel said that Kukur is adaptable to both extremes of the environment that is cold and scorching heat environments. Therefore, worshipping dogs is feasible for humans.

On the religious aspect, dogs watch the front door of heaven, therefore, it is believed that dog is worshipped in the hope to get to heaven. Along with this, among the five Pandavas, only the eldest Yudhishitir, with a dog had reached heaven, therefore, the dog carries characters like loyalty and protection.

While exploring the social aspect, dogs are now being used to find criminals as their sense of smell is very strong. Along with this, dogs informed about the natural disasters to humans by barking.