The Complete Science of Bhakti-Yoga #2″ – The Nectar of Devotion — Vrndavana, October 23, 1972
953) Whether I know Deity worship is not lower than meditation! Taught by Srila Prabhupada!
——————— Prabhupada: So there are three kinds of devotional stages: kanistha adhikara, lower stage, and the madhyama adhikara, middle stage, and uttama adhikara. So the kanistha adhikara means:
arcayam eva haraye ya pujam sraddhayahate
na tad-bhaktesu canyesu sa bhaktah prakrtah smrtah
In the lower stage, the devotee is engaged in Deity worship. It is not that Deity worship is lower than meditation. We don’t mean that. Deity worship is the beginning of devotional service, as it will be mentioned in the Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu, how to approach the Deity, how to cleanse the floor, how to change the dress, flower, how to make aratrika, everything in detail there are. ————-