Q1. What does
burning incense do spiritually?
Performing rituals (devotional service) is an
essential part of spirituality in which the worshiper uses various items or
paraphernalia for offering to the Lord. The paraphernalia usually represents
our five senses – ears (sound), nose (smell), eyes (sight), tongue (taste), and
skin (touch). The philosophy behind performing rituals is that all our senses
should be engaged in the service of the Lord. Thus, burning fragrant incense
and offering it to the Lord, and smelling it purifies our hearts. As a result,
all the undesired qualities within us are eradicated by His grace and we become
fixed up in His loving devotional service.
you supposed to let the whole incense burn?
Burning incense and offering it to the Lord is an
important part of deity worship in temples as well as at home altars. The
worshiper holds an incense holder with an odd number of burning incense sticks
in it which is offered to the Lord. Their fragrance purifies the heart of those
who smell it. The burning of incense can also be compared to the false ego of
the conditioned soul. When we engage in the devotional service of the Lord, we
burn our ego and develop a humble state of mind. After offering it to the Lord,
the incense is kept somewhere outside the altar and is left to be burnt wholly.
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