Shani Jayanti 2018

In year 2018 (1940 Vilambi) Shani Jayanti is marked on Tuesday 15 May 2018. Shani Jayanti is marked as birth anniversary of Lord Shani. Shani Jayanti is also known as Shani Amavasya. Lord Shani is son of Lord Surya and rules planet Saturn and Saturdays. It is believed that Lord Shani believes in fair justice and if appeased blesses His devotee with good luck and fortune. People, who don’t have blessing of Lord Shani, toil for years without getting any reward for their hard work in life. In this message on 2018 day of Shani Jayanti, we reflect on the Thunderbolt Armour of Saturn (Shani Vajra Panjarika Stotram) as remedy for the ills of Saturn.


Year 2018

For western civilisation, the New Year arrived on January 1st. For those who follow South Indian Amavasyant calendar the New Year came when the Moon entered Aries, an event that happened on the 18th of March 2018.

Samvatsara is a Sanskrit term for “year.” In the Vedic system, there are 60 samvatsaras. Each samvatsara carries a particular essence that correlates with its Sanskrit name and also is related to its group ruler.

The samvatsara for this New Year is called Vilambi. The sages tell that Vilambi will bring “scanty crops and rains.”

The Jyotisha writings give Lord Surya as the ruler of this year. Surya is the Sun God who is life-giver and time-giver and who represents our capacity for inner strength, wisdom, and will. As with the previous year (1939 Hemalambi), there is a need to attend to proper timing of events, muhurta.

Some tell that those born in the Vilambi year will be prosperous and generous. Others say those born in Vilambi may be deceitful, extremely avaricious or greedy, lazy, phlegmatic (that is, his predominant humour is Phlegm), weak, fatalist and has the habit of speaking without purpose, and keeps his or her thoughts secret.

Saturn 2018

At the time of Lunar New Year, Saturn was in Sagittarius, in the first part of Purva Ashada nakshatra. Saturn had the highest strength of any planet for the year. While the Sun is Lord of the Year, Saturn is 1½ times stronger than the Sun. Purva Ashada is lorded by Venus (friend of Saturn) while Sagittarius is lorded by Jupiter (neutral to Saturn). Purva Ashada is ruled by Sri Vishnu, indulges in bhoga (food, food, food) and enjoys root vegetables. Saturn in this nakshatra would be giving light/energy/magnetism to encourage us to take measured portions of food, and to masticate or consume slowly. Energy from food enters the body through the glands in the throat; food that is swallowed too quickly does not transfer its energy efficiently into our body’s systems.

There has been a planetary war (graha yuddha) between Mars and Saturn during the transit of Mars between mid-March and 2nd May 2018. The meeting of these two planets – both stubborn and determined in their own way, can sometimes be strained. When force meets pressure creative events can occur such as the smelting works housing the furnace; however, application of heat to Saturn’s ambit is not always productive. At times it is necessary to plan for such meetings and to take action (recite gayatri mantras, kavachams, stotrams, chalisa’s etc.,) during the stressful periods.

At the time Shani Jayanti, Saturn is still in Sagittarius, in the same nakshatra, Purva Ashada nakshatra. At this time, Mars has moved to Capricorn where it is exalted and conjunct Ketu. (The Kuja vat Ketu rule has Ketu magnifying the effects of Mars.) At this time, Saturn’s drishti has some warmth and grace as it is aspected by Venus, from Mithuna rasi, where it is in the friendly sign of Mercury. While Saturn is not having a lot of dominance at this time, it is spreading somewhat graceful timing and patience with humour throughout the zodiac. This is a much more comfortable time than Saturn in Mula, a rough tumbling time of abrasive energies.

Shani Vajra Panjarika Stotram
(The thunderbolt armour of Saturn)
translation by P.R. Ramachander


Planet Saturn has many names: Sani (the slow one) aka Sanaischara (the one who moves slowly) aka Saneeswara (The god who is slow) is the planet Saturn among the nine planets of the Vedic astronomy. He is the son of Surya and Chaaya and is the only planet with the epithet Iswara (god). This makes Saturn the only planet who is referred to as divinity.

Saneeswara takes 30 years to make a full round of the Sun and so he becomes the slowest among the planets. This is ascribed to the fact that he was made lame by his half brother Yama (God of death)(note: Yama is also the God of Dharma). Shani (or Saturn) signifies longevity, diseases, death, base actions, reason for death, danger, slavery and wealth of cattle in the horoscope.

He is described as one with very hard hair, of black colour, phlegmatic, one with thick strong teeth, one having red eyes, one with base character, slow witted, lazy and well proportioned. Among the 12 signs, Saturn is the owner of Capricorn and Aquarius. Saturn is in fall (debilitated) in Aries and exalted in the sign of Libra.

Planet Venus (Shukra) and Mercury (Budha) are his friends, Jupiter is his equal, and the Sun, Moon, and Mars (Kuja) are his enemies. He is also referred as Manda, Kona, Bhaskari, Arki and Suryaputra in astrological literature. He takes 30 months for moving from one rasi to another. He gives rise to bad effects when he is standing in the sign of the birth Moon, and the sign before and after this sign. This period is called Sade Sati in Hindi and Ezharai nattu sani in Tamil. During this seven and half year period, the period when it is within the sign of the Moon at birth is the worst period. In a person’s life, there is a possibility of this seven and half period coming three times: the first called mangu sani, the second called pongu sani and the third called marano (pokku) sani.

Another challenging period is when Saturn resides in the 8th house from Moon. The mental confusion it causes may even make one mad. Other signs where Saturn is considered to have malefic effects are the 4th, 5th, 7th, 9th and 10th signs from the Moon. This would mean that Saturn has benefic effects – does good – for only 5 years during his transit of the twelve signs, which takes 30 years.



To appease Sani it is necessary either to pray him, or his friend Hanuman or Lord Ayappa of Sabari Malai or to light gingelly lamps in front of him on Saturdays or to give a copper pot full of gingelly oil as dhana to a Brahmin after seeing your own image in that oil, once. This great prayer occurring in the Brahmanda Purana is believed to be the best possible antidote to the ills of Saturn, particularly sade sati. All people suffering in any trouble caused by Saturn are advised to recite this prayer regularly on Saturdays. All Remedies, like sadhana, require effort.

Shani Vajra Panjarika Stotram

Neelambaro, Nelavapu, kireeti,
Grdhra sthitha, sthrasakaro, dhanushman,
Chathurbhuja, suryasutha, prasanna,
Sada mama syadwaradha prasantha.

Oh god dressed in blue silk, who has a blue body,
Who wears a crown, who sits on vulture,
Who gives misfortunes, who is armed with a bow,
Who has four hands and who is son of the Sun God,
Be pleased with me always and happily grant me boons.

Brahmo Uvacha:-
Brahma told:-

Srunu dwam rishaya , Sarva sani peeda haram mahath,
Kavacham Sani Rajasya Soureridhamanuthamam.

Be pleased to hear oh sage, the great armour,
Which is a cure to all misery brought by King Sani,
Who is the incomparably great in the clan of the Sun.

Kavacham devatha vasam vajra panjara samgnakam,
Sanaishara preethikaram, sarva soubhagya dhayagam.

This armour – called “thunderbolt shield” – in which gods live,
Is very dear to the slow moving planet, and brings all luck.

Om Sri Sanaischara, pathu bhalam may Soorya nandana,
Nethre Chayathmaja pathu, pathu karnou Yamanuja.

Om, Oh God Saturn, let the son of Sun protect my forehead,
Let the darling son of Chaaya protect my eyes,
Lat my ears be protected by the brother of Yama.

Nasam Vaivaswaswatha Pathu, mukham may Bhaskara sada,
Snigha kandashasch may kandaam , bhujou pathu Mahabhuja.

Let my nose be protected by Sun God,
Let the illuminator always protect my face,
Let he with a pleasant voice protect my voice,
And let the great armed God protect my arms.

Skandhou pathu sanischaiva, karou pathu shubha pradha,
Vaksha pathu Yama bhratha, kukshim paathvasitha sthadha.

Let my shoulders be protected by Sani,
Let my hands be protected by he who does good,
Let the brother of Yama protect my chest,
And the one who is dark in colour protect my navel.

Nabhim grahpathi pathu, manda pathu kateem thadha,
OOru mamanthaka pathu , yamo januyugam thadha.

Let my stomach be protected by the lord of all planets,
Let the slow mover protect my hips,
Let he who makes end protect my thighs,
And let Yama protect my pair of knees.

Padou Manda gathi pathu, sarvangam pathu pippala,
Angopangani sarvani rakshen may Surya nandana.

Let my legs be protected by him with slow speed,
Let all my organs be protected by he who wears the coat,
And all my primary and secondary organs,
Be protected by the darling sin of the Sun God.

Ithyethath kavacham divyam padeth soorya suthasya ya,
Na thaasya jayathe peeda , preetho bhavathi sooryaja.

If this armour of the son of the Sun God is read,
No misery will come to him and,
The son of Sun God would be pleased with him.

Vyayay janma dwitheeyastho, mruthyu sthana gatrhopi va,
Kalathrastho gatho vapi supreethasthu sada sani.

Whether Saturn occupies the twelfth, first or second house,
Or even goes to the house of death or occupies the seventh star,
Saturn will always be pleased with him.

Ashtamastha soorya suthe vyaye, janma dwitheeyage,
Kavacham padathe nithyam, na peeda jayathe kwachith.

If the son of Sun God is in eighth, twelfth, first or second house,
On daily reading this Kavacham, no misery would ever be caused.

Ithyedath kavacham divyam saureya nirmitham pura,
Dwadasahtama janmastha doshan nasayathe sada,
Janma lagna sthithaan doshan sarvan nasayathe Prabhu.

This holy divine armour composed by Sun in ancient times,
Would destroy the ills caused by eighth, twelfth, first and second house,
And also destroy the bad effects of Saturn occupying the Lagna rasi (Ascendent)

Ithi Sri Brahmanda Purane Brahma Narada Samvade,
Sani Vajra panjara kavacham sampoornam.

Thus ends the thunderbolt armour of Saturn,
Occuring in the discussion between Brahma and sage Narada,
In Brahmanda Puranam.


Shani Vajra Panjarika Stotram


Shani Arathi



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