"Karttikeya once asked his father, Lord Siva,” My dear father,
which tree or plant is capable of giving love of God?"
"Lord Siva replied, ' My dear son, of all trees and plants,
Tulasi Devi is the topmost; She is all auspicious, the fulfiller of all desires, completely pure, most dear to Lord Krishna,
and the topmost devotee. Long ago, Lord Krishna, for the welfare of all conditioned souls brought Vrinda Devi in Her form
of a plant, [Tulasi] and planted her in the material world. Tulasi is the essence of all devotional activities. Without Tulasi
leaves, Lord Krishna does not like to accept Flowers, foodstuffs, sandalwood paste; in fact, anything without Tulasi leaves
is not looked upon by Lord Krishna. One who worships Lord Krishna daily with Tulasi leaves attains the results of all kinds
of austerities, charities and fire sacrifices. In fact, he does not have any other duties to perform, and he has realised
the essence of all scriptures. Just as the Ganges River
is purifying all who bathe in her, so Tulasi Devi is purifying the three worlds.
It is not possible to describe the full benefit of offering Tulasi
Manjaris [flowers] to Lord Krishna. Lord Krishna, along with all the other demigods, lives wherever there is Tulasi Devi.
For this reason, one should plant Tulasi
Devi in one's home and offer worship daily. One who sits near Tulasi Devi, and
chants or recites prayers will attain the results much faster. "
"Tulasi Devi is a pure devotee of Krishna and she
should be treated with the same respect given to all Krishna's pure devotees. Simply by worshipping
her faithfully, a devotee can get himself free from all material miseries. In the Nectar of Devotion, I have given two verses
from the Skanda Purana, one of which is, 'Tulasi is auspicious in all respects. Simply by seeing, simply by touching, simply
by remembering, simply by praying, simply by bowing before, simply by hearing about, or simply by sowing the tree, there is
always auspiciousness. Anyone who comes in touch with the Tulasi tree in the above mentioned ways lives eternally in the Vaikuntha
“So from this verse we can understand how pure if the service which Tulasi
offers to Sri Krishna. So we should always endeavour after becoming a servant of Tulasi Devi. Tulasi Devi never goes back
to Godhead, she is always with Godhead. She is a pure devotee and thus she has appeared on this planet to render service to
Krishna by being offered in all Temples throughout the world by being offered up to the lotus
feet of Krishna."
So in this way, we can see that the worship of Tulasi Devi is actually
very purifying and will definitely benefit us on our spiritual path. Even if we are not worshipping Deities, or we are unable
to have an altar, the presence of Tulasi Devi is good enough...