India is a land where people have many traditions, rituals, and customs with sacred meanings. In Hindu culture, everything in nature has great significance. This includes birds, trees, animals, water, air, etc. The Vedas and Scriptures say that the feeding of birds and animals can help one to avoid the malefic effects of planets in one’s horoscope and boost one’s good karma.
In Hindu mythology, animals and birds are the vehicles of certain gods and goddesses. So, feeding animals and birds are believed to be beneficial, and it is said to release us from our sins.
The crow is a commonly seen bird in India. Crows have some significance in Hindu mythology. It is believed to be the vehicle of Saturn, a planet that has great importance in Vedic astrology. Many Hindus fear this planet, as it can bring untold hardship and suffering to people when it is afflicted or placed unfavorably in the horoscope. It is believed that our ancestors come to earth in the form of crows. For this reason, giving food to crows is seen as feeding our departed ancestors. Crows also act as messengers to Pitru Loka.
Saturn has a unique function in our lives. It helps us to develop stability and focus, to persevere even when we face delays and hurdles, and to endure the pain that is beyond our power to control.
Connection with Saturn and Rahu:
When Saturn is strong, we will be able to work for long periods to finish a task that has long-term value, and we will be willing to do even the most tedious work. Vedic astrologers believe that crow feeding can help reduce Saturn’s adverse effects and hence recommend people suffering from Saturn afflictions to do it. In astrology, feeding birds various foods on different days of the week supposedly support the different planets. Each day of the 7-day week is associated with one of the planets. Thus, Saturn is believed to rule Saturday. Feeding crows helps us connect to Saturn and what the planet represents. It can make the Saturn function within our psyche stronger.
Rahu, the north lunar node, represents new technologies. Feeding the crows during Rahu Maha Dasha is believed to help one to deal with Rahu’s turbulent energy. Saturn is the planet of death, and crows, being scavenger birds, eat dead animals. Crows, in many cultures, are associated with death.
Benefits of crow feeding:
Crow feeding can benefit anyone. It also brings benefits when Saturn:
• rules the Ascendant (Capricorn or Aquarius rising)
• is afflicting the Moon (Saturn with, or aspecting, the Moon)
• is in weak dignity (Saturn in Aries, Leo, or Cancer)
• rules one’s current Dasa or Bhukti periods
• is afflicted due to its being with Rahu, Ketu, or Mars
• Saturn is transiting one’s Moon sign or the sign that is before and after
• It is transiting over one’s Ascendant
Crows are also fed as part of a Hindu ritual called Shradh, which is an annual ritual conducted on the anniversary (Thithi) of a person’s death, which is calculated according to the Vedic calendar and astrology. After someone dies, every year, the dead person’s family prepares a feast comprising their relative’s favorite dishes. Then they take turns to serve the dishes on a banana leaf, after which the leaf is placed outside. They call out to the crows shouting ‘Ka, ka’, to invite them to partake of the feast. Once a crow begins to eat from the leaf, it is assumed that the dead person (in the form of the crow) has eaten, and the Shradh ritual is successfully concluded, as it indicates that the ancestor’s soul is now appeased. Crows are also fed on Amavasya days, as dead ancestors supposedly visit us on such days.