The next important items are as follows: 1) One should decorate the body with tilaka, which is the sign of the Vaiṣṇavas. (The idea is that as soon as a person sees these marks on the body of the Vaiṣṇava, he will immediately remember Kṛṣṇa. Lord Caitanya said that a Vaiṣṇava is he whom, when seen, reminds one of Kṛṣṇa. Therefore, it is essential that a Vaiṣṇava mark his body with tilaka to remind others of Kṛṣṇa.) 2) In marking such tilaka, sometimes one may write Hare Kṛṣṇa on the body. 3) One should accept flowers and garlands that have been offered to the Deity and the spiritual master and put them on his body. 4) One should learn to dance before the Deity. 5) One should learn to bow down immediately upon seeing the Deity or the spiritual master. 6) As soon as one visits a temple of Lord Kṛṣṇa, one must stand up. 7) When the Deity is being borne for a stroll in the street, a devotee should immediately follow the procession. (In this connection it may be noted that in India, especially in Viṣṇu temples, the system is that apart from the big Deity who is permanently situated in the main area of the temple, there is another set of smaller Deities which are taken in procession in the evening. In some temples it is the custom to hold a big procession in the evening with a band playing and a nice big umbrella over the Deities, who sit on decorated thrones on the cart or palanquin which is carried by devotees. The Deities come out onto the street and travel in the neighborhood while the people of the neighborhood come out to offer prasādam. The residents of the neighborhood all follow the procession so that it is a very nice scene. When the Deity is coming out, the servitors in the temple put forward the daily accounts before Them: so much was the collection, so much was the expenditure. The whole idea is that the Deity is considered to be the proprietor of the whole establishment, and all the priests and other people taking care of the temple are considered to be the servants of the Deity. This system is very, very old and is still followed. So, therefore, it is mentioned here that when the Deity is on stroll the people should follow behind.) 8) A devotee must visit a Viṣṇu temple at least once or twice every day, morning and evening. (In Vṛndāvana this system is followed very strictly. All the devotees in town go every morning and evening to visit different temples. Therefore during these times there are considerable crowds all over the city. There are about 5,000 temples in Vṛndāvana City. Of course it is not possible to visit all the temples, but there are at least one dozen very big and important temples which were started by the Gosvāmīs and which should be visited.) 9) One must circumambulate the temple building at least three times. (In every temple there is an arrangement to go around the temple at least three times. Some devotees go around more than three times: ten times, fifteen times—according to their vows. The Gosvāmīs used to circumambulate Govardhan Hill.) 10) One should circumambulate the whole Vṛndāvana area. 11) One must worship the Deity in the temple according to the regulative principles. (Offering ārātrika, prasādam, decorating the Deity, etc.—these things must be observed regularly.) 12) Rendering personal service to the Deities. 13) Singing. 14) Saṅkīrtana. 15) Chanting. 16) Offering prayers. 17) Reciting notable prayers. 18) Tasting mahā-prasādam (food from the very plate offered before the Deities). 19) Drinking caraṇāmṛtam (water from the bathing of the Deities which is offered to guests). 20) One must smell the incense and flowers offered to the Deity. 21) One must touch the lotus feet of the Deity. 22) One must see the Deity with great devotion. 23) One must offer ārātrika at different times. 24) One must hear about the Lord and His pastimes from Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, the Bhagavad-gītā, and similar books. 25) One must pray to the Deity for His mercy. 26) One should remember the Deity. 27) One should meditate upon the Deity. 28) One should render some voluntary service. 29) One should think of the Lord as his friend. 30) One should offer everything to the Lord. 31) One should offer a favorite article (as food or a garment). 32) One should take all kinds of risks for Kṛṣṇa's benefit. 33) In every condition, be a surrendered soul. 34) Pour water on the tulasī tree. 35) Regularly hear Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam and similar literature. 36) Live in a sacred place like Mathurā, Vṛndāvana or Dvārakā. 37) Offer service to Vaiṣṇavas (devotees). 38) Arrange your devotional service according to your means. 39) In the month of Kārttika (October and November), make arrangements for special services. 40) During Janmāṣṭamī (the time of Kṛṣṇa's appearance in this world) observe a special service. 41) Do whatever is done with great care and devotion for the Deity. 42) Relish the pleasure of Bhāgavatam reading amongst devotees and not amongst outsiders. 43) Associate with devotees who are considered more advanced. 44) Live in the jurisdiction of Mathurā.
During these times there are considerable crowds all over the city. There are about 5,000 temples in Vrndavana City
Other Books by Srila Prabhupada
Nectar of Devotion
During these times there are considerable crowds all over the city. There are about 5,000 temples in Vṛndāvana City. Of course it is not possible to visit all the temples, but there are at least one dozen very big and important temples which were started by the Gosvāmīs and which should be visited.) 9) One must circumambulate the temple building at least three times. (In every temple there is an arrangement to go around the temple at least three times.