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Thought needs to be expanded... Do people worship gods in order to gain their favor, or do they worship gods to thank them for having received their favor?
If the first, why would anyone think that worshiping a god would put you in it's good graces? (May be obvious, but worth asking)
If the latter, what compels people to worship that which provides for them? Seems like most of human nature is quite contrary to that.
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Paul Howard's profile photoMaya Dvorah's profile photo
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I can't speak for people in general, but this was my belief:

CC Ādi 7.141: "It is only by devotional service, beginning with hearing, that one can approach the Supreme Personality of Godhead. That is the only means to approach Him.

CC Ādi 7.142: "By practicing this regulated devotional service under the direction of the spiritual master, certainly one awakens his dormant love of Godhead. This process is called abhidheya.

CC Ādi 7.143: "If one develops his love of Godhead and becomes attached to the lotus feet of Kṛṣṇa, gradually he loses his attachment to everything else.

CC Ādi 7.144: "Love of Godhead is so exalted that it is considered to be the fifth goal of human life. By awakening one's love of Godhead, one can attain the platform of conjugal love, tasting it even during the present span of life.

CC Ādi 7.145: "The Supreme Lord, who is greater than the greatest, becomes submissive to even a very insignificant devotee because of his devotional service. It is the beautiful and exalted nature of devotional service that the infinite Lord becomes submissive to the infinitesimal living entity because of it. In reciprocal devotional activities with the Lord, the devotee actually enjoys the transcendental mellow of devotional service.

http://vedabase.net/cc/adi/7/en
 
+Paul Howard, thanks for sharing this point of view from a non-abrahamic theology. However, these are given as axioms. I'm wondering what in the human animal forms the logic/instinct that causes many religions to formalize the notion that love of god is a profitable goal.
 
Usually it is taught as fact, and it is often confirmed by experience. If someone thinks they are pleasing the eternal Lord of all, then it gives a noticeable freedom from anxiety on the level that we are accustomed to experiencing it. For example, in Bhagavad-gita, Krsna says that He personally provides for all the needs of His devotees. There is pleasure in these kinds of thoughts, and one feels free even from all fear because of being both physically indestructible and protected from misfortune.

There is also, of course, pleasure in feeling love for someone special, and who could be more special than God?

In the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, he says that the mind becomes like that which it dwells upon. This can be understood to mean that thinking always of God gives one an eternal, blissful, gorgeous body like God's in the next life as one of His personal friends, lovers, relatives, etc.
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