Originally Posted by Tirisilex
I'm looking for Deva / Deity Yoga practices within Sanatana Dharma.
I was told to look in the Patanjali Sutras But I could not find anything in the book I got of the title Patanjali Sutras. So yes please help me here.
Deity worship (which is akin to hero worship in common parlance) is core in Hinduism. Deity in Human form is the nearest representative of the formless God without any attributes/qualities (Nirgun Nirakar). As per Avtar mimansa (doctrine) it is the manifest form of formless God without any attributes/qualities and NOT just nearest representative like saint .
As u rightly noted Patanjali's yogsutra is very authentic for Deity worship . Though my meditation and deity worship practices are not great and there is great scope for improvement, I write here from memory what i have read and heard to the best of my knowledge.
1. Thorough knowledge of deity life
2. Firm conviction of presence of God in the deity. Agnostic or skeptical people will not benefit.
3. Intense love for the deity
4. daily meditation/worship for roughly 30/45 mins.
5. Though best offering to God from you is your heart and mind (which at best u can say is yours with your own efforts) , you can offer water, leaves,fruits,flower,delicacy,incense , deepak (sort of a candle lit from oil), candle etc
There are nine stages of bhakti which seeker progressively goes through.All these too can help you in your worship practice .
1). Hearing about God (Shravana)
2). Chanting His Name and Glory (Kirtana)
3). Remembering Him (Smarana)
4). Serving His Lotus Feet (Pada Sevana)
5). Worshipping Him as per the Scriptures (Archana)
6). Prostrating before Him (Vandana)
7). Being His Servant (Dasya)
8). Befriending Him (Sakhya)
9). Offering Oneself to Him (Atma Nivedana)
Hope this helps .