Offer your food

Offering Food

We eat food every day. Such eating can become a sacred activity when conducted with due care, attention and spiritual consciousness. Food prepared for and offered to Krishna with love and devotion becomes completely spiritualised. Such food eradicates our karma, purifies our mind, and is called Krishna prasadam, which literally means ‘the mercy of Lord Krishna’.

Krishna accepts only vegetarian food so read labels carefully because ready-made products may contain meat, fish, or eggs. When preparing a meal, use fresh, natural and wholesome ingredients. Cleanliness is also important. Wash your hands before you begin, and avoid tasting the food while cooking; the meal is for Krishna’s pleasure, so He should taste it first. For those who may not be experienced in vegetarian cooking, a variety of easy-to-follow recipes can be found in various Hare Krishna cookbooks.

 

Sacred food that purifies and elevates

Devotees of the Lord offer food to Krishna before eating it, a process that nourishes the body spiritually. By such actions, not only are past sinful reactions in the body vanquished, but he body also becomes immunised from the contaminations of material nature:

Lessons from the story of Sudama Vipra

This video is the delightful story of Sudama Vipra. He offered Lord Krishna all the food he could afford with humility and devotion. Although his offering was small and simple, Lord Krishna not only accepted it but rewarded him hugely:

The highest welfare work – the offering of Sudama Vipra

When Lord Krishna accepted a very humble food offering from Sudama Vipra, He declared “This chipped rice will not only satisfy Me, but the whole of creation”. Lord Krishna is the origin of everything, so when we offer Him something with love and sincerity, it is the highest welfare work.

The process of offering

It’s best to have a special plate reserved for Krishna’s offerings. Once everything has been cooked, prepare the plate and place it in front of His picture. While reciting the following mantras (three times each), you can then request Krishna to accept the offering.

nama om vishnu-padaya krishna-preshthaya bhu-tale
srimate bhaktivedanta-svamin iti namine
namas te sarasvate deve gaura-vani-pracarine
nirvisesha-sunyavadi-paschatya-desa-tarine

I offer my respectful obeisances unto His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, who is very dear to Lord Krishna, having taken shelter at His lotus feet. Our respectful obeisances are unto you, O spiritual master, servant of Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Goswami. You are kindly preaching the message of Lord Chaitanyadeva and delivering the Western countries, which are filled with impersonalism and voidism.

namo maha-vadanyaya krishna-prema-pradaya te
krishnaya krishna-chaitanya- namne gaura-tvishe namah

O most munificent incarnation! You are Krishna Himself appearing as Sri Krishna Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. You have assumed the golden colour of Srimati Radharani, and You are widely distributing pure love of Krishna. We offer our respectful obeisances unto You.

namo brahmanya-devaya go-brahmana-hitaya ca
jagad-dhitaya krishnaya govindaya namo namah

My Lord, You are the well-wisher of the cows and the brahmanas, and You are the well-wisher of the entire human society and world.
You can also chant the Pancha Tattva and Hare Krsna mantras three times:

sri-krishna-chaitanya prabhu-nityananda
sri-advaita gadadhara srivasadi-gaura-bhakta-vrinda

I offer my obeisances to Sri Krishna Chaitanya, Prabhu Nityananda, Sri Advaita, Gadadhara, Srivasa and all others in the line of devotion.

Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare
Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare

After offering the food, wait at least five minutes for Krishna to accept the preparations. You can then transfer the food from the special plate and wash the dishes and utensils. Now you can serve the prasadam to your friends, family and guests! While you eat, try to appreciate the spiritual value of the food. Remember that the real purpose of preparing and offering food to the Lord is to show your devotion and gratitude to Him. Krishna is attracted by the devotion, love and sincerity of an offering. Krishna is complete in Himself – He doesn’t need anything – but out of His immense kindness He allows us to offer food to Him so that we can develop our love for Him.

Published onWednesday, March 31st, 2021

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