- The food items to be offered to each Deity are predetermined. It is said that every Deity has some favourite food item which is offered as naivedya to Him / Her. For example, kheer (A sweet made from milk and rice / wheat)or shira (A sweet prepared with semolina, sugar and clarified butter) for Shrivishnu, modak (Special sweet balls made of jaggery and coconut) for Shri Ganapati, payas (A sweet made out of milk and rice) for Goddess. The specific food item offered to a specific Deity attracts more frequencies of that Deity. When this Naivedya is partaken as Prasad, we benefit from the energy of that Deity in it.
1. Why is a banana leaf
used to offer Naivedya to a Deity?
Banana leaf used to offer Naivedya to a Deity
The subtle waves emitted by colour particles present in a banana leaf are associated with the Apatattva (Absolute Water Principle) to a greater extent. The sound generated from the subtle movement of these colour particles is analogous with the subtle sound generated from the ritualistic bell. Because of this subtle sound, the requisite Principles of superior Deities from the Universe associated with the Akash (Absolute Ether Principle) are attracted faster into the banana leaf. The colour particles in the banana leaf associated with the Apatattva lend momentum to the Principles of the superior Deities. Consequently, the food items offered to the Deity on the banana leaf also receive the superior Principles of the Deities. Consumption of this Naivedya purifies the prana-deha (Vital body) and the praṇamay-kosha (vital energy sheath) simultaneously. (Through the mediumof Mrs. Anjali Gadgil, 31st December 2004, 10.05 p.m.)
2. Method of serving
dishes in a Naivedya offeredto a Deity
There is no major difference between serving foodto people and as Naivedya to a Deity. The only difference is that nosalt is offered to a Deity, whereas when serving food to people, saltis served first.
3. What is the Science behind
offering jaggery and grated coconut to God?
Offering jaggery mixed with grated coconut to God
Jaggery signifies the prana (Vital energy) and grated coconut signifies the individual, that is, the gross body of the individual. The individual and prana is to be offered to God through the medium of jaggery and grated coconut. The pranain the form of jaggery is bound by the coating of the grated coconut, that is, the gross body.
The prana is related to the soul, whereas the individual is related to the physical body. The individual assumes dvait (Duality)through the medium of the prana and performs the mission of advait (Non-duality). Jaggery is sweet. The individual that has eliminated its ego has the bhav (Spiritual emotion) of sweetness that draws everybody towards it.Thus, the individual easily attains oneness with the comprehensiveness of God. As the mission in advait is based entirely on comprehensiveness, there is especial importance of the bhav of sweetness in the form of jaggery. That is why the prana also merges into the comprehensive light of God. Offering of jaggery and grated coconut is a symbol of this process. The individual is meant to surrender its body consciousness through the medium of grated coconut and its ego in the form of prana through the medium of jaggery and merge into advait. Hence offering of jaggery and grated coconut is advocated in the puja (Ritualistic worship).
(Through the medium of Mrs. Anjali Gadgil on 22nd April 2005, 2.20 p.m.)