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The Three Modes of Worship

Dr (Pundit) Roshan Singh

The three modes of worship

Sattvik Bhakti – Pure – Worship of the Supreme Lord

Rajasik Bhakti – Dim – Worship of the Devi and Devata’s

Tamasik Bhakti – Dark – Worship of Ghosts and Spirits

Bg. 17.2

त्रिविधा भवति श्रद्धा देहिनां सा स्वभावजा ।
सात्त्विकी राजसी चैव तामसी चेति तां श‍ृणु ॥ २ ॥

śrī-bhagavān uvāca
tri-vidhā bhavati śraddhā
dehināṁ sā svabhāva-jā
sāttvikī rājasī caiva
tāmasī ceti tāṁ śṛṇu


The Supreme Personality of Godhead said: According to the modes of nature acquired by the embodied soul, one’s faith can be of three kinds – in goodness, in passion or in ignorance. Now hear about this.


In Sattvik Worship the presiding deity of Sattva Guna “VISHNU” and the result of such worship is that the bhakti of the bhakta is called Sattvik Bhakti. The man who worships from the very depth of his heart without the least ostentation or vanity is a Sattvic worshipper. He dedicates his life in the service of the Lord without any material desires. He is vegetarian and partakes of food that has been offered to the Lord. HE PRAYS TO GOD.

His objective is to serve the Lord and return to the spiritual world and never to return to this material world of suffering.


In Rajasic Worship the presiding deity of Rajo Guna is “BRAHMA” and the result of such worship is that the bhakti of the bhakta is called Rajasic Bhakti. 
He performs prayers and makes offerings to the devi and devata’s with expectation and wanting to fulfil his desires. He partakes of hot, spicy and pungent food. HE PREYS ON GOD.

His objective is he wants to be happy and enjoy the material world and not very conscious of this world of suffering, repeated birth, old age, disease and death.


In Tamasic Worship the presideing deity of Tamo Guna is “SHIVA” and the result of such worship is that the bhakti of the bhakta is called Tamasic Bhakti. 
The man who immolates innocent and harmless goats, sheep and chicken on the altar, has dishes of meat and alcohol for offerings, and is absorbed only in dancing and singing and causing harm to his body while conducting worship, is a Tamasic worshipper. HE WORSHIPS THE GHOSTS AND SPIRITS.

In every body resides the spirit soul which in reality is you, as you are not this material body but a spirit soul. When a person commits suicide or dies tragically his soul is compelled to live and wonder around in this material world without a body up and until the day when he was supposed to die. During this time of waiting the soul is bewildered and forced to live as a ghost or spirit without a physical body. He sometimes enters the body of another person and possesses such a person. He can act in two ways, either pretending to act as a deva in order to be accepted by the person whom he possesses or possesses the body of the person and causes harm and distress to the body which he occupies as he wants total control of the body.

When he pretends to be a deva he is very easily accepted by the body of the person who he occupies, When he assumes his bewildered form he causes harm and distress to the person whom he possesses as he wants to take over such a body. Such a person will be forced to seek help to have the “spirit” removed from him.


Through devotional service one can easily please Lord Kṛṣṇa with a leaf of the tulasī plant and a little water. As the Lord says in the Bhagavad-gītā (9.26), a leaf, a flower, a fruit or some water (patraṁ puṣpaṁ phalaṁ toyam), when offered with devotion, very much pleases Him. He universally accepts the services of His devotees. Even the poorest of devotees in any part of the world can secure a small flower, fruit or leaf and a little water, and if these offerings, and especially tulasī leaves and Ganges water, are offered to Kṛṣṇa with devotion, He is very satisfied. It is said that Kṛṣṇa is so much pleased by such devotional service that He offers Himself to His devotee in exchange for it.

By making offerings directly to the Lord it is like watering the roots of the tree which automatically satisfies and feeds the trunk, the branches, the leaves and the fruit. On the other hand if one waters the fruit, the branches will die, by watering the branches the trunk will die and eventually the roots die causing the death of the entire tree.

Your ever well wisher

Dr (Pundit) Roshan Singh

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