740813 - Letter to Amsu written from Vrndavana
Krishna Balaram Mandir
Raman Reti, Vrindaban Dist. Mathura U.P.
August 13, 1974
My Dear Amsu das:
Please accept my blessings. I beg to acknowledge receipt of your letter dated July 23, 1974 and have noted the contents. Regarding the worship of our Gaura Nitai by women pujaris, we worship Lord Caitanya in His householder life when He was with His wife, and not as a sannyasi. So, it is alright for women to do this service. But, besides this, service is spiritual and there can be no material designation. In Bhagavad-gita it is stated by Lord Krishna: striyo vaisyas tatha sudras te'pi yanti param gatim. The principle is that everyone who is properly initiated and following the rules and regulations can worship. This activity can not on the material platform.
According to the smarta vidhi, women cannot touch deity during menstrual period but the goswami viddhi allows. But it is better not to do it. One thing is that the seva can never be stopped for any reason. This also for the cooking.
I hope this meets you in good health.
Your ever well wisher,
A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami
Sriman Amsu das Adhikari
561 Adeleide St. East