Shani Jayanti is a day to dedicate and devote Shani Dev or Lord Shani. In accordance with Hindu mythology, this festival marks the birthday of Lord Shani.
In Vedic astrology, Shani is planet Saturn. As it has a strong influence upon peoples life, this day observes great devotion and festivity on the occasion of Shani Jayanti. In Hindu religion, the celebration of the occasion of Shani Jayanti has significant importance as the Shani is one of the most influential and strong planets of Hindu Astrology.
On the occasion, people pray to Shani Dev to gratify him and ensure the prevention of bad omen and bad luck. Each year, the festival of Shani Jayanti typically falls in the month of May or June according to the Gregorian calendar.
In accordance with the believers and holy writings, it is vital to celebrate the festival of Shani Jayanti to offer gratitude to Shani Dev as he monitors Karma and he is the deliverer of good and bad luck. Regardless of religion, the above fact makes people from different communities to offer prayers to Shani Dev.
Shani refers to one of the 9 planets which is Saturn. It is a celestial object and is a primary part of Hindu Astrology’s Navagraha.
Shani Dev is referred as to the son of Lord Sun. With names like Ara, Kona, and Kroda, people worship him as a celestial body.
Lord Shani is a divine deity in the sacred Hindu writing. He is a good looking figure who carries a sword and sits on a crow. In Hindu mythological tales, Shani Dev is the God of Justice. He monitors the good & bad deed and thoughts & speech of a person. According to Astrology and sacred writings, he watches the good and bad Karma of every person.
Along with this, he signifies the forfeit, spirituality, discipline, and hard work. Being one of the majorly impacting Planets of Vedic Astrology, it affects the life of native in many ways. However, if the planet Saturn or Shani makes a person put effort for something, he never allows the native to go with disappointment. Lord Shani makes people learn discipline and in return, he offers great results.
In medieval era wording, he only delivers misfortune and loss to people who deserve it. Also, he confers boons and blessings to each person who is worthy because he delivers happiness and sorrows on the basis of their Karma.
According to the Hindu calendar, the occasion takes place on Vaishakh Vedya Chaturdasi Amavasya which in general falls in the concluding days of the month of May or in the first ten days of the month of June.
The celebration takes place in a global manner in which people from several region and religion take part. On this day, people cook tradition Hindu food and perform rituals to offer prayers to Shani Dev.
The celebration and festivity of Shani Jayanti are singularly dedicated to the birthday of Shani Dev. However, there are numerous legends that have an association with the mythological tales behind the festival.
In the tales, Lord Sun or Surya Dev marries to Sandhya, Daughter of Daksha. They together have three children namely, Manu, Yam, and the Yamuna. With time, Sandhya feels diminutive in the companionship of her prevailing husband. Upon this, she creates a female figure Chaya with her shadow. She allots Chaya responsibility of being the wife to Surya Dev.
Later, Sandhya visits the forest to perform penance to increase her powers. Alongside this, Chaya gets pregnant and gives birth to 3 children i.e. Manu, Shani, and Bhadra. When Chaya gets pregnant with Lord Shani, she deeply devotes to Lord Shiva beneath the blazing sun which leads to Lord Shani being born with a dark complexion.
This angers Surya Dev and he doubts that Shani Dev is not one of his children. In his childhood, Lord Shani gets angry with his father insulting his mother. Upon this, Shani Dev gives a cruel gaze on Surya Dev which turns his color dark.
Unable to analyze the situation, Surya Dev rushes to Chaya and apologizes for his unkind words. Also, he visits Lord Shiva who tells him the reason behind Shani Dev’s complexion.
Since then, both the father and son have a humble and loving relationship with each other.
At some places, the festival of Shani Jayanti is the most prominent Hindu festival. The Indian village, Shani Shingnapur has a strong association with the Shani Dev. Thus, here people celebrate the festival with great zeal.
The celebration of Shani Jayanti begins with the early morning cleaning of house and worship areas. After the cleaning, people gather together for prayer offering. As the rituals commence, people bathe the worship idol of Shani Dev with the Holy water of river Ganga, panchamrit, and oil & water because of it is one of the major customs of Shani Jayanti.
Afterward, devotees offer Mala of Navratnas and perform worship. With the faith of seeking Lord Shani’s guard from all the negative energies, devotees perform Telabhishek and Shani Vandana during the prayers.
Later, people perform a unique ritual of offering jaggery and wheat to the ants. Alongside this, they chant holy Shani Stotra to seek blessings of Shani Dev.
Here is a suggestion of delicious Indian food that you can include in the menu on the occasion of Shani Jayanti-
Lord Shani has several names like Shani Dev, Manda, Shani Maharaj, Yama, Neel, Chhayasunu, Krushang, Kapilaksha, and Sauri. Whosoever prays to him in any of these forms never faces the wrath of bad omen and misfortune because they receive guard from Shani Maharaj from all the negative energy.
One and all are aware of the wrath of Shani Dev. To offer him gratitude for being the God of Justice and deliverer of discipline & guidance, people worship Lord Shani on Shani Jayanti.
This year, the festival of Shani Jayanti falls on Friday, 22nd May.
Shani Jayanti Next Five Years-
These were some major facts and information about the Hindu festival of Shani Jayanti and you may also like to read about Effects of Saturn in Each House according to the Vedic Astrology.