People often wonder, why should i go to the temples ? ‘Dēvālaya’ is an abode of God, meaning, the actual existence of God. ‘By going to a temple our wishes are accepted by God and we experience mental peace’ – with this faith the devotees visit a temple. It is said that God yearns for bhāv (Spiritual emotion). It does not matter which way a staunch devotee with bhāv has darshan, he still experiences God’s grace; however, an ordinary devotee does not have as much bhāv and hence, it is imperative that he has darshan in a spiritually correct manner.
Spiritually scientific answers to various questions pertaining to the different acts one performs while visiting Hindu Temples, such as why enter a Hindu temple only after washing the feet, why have darshan of the Deity by standing beside the image of the tortoise present in front of the Idol, what prayer to make while having darshan of the Deity, why, how and how many times to perform pradakshiṇā around the Deity in Hindu Temples etc. The general rule is that, for male Deities, the number of pradakshinas should be in ‘even’ numbers (0, 2, 4, 6), and for female Deities, it should be in odd numbers (1, 3, 5, 7). The reason is as follows. ‘Zero’ denotes Brahman, meaning, Supreme God, who isthe Creator of the universe. From ‘zero’, the number ‘one’, that is, Maya (The Great illusion), meaning, the universe has originated. Maya is feminine, and the number ‘one’ is an ‘odd number’. Hence, pradakshina around the female Deities should be done in ‘odd’ numbers. ‘Even’ numbers are associated with ‘zero’ and hence, pradakshina around the male Deities should be done in ‘even’ numbers.