Everyone knows that here is vigraha, Gaura-Nitai vigraha, Krsna-Balarama vigraha, Radha-Krsna vigraha. But why people are coming in thousands to see the vigraha? They do not know that it is made of stone? Everyone knows. Maybe one or two may be coming, sentiment. In every temple... Just like Jagannatha Puri everyone knows that Jagannatha is made of wood. Then why lakhs of people are going there to see? Similarly, Balaji. Everyone knows He's made of stone. But thousands of people are going to see. So this is the system. This is not artificial. This is the system. One... As the vigraha... Vigraha means the form of the Lord. There are eight kinds of the forms of the Lord. They are made of stone, they are made of wood, they are made of jewels, and sometimes they are made of painting, and metal. So many. There are eight. All these vigrahas are to be worshiped. That is mentioned in the sastras. Painting also. If there is painting or even if you think of the form of the Lord within the mind, that is also vigraha. Just like dhyanavasthita-tad-gatena manasa pasyanti yam yoginah [SB 12.13.1]. The yogis, they think of Visnu form within the core of the heart. That is also vigraha. Don't think that is imagination. That is also vigraha. So there are eight kinds of vigrahas, and each and every one of them are as good as the other.
Just like we have installed the Deity according to sastra. There is nothing imaginary. It is not idol worship. Idol worship is different. Just like in the Western countries they put an idol on the street, on the park, as the resting place of the crows and passing stool on the head. That is idol worship. The so-called statues are installed and without any protection... No. Our worship is not idol worship. This is Deity worship.
- Srila Prabhupada Lecture SB 1.7.45-46 in Vrindavan