Devotees worship Lord Saneeswaran
By Dushiyanthini Kanagasabapathipillai
The leader of the nine planets is Sun. He has two wives-Sayadevi and Ushadevi respectively. Lord Saneeswaran, is also known as Sayaputhran, (son of Saya).
It is said that “Saniyai pol kodupaarum illai; Saniyai pol kedupaarum illai” (there is nobody who will give at the same time obstruct like Saneeswaran).
The Saturn (Saneeswaran) moves his house every thirty months. He moved from Magara Rasi to Simma Rasi on August 5th 2007 at 12.34 pm according to Vaakkiya Panchaangam (almanac).
Special poojas and Yagams (vedic fire) have been orgainsed on the eve of the “Sani Peyarchchi”. A festival of Sani Peyarchchi was celebrated on August 5 th 2007.
A special Yagam was organized at the Naattukottai Nagaraththaar New Kathiresan temple in Bambalapitty on August 4 th and 5th 2007. As the countdown started for the transit of Saturn from the ‘Kadaga Rasi’ to the ‘Simma Rasi’, New Kathiresan temple in Bambalapitty, in capital of Sri Lanka was brimming with devotees. Hundreds of devotees thronged the temple to worship and take part in Yagam. The devotees were allowed to go near the “Omakundam” (Place to set fire) to perform the religious rituals. They were given sesame seeds on betel leaves along with banana, flowers and a ring of “Thettpai” (a ring made out of straw). It’s worn while performing the religious rituals.
Men, women and children flocked the temple in large numbers. Festive atmosphere was created on both days. An “Abishekam” (a shower with milk, honey, fruits, curd, king coconut water, saffron, holy ash, sandalwood, Kumkumam and water) was performed to Saneeswaran. Bells began to toll, devotees lit sesame lamps, some sang devotional songs, priests chanted the Sanskrit Mandras and the Vedic fire was set. Coins, betel leaves, ghee, sesame seeds, nutmeg, cardamom, cinnamon, were offered along with other holy items.
Honey is offered to Saneeswaran along with fruits
Devotees thronged the temple in hundreds
Cotton sarees and fresh banana trees are tied to the “Omakundam” (Where the vedic fire is set)
Milk shower is given to Saneeswaran
Many spent long hours in the temple
The chief priest of Naattukottai Nagaraththaar (New Kathiresan) temple Nagarajah Kurrukkal performs the religious rituals
Sesame lamps are lit to get rid of the evils
Crow is the celestial vehicle for Saneeswaran
Devotees smash coconuts before entering the temple
The Yagam began early in the morning on Saturday
Moolasthanam (main shrineroom) of the Naattukottai Nagaraththaar New Kathiresan temple in Bambalapitty
Curd shower is given
Kumbam is welcomed
Navakalasam (Nine pots of Kumbam) is kept from the beginning of the Yagam
Water which was kept in the Kumbam for two days is poured on Saneeswaran
Granite statue of Saneeswaran is decorated with blue silk, lotus flowers,purple lillies, nanthiyaavattai ,exora and leaves
A male devotee worships in front of the temple
Devotees perform Yagam
Ezharai Sani (Saturn stays in a peron’s star for seven and a half years). A person goes through similar period for three times in his or her life according to Hindu mythology
A devotee reads a notice, which includes the advantages and disadvantages of the move of Saturn
Kumbam is worshipped
Vedic fire is set to invoke bleesings
Essential ingredients for the Yagam
Devotees go around the Navakkiram (nine planets) for nine times
Kids enjoyed coming to the temple
Smell and smoke of camphor purifies the air
Varities of garlands are made for the festive season; these made of arugam pul (durva grass)
A ring of “Thettapai” is worn on right hand ring finger by the males, and on left hand ring finger by the females
Steamed and fried grams are served
Devotees abstain from non-vegetarian meals during the festival time
Priest blesses a devotee
The festive atmosphere was felt on the streets
Sesame seeds are covered in black cloth and tied, soaked in gingelly oil,placed in a clay pot and lit
Devotees worship “Panchararththi”
Poojas were conducted for the welfare of the people belonging to the rasis which would be affected by Sani Peyarchchi