Friday, 27 April 2012

Navagraha Prayers


Just last week (Apr 21, 2012), I had a "situation" at the Navagraha Temple at the Perumal Temple, Klang.
It was a Saturday night, obviously rather crowded with devotees who are performing their religious duties.

As usual, I go for my rounds to see if everything goes well at Perumal Temple and at Navagraha temple.
I noticed a man carrying the Ellu  (Sesame Seeds) Chatty and was going around the temple with the villaku (lamp). I stopped him, and advised him that it is not proper to go around the temple carrying the lamp, for reasons that I will explain below.

The man got offended, and asked me to hold the lamp instead.  He became furious and told me off that he have doing this for more than 10 years, and who am I to stop him from going around the navagraha temple carrying the lamp.

I have advised him that, it is my duty, as the temple representative, to advice the devotees on the proper manner and processes of religious rituals.

Unhappy still, the man just left the lamp, stopped his prayers, and left... while still shouting and complaining about the way I have treated him.

Well.... one of those days for me!  All are done in the name and for the benefit of the Lord!.

Bad practices

First, recognize that Navagraha (and especially Sani Bhagavan) are NOT negative energies.  Each of the navagraha produces tremendous balans (benefits) for the devotees.  For example, Sani Bhagavan is a GREAT teacher of life.  He creates challenges in life, so that our soul matures and transformation takes place so that we could seek success in our life.  Sani Bhagavan is also the 'Ayul-kaaragan', i.e. he takes care of the longevity of ones life.  I have observed the following BAD practices by devotees when they approach the Navagraha (and you will be amazed at the things that the priests and temple goes through when it comes to Navagraha prayers):
  1. Devotees does not accept prasadams from Navagraha.  When a flower or fruit is offered to a devotee, the devotee will hold the flower prasadam, circles the prasadam around their head 3 times, and leaves the prasadam at the Navagraha temple - on the assumption that "sani bhagavan will follow them if they carry the prasadam back home".  Realise this - Sani Bhagavan, Guru Bhagavan and all other Navagrahams are LORDS, not devils.  They are there to help you.  Each of the Navagraha carries out specific duties.  The prasadams are given as a way as a mean of appreciating the devotees.  Therefore, to "return" back the prasadam offered is an insult to the Lords themselves. 
  2. Worst, some devotees spits onto the prasadam, and leaves them at the temple.
  3. Worst still, there were incidence where the temple priest were spit at, for the same reason!
  4. Some devotees goes around the Navagraha temple 9 times anti-clockwise
  5. Some devotees goes around the Navagraha temple 7 times clockwise, and 2 times anti-clockwise
  6. Some devotees carries the Ellu (Sesame Seed) lamp while they go around the Navagraha at Perumal Temple.
  7. Some devotees still have some chats left via their mobile device, while going around the temple.  
  8. Some devotees purchases just ONE receipt and takes 5-9 Ellu lamps
  9. Some devotees just takes the Ellu lamp without purchasing any receipts.

Bad Karmas

  1. When we lack of knowledge, we need to seek the knowledge.  Ignorance is a Sin.
  2. Going around anti-clockwise is only done during inauspicious occasions, such as funerals.  Hence, we are creating more sins by going around anti-clockwise at the Navagraha temple, since we are facing the Lords and Gods.  
  3. One must understand the SIGNIFICANCE of the lamps, the Ghee, and how our minds can send vibrations and messages (praartanai) via these lamps to the Lords.  It is not meant to be carried and going around the temple.
  4. One must engage their mind fully concentrating on their praartanai (prayers, purposes in life) instead of getting distracted.  Hence the importance of a) turning off your devices.  b) Absolute Silence and avoid talking unnecessarily with friends/family/children during the praartanai 
  5. The Law of Karma, Law of Compensation plays a role in every action that we do.  All Hindus believes in this system.  Hence, when we try to break the system by doing any acts that are unethical, breach of trust, dishonesty, etc, it's between you as an individual and the Universe and Gods.   Temple is the best place to learn and obtain these good energies.

Feedbacks Welcomed

  1. Please do share on your experiences in conducting your duties at the Navagraha Temples.
  2. Frequently asked Questions (FAQ's) were discussed and highlighted by Perumal Temple Priests in their video which had been posted in the Youtube.
  3. You may also post any queries / doubts regarding the Navagraha prayers, and we'll try our level best to address them here.
  4. Feel free to visit the following Youtube page to know more of the do's and don't.
              The Video can be found at :

Guru Peyarchi Maha Yaagam

  1. On a separate note, Guru Peyarchi Maha Yaagam will be conducted on May 13, 2012.
  2. All devotees are welcomed to participate in this Maha Yaagam by paying a small administration amount of RM30 only.
  3. An awareness video on this Guru Peyarchi Programme can be found at:


More details on the temple activities can be found at Perumal Temple Klang website and facebook page:


More articles coming soon.


  1. Dear Bro Nehru;

    I agree with you on the point that Navagrahas are not negative energies especially Lord Shani Bhagwan. It is our thought and belief that reflect on our lives thus creating positive or negative impact. Think positive and you gain positive results.

    Each Navagraha have their unique role to play not only on the planetary system but also in human life. You have described well Lord Shani's role and how He guides us to be a better being.

    Great transformation took place in my life, as I understood the role of Navagrahas and giving equal importance to them during my daily prayers.

    Ignorance is Sin, well said bro.

    Being ritualistic is one thing, being spiritual is another. Hope devotees just don't blindly follow without understanding the reason or science behind each practice.

    It's about time, devotees analyze, understand and practice this beautiful religion of ours. Hinduism is way of life & full of science.

    Om Namo Narayana!

    Kumareswaran Sinayah

  2. what is the proper way to circle navagraha?

    1. Some devotees goes around the Navagraha temple 9 times anti-clockwise
    2. Some devotees goes around the Navagraha temple 7 times clockwise, and 2 times anti-clockwise

    1. Bro Easwar:

      Many are confused between religious perspective and astrological perspective.

      From astrological perspective, the 7 navagraha planets (i.e. surya, chandran, anggaragan, budhan, guru, sukran and sani) rotates clockwise. Rahu and Kethu are not planets, but are lunar nodes, but due to their significance, they are worshipped as planets. They move in anti-clockwise.

      That's from astrological perspective. Let the planets move that way! :)

      From a religious perspective, all movements (from religious and vastu perspective) must be made in clockwise manner. When we honour Gods and Lords, we must go around clockwise.

      Anti-clockwise movement is only done in non-auspicious occasions (e.g. dead/funeral).

      1. Circling navagraha (and/or temple) anti-clockwise 9 times is wrong
      2. Circling navagraha 7 times clockwise and 2 times anti-clockwise is wrong.

      Circling navagraha must be made clockwise (all the 9 circles).

      We are unnecessarily creating a karma for ourselves for the ignorance by circling the navagraha anti-clockwise.

      Hope this answers your question bro Easwar.

  3. Dear brothers and sisters,

    I would like to share this with you.

    When we make an offering of ghee lamp or sesame lamp, or any offering for that matter, it would be good if we can say "I am making this offering on behalf of all the sentient beings in all the dimensions. Please help us to see good things and to think of good things. Pkease help us to reduce and to overcome the burden of our negative karma from our present and past lives"...

    The more we give, in kinds or in thoughts, the more divine merits we gain...

    Sami Sharanam and Sarva Mangalam...

    Mugunthan Damodaran

  4. Dear sir, We worship lord shani(abhishekam) with sesame oil and we r instructed not to eat oil on Saturdays. Can we eat ghee made foods instead of foods made of other cooking oils?

  5. Dear sir, We worship lord shani(abhishekam) with sesame oil and we r instructed not to eat oil on Saturdays. Can we eat ghee made foods instead of foods made of other cooking oils?

  6. Very informative article, thank you. Is there a set amount of time one should offer ellu villakku for Sani bhagwan (for example, 48 weeks), or it is a continuous effort, to pacify him. Also, the archanai must be done everytime we put ellu vilakku right, so the flowers given after the archanai must be taken home, instead of placing at his feet?