Why Krishna recommends Animal Sacrifice through Vedas?

Why Krishna recommends Animal Sacrifice through Vedas?

Actual Qn by a Girl devotee:

“Hare Krsna!  My name is ——–.  Sir,  I have a doubt regarding sacrifices.  So many types of sacrifices were done during Lord Krsna’s time in  Dwapara yuga.  Does it mean animal sacrifices as well?  If animal sacrifices were done, were they supported by Lord Krsna?

In Bhagavad Gita,  It has been said by Lord Krsna, no living entity shall be killed as there exists a soul in every living entity.  It has been said in Vedas like if a lower grade animal is sacrificed into the fire during Yagnas, it will come out alive into a better  living entity and  it will be prove that the recitation of mantras by the Brahmin’s was very powerful and effective.

I have a doubt here, whatever is the result post sacrifice, it will be very painful for the animal at the time of killing it into pieces to put into the fire right? More over it is an innocent animal which doesn’t even know the common sense and intelligence that is going to be killed to get a better life.

Another doubt that is haunting me is Why has Lord Krsna supported such a kind of Animal Sacrifice. I have read in  Nectar of Devotion (Qualities of  Sri Krsna, In Krsna is Religious (Quality no. 30). And Vedas are even came out of Lord Krsna himself  right even though they were written by Veda Vyasa Maharshi. Then why did Lord Krsna supported that.

I am not able to convince myself and not getting any answer to this question and feeling very painful in heart about this.   I love Lord Krsna very much and my Krsna is a very compassionate God.  Can you please clarify my doubt so that I will be very peaceful.

Please don’t reveal my identity over net Sir, Thank you!”


This is like the kshatriyas attain heavenly life just by getting killed in the war field whether they followed dharma or not.  Even Duryodhana went to heavenly planets just because he was killed in war.

Similarly, for the animals to get immediate human birth bypassing the sequence, they should be sacrificed in the fire yagnas.

Krishna actually helps those animals by IMMEDIATELY GIVING NEW BIRTH AS A HUMAN WITHOUT ANY DELAY.

(Why destructive rituals like Black magic are included in vedas? READ HERE!)


Your worries are body oriented. For Krishna and His servants like Yama, celestials, demigods, etc, we are athma only.

When Krishna Himself said that the athma can never be killed, there is no point of killing anyone.  Does this mean we can kill everyone as we like?

Not so.

We are allowed to kill the animals only for performing YAGAS and YAJNAS for the welfare of the entire society, not for our own welfare.  The sacrifice must be performed as recommended by the scriptures. Kings do such sacrifices to get more rain, more grains, to get more peace in their countries.  Since they are for the welfare of the society and the people, animals sacrifice their lives and in turn, get human birth.


SRILA PRABHUPADA writes in his Purport for BHAGAVAD GITA (2-30):

“The ksatriyas are specially trained for challenging and killing because religious violence is sometimes a necessary factor. Therefore, ksatriyas are never meant for accepting directly the order of sannyasa or renunciation.


Nonviolence in politics may be a diplomacy, but it is never a factor or principle. In the religious law books it is stated:

ahavesu mitho ‘nyonyam
jighamsanto mahi-ksitah
yuddhamanah param saktya
svargam yanty aparan-mukhah
yajnesu pasavo brahman
hanyante satatam dvijaih
samskrtah kila mantrais ca
te ‘pi svargam avapnuvan

“In the battlefield, a king or ksatriya, while fighting another king envious of him, is eligible for achieving heavenly planets after death, as the brahmanas also attain the heavenly planets by sacrificing animals in the sacrificial fire.”

Therefore, killing on the battlefield on religious principles and the killing of animals in the sacrificial fire are not at all considered to be acts of violence, because everyone is benefited by such religious principles involved. The animal that is sacrificed gets a human life immediately without undergoing the gradual evolutionary process from one form to another, and the ksatriyas killed in the battlefield also attain the heavenly planets as do the brahmanas who attain them by offering sacrifice.

(Why Krishna as Buddha & Siva as Sankaracharya differed on vedas? READ HERE!)

There are two kinds of sva-dharmas, specific duties. As long as one is not liberated, one has to perform the duties of his particular body in accordance with religious principles in order to achieve liberation.

When one is liberated, one’s sva-dharma–specific duty–becomes spiritual and is not in the material bodily concept. In the bodily conception of life there are specific duties for the brahmanas and ksatriyas respectively, and such duties are unavoidable. Sva-dharma is ordained by the Lord, and this will be clarified in the Fourth Chapter.

On the bodily plane, sva-dharma is called varnasrama-dharma, or man’s steppingstone for spiritual understanding. Human civilization begins from the stage of varnasrama-dharma, or specific duties in terms of the specific modes of nature of the body obtained. Discharging one’s specific duty in any field of action in accordance with varnasrama dharma  serves to elevate one to a higher status of life.”


Performing yaga/ yajna is the yuga dharma for treta yuga.  Separate yuga dharma is recommended for every yuga.    Yuga dharma means the practices recommended by the scriptures to  get the mercy of Krishna.

(Demigods help faster than Krishna and my friends got promoted while I am not yet. Why? READ HERE!)

They are:

(i) In Satya yuga, the life time of the people was 1,00,000 years.  So, the yuga dharma for satya yuga was performing 1000s years of penances, as they had life time for that.  Thus, they got the mercy of Krishna by long years of penances.

(ii) In Treta yuga, the life time of the people was 10,000 years.  So, the yuga dharma for Treta yuga was performing 100s of years of yagas, as they had life time for that only.  Thus, they got the mercy of Krishna by long years of performing yagas/ yajnas.

(iii) In  Dvapar yuga, the life time of the people was 1000 years.  So, the yuga dharma for Dvapar yuga was constructing and offering temple worship, as they had life time for that only.  Thus, they got the mercy of Krishna by constructing/ maintaining/ visiting temples.

(iv) In this present Kali yuga, the life time of the people was 100 years maximum that is very less. So, they have been given very simple saadhanas in kaliyuga.    So, the yuga dharma for kali yuga was chanting / singing the Holy Name of the Lord, as they have life time for that saadhana only.  Thus, they can get the mercy of Krishna by just chanting His divine name.  Thus, Krishna is very merciful in Kaliyuga with us, as He can be achieved by sincere chanting.

(Why Krishna do not save the devotees killed during pilgrimage? READ HERE!)

So, those yagas and yajnas were recommended for treta yuga, not for this kali yuga.  As performing yagas for the welfare of the society was the yuga dharma then, there was no sin in Animal Sacrifice in yagas.  Since Krishna has said for that yuga to perform yagas, that is not a sin.

Here, you have to note a point.  We can’t perform Animal Sacrifice as we wish in yagas. It was supervised by the learnt brahmanas and such yagas were perfornmed by kings and kshatriyas only FOR THE WELFARE OF PEOPLE.

When the king performed those yagas, the benefits acquired were shared to the people also.  This is similar to the fact that anyone who supports this devotional preaching service shares the blessings of Krishna.

The kings were allowed to perform Animal Sacrifice, since performing such yagas was yuga dharma and were done strictly under the supervision of brahmanas.

You are worried about the pain for just a moment when those animals were liberated in the fire of yagas. Though we die naturally, we have to experience severe pain.  But, the animals get elevated.

(Why Krishna is attracted by Pure Devotional service only? READ HERE!)

When we perform the yuga dharma, if any animal or man loses his body, he is elevated to higher planets.  For example, In Ashvametha Yaga, the sacrificed horses attain  liberation from this material world.  So, they are fortunate to get relieved from this painful material world.

Similarly, Krishna asked Arjuna to kill all the kiths and kins in the battle field. Since fighting war is the dharma for kshatriyas, they must fight wars, without bothering about loss of lives.  Because, for kshatriyas, fighting wars is recommended if they are given such opportunities by enemies.  If they escape from war, that itself is sinful as he skips his karthavya karma (Assigned duties)

That is why, Krishna told Arjuna to fight and kill the enemies as his assigned duty that was not sinful.

This does not mean Krishna is not merciful.  Krishna gave the mercy of elevating all the fighters of war to higher planets when they were killed in war.  So, Krishna did not act as merciless. Those enemies came to war field to die.  It happened through Arjuna.  Thats all.

Therefore, Don’t view the activities of Krishna as body oriented.  Krishna never advised anything that will push us to lower planets.  He speaks everything to elevate us only.


Srila Prabhupada says:


“Another significant point in this verse is that there were animals for sacrifice. That these animals were meant for sacrifice does not mean that they were meant to be killed. The great sages and realized souls assembled were performing yajnas, and their realization was tested by animal sacrifice, just as, in modern science, tests are made on animals to determine the effectiveness of a particular medicine. The brahmaṇas entrusted with the performance of yajna were very realized souls, and to test their realization an old animal was offered in the fire and rejuvenated. That was the test of a Vedic mantra. The animals gathered were not meant to be killed and eaten. The real purpose of an animal Sacrifice was not to replace a slaughterhouse but to test a Vedic mantra by giving an animal new life. Animals were used to test the power of Vedic mantras, not for meat.”

Animal Sacrifice in yagas and yajnas is prohibited because there will be no pure brahmanas to perform such rituals.  Those yagas and yagnas MUST BE PERFORMED only by PURE BRAHMANAs.

As said by Srimad Bhagavatham,  finding perfect brahmanas is very difficult in kaliyuga.  If we perform the yagas with imperfect brahmanas, they give negative results that affect us.  Therefore, such sacrIfice of animals were applicable for previous yugas only.  Not for kaliyuga.

In kaliyuga, only one devotional practice (Saadhana) is recommended.


(Is it sinful to kill insects like cockroaches, mosquitos, snakes, ants, etc? READ HERE!)

Author: RAJAN

RAJAN from Tamil Nadu, India, a Life Patron and an Initiated Devotee being in ISKCON for nearly three decades, serves anonymously to avoid Prominence and crowd as an insignificant, Humble and Neutral Servant for all the devotees of Krishna! He promotes Social media forums and this blog-website as e-satsangha (e-forums) blessed with Lakhs of followers, to give Spiritual Solutions for all the Material Problems of the devotees since 2011! He writes friendly and practical tips to practice devotion (i) without hurting the followers of other paths, (ii) without affecting the personal and career life, and (iii) without the blind, superstitious and ritualistic approach! He dedicates all the glories and credits to his Guru and Krishna.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.