Prashant: Please tell me if the following is really mentioned in Bhavishya Purana: According to Bhavishya Purana in the Pratisarag Parv III Khand 3 Adhay 3 Shloka 10 to 27 Maharishi Vyas has prophesised:
“The Malecha have spoiled the well-known land of the Arabs. Arya Dharma is not to be found in the country. Before also there appeared a misguided fiend whom I had killed; he has now again appeared being sent by a powerful enemy. To show these enemies the right path and to give them guidance, the well-known Muhammad (pbuh), is busy in bringing the Pishachas to the right path. O Raja, You need not go to the land of the foolish Pishachas, you will be purified through my kindness even where you are. At night, he of the angelic disposition, the shrewd man, in the guise of Pishacha said to Raja Bhoj, “O Raja! Your Arya Dharma has been made to prevail over all religions, but according to the commandments of Ishwar Parmatma, I shall enforce the strong creed of the meat eaters. My followers will be men circumcised, without a tail (on his head), keeping beard, creating a revolution announcing the Aadhaan (the Muslim call for prayer) and will be eating all lawful things. He will eat all sorts of animals except swine. They will not seek purification from the holy shrubs, but will be purified through warfare. On account of their fighting the irreligious nations, they will be known as Musalmaans. I shall be the originator of this religion of the meat-eating nations.”
Swami Ram Swarup: Sorry, I have not read most of Bhavishya Purann because contents of Bhavishya purann do not tally with Vedic philosophy.
Jatin: Significance of Rigveda,Atharvaveda,yajurveda,samaveda
Swami Ram Swarup: Knowledge of Vedas emanates directly from Almighty God in the beginning of every creation. There are four Vedas in which three educations have been taught. In this connection, I paste my articles as under-
God has made universe and blessed us with human body to do pious deeds to attain salvation only. He has not made any heaven or hell. All have to face the result of their deeds, good or bad here only, even by taking rebirth. (Rigveda mantras 10/135/1,2 refer)
God has not only made universe but has also given knowledge of four Vedas where answers to your and everyone’s questions have been given. There are four Vedas:
1. Rig Veda – gives knowledge of science, matter of the universe like sun, moon, air, body etc., etc.
2. Yajurveda – gives knowledge of all the deeds and duties to be performed by men, women, students, leaders, king, agriculturist etc., etc., etc.
3. Samveda – gives knowledge how to worship God who gives peace and long happy life etc. In this way, details of Yoga philosophy, qualities, supreme deeds and nature of the God are also given.
4. Atharvaveda – gives details of God, medical science and details of medicine etc.
Actually in four Vedas there is unlimited knowledge. Yajurveda mantra 40/8 says that God is everywhere, is Almighty, formless, devoid of nervous system, purest, away from sins and does not have to face any result of any karmas (deeds), knows every soul, knows what is in everyone’s mind, no body has made God, but God creates universe, has given the eternal knowledge of four Vedas and always gives the said knowledge at the beginning of every universe to know the science and deeds to all concern. Similarly four Vedas say about God that God is an omnipresent, omniscient, formless, beyond imagination and beyond calculation. Actually God has unlimited qualities. There is only one God who creates, nurses, destroys the universe and recreates. Atharvaveda mantra 4/1/1 also says that God gives the knowledge of Vedas at the beginning of the earth to four Rishis of non-sexual creation. And thereafter only public listens Vedas through Rishis Munis as yet and become learned. Rig-Veda gives knowledge of Almighty, Yajurveda gives knowledge of karmas (deeds), Samveda tells about worship-Yoga philosophy and Atharvaveda about medicines and God. Actually all Vedas commonly says about God also, so this is about Vedas in short. But the knowledge of Vedas is endless.
It is a fundamental law that knowledge is always given by somebody. Otherwise knowledge can’t be gained at any cost. If a new born baby is nursed well in a dense jungle and is not educated then he will not be able to gain any knowledge even if he becomes young or old. So we have to think about the origin of the knowledge prevalent in the world today. In this connection the Vedas themselves say that God gives this knowledge to four Rishis. As said by Rishi Patanjali in Yoga shastra sutra 1/26, God is the first Guru of the four Rishis. Yajurveda mantra 31/7 also refers. This is all in short about Vedas.
The Vedas are not a book, rather it is a knowledge originated in the heart of Rishis. At the time of beginning of the earth those Rishis preached Vedas by mouth and all others remembered the same orally. At that time there was no pen, pencil, paper, etc. This process of studying Vedas orally remained till Mahabharata time. Muni Vyas too remembered Vedas traditionally by heart. Then Muni Vyas for the first time wrote the Vedas on Bhoj patra about 5300 years ago. In 16th century when printing press came into existence then the Vedas were printed. Still Vedas are not those which have been printed but those which are preached by mouth by an Acharya/yogi and the printed Vedas are called Sanhita.
Now if somebody worships a statue etc., then it is their own creation please but Vedas deny. According to Vedas the best worship of the God is Yajyen for which all Vedas are self-proof. Yajurveda mantra 31/16 says that the learned persons worship God by Yajyen.
So many people have asked me that most of the scholars/preachers of different religion state that their religion incorporates all matters of the world including science. What about Vedas? I wrote so many Ved Mantras describing science matters therein. For example, Yajurveda Mantra 3/6 states “Ayam Gauhu Swaha Pitram Puraha Prayan Mataram Prishnihi Aakrameet Asadat”.
This earth revolves around the Sun in the space and it also rotates on its own axis. Vedas are eternal like God because Vedas emanate from God. Now, according to Vedas, this present creation is about 1 Arab, 96 crores, 8 lakh 53,111 years old. So are the Vedas but as said in Rigveda Mantra 10/191/3 the present creation is same as was the previous one and this process of creation is eternal. So are the Vedas which emanate from eternal God. This all concludes that Vedas are the oldest in this creation also and no other book of science, maths or pertaining to spiritualism is written before Vedas.
Like the above example of rotation and revolution of earth, the significance of whole present science is mentioned in Vedas. We can see that whatever is happening in the universe, is all according to the Vedas. For example, occurance of six seasons, actions of Sun, moon, process of death, birth, worship, yoga philosophy, atomic energy, agriculture, animal husbandry, knowledge of politics, administration, architecture, solar energy, knowledge of home appliances like mixer, grinder, business rules, about men, women, children, marriage, Brahamcharya, education, clothes etc., etc., i.e., knowledge right from a straw to Brahma is all in Vedas. God is Almighty and has unlimited powers. So through His power He is able to originate the knowledge of Vedas in the heart of four Rishis without pencil, paper, help of mouth or any other worldly assistance.
We, i.e., the whole world depends on Almighty God but God is forever independent. That is why, He is God. We are the souls who reside in human bodies. We need assistance of senses, perceptions, mind and body to do deeds but not God.
Nowadays, so many saints are writing books. What is the background to write their books? Background is clear that they have first studied or listened the preach from their Gurus, keeping aside the matter of truth or falsehood. And after studying or listening the same, they became able to write the books. So this is also fundamental law, based on which, the ancient Rishis first listened Vedas and when they became learned then only they wrote the Vedic books like Valmiki Ramayana, six shastras, Mahabharat (Bhagwad Geeta), Upanishads, etc., etc. So, first the knowledge of Vedas is initiated in the universe and afterwards other books come into existence.
Somebody may say that human beings have knowledge by their nature to create anything like books etc., but we see that the newly born baby who is nursed in a jungle, in the absence of knowledge of a learned person, he becomes incapable to do anything. Thus, he
can’t be M.A, M.Sc, doctor etc. So there are two types of the words and meanings. First, eternal which are from Almighty God and second, natural made by human beings. Eternal word meanings are always from Vedas i.e., from God. After listening/studying Vedas, human beings become learned and then too based on their own natural knowledge, they make their own words and meanings, literature etc. But it is very much clear that in the absence of knowledge of Vedas, no one can become learned. Nowadays, also people live in dense jungle and do not lead a civilized life because they are not learned as cited above. Vedas are not sects because they emanate direct from God and God is one for all human beings. God creates sun, moon, air, water, food etc., which are meant for the best use of all human beings for their long, happy life. So are the Vedas. So all human beings must accept Vedas as an eternal knowledge from God, for the benefit of whole creation.
Moorthy: Swamiji, how to do homam in home? Is there any publication released in Tamil?Please guide me.
Swami Ram Swarup: Publication in Tamil has not yet been released. I will try to release it. Hindi publication is available. I paste my article as under-
How to do havan
Please sit in the morning to perform havan. Havan must be performed in sunlight then it is more beneficial. Half a bowl of fresh water with a tablespoon must be with you with small twigs especially of mango tree if possible, havan samagri, ghee, camphor and match box must be there with you. Please sit on sukh asan on four times folded blanket and blanket must be kept on mat.
Sukh asan i.e., sit on duly folded feet in comfortable position. First close your eyes and concentrate between two eyebrows and chant Gayatri mantra three times within heart and not by mouth. Then open your eyes.
Take one spoon of water in right palm. Chant this mantra, OM AMRITO UPASTRANMASI SWAHA and drink the water which you have put in your palm. Then again take the spoon of water in right palm then chant the next mantra, OM AMRITA APIDHANMASI SWAHA, and drink the water. Then again take the water in right palm and chant the mantra, OM SATYAM YASHAH SHRI MAYI SHRI SHRAYTAAM SWAHA, and drink the water. Then wash the right palm while sitting, with the same water kept in bowl.
Now, put the twigs into havan kund with one piece of camphor and burn it. During this process chant the Gaaytri mantra again and again till such time the fire is lighted sufficiently. Then chant the Gayatri mantra and at the last add the word Swaha and offer ghee with tablespoon, quantity equivalent to 4 to 5 drops. And if you are alone then also offer in fire pinch of havan samagri from your right hand’s fingers and thumb avoiding forefinger. So this offering may be of 11 times, 21 times or 51 times as the time suits. It is the simplest way and I have not quoted the complete method of Yajyen. The havan with Ved mantras are always offered as the best worship of God only please. Do havan daily and both times.
Kumar: Respected Sir Namastey What is prayer? What is it meant for? This is my question. This question confuses me all the times. Praying most of the times is like pleasing a king and asking him for his mercy and gifts. Although God has no attributes, he is not listening to any one as he has got no ears. So If I am praying in that sense I am praying to myself because I am listening to it. Then it raises a question that is it a waste of time to pray? Or is there a need to change the perception. What if I change the perception? Still the meaning of God will remain mystery. So what to do first? Know God or pray God. What I learn from your books and answers is Yajen as a prayer. But honestly I used to value it in past when I was desperate to fulfill desires by offering bribes to God. Yajyen may only solve the environmental problems but not issues related to prayer. Because without understanding the fact that what actual prayer is and whom we are praying to; my any activity towards doing it is meaningless. Rational thinking is making me a nonbeliever. What should I do. I do not understand what is God what is his power and many other things like making whom happy and turning whose anger upon me by not believing in whom?
Swami Ram Swarup: Namasteji. Prayer means humble request before God to fulfill desire. But Rigveda states that mere prayer would do nothing, if we do not worship God and do not try our level best to attain the goal for which we pray God. For example- A person pray God to be a rich person so if the person do not work hard to earn the money then mere pray will do nothing. You see, God helps those who help themselves. God is formless. He has unlimited divine qualities for example- He creates, nurses and destroys the universe. He awards the result of our deeds. Birth and death is controlled by Him. I mean to say He has unlimited Divine qualities. He is also Almighty i.e., He has unlimited divine powers. He needs no assistant being Almighty. Therefore, He listens without ears. He sees without eyes etc., etc. But, fundamental law of God mentioned in the Vedas is this that when a devotee follows the Vedic path thus perform daily Yajyen/havan with Ved mantras under the guidance of a learned acharya of Vedas and Ashtang Yog philosophy, then God listens our pray in Yajyen. So, one should note the above Vedic views and follow the same in the matter of Pray. The meaning of God was never, is never and will never remain mystery even to say the same is due to lack of knowledge of Vedas. You see, if a person wants worship God then at first step, he will have to know about God i.e., who is God? The answer is in Vedas. So first of all a person must listen to Vedas to know about the God. I also paste my articles as under-
God is formless
Being formless there is no need of statue or temple of God according to Vedas. As a matter of fact, you, I or every human being, lives in a body. Body is separate, we are called souls. Vedas say soul has no form even. Then also we know each other. For example even if you have not seen the photograph of King Akbar then, you can know Akbar by means of the study of his qualities. So is the case with the God. If an aspirant really goes to his Guru and listens Vedas like Shri Ram, and ancient kings and their public then he will be able to know hundred percent about formless God. Then comes realization for which Vedas (especially Samveda) says that he who performs Yajyen, does jaap (according to Vedas) and practises Ashtang Yoga Philosophy while remaining in family like Shri Ram etc., he sure realizes ,being eternal law.
If we will meditate concentrating outside our body which is also against Vedas/Ashtang Yoga Philosophy, then our attention will always naturally remain outside i.e., attached with outer world i.e., decoration/music/dances etc. In that case subject matter of God will be over. It will be converted into spending fun, doing dances and singing attractive songs by ladies and gents, which is totally against Vedas. Thus the chapter of praising God, True Acharya, Rishi-Munis, performing Yajyen, practice of Ashtang Yoga, eternal knowledge of Vedas etc., will be over.
It is also baseless to say that study of Vedas and practice of yoga philosophy is difficult. It is self made story because Vedas are also called Shruti i.e., Vedas are to be listened first and not to be studied. So to listen to the Vedas, a learned Acharya is needed. The Acharya will explain the Ved mantras in the Yajyen in your own language i.e., in English or Urdu etc., and for an aspirant to do asan, pranayaam, meditation etc., is also not difficult. It is all difficult for those human beings, including present false prophets, (who are against the Vedas), who are lazy, can’t awake early in the morning to listen Vedas and fail to do practice of yoga philosophy. Those people are always after money, materialistic articles and pomp and show etc.
Vedas are not written or spoken by God. This knowledge is emanated from God and is originated in the heart of four Rishis as stated above. God is Almighty i.e., He has all powers. So He needs no assistance to do deeds of universe. In human body alive soul resides and soul is dependent, soul requires mouth to speak, eye to see, hand to write etc., etc. but not God. From His power God originates the knowledge of Vedas in the rishis without writing, or speaking etc. Vedas’ knowledge is divine. The fundamental of the Vedas is this that it was not written or spoken. The knowledge by the power of God was originated about one Arab 96 crore, 8 lakh and 53,111 years ago. Then first time the four rishis of nonsexual creation started pronunciation of the mantras by the power of God. God wanted them to know word meanings and sense of the mantras and therefore the rishis knew all. Then first time the four rishis started pronunciation of the mantras. They taught the mantras to other ignorant people. Then more rishis were produced who knew the Vedas by heart by listening only. There was no paper, ink or pen there. The Vedas were being learnt orally and traditionally this process is yet in force. But mostly not by heart but taking help of the printed book. So printed books are not called Vedas but these are called samhita.
Samhita means the collection of Ved mantras. Therefore Present printed books cannot be considered as Vedas and will never be in future, but samhita. Kapil Muni throws light on this point in his Sankhya Shastra sutra 5/48 that when a rishi does tapsya in the shape of Yajyen, study of Vedas, practice of Ashtang Yoga then the Ved mantras still (now also) originate in heart of the Rishi and the rishi pronounces the mantras. Those mantras are called Vedas, which emanate from God. So Vedas must first be listened (study) from alive Acharya (Guru who knows Vedas). Then only Samhita (books of Vedas) can help.
Are Brahma, Vishnu, Mahesh Gods?
Brahma, Vishnu, Mahesh are not God. Vedas tell that there is only one formless God who never takes birth. He creates, nurses and destroys the universe. His power is enough to create and control the whole universe. He is Almighty i.e., He has all unlimited powers and therefore He does not need any assistance to create, nurse and destroy the universe by Brahma, Vishnu, Mahesh. If God needs assistance then He will not be called Almighty. So God does not need any support but we all humans as well as all living beings need His support and blessings every time. However, in Vedas, there are innumerable names of Almighty God according to His divine qualities. So Brahma, Vishnu, Mahesh etc., are also the names of the formless Almighty God. Brahma means the greatest. Vishnu means omnipresent and Mahesh means the greatest.
It is the personal matter of worship or not to worship. So atheists are also there. But it is very clear that God in Vedas as clarified that He Has blessed the human being with human body to worship and realise God. Nobody can attain happy life in the absence of worship of God. One more thing is clear from Vedas in which God states –Oh man/woman you live on the earth given by God and all comforts provided by the God. And if you do not remember/worship God then it is sin and punishment is awarded by the God.
Very few persons know that present science has also come out from Vedas, especially Rigveda. The knowledge of Vedas also emanates from God. So, it is clear that scientist also enjoy science which is given by God. God is not only the matter of blind faith. It is the matter of discussion with a learned acharya of Vedas and Yoga philosophy who from Vedas, shastras and Upnishads etc., and scientifically also prove the existence of God. For example- we see the creation and can think deeply that who has created it or is it a job of man/woman, scientist etc., then automatically after long discussion we would reach on the conclusion that men/women/scientist have not created the universe and then He who has created is called Almighty God.
Vishnu is also a name of formless, Almighty God based on quality. Quality is a sunder- “Vishnu” word is made from “Vishlari” Dhatu and the sense of Vishlari” is omnipresent. So he who has the quality of being Omnipresent at all times without a second’s break, He is Vishnu and no other Vishnu exists equivalent to this God. Similarly, Brahma= “Vri Vridhau” i.e., the biggest amongst the universe. Naturally, He is Almighty God. So, the name of Almighty God is also Brahma. Similarly, according to Yajurveda mantra 16/41 shiv means he who is beneficial/causes welfare, is shiv. The most beneficial, who creates and nurses the universe is Almighty God. So, Shiv is also name of Almighty God.
Idol worship is not mentioned in Vedas
If an aspirant will concentrate over mouth of idol then for sometime he will concentrate on chin, nose, head etc., but concentration on one point will not be achieved. Secondly, Vedas do not preach to concentrate outside the body. Yog shastra sutra 3/1 also states, “DESHBANDHASYA CHITTASYA DHARNA” i.e., concentrate on a point of body like agyachakra, tip of the nose or heart. So we cannot go against the ved-shastras. Yes, idol worship has been started within two thousand and five hundred years. That is why, Vedas do not tell for idol worship but if people desire, they can go ahead.
Pictures, drawings etc., may not be considered idols but it is an art and not worship of God. We must know that knowledge of Vedas emanates direct from God and idol worship has been made by human beings. So now we have to decide whether we obey God or human beings. If we still follow the path made by humans then no problem, one must go ahead. On the other hand, follower of Vedas must continue his own path.
In four Vedas, the media to realize the God has been stated as –
Study of Vedas under guidance of acharya which is a real media and as mentioned in the Vedas, one has to follow the preach mentioned therein viz., performance of Yajyen, name jaap of God , regular contact with learned acharya of Vedas, ashtang Yoga Practice under his guidance etc. The said media is stated by God Himself in Vedas. Man, an artist, clay and every matter right from straw to sun, moon, air, space etc., is the creation of God. It thus concludes that we have to worship and realize the creator and we must not be attracted towards creation. Attraction is the task of senses, perceptions and mind which is destroyed but the creator is immortal. No other media is stated in Vedas except the human body through which the said worship is done by a Yogi, Rishi-muni or aspirant.
Vedas-shastras state that God is omnipresent and according to Yajurveda mantra 40/6 it is true but other mantras state that God is “Ninnaya” that is hidden in the universe and we have to locate the hidden God and not the visible, non-alive matters of the world.
T.V., radios etc., all articles are man-made and controlled by some mechanism. And examples of man-made mechanism are actually not applied on Almighty, omnipresent God. Any mechanism, for example- rocket launching , launching of satellites etc., involves the mind of a man and mind has limited power otherwise mind could have searched the hidden Almighty God also but Vedas state that mind, intellect , senses etc., have limited power and God is beyond imagination , beyond description, beyond calculation. That is why, our ancient Rishis, Rajrishis practised Vedic path that is did practice of Ashtang Yoga Philosophy, yajyen etc.
As such they exercised control over mind, intellect, senses etc. A Yogi when makes the mind dead etc., and forgets even himself (soul) then he realizes the God. This eternal Vedic path of Yoga philosophy has been very well preached by Rishi Patanjali in his Yog Shastra.
God is not a matter to be seen with eyes. So how can He be seen alone in everything with the destructive eye?
Ego is not one-sided matter. If there is ego, neither a formless God is realized nor difference between idol or formless God is established. It is ego that most of the people respect the idol worship as well as formless God’s worship mentioned in Vedas but when an aspirant follows the Vedas, his mind becomes stable, then he only accepts worship of formless God and not others. Whereas, the worshipper who worships idol, he accepts formless God also i.e., he cannot ignore Vedas and can not accept one path alone. We must deeply think over it that why is it so?
God being formless has not preached regarding any of His substitute or symbol, so the aspirant who knows Vedic philosophy accepts the God’s preach accordingly. When God in four Vedas, has not stated about His mark or representative then how the follower would accept the same? Vedas have been preaching the formless worship as quoted above eternally whereas the worship of idol has been made for the last about two thousand five hundred years ago by the human-beings. So there is difference of worship of formless God and idol.
Idol worship is the worship where the sentiments and emotions of heart are involved and all the said involvements are man-made as well as destructible. How a mind/intellect having limited power can dig out the Almighty, formless, hidden God from the creation? God is Almighty i.e., He has unlimited powers whereas soul who is being assisted by mind, intellect and senses etc., has limited power.
Yajurveda mantra 1/5 and Rigveda mantra 3/56/1 states that even God cannot transgress His rules. So how can God be transformed according to our emotions and be forced to accept our sentiments which are not according to His laws of nature.
All Vedas state that His laws of creation remain unchangeable. So there is no value of our sentiments etc., contrary to His rules and regulations. In the said Rigveda mantra, God strictly states “that all mountains, seas, rivers and even the Yogis who have realized Him (God) are incapable to change His rules and regulations and the way of worship etc.” So our self-made worship, emotions and sentiments etc., are of no use until these are according to Vedas.
As regards flag, yes it is invaluable not only for soldiers but for countrymen as well. However, the flag of each country is different. Will any other countryman sacrifice his life for our Tiranga? We, the Indians are enough to sacrifice our lives to maintain the dignity of our adorable Tiranga. So flags are different, the countries being different but God is one and only one for entire universe. So worldly example in the matter of formless, Almighty God is not applicable, please.
Also the matter of image being very clear to the devotee when it speaks to him in his own language of devotion, forces a learned man to say that the said speech between his mind and soul is worldly speech and even destructible whereas when a Yogi realizes God, he is completely unable to speak, hear, see, smell, eat, think etc. In this connection, the description of Yog shastra sutra 4/30,31, 32 pertaining to Dharmamegh Samadhi refers.
Yes, only currency notes are valuable. Similarly the Yogis –like Yogeshwar Sri Krishna Maharaj, Sri Ram, Vyas muniji, Guru Vasishth, Atri Rishi, Patanjali Rishi and the present Yogis-Rishis –Munis who have realized God, following the Vedic path are valuable. The stamp of beloved God is everywhere that is in sky, water, vegetation, in each living being etc. But as far as worship is concerned then the follower of Vedas only worships formless God who creates, nurses and destroys the universe, alone being Almighty. He is Almighty, therefore, He doesnot need any assistance from anyone.
This is never forgotten that the image has been brought from Jaipur etc., so if one can worship an image then why can’t one worship all pervading, omnipotent, omniscient, merciful God, who is the source of everything, who is eternal, unchangeable, life of life and soul of soul etc. Why do we change Him from being unchangeable to changeable idol?
Practice makes man perfect. So the beginner will get the sanskar (effect) on his chitta of idol worship and the same will never be omitted again. Secondly, according to the Vedas idol worship is not authentic. You see, there is no shape of soul. Atharvaveda mantra 10/8/25 states that size of soul is less than the tip of hair i.e., soul is the minutest matter which remains unseen. But when an aspirant tries to know about the soul, he knows based on qualities. We know about a person according to the description of his qualities- good or bad. Accordingly, we know Ravanna, King Harishchandra etc., based on their bad and good qualities respectively. So is the case of formless God. God has given His description/His divine qualities in Vedas only. After studying the Vedas, we first know the God based on Shabda Brahma i.e., ved mantras. Thereafter, when we worship Him according to Vedas, we attain Samadhi and realize Him. This fact has also been mentioned in Shantiparv of Mahabharat wherein Bheeshma tells Yudhishthir that Oh! Yudhishthir, he who gets perfection in ved mantras first, then he realises God.
When Formless, Almighty God has not stated in any ved about the idol worship then how will He be pleased by idol worship? Yajurveda mantra 32/3 states “NA TASYA PRATIMA ASTI” i.e., God cannot be measured. So there cannot be any idol of God because He is immeasurable. However, if people get peace in following idol worship, they may continue. Here I am only discussing the fact of Vedas.
Touching of hand and body etc., is materialistic matter which can only please mind, intellect through skin but it can’t be quoted in respect of Formless, Almighty God.
Whole world can be considered as the body of God but in reality God does not have body because God is alive whereas world is non-alive matter. So God is separate and world is separate. God remains immortal whereas world is destructible.
The image will be destroyed one day but not God. When there is no body of God then how will we be able to offer flowers, sandal wood paste, food etc., to Him.
Yajurveda mantra 40/8 states God to be the purest and He needs not to be purified by bathing, changing clothes and applying sandal wood paste etc. It is an idol or body of human-being which requires purification again and again.
External form of worship will strengthen the idol only because we will be singing, describing the attributes of idol/creation and not to Formless God. If we in the beginning are not able to judge the true, divine qualities of formless God then our love and faith will remain unstable.
Such aspirant will only feel nearness to the idol and not formless God who is already within him and who already resides the nearest to the soul i.e., within the soul.
We will have to study the Vedas which state that idol worship is not permitted by God. Yet, if an aspirant wants to worship an idol then I am telling again and again that he can go ahead at his own. On receipt of your e-mail, I am giving answer based on Vedic philosophy only that what Vedas say about idol worship. Vedas do not speak about idol worship and avtarwad. However, people are free to go ahead on their own and do whatever they like.
When I will see any art which is liked by soul through eye, definitely it will be admired and the scene which is disliked will be ignored. So if many people admire the idol of Ganesh sitting on conch, admiration is natural. As far as Vedas-shastras and other holy ancient books written by Rishis are concerned in the worship of formless God, spirit has no concern. Neither spirit exists nor has any concern with the worship of God.
Yajyen is not only to solve the environmental problems but it is also a spiritual task i.e., the best worship of God, say Vedas. I would advise you to learn and remember the meaning of each ved mantra which are used to perform Yajyen. In this connection, please try to read my book- Yajyen karma Sarvashreshth Ishwar Pooja worth Rs.65/-, excluding postal charges, wherein detailed meaning of each word of every ved mantra is mentioned therein. Then a person becomes able to know about the spiritual benefit of the Yajyen/Havan. Only Yajyen fulfills the desires. So, a person as quoted above should also make contact with a learned acharya to listen to Vedas to know the secret of knowledge, deeds and worship and the real fact of performing Holy Yajyen etc. So, if we oversight the basic principle of the Vedas to make contact with learned acharya, nothing can be achieved. So, please either locate the acharya locally or try to come to me here.