Monday, July 11, 2011

How to Worship in a Temple

Temples are the connecting points of high importance in our religion and culture. Going to Temple has been recommended by our many great saints and Aachaarya. It plays an important role play in cultivating the feelings of spiritualism and devotion in people. It is the place for collective worship. But going to temple also requires some discipline to be followed as it is the public place. Here are a few things to observe while you are in a temple to set the harmony. They are applicable to all.

(1) The first thing when you go to the temple you should go there with a clean body, maybe after taking bath. Besides wash your feet, hands and mouth before entering the temple.
(2) Always take something for the Deity, whatever you have, such as flowers, sweets, or fruits. This shows your devotion to the Deity.
(3) Never enter the temple with shoes or any other thing which is made of leather, for example purse or bag or belts etc.
(4) It is a good practice to touch the entering place on the door and then touch the hand to one's forehead before entering the temple.
(5) Go to your Deity with folded hands, offer the offerings, first water, then Chandan or Rolee, then flower, then sweets and / or fruits (Naivedya), then water again, then incense, then again fold your hands, pray your Deity with closed eyes.
(6) After this you may stand up or prostrate before the Deity and return from there backward for a few steps. After that you may show your back to your Deity.
(7) Do not prostrate to anybody else in the temple premises.
(8) If you are visiting a Shiv temple, first take the permission of Nandee Jee mentally then salute and worship Ganesh Jee and then only Shiv jee and Paarvatee Jee.
(9) Avoid any gossip, keep chanting your Deity's name or Stotra or Mantra mentally or verbally (if other people are not getting disturbed), while you are there
(10) In Shiv temple, if the priest blesses you with the Holy ash, it should be worn saying "shivaaya
namah". It should not be spilled on the ground or wasted. If it is more, keep it in some paper for next time.
(12) It is normal to give something to the priest also who takes care of the temple. So give something (normally money but one can give anything) to the priest also,
(13) Circumambulate the Deity or temple also in the temple. The circumambulation should be done at least for three times. On special occasions like Pradosh (for Shiv) there are special circumambulation
methods like Som Sookt Pradakshinaa.
(14) While you are in the Shiv temple chant the Holy five letters "Om Namah Shivaaya" or any Mantra or Stotra for Shiv can be chanted.
(15) One must not take out of the temple anything else, except Prasaad. That is why one should not go inside the temple with any kind of excess things which are not to be given in that temple. If nothing is
taken it is the normal practice to wipe (rub) the hands together in its place inside the temple.
(16) One should do something in the promotion of the temple physically or materially or whichever is convenient and required.
(17) While inside the temple one should not make the place dirty in any way or make any noise.
(18) One should make a habit to go to temple once a week or at least on special occasions with the family.

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