A BRAHMANA used to worship his family Deity with food offerings. One day he had to go away on business. As he was about to leave the house, he said to his son: "Give the offering to the Deity today. See that God is fed." The boy offered food in the shrine, but the image remained silent on the altar. It would neither eat nor talk. The boy waited a long time, but still the image did not move. But the boy firmly believed that God would come down from His throne, sit on the floor, and partake of his food. Again and again he prayed to the Deity, saying: "O Lord, come down and eat the food. It is already very late. I cannot sit here any longer." But the image did not utter a word. The boy burst into tears and cried: "O Lord, my father asked me to feed you. Why won't you come down? Why won't you eat from my hands?" The boy wept for some time with a longing soul. At last the Deity, smiling, came down from the altar and sat before the meal and ate it. After feeding the Deity, the boy came out of the shrine room. His relatives said: "The worship is over. Now bring away the offering." "Yes," said the boy, "the worship is over.

But God has eaten everything." "How is that?", asked the relatives. The boy replied innocently, "Why, God has eaten the food."

They entered the shrine and were speechless with wonder to see that the Deity had really eaten every bit of the offering. (61)