Deity Worship

Srila Prabhupada with Radha Krishna

Deity Worship is so important to our preaching mission and the development of our Krsna consciousness, and there are so many letters written by Srila Prabhupada to his disciples explaining its importance. I have only posted just a very few letters here.

…Proper Deity worship, with all attention to cleanliness, is of the utmost importance. If you can please the Deity by your sincere service, then your temple will flourish. To be able to personally serve the Deity is a great privilege and such a person is very fortunate indeed. So you continue in this way and Krishna will surely bless you. (Letter to Hladini, Dec. 29, 1970)

I am very glad to learn that Harivilasa has given you a Pair of Radha Krishna Murtis, so it appears that Radha Krishna is very kind on you, because you went to Vrindaban, to live there but circumstantially, you could not live there, and you left. Krishna has given you New Vrindaban, as well as He has, out of His good will, He has come to you. It is very surprising. So please welcome the Deity and install Him in a nice throne. I think Vamanadeva will be able to prepare a nice throne, and you have seen the New York Deities’ dress and process of worship, so you can do in that way. There is nothing to be added new. The same principle should be followed, and the Deities should always be well-dressed in clothing and some ornaments and flowers and incense. The Deities should always be attractive. And the more we are engaged in decorating the Deities, washing the room, the more we are engaged in Deity worship, the more we become purified. That is practical. Brahmananda is also taking care of my Deity in New York, and he is practically experiencing and doing it. So if necessary you can take some information from him also. (Letter to Kirtananda, Sept 22, 1968)

…Actually, although Radha-Krishna is worshiped in Vrindaban which is like a simple village, but we worship Laksmi-Narayana, and the worship is accepted by the Radha-Krishna Deity. Actually, in our present status, we can not worship Radha-Krishna. But as all the Visnu Murtis are situated in Krishna, therefore, our Radha-Krishna worship is transferred to Visnu, Lord Narayana. Visnu worship is the regulative devotional principles, and Radha-Krishna worship is spontaneous service of eternal feelings. Therefore, as Laksmi-Narayana is the Deity of great opulences, similarly our Radha-Krishna Murtis also should be worshiped with great pomp and dignity. Krishna will give you the proper intelligence to do this very nicely. (Letter to Satsvarupa, Feb. 12, 1969)

… Our Deity worship is not heathenism. If we keep Forms of the Lord without worshiping the Deity under regulative principles, it will gradually turn into idol worship, which is an offense. The Deity of the Lord and the Lord Himself are identical. Krishna can act through the Deity perfectly. As I have given several times the example, the mailbox can act perfectly as the post office because it is authorized. Similarly, when the Deity is installed under authorized regulative principles, the Deity is as good as Krishna Himself. (Letter to Syamasundara, July 15, 1969)

Full Letters More

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