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Indian Crows .

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The Indian Crow

First Online: July 09, 2011
Page Last Updated: November 01, 2016

Pictures of the Crows of India

Crow as Vehicle  of Shani

K.L. Kamat/Kamat's Potpourri
Two Headed Deity Shani Rides a Crow
Two Headed Deity Shani Rides a Crow
Illustration from Telugu text Ragamalika

 

Role of Crow in Hindu Funeral

It is interesting that the crow, much despised bird, becomes  very important  on the occasion of Pindadana. Crow is supposed to be messenger of Yama, the Lord of Death. Hence, there is a prayer. Master of the ceremony recites, "O Crow! Thou art the messenger of Yama. Please accept this offering (food-pinda) and satisfy the hunger of the departed Spirit that has proceeded to the Abode of Yama."

On the tenth day when the pinda is offered to manes, all wait eagerly for the temporarily holy crow to pounce and partake food. Delay on the part of the crow suggests that the deceased had some unfulfilled wish which was compelling. Often the priest advises the performer to declare there and then to fulfill the last wish of the departed soul. All heave a sigh of relief, when the crow descends or condescends to peck at the food!.

 

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