Through the Vedas rules have been passed on to us how to perform pujas and it is wise to follow them. Unfortunately there are not many people who can read the Sanskrit texts and interpretate the scriptures correctly. Moreover, they are written down in such a different era. Are they still applicable in our times? It is not possible that each and everyone of us becomes a Veda specialist. We have to rely on other people to know how to perform a puja. That doesn’t mean we don’t need to think ourselves. It is important that if we recite a mantra that we really understand the meaning of what we are saying. But more important the words should come from our heart. Lord Hanuman (see picture; http://thepujashop.com/index.php/murtis/hanuman.html) is an great example of devotion. His surrender to Rama was complete. The words he spoke came directly from his love for Rama. The same applies to us. If we perform puja or recite mantras for our favourite deities with such a love and passion it becomes less important if we follow the rules exactly. Our Ishta Deva will welcome us with open arms when we approach Him or Her with respect and love. The further we go on the path of devotion the easier it becomes to find the right words in your heart.