"The neophyte Vaisnava devotees' ringing the bell even once during worship of the Deity of the Supreme Lord is a MILLION TIMES MORE VALUABLE spiritually and otherwise, than the charitable fruitive workers building many hospitals, feeding thousands of the poor, or building homes, or even the empirical philosophers' Vedic studies, meditation, austerities, and penances."

N98:RTW2.9 Following in the footsteps of Self Realized


The above was quoted from a lecture given by Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Maharaj and found in the vedabase folio.

DEITY WORSHIP-THE MOST VALUABLE BENEDICTION GIVEN BY THE LORD TO NEOPHYTES
 
Lecture NY sept 18 1966
So in my childhood, when I was five or six years old, I requested my father that "Father, give me this Deity. I shall worship." So father purchased for me little Krishna, Radha, and he gave me, and I was imitating. Whatever foodstuff I was getting, I was offering to Krishna and eating. In this way I got my life developed. And there was a temple in our neighbourhood.So I was seeing the Krishna deity. Oh, I was thinking.....I still remember. I was standing for hours together. 
 
SB 4.30.27 purport--Deity worship in the form of temple worship is the most valuable benediction given by the Lord to beginners. All neophytes must therefore engage in the worship of the Lord by keeping the arcā-vigraha (arcāvatāra) at home or in the temple.
 
SB 7.14.39-TRANSLATION--My dear King, when great sages and saintly persons saw mutually disrespectful dealings at the beginning of Tretā-yuga, Deity worship in the temple was introduced with all paraphernalia.
 
NoD 35 Neutral Love of God 175614/530501
Without worshiping the arca-vigraha, the form or Deity of the Lord, one cannot understand such literature as Bhagavad-gita and
Srimad-Bhagavatam.  
 
751030SB.NAI Lectures 223477/530501
So the temple worship is essential. So those who are against temple worship, Deity worship, they are not very intelligent class of men,
foolish, mudha.  NoD 35 Neutral Love of God
 
Madhya 25.278 : PURPORT :-All the devotees connected with this Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement must read all the books that have been translated (Caitanya-caritāmṛta, Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, Bhagavad-gītā and others); otherwise, after some time, they will simply eat, sleep and fall down from their position. Thus they will miss the opportunity to attain an eternal, blissful life of transcendental pleasure.

When we have lost that loving feeling

760924SB.VRN--
If we think that "Here is a stone statue," then it will not prolong many days. It will not... Galagraha. No more vigraha, but galagraha. Suppose I have established this temple. Now under my direction, my disciples are worshiping vigraha. Vigraha means the form of the Lord, rūpa. But if there is no following of the regulative principles, then after my death it will be galagraha, a burden, that "Our rascal Guru Mahārāja established this temple, and we have to worship, early rise in the morning, all botheration."This will be... That is called galagraha, a burden, "He has left with us a burden." This is the risk. Then this, such a big temple will be mismanaged, and you'll find that "This is breaking" and "This is unclean," and there is no attention. This will be our... That is called galagraha. "The rascal has given us a burden." So it is very difficult. If we lost, if we have lost that feeling that "Here is Kṛṣṇa. Here is a chance to serve Him..."
 
Conv june 23 1976 NVRN
Devotee (4): The difficulty is that we cannot understand, we cannot feel what pleases Kṛṣṇa now, yet we can feel what pleases us, and that is the difficulty?
 
Prabhupāda: You have no feeling, that everyone knows. Therefore you have to carry out the order of spiritual master, that's all.
 
Devotee (1) : If we try to please Kṛṣṇa with all of our service and activities, that automatically brings pleasure to the self?
 
Prabhupāda: You cannot please Kṛṣṇa directly. You please your spiritual master, Kṛṣṇa will be pleased. If you want to please directly Kṛṣṇa, that is not possible. That is concoction You cannot please. Yasya prasādād bhagavat-prasādaḥ **.You have to please your spiritual master, then Kṛṣṇa will be pleased. 

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Bombay Dec 4 1974 lecture
Somebody was talking that "Your Deity is just like trying to talk with me." Prasanna-vaktra Yes. He is here to talk with you, but He is waiting whether you're interested to talk with Him. That's all. Kṛṣṇa says that teṣāṁ satata-yuktānāṁ bhajatāṁ prti-pūrvakam, bddhi-yogaṁ adāmi tam [Bg. 10.10]. He talks, but with whom? Teṣāṁsatata-yuktānām. One who is twenty-four hours engaged with love and faith in the service of the Lord. To whom? Just like if you want to talk with some big man, then you must have qualification. Is it possible that if you want to talkwith the big man here, immediately you like? No. You cannot talk. Youmust be fit to talkwith him. Similarly,Kṛṣṇa is ready to talk with you. He has come. He has descended in arcā-mūrti to talk with you, to be visible by you. Now you make yourself ready and fit to talk with Kṛṣṇa. Then He will exchange conversation. Santaḥ sadaiva hṛdayeṣu vilokayanti. This is possible.
 
SB 4.28.34 . Unless one is an advanced devotee, he cannot fix his eyes on the Deity in the temple.
 
Some Conclusions-This series of statements by Srila Prabhupada was put together because from my personal experience I know many, if not most devotees, especially the older ones do not do daily, regulated worship to some form of the Lord. Time wears us all down but this point about daily deity worship should be like granite in our lives-immovable and fixed.
Who would not want the best benediction for incapable neophyte devotees such as ourselves? Who among us reads Bhagavad gita/Srimad Bhagavatam but does not do daily Deity worship? Prabhupada tells us (above) that we wont understand a word we are reading of Bhagavad gita if we do not worship the Lord daily in His deity form, so important is this aspect of Krsna Consciousness. These are his instructions for all of us inmates of Kali yuga. Don't think we can just sit and meditate upon some service for the Lord like the brahmana who got his finger burnt from the hot sweet rice episode with Lord Narayana. Prabhupada told us that hearing is more important than thinking in this age because the mind is so so disturbed by all the garbage of this age. So what are we supposed to hear? The instructions of the Lords pure devotee-Srila Prabhupada. And in those instructions one very important aspect of becoming a bona fide Vaisnava is to daily worship the form of the Lord
 
Hare Krnsa
Damaghosa das

 

Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare

Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare