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Rituals are for Transformation.
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Doing Pooja (puja) at home! 12 years 1 month ago #357

  • Uni5
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If God (Consciousness) is everywhere and is formless, then why to do (worship) in an idol form? This is the most frequently asked question.

As mentioned earlier that there is the structurality and functionality aspect of God. It is difficult for a common mind to comprehend the abstract God like a child has difficulty in grasping abstractness of numbers and alphabets. However children can quickly grasp numbers and letters when given in the form and so does an adult mind in forms.

Children grasp numbers and letters through form and then they are taught to use them through different permutations and combination fashion. When a child learns the letter "A", "P", "L", "E", but do not know how to write "Apple", then it is not learning. The alphabets and numbers becomes just picture in the child's mind. Like this the structural aspect of God in temple are for everyone to understand and learn how to use those aspects in life. If the conceptual forms are not used in daily life but only remembered during temple visits, then the image becomes just a picture.

Moreover God's functional Energy can be invoked, stored and used like Energy harnessed in tiny batteries. Like every material vary in their efficiency in storing energy,so do deities made out of wood, metal and even type of stones differ. Chanting mantras become the input Energy and in Awareness-Energy vibrations the deities harness and give out Energy. Pancha Loha (five metals) and black granite stones are well known for their Energy capturing potential.

More than the Sound Energy, the Awareness Energy in the unconditional aspect (Bhakthi or devotion) Energizes the material-functional deity to the maximum. In that level, there are very less rules and regulations (restrictions).

When the Puja (invocation) is done with conditional aspect (Sankalpa) , then the rules and regulations have to strongly adhered (madi). In pure Bhakthi (devotion), there is no duality between the seeker and sought (God and devotee) and so all that rules that the devotee follows holds good for God also. However when the conditions are set forth so does bring rules and quality measures.

Keeping idols in home can generate huge amounts of Energy and it is not good idea to leave unattended during travel. It is similar to switch on the battery operated light and going to vacation. All the harnessed Energy is lost. Again it needs to rebuild by spending Energy, like recharging battery from zero volt up. However if this rituals are understood and done everyday not only for the good of the family but for all the beings, then the Energy harnessed will not be lost.

Manasa Puja (mental worship) can also be done during travel. This Awareness worship will still keep the energy level of the deity.

Nivathyam (food offering like sweets, fruits, milk etc) given to the deity is not a waste, because it is a means to deliver the Energy. Five elements (Pancha Bhootas) in the form of oil lamps, flowers, water, chantings, bells all add up very much to be the medium of Energy source to the deity. Indian Vedic science has been using this Energy for thousands of years. Several temples (Energy centeres) still continue this Energy harvesting aspectfor the good of mankind.

Idol worship is no superstition, but a perfect science if understood from the Energy functional perspective of God. To a tribal person a laptop battery is just a piece of plastic. Same way for a person who merely looks at a Vedic deity at only at the form level, without thinking about its functional use, it is a mere doll.

Awareness Energy is the key to Puja mode of worship. See SAL Energy article for connecting to this article at a deeper level.


1. Steps to perform Puja: The Energy is treated like a guest who arrives at our home. We first invite our guest. This is Avahanam.
We receive them, offer a seat (sthapanam), offer water. The guest is given all needed things to take bath and refresh. Next is suddha-karma (cleansing). For bathing ritual, fragrant items and cosmetics like sandal wood, flowers are offered (Poojanam) Then new clothes are offered to wear. Then food is served (Nivadya) which is Bhojanam. Then entertainment is given in the form of singing bhajans or slokas praising the qualities are done (Samarpanam). Then finally visarjan or sending off is performed.

Intention of Puja: Supppose if the president of our country is a close friend. We will invite him or her to our house with one of the two thoughts.

1. We invite him outwardly as a friend, but inwardly as a Government officer who will be pleased with our hospitality and will fulfill our materialistic desires (Functional Energy) in life. So the whole intention is to treat them as an officer and get the job done. This is conditional Puja ritual with a Sankalpa. There is always an anxiety to do things to please the other person. Definitely the President will fulfill our desires to the best he or she can without violating rules.

Another thought is to invite not as an officer but as one who is do dear to us. We feel one with the person. In this thought, there is no thought of asking anything, but only mere love as we love ourself. So we offer what we love the best to the friend or guest who comes. In this way we realize that we and the guest are one and the same. This gives tremendous joy. This is unconditional pooja without any fear. ANything that you offer silly is also enjoyed by the friend. There are no rules and regulations in the whole ritual. This is Bhakthi or devotion. Even offering a leaf or a candy will please the guest.

2.How or the direction in which the deities have to be placed? Do the number of deities matter? Bathing all the deities daily may not be possible in this time constraint modern world, so which deities are best to keep?

When treated as our own reflection, no direction matters ( rules and regulations that applies to us also holds good for the deity). But if done with the thought of conditions of Energy, then each direction gives a different functionality. Example, Facing east gives balanced fulfillment of wealth, health and prosperity. This is a like to be in a school where there is a balance of learning, sports, entertainment etc, a balance of everything at its best.

Facing west gives more knowledge and wisdom. This is alike a school where less extra curricular activities but more focused on study. West is the direction of Guru.

Facing North gives more Awareness of everything in life. This is a school which gives more focus on personality development.

Facing South is to destroy Ego. This is not liked by many because it is a tough school, where even corporeal punishment is given.

I am not giving arti daily at home, so would it be okay?
God is not angry on anything we do. Everything is okay but each action will have its effect. If we show Arathi, it will light up oir Awareness and like being in light, we can always see things clearly.

Do the number of deities matter? Bathing all the deities daily may not be possible in this time constraint modern world, so which deities are best to keep? God is only one. But through our mind we experience only the Energy (functionality) aspect of God in various ways and so for each functionality we have God in a particular form.
Actually one deity, in the form we like (Ishta Deivata) is only needed. It is good to focus on only one. But we have so many desires and every time somebody tells that this particular God is the best, then we keep that in the Puja room. But actually it is all one God only.

Even if we have lot of deities and have the understanding that it is all one God in many functional aspect, it is not a problem. It is all for the mind.

Regarding bathing, it is better to do Aaradhana to one moorthy (Puja worship to one form of God). God forms that are kept in the Puja room will not be angry, like the untouched books in our book shelves. Whatever we read we get benefit from that book. If we dont have time, finish with one book and go for the next. Here doing Aaradhana to one form of God and keep the only desire to Know God in life will take care of desires.

Even I heard somewhere that we should take bath with cloths on before pooja and it is only after our death that we are given bath without clothes.What is the procedure to take bath as per vedas?

Dress for human is a symbolic of a cover of Ego and for Deity or God , dress is a symbolic of beauty. So before puja we should take bath with clothes as an expression of beauty. After death , the cover of Ego is gone. So all rituals in vedic Science has a meaning symbolically, philosophically and physiologically at body, mind, intelligence levels.

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