Shani Shignapur Temple is a Jeet Devasthan (alive temple) in the district of Ahmednagar (about 70 kms from Shirdi) well-known for the mysterious and powerful Lord Shani, who is believed to have been residing in a black stone in the Temple. The stone (symbolizing the planet Saturn) here is believed to be Swayambhu, meaning he has emerged in the form of the black stone that scores hundreds of thousands of devotees each year. People’s trust in the lord is so strong that there are no doors and locks in any of the houses in the wondrous village as people believe Lord Shani protects their valuables from thieves.
The enthusiasm and vehemence rise to the next level on some of the holiest days like Saturdays, Amavasya and Shri Shaniwara Jayanti. Many Hindus worship Lord Shani as it is considered bad luck to offend him due to the power of planet Saturn’ influence on the life of anybody.
There are no roofs, gates or walls around the Shani Shignapur Temple. It only has a black stone that is five and a half feet high, symbolizing Lord Shani, on a base. The idol is placed under the open sky, making the temple unique in comparison with others. On Lord Shani’s idol, mustard oil is continually poured out of a copper vessel hanging just above the idol. In addition to Lord Shani, there are also representations of Nandi, Hanuman and Shiva.
It is believed by all the devotees, that a visit to the Shani Shignaour Temple will surely give confidence that the rest of your life will be smooth and that Lord Shani will only give you joy. You may quickly get darshan of the divine power with no long queues or waiting period.
Shani Shingnapur History:
It is believed that the black stone was touched by a shepherd many years ago with a pointed rod after which it began bleeding. This amazed the whole village. One of the most devoted shepherds later that night saw Lord Shanaishwar in his dream in which he told him the black stone was his Swayambhu form. The shepherd worshipped the Lord and asked for a temple to be built for him. The Lord refused, though, as the colossal sky is his roof. Shanaishwar then asked him every Saturday to perform pooja and’ Tailabhisheka’ on a daily basis. He also gave a boon that thievery and theft would not cause the village any harm.
Lord Shanaishwar is therefore placed even today in an open yard. Surprisingly, no burglary incidents were recorded even though there were no locks or doors in the buildings. Several people tried to steal in 2010 and 2011, but they are said to have died within short time of the crime being committed.
Strangely, in the earlier days, women were not allowed to enter the temple (almost for more than 400 years). 8th April 2016 marked the watershed moment in the history of India when the temple finally decided to open its gates for women after they protested furiously against the tradition.
May we all receive the choicest Blessings of Shanidev at Shingnapur for peaceful and trouble-free life and living.
For Shani Shingnapur live dharshan:
Jai Jai Shani Dev!
Jai Mata Di!