Sri Saneeswarar, Nachiyar Koil18 May 2021
King Dasharatha once fought against Lord Shani, not with a sword but with his intellect and Lord Shani was mighty impressed with him in this regard and sanctioned him a boon, to which the King requested the Lord to remain on Earth and bless all those who came there to seek his divine blessings.
At this temple, Lord Shani is present with His two wives Mantha Devi and Jeshta Devi and His two children, Mandhi and Kuligan. In the same shrine, there is also an idol of King Dasaratha with folded hands facing the deity.
Lord Shani here is also known as “Kudumba Shani”, that He is with his entire family. Those who have more than one family member simultaneously going through the 7 1/2 period of Lord Shani’s Transit, when prayed at this temple, is blessed with abundant fortune and happiness by the Lord.
The presiding deity here is Sri Ramanatha Swamy, a form of Lord Shiva. It is said that many years later, Lord Sri Rama visited this place and installed the idol of Lord Siva, which surprisingly measures exactly the same as the one at Rameswaram.
About Lord Shani
Lord Sri Shaneeswara is one among the Nine Planets, depicts the planet Saturn and holds a unique significance for being the one who moves the slowest – once in 7 ½ years from each Rasi – 2 ½ years before and after one’s Janma Rasi and 2 ½ years in the Janma Rasi. He takes 30 years to orbit around the sun and is hence expected to pass through each individual three times in their life, assuming one would live 100 years. His actual name is “Shanaischaran” or the one who moves slowly ever since one of his legs was broken after a curse by His mother.
Lord Surya’s wife was Sandna. Since she couldn’t bear a child due to the extreme brightness of her husband, she created a clone of her by the name Chaaya (meaning shadow) and went to perform penance in the Himalayas. One day, when little Shani was hungry, he pleaded His mother to give Him food, but she delayed it, saying she would first offer it to the Gods. Enraged, Shani kicked His mother with His legs and hence Chaaya Devi cursed that his leg be broken. When Shani went to his father Lord Surya, he was surprised how one’s Mother can be so cruel and can curse her own son. That is when he found out that Chaaya was not the real mother although her curse would remain afflicted on Lord Shani.
Lord Shani is the brother of the deity of death and justice, Lord Yama. It is said that Lord Shani teaches fitting lessons to each one’s misdeeds during their lifetime while Lord Yama teaches their lesson after their death in His Yama Loka. Lord Shani is a planet who is extremely just and disciplined and guides everyone to lead a clear life and afflicts harm on them until they learn by their own misdeeds, again and again.