This is the 7th day of the Navaratri celebrations – nava meaning nine, rathri meaning nights. All festivals are meant to remind mankind that they should cultivate noble qualities by engaging themselves in activities beneficial to one’s own self and society. Sai Baba has told that the navaratri festival of nine nights represents the Nine Planets.
Sai Baba went on to say that each planet has its own significance. However, these planets are not outside, they are within. This refers to the cosmic energies of the planets within, and pursuit of the spiritual path would include influences within us from birth. Taking up the opportunity presented by Navaratri we look to the influence of Planet Saturn within and examine how the Divine Mother is related to these energies, in the form of Ma Durga. The colour for the 7th day of Navaratri is GREY so we scribe in GREY for this 7th day of Navaratri.
For some, Saturn is a planet that induces fearful responses. The role of Saturn is not to induce fear, but rather, to give opportunities to everyone to follow duty, devotion and discipline.
Duty is following one’s personal path of righteousness, right conduct, their rightful place in society. It is the duty of fathers to provide for their family, it is the duty of the mother to feed, clothe and raise the children; it is the duty of teachers to impart knowledge necessary to every child’s growth and advance. Through educare, teachers elicit the five eternal values within children: truth, right conduct, love, peace and non-violence. There are many other duties: the protection of the community, the fostering of trade and commerce, the protection of the economy; like this, people do their duty, further the culture and goals of a society and raise up a strong nation. These are the fruits of following one’s duty.
We told that Saturn gives opportunities for everyone to follow duty, devotion and discipline. Devotion is practice of the faith we are born into, and learning about the Formless Absolute as it reveals itself to other cultures and nations with all the different faith systems and the manifold names and forms of God that humanity has. Devotion matures into a personal spirituality that does not violate him or her self nor others in thought, speech or action. Self awareness – a critical element of personal spirituality – leads to awareness of the environment and the need to relate to nature. There may be appreciation of art, aesthetics and beauty, and a view of the world as an expression of the Divine. The person is capable of managing their spiritual life.
Where does Saturn gives opportunity for everyone to follow devotion? In the challenges, vicissitudes, confrontations and ups-and-downs of life, Saturn presents the necessity to endure, to persevere, to withstand taking up resources from within. These resources are based on personal faith and practice of spirituality. For those with no faith, faith in yourself is equal to faith in God.
Saturn gives opportunities for everyone to follow discipline. Self discipline is the foundation for going forward in life, in every part of our lives: in the home, at school, in the university, in the workplace, in sporting and social activities, in the society. Self discipline produces self control, which produces self confidence, which produces self-satisfaction and the achievement of personal goals.
There is no progress without adherence to discipline; the body has an optimum temperature, which, when passed, fever sets in. The eye has a maximum amount of luminosity it can perceive, beyond which, damage occurs to the eye. Desires should be kept in check; those who delay immediate gratification of their desires, science and psychology have shown, achieve their long-term goals in life.
During Navaratri, we invoke the energy aspect of God in the form of the universal mother, often referred to as “Durga,” which literally means the remover of miseries of life. She is also referred to as “Devi” (goddess) or “Shakti” (energy or power). It is this energy, which is embedded in the work of creation, preservation and destruction. In other words, you can say that God-Brahman is motionless, absolutely changeless, and the Divine Mother Durga, does everything; worship of Shakti confirms the scientific theory that energy is imperishable. It cannot be created or destroyed.
Mahashtami, also known as Maha Durgashtami, is second day of Durga Puja. On Maha Ashtami nine small pots are installed and nine Shaktis of Durga are invoked in them. All nine forms of Goddess Durga are worshipped during Maha Ashtami Puja.
It is thought that Saturn is governed by Goddess Kalaratri. When the Goddess Parvati removed outer golden skin to kill demons named Shumbha and Nishumbha, she was known as Goddess Kalaratri. Kalaratri is the fiercest and the most ferocious form of Goddess Parvati. Kalaratri is worshipped on the seventh day of Navratri. Goddess Kalaratri complexion is dark black and She rides on a donkey. She is depicted with four hands. Her right hands are in Abhaya and Varada Mudra and She carries sword and the deadly iron hook in her left hands. The name of Goddess Kalaratri is also spelled as Goddess Kalratri and Goddess Kaalratri.
What is the role of the Saturn in the 4th and 5th Dimensions? Saturn provides opportunities to the human to develop their inner capacity, in all areas of action. This capacity is born of duty, devotion and discipline which provides inner boundaries from which capacity may be enlarged to accommodate the evolution to (or return to) the 4th and 5th Dimensions. If there is capacity within, with bunds of duty, devotion and discipline, then this is the foundation for new dimensions of human life with new capacities for inner life, inner experience, inner skills. You cannot build capacity without first having capacity. This is the gift of Planet Saturn to the 4th and 5th Dimensions.