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|Mantra||Om Sham Shanaishcharaye Namah|
|Mount||Raven / Vulture / Crow|
Śani (Sanskrit: शनि, Kannada: ಶನಿ Śani, Tamil: சனி, Caṉi, Telugu: శని) is one of the Navagraha or Jyotiṣa (the nine primary celestial beings in Hindu astrology). Shani is embodied in the planet Saturn and is the Lord of Saturday. Shani is also known as Śanaiścara (शनैश्चर).
The word shani also denotes the seventh day or Saturday in most Indian languages. The word shani (शनि) comes from Śanayē Kramati Saḥ (शनये क्रमति सः), the one who moves slowly, because Saturn takes about 30 years to revolve around the Sun.
Shani is a deva and son of Surya and his wife Chhaya, hence also known as Chayyaputra. He is the elder brother of Yama, the Hindu god of death, who in some scriptures corresponds to the deliverance of justice. Surya's two sons Shani and Yama judge. Shani gives us the results of one's deeds through one's life through appropriate punishments and rewards; Yama grants the results of one's deeds after death.
It is said that when Shani opened his eyes as a baby for the very first time, the sun went into an eclipse, which clearly denotes the impact of Shani on astrological charts. He is known as the greatest teacher and well wisher for the righteous as well the greatest punisher for those who follow the path of evil, betrayal, backstabbing and unjust revenge. He is depicted dark in colour, clothed in black; holding a sword, arrows and two daggers and mounted on a crow, which is Shani's vāhana. As protector of property, Shani is able to repress the thieving tendencies of birds.
Prayers, chants, rituals
According to legend, Shani is a devotee of Lord Shiva. According to the "Navagraha Pidahara Sthothram" of "Brahmanda Purana", the following sthothra relieves the communicant from all the ill effects of Shani:
- निलाञ्जन-समाभासं रवि-पुत्रं यमाग्रजम् ।
- छाया-मार्ताण्ड-संभूतं तं नमामि शनैश्चरम् ॥
- nilāñjana-samābhāsaṃ ravi-putraṃ yamāgrajam,
- chāyā-mārtāṇḍa-saṃbhūtaṃ taṃ namāmi śanaiścaram.
The Shanaishchara Mantra In Telugu:
- నిలాంజన-సమాభాసం రవి-పుత్రం యమాగ్రజం ।
- ఛాయా-మార్తాండ-సంభూతం తం నమామి శనైశ్చరం ॥
- सूर्य-पुत्रो दीर्घ-देहो विशालाक्षः शिव-प्रियः ।
- मन्द-चारः प्रसन्नात्मा पीडां हरतु मे शनिः ॥
- sūrya-putro dīrgha-deho viśālākṣaḥ śiva-priyaḥ,
- manda-cāraḥ prasannātmā pīḍāṃ haratu me śaniḥ.
The Shanaishchara Mantra In Kannada:
- ಸೂರ್ಯಪುತ್ರೋ-ದೀರ್ಘದೇಹೋ-ವಿಶಾಲಾಕ್ಷ: ಶಿವಪ್ರಿಯಃ
- ಮಂದಚಾರಃ-ಪ್ರಸನ್ನಾತ್ಮಾ ಪೀಡಾಂ ಹರತುಮೇ-ಶನಿ:
The Shanaishchara Mantra In Telugu:
- సూర్య-పుత్రో దీర్ఘ-దేహో విశాలాక్షః శివ-ప్రియః ।
- మన్ద-చారః ప్రసన్నాత్మా పీడాం హరతు మే శనిః ॥
The Shanaishchara Mantra In Tamil:
- Sangadangal Theerpai Shani Bagavane
- Mangalam Ponga Manam Vaitharul Vai
- Sacharavindri Saaga neriyil
- Icchagam Vaazha Innarul Thaa Thaa
சங்கடங்கள் தீர்ப்பாய் சனி பகவனே மங்களம் பொங்கa மனம் வைத்தருள்வாய் சச்சரவின்றி சாக நெறியில் இச்சகம் வாழ இன்னருள் தா தா
Complete Mantra (संपूर्ण शनी स्तोत्र):
- ॐ निलान्जनम समाभासं रविपुत्रं यमाग्रजम।
- छायामार्तंड संभूतं तं नमामि शनैश्चरम॥
- ॐ शनैश्वराय नमः॥
- सूर्य पुत्रो दीर्घ देहो विशालाक्षः शिवप्रियः।
- मन्दचारः प्रसन्नात्मा पीडां हरतु मे शनिः॥
- कोणस्थ पिंगलो ब्रभू कृष्णो रौद्रो दंतको यमः।
- सौरिः शनैश्वरो मन्दः पिप्पालोद्तः संस्तुतः॥
- एतानि दशनामानी प्रातः रुत्थाय य पठेतः।
- शनैश्वर कृता पिडा न कदाचित भविष्यती॥
- auṁ nilānjanama samābhāsaṁ raviputraṁ yamāgrajama,
- chāyāmārtaṁḍa saṁbhūtaṁ taṁ namāmi śanaiścarama.
- auṁ śanaiśvarāya namaḥ.
- sūrya putro dīrgha deho viśālākṣaḥ śivapriyaḥ,
- mandacāraḥ prasannātmā pīḍāṁ haratu me śaniḥ.
- koṇastha piṁgalo brabhū kṛṣṇo raudro daṁtako yamaḥ,
- sauriḥ śanaiśvaro mandaḥ pippālodtaḥ saṁstutaḥ.
- etāni daśanāmānī prātaḥ rutthāya ya paṭhetaḥ,
- śanaiśvara kṛtā piḍā na kadācita bhaviṣyatī.
- Om Neelaanjanam Samabhasam Raviputram Yamagrajam|
- Chayaamartand Sambhootam Tam Namaami Shanaischaram|| (Repeat Twice)
- Om Shanaischaraay Namah|| (Repeat Twice)
- Surya Putro Dheergh Deho Vishaalaakshah Shivapriyaah|
- Mandacharah Prasannaatma Peedam Haratu Mein Shanih|| (Repeat Twice)
- KoNasth Pingalo Prabhoo KrushiNo Roudro Dantako Yamah|
- Sauriah Shanaischaro Mandah Pippaalodatah Samstutah|| (Repeat Twice)
- Aetaani Dashanaamaanee Pratah Ruthaay Ya Patethah|
- Shanaischar Krutaa Peeda Na Kadaachit Bhavishyati|| (Repeat Twice)
According to the Vedic astrology, the bad effects of Saturn's transit may be mitigated by
- Worship Mother Goddess Kali during dark moon
- Worship Vishnu in the form of Lord Krishna and keep chanting 'Om Namo Narayanaya', or 'Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare' or Sriram jayaram jayajayaram or Sriramajayam or 'Om Namo Bhagawate Vasudevaya'
- Pray to Lord Hanuman (Anjaneya) in His Supreme Cosmic Form, which is the form in which he shook Shani Bhagavan off of his back and the form in which he received divine blessings and instructions from Surya, the Sun God.
A common mantra for drawing the support of Shani Bhagavan is:
- Om Sham Shanaischaryaye Namah
Some devotees chant 'Om Sham Shanaischaryaye Namah' 108 times daily
A mantra for propitiating Shanaishchara:
- Aum praang preeng proung sah Shanaye namah
A mantra for praying to Shanidev is:
- Neelaanjan samaabhaasam raviputram yamaagrajam, Chaayaa-maartandam-sambhootam, Tam namaami Shanaishcharam
Saturn's shloka from Navagraha Sukta, according to vedic texts:
- Om Shanno Devirabhishtaya Aapo Bhavantu Peetaye Shanyorbhisravantumah Shanaishcharaaya Namah
Temples and shrines
Thirunallar Shree Shanaishchara Koil
There are clusters of nine temples/shrines dedicated to the Navagrahas. One such cluster is located near the town Kumbakonam or Mayiladuthurai in the state of Tamil Nadu, India. Lord Shani's shrine in this cluster is located at Tirunallar. It is a temple dedicated to Lord Darbaranyesvara, a form of Lord Shiva, in which Lord Shani is located in a niche in a wall. At this temple, Lord Shani is considered to be of benevolent nature. Tirunallar is close to Pondicherry, and is of paramount importance to Shanaishcharan. Millions of devotees visit this place to protect themselves from the effects of the transit of Saturn.
Believers consider Shani so powerful here that when a person who is suffering from Shani dasha comes here takes bath in the Nala Theertha and with their clothes wet goes and has darshan of Sri Shanaishchara, the ill effects which he is suffering through Shani dasha is sure to vanish or at least abate to some extent.
The legendary King Nala is said to have been relieved of his afflictions, which were due to the malefic influence of Saturn, after worship in this temple. Of the numerous tanks theertams, the Nala theertam is the most important one. By bathing here, it is believed that one is washed off all kinds of misfortune and afflictions.
Shani Devaalayam in Deonar
This temple called Shree Saneshwara Temple is situated east of the Shivaji statue at the junction of Chembur, Deonar, Govandi on (Mumbai-Pune-Bangalore) Eastern Express Highway. The presiding deity of this temple is Lord Shaneeswara: a beautiful, mighty, and imposing seven-foot-tall black statue. Many devotees who have Shani Dosham, or people who are passing through Shani maha dasha, throng the temple, for doing Tailabhishekam (Tailam means oil in Sanskrit, Telugu and Malayalam). Nuvvula Nune (in Telugu, Nuvvulu means Sesame; Nune means oil) and Ellenne (in Kannada, Ellu means sesame; enne means oil) is poured with utmost devotion on the head in a manner such that the oil covers the entire idol while flowing down.
Every Saturday evening, as soon as the priest gives Aarti, Lord Shaneeswara is said to descend upon the main priest. All of a sudden, the whole atmosphere in the temple changes. One can see and feel the charged atmosphere in the temple. There after the priest sits on a chair which has a seat made of very sharp, long iron nails pointing upwards. The foot rest and hand rest are also fully fitted with upward facing, sharp long iron nails. He sits on the chair without any discomfort. Thereafter the devotees sit in silence in front of 'swami.' They are asked to bring and keep a pair of yellow lemons in their hands, waiting for their turn. Swami signals one by one by turn, to come near to him. People place the pair of yellow lemon in front of him. He listens patiently to their problems, agony, or distress or whatever they say. Then he explains the reason/cause of their agony/problem/distress. It could be 'Prarabdham', consequences of their past karmas (deeds) which are carried over to present janma, which means "life" in Sanskrit, Telugu, Kannada and Malayalam. Or as Swami explains, their problems could be the result of actions/deeds of his or her present birth itself. In some cases it could be handy work of Vamachara Tantra (black magic) by their enemies and ill-wishers. There are other types of cases where it is believed that Aatmas (spirits) of the deceased have occupied the sufferer's body causing misery and trouble. 'Swami' listens to them all with apt attention with closed eyes and intent silence and offers them Prakshalana, or "cleansing" Praayaschitam (Sanskrit and Telugu), or "repentance" through procedures such as yagna, pooja, dana, abstinence, etc. Thousands have claimed that their prayers have been answered by "Shaneeswara" through 'Swami'.
In the premises of this Shani temple, navagraha mandapam is also there apart from Hanuman, Jagadeeswara, Saibaba and Mata deities. The Sanctum Sanctorum has a very tall imposing murthy of Lord Shaneeswara along with Jestha Devi. To his left is Hanuman and to his right is Jagadeeswara Swami.
Another important Shrine for Lord Shani is in Shani Shingnapur, Maharashtra, India. is located half-way between Shirdi and Aurangabad. The deity here is "Swayambhu" (Sanskrit: self-evolved deity) that is self emerged from earth in form of black but imposing stone. Though no one knows the exact period, it is believed that the Swayambhu Shanaishwara statue was found from times immemorial by shepherds of the then local hamlet. It is believed to be in existence at least since Kali yuga.
The story of the swayambhu statue handed down from generations through word of mouth, goes something like this: When the Shepherd touched the stone with a pointed rod, the stone started bleeding. The shepherds were astounded. Soon the whole village gathered around to watch the miracle. On that night Lord Shanaishwara appeared in the dream of the most devoted and pious of the shepherds.
He told the shepherd that he is "Shanaishwara". He also told that the unique looking black stone is his swayambhu form. The shepherd prayed and asked the lord whether he should construct a temple for him. To this, Lord Shani Mahatma said there is no need for a roof as the whole sky is his roof and he preferred to be under open sky. He asked the shephered to do daily pooja and 'Tailabhisheka' every Saturday without fail. He also promised the whole hamlet will have no fear of dacoits or burglars or thieves.
So, Lord Shanaishwara can be seen even today, in the open yard without any roof above. To this day, there are no doors for any houses, shops, temples. It is to be seen to believe that even post office has no door, not to speak of locks. Due to the fear of Lord Shani, none of the structures, be it dwelling houses, huts, shops, etc. situated within one kilometer radius of this Lord Shani temple have neither doors nor locks. No thievery or burglary ever occurred here in this hamlet called Shani Shingnapur. Some who have tried to steal have died vomiting blood within minutes of their act and before they could cross the boundary. Many others are said have received varied punishments such as long sickness, mental imbalance etc.
This Shani Shingnapur is visited daily by thousands of devotees praying for Lord Shaneswara's favour. The place is busiest on Saturdays. Shani Trayodasi is considered to be a favorite day for the lord. Similarly Saturday falling on 'Amavasya'(new moon day in Sanskrit and many other Indian languages) is considered to be a favorites day for the Lord Shanaishwara. Thousands of devotees seeking visit the temple daily.
Sri Shani Temple Titwala
Sri Shani Temple at Titwala is situated near Titwala Ganesh Temple and Shri Swamy Samarth Matha. Prana Pratisthta of this temple was carried out on May 29, 2011. It is constructed by Sri Prahlad Trayambak Kanhore on his own compound. Once he thought of constructing a temple of Lord Shani Temple, but he had no place to build the temple. In a dream Lord Shaneshwara told him to build a temple in his own compound for the well wishers of Lord Shani's devotees.
A 20 feet tall statue of Lord Shani has been established at Yerdanur in Sangareddy (M), Medak (D) (Andhra Pradesh) nearly 40 kilo meters to Hyderabad city and around 8–10 km from Patancheru easy to reach by road and by far is being considered as the largest statue of The Lord of Saturday. It has been carved of a monolith and weighs about nine tonnes. A Sri Sri Sringeri Jagadguru Maha Samsthanamu - Dakshinamnaya Sharada Peetam - Sapthaprakarayutha Sri Durga Bhavani Kshetramu dedicated to her highly blessing Goddess Durga temple is located near to here at Vill. Eeshwarapuram (Ismailkhanpet) Sangareddy (Mandal). is place to be visited 
Sri Kala Bhaireshwara Nilaya – Basavanagudi Bangalore Special poojas offered to Sri Saneeswara Bhagavan every Saturday. Devotee need to offer gingelly (seasam seed) oil and curd rice to the lord for Shani Shanthi on Saturday.