Lord Shani Dev - The God of Saturn

Published: 09th February 2011
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One famous deity that wards of evil and also removes obstacles is Lord Shani Dev. His name means one who is slow moving. He is the son of the Sun God, Surya Dev and Chhaya. Based on Hindu principles, he is among the celestial gods or the Navagraha and governs over the seventh planet, Saturn. There is a story that says when he was born, an eclipse happened to the Sun God.

This is the reason why many believe that he causes miseries to all human beings and brings bad luck. His brother is the god of death, Yama, and is also responsible in rewarding or punishing people based on their actions. The myths say that he keeps an eye on the "chambers" of the heart and all the dangers that inhabit there.

Lord Shani Dev is usually depicted as a dark skinned god and many believe that he is an avatar of Lord Shiva. He would be dressed in black or blue and have two daggers, arrows and a sword. He would ride a chariot pulled by a vulture or a black crow.

He is also called by other names like Mandu, Pangu, Kruradris and so many others. Hindu scriptures like the Skanda Purana, Shani Mahatmaya and Bhramada Purana describes him as a great trouble maker and an amazing well wisher, as well. There are even stories on how he removed the head of Lord Ganesha. He is said to be somewhat lame and limp due to a knee injury as a child when he fought with Yama.

The Hindus fear his reigning planet, the Saturn! According to Vedic astrology, planetary position during a person's birth will determine his future. Hindus are among those who greatly believe in the influence given off by planets and they highly fear Saturn because they say it brings around bad luck and ill fate. People born under this planet are said to be at risk most of the time!

This god is also feared because he has the power to turn the richest king into a beggar and be able to change the destiny of those in pain and misery. Lord Shani Dev is also the Lord of Saturday that is why many people try to appease him during this time. They also consider it lucky to wear sapphire as it is the Lord's favorite stone.

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