Memory of the Day
Revatinandan das: We were brought into the Durga temple. This one was new, the deity was new, she was nicely dressed and nicely worshipped.
When we came into the room, I remember Prabhupada said, “Do just exactly like I do.” And when Prabhupada came before the deity of the demigod, he bowed down before the demigod just like you’d bow down before the Radha-Krishna altar; but instead of putting his left side toward the altar, he put his right side toward the altar. He said, “When you bow down before a demigod, you keep the demigod on your right. The understanding is your spiritual master is in front of you and Radha and Krishna are on your left. So you’re still bowing to Radha and Krishna and your guru, but you’re also offering respect to the demigod at the same time. And that’s how you offer respects to a demigod, with your right-hand side toward the altar.”
In other words, he was respectful to Durga but he didn’t want her worshipped in the same way that we would worship Radha and Krishna, so that’s the distinction.
Reference: Following Srila Prabhupada – Remembrances by Yadubara Dasa