At the end of a puja, the priests or hosts offer special food to deities and attendees. Typically it’s panchamrita, which means “five nectars of the gods.” Panchamrita goes back to the famed Indian epic, Mahabharatha, in which the demons and gods had a very long fight for control over this luxuriant beverage, aware that whoever had it would become immortal. The Gods won. That’s why it’s offered. The thick, rich drink is made from equal amounts of honey, milk, sugar, yogurt and butter or ghee. Milk represents purity and piety; honey sweet speech; yogurt longevity and prosperity; sugar is happiness; ghee-- being distilled from butter that is in turn churned from milk-- represents victory, meaning you have to work to achieve something valuable. These ingredients represent “ahimsa”, the promise of not harming anything alive. They’re also Ayurvedic sattvic foods: simple, bland ones that don’t let the stomach distract the mind.