Offering food to Poor and Krishna – Which is recommended?
Question from a devotee (Name hidden):
“Sir, Should We Spend the Money On The Things Required For The Prayer Of God Like Milk , Sweets and etc or Instead We Should give the Milk and Sweets To The Poor? Because sir God Just Needs Our True Love And Dedication Not The Materialistic Things.”
Did Krishna ask you anything?
From where you give to Krishna?
Is the wealth yours?
Do you own anything in this world?
Did Krishna refuse food and shelter for atheists who refuse Him?
Krishna is like the Sun. He is not depending on the rays to give light, because the rays come out of the Sun itself.
Similarly, Krishna does not depend on us for food. He has no material body and He is fully satisfied as He has all the opulence in full.
In fact, we can not offer anything THAT IS OURS to Krishna, because, nothing in this world is ours, but, all are the properties of Krishna.
(Which is the best offering to Krishna that one can give? Why? READ HERE!)
See how ignorant and greedy the people of today’s generation are! People invest in more and more real estate properties to increase their profits. In another side, there are poor who do not own even a foot of land. Who are we to own and sell the land of Krishna?
Each and every grain you eat is the merciful gift given to us by Krishna. The wealth of gold and money that the man keeps in his lockers are actually that of Krishna. He has mercifully gifted to the man for certain period. It will be changing from hand to hands.
Krishna is the owner of all the wealth as said by VISHNU PURANA:
aisvarasya samagrasya viryasya yasasah sriyah
jnana-vairagyayos caiva sannam bhaga itingana
“Bhagavan, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is defined as one who is full of SIX OPULENCES—who has FULL STRENGTH, FAME, WISDOM, WEALTH, BEAUTY AND RENUNCIATION.”
Thus, Krishna has all the 100% wealth available in His creations. Therefore, He does not require anything from us.
Then, Should we spend Krishna’s wealth to offer food and things back to Krishna?
We give Him His wealth only JUST AS A SHOW OF LOVE. Because, Krishna sees only the love with which we give things to Him. Not the things we offer. He says in Bhagavad Gita that He will accept even if you offer water, a leaf, a flower with love. He did not ask you gold.
However, we ourselves have some spiritual responsibilities. When we realize that all the wealth that we have are that of Krishna, we spend a part of it for the service of Krishna that is a gratitude shown by us to Krishna for having given this human birth and this much of intelligence.
Though He does not expect anything from us, He feels happy when we realize that we are using His wealth and hence offer Him back. He wants that Realization and love only.
(How to serve Krishna through our job or business of earning money? READ HERE!)
How to spend the wealth of Krishna back to Krishna Himself?
(i) If you have excessive earnings/ wealth, you can use or donate for constructing or renovating the temples for Krishna or you can sponsor some sevas (services) in temples.
(ii) If you earn moderately, you can purchase Bhagavad Gita and distribute to new devotees; Or, you can sponsor for Prasadam Distribution in temples. Or, you can give some donations to the temples. Or, you can DONATE to the services of Krishna (through this site)and become the partners of such services.
(iii) If you do not earn anything, but, studying, you can DONATE even small amount for Krishna or offer some flowers or fruits to the temple.
(iv) If you are the poorest one or unemployed or just studying now and like to help through the services, you can physically help in cleaning in temples, cooking for Krishna, book distribution, or any other assignments in a temple.
MY SUGGESTION IS: THERE ARE 100s OF TEMPLES IN INDIA THAT HAVE NO REVENUE EVEN FOR LIGHTING THE GHEE/ OIL LAMPS FOR THEIR DEITIES. YOU CAN IDENTIFY AND HELP THEM TO BECOME SELF SUFFICIENT.
SUPPORTING POOR TEMPLES AND SERVICES WILL INVITE THE BLESSINGS OF GOD.
Thus, if you have the will, you will find many ways.
You can do whatever you can. No compulsions. Krishna does not need anything from you.
In the Ninth Chapter of the Bhagavad-gita , Lord Krishna says:
patram pushpam phalam toyam yo me bhaktya prayacchati
tad aham bhakty-upahritam ashnami prayatatmanah
Here Lord says that He eats the offering of someone who has devotion. It’s an extraordinary thing. Because Lord already owns everything. It’s not that Lord needs to eat.
(HOW TO OFFER FOOD IN ALL PLACES LIKE HOSTELS, HOTELS, RELATIVE HOUSES, TRAVEL, ETC? READ HERE!)
You may know this story:
Krishna once made a surprise visit to the home of Vidhura. Vidhura jumped up, sat down to Krishna, and washed His feet. Next he tried to offer Krishna some bananas. But he was so bewildered by love that after peeling a banana he threw it away and gave Krishna the peel. And Krishna was so overwhelmed with love for His devotee that He accepted his offering of peel.
Of course, it’s not that we should just give Krishna banana peels. No. But there is a realm of loving exchange that we generally fail to touch or comprehend, a pure loving exchange in which there’s no self-interest at all. There’s no thought for oneself.
Offering food to Poor and Krishna means Offering our Love and Care.
A devotee of God thinks that he just wants to please the Lord; similarly, the Lord thinks. “I just want to please My devotee.”
We can even sing and offer our voices to Krishna, and we can offer other things. Krishna says, patram pushpam phalam toyam: “You can offer Me a leaf or a fruit or some water or a little juice—just something small—and I’ll accept it.”
Everyone can pick a leaf from a tree or grow a leafy vegetable. Everyone can get a flower. Everyone can get some water or a little juice. So it’s not the item that’s so important, but the love that goes into it.
(Should we avoid offering food to Krishna for one year after death in family? READ HERE!)
Krishna is the father of everyone in the universe, and if somebody offers Him something, He immediately feels overwhelmed with affection. So this is the idea.
It is said in the Vedic literature, yasmin tushte jagat tushtam:
“If you please God, you don’t have to worry about pleasing anyone else.”
It is said that “You are what you eat.” Therefore, if you eat spiritualized food that’s been offered to Krishna, gradually your body will also become spiritualized, and you will be better able to understand God.
Therefore, we offer anything to Krishna to purify it with the mercy of Krishna.
Offering food to Poor and Krishna give different effects:
Offering food to the Poor without attachment to results reduces your past negative karma.
If you offer food to Krishna, that food is purified and becomes a Prasadam and that food is freed from karma.
(Why can’t we offer our love instead of Food to Krishna? READ HERE!)
If you offer monetary offerings to Krishna or His service, your wealth is purified and thus get freed from karma.
Why I am writing these replies to you sparing enormous time?
Because, the human life I have and little knowledge that I have now, is the blessing from Krishna; So, I use that time and knowledge back in the service of Krishna by explaining to the devotees like you. Thus, my knowledge and consciousness is purified!
Now, tell me, why we offer everything to Krishna?
It is the show of our gratitude and love to Krishna.
Therefore, utilize part of your earning, wealth and atleast your body or intelligence for the service of Krishna and purify them. This will prevent you from adding karmic reactions.
So, If we consider ‘Offering food to Poor and Krishna’, my reply should be that we should show our offering for both Krishna and suffering people without attachment.
Hope you are clear.
(Also read this detailed post to know how to offer food to Krishna.)