The Almighty is formless, endless and eternal. Depending on the bend of our own mind we have given Him a shape, gender and form. In reality we worship a formless Supreme Energy and we all are a part of it.
During the Vedic times people used to worship energies, fire, air, water, earth and ether. There was no god in any form then, it was the Absolute Supreme Energy that was worshiped. Our Upanishads beautifully narrate the glory of the formless Almighty. It was all about pure ‘Spirituality’, not bound by any religion.
However, as time passed, people became more and more materialistic and went gradually away from being spiritual to being ritualistic and religious. What was easy for self-realised sages of the Vedic times to understand, became very difficult to perceive by the materialistic people of later times. We, the materialistic people, cannot comprehend anything without our five senses. We need to see, touch and feel to know something exists; so came the forms of the Supreme Power.
With the various forms of the same God, people had something in front of them to which they could bow down, pray and worship. After all it is much easier to worship a form to which we can relate than imagining that we are worshiping the Absolute Oneness. Some of us call this Supreme power Vishnu, some call the same Shiv and some call Maa ( Shakti form). There is no difference, no form is higher than the other.
Even when we are worshiping various forms of God, we have a process through which we establish connection with the Supreme Energy before we start the Puja. This is called ‘Pran Pratishtha’, which literally means ‘connection of the soul with the Almighty’. Without this any ritual of worshiping is meaningless. Therefore in essence, we are outwardly worshiping a form, but actually trying to connect with the Supreme Soul.
Whichever form you worship, whichever way you worship, if you are a true devotee, you know that you are worshiping the same Almighty and will reach the same destination. Therefore let us not get confused by the superficial differences. Dive deep into your soul and you will surely find Him there expressed in full glory. May God bless us all!