Prabhupāda: Now today this function of installing Deity, this is authorized. Just like several times I have given the example that when you put your mails in a box in the street, because it is written there "US Mail," you know that it is authorized box. And if you put your letters within this box, it will surely reach the destination. The post office will work. So there is no difference between the huge post office building and that small box, because it is authorized.
Similarly, the difference between idol worship and Deity worship is like that. Unless authorized process is accepted, it is idol worship. That is the general rule. If somebody thinks that, "There is a box, red and blue, on the street. Why shall I so to that box? Let me have similar box at my door, and it will be cleared by the postman because it is blue and red," oh, that will not be. Because the box which you put at your door, that is not authorized.
Similarly, we have to worship the Deity according to the authorized system. Just like in our Gauḍīya-sampradāya there is authorized system by the Gosvāmīns, and there is a big book which is called Hari-bhakti-vilāsa. So everything is stated there, how the Vaiṣṇava family should have their all function . . . it is called Vaiṣṇava-smṛti. Śruti and smṛti. So we have to follow this regulation of the śruti, Vedas, and smṛti. Smṛti means derived from the Vedas. Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī says:
- śruti-smṛti-purāṇādi-pāñcarātrikī-vidhiṁ vinā
- aikāntikī harer bhaktir utpātāyaiva kalpate
- (Brs. 1.2.101)
Without following the rules and regulations of Vedic injunctions, without reference to the regulative principles mentioned in different smṛtis, without reference to the Purāṇas and without reference to the pāñcarātrikī-vidhī . . . the pāñcarātrikī-vidhī means it is a special concession for this age. Vaidika-vidhī and pāñcarātrikī-vidhī. Vaidika-vidhī is very authorized, but this Vaidika-vidhī is specially meant for those who are highly elevated Brahmins.