Why Women are not Allowed into Shani Shingnapur Temple?


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Questioner: Sadhguru, why are women not being allowed into certain temples? For example, now with the Shani temple. Why this discrimination?

Sadhguru: At Linga Bhairavi, men are not allowed to enter the sanctum sanctorum, but they never protest. They are married and domesticated – they have been trained not to protest against anything (laughter).

It needs to be understood that these temples are not places of prayer – they are different types of energies. Since we are aware that the planets in the solar system have an impact upon our physiology, our psychological structure, and the context of our lives, we have created temples for the different planets.

Based on the time and date of your birth, and the latitude and longitude of your place of birth, Indian astrologers make complex calculations to see which planets have the greatest influence on your life. These things are relevant to you to some extent. However, if you have access to inner technology, it will level out these planetary impacts.

Shani or Saturn, which is a faraway planet, takes 30 years to complete one revolution around the sun. Considering the revolutions of Saturn and those of the Earth, and your birth details, they can calculate what impact Saturn has on you at different times of your life.

Shani is one of the sons of Surya, the sun – the other one being Yama. Shani is the lord of dominance, distress, depression, disease, and disaster. Yama is the lord of death – the “D” company. These two are brothers-in-arms, always working in tandem. Their mother, Surya’s wife, is Chaya. Chaya means “shadow.” This is science expressed in a dialectical way. The sun is the source of light for us. His wife is Chaya – shadow. Only because there is sunlight, there is shadow.

The seventh day, Saturday, is the day of Saturn. Seven being Saat, it isSaaturday or Saturday. Saturn is the seventh planet or graha in the Indian astrological system. The word “graha” means “to grasp” or “to impact.” Saturn as per modern astronomy is the sixth planet. But the Indian astrology looked at celestial objects which have a strong impact on life upon this planet. In that context, Sun and Moon are also counted as grahas, not to be understood as planets, making Saturn the seventh graha.

Shani

In the order of grahas that have a strong influence upon this planet – Sun, Moon, Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn – though Shani is the seventh, he is a very dominant force, as health and happiness give you freedom of life, but disease and depression will seriously dominate your life. The question is are you allowing external forces, such as the celestial objects, to influence or impact you, or is your inner nature the only influence upon you. Hence, in this tradition, profound astrologers refused to make predictions for those who are on the spiritual path or under the influence of a spiritual Guru.

Because his is a 30-year cycle, once in 30 years, you become more susceptible to the influence of Saturn. This phase, known as Saade Saati, or in Tamil,Yelarai Shani, lasts for seven and a half years. You may become more susceptible to disease, depression, disasters, and death, and more vulnerable to external influences. In order to bridge the pits that may occur during a Saade Saati, various processes and rituals are associated with Shani temples.

There are temples for Shani Deva, where Saturn is personified as a god. Currently, there is this controversy about allowing women to enter a certain temple in Maharashtra, the Shani Shingnapur temple. Very powerful processes are conducted at this temple. Shani temples are mainly used for occult purposes and exorcism. People come there mainly to ward off occult influences or because they feel they are possessed. Because occult processes are conducted there, the energies are not conducive for women. As a woman is entrusted with the significant responsibility of manufacturing the next generation, her body is far more receptive and vulnerable to certain types of energies – especially during pregnancy and menstrual cycles.

Should women not enter the sanctum at all? They could if they were appropriately trained for it, but it would be much more difficult to train women than men for this purpose, simply because of a few biological advantages men have in this area of life. In the very nature of female biology, occult forces can have a deeper impact upon her system.

To remove occult influences and perform exorcisms, certain energies are used that are not nice for a woman at all. Shani is not nice. But he is a part of our lives – we have to deal with him too. Because of these occult forces, women are asked not to enter the area where such things are done. It would not be good for their physical wellbeing.

When certain things go wrong with life, you have to deal with them in a certain way, which may not be pleasant. These temples were created for this purpose. Today, some people perceive it as discrimination that women should not enter this space. It is not discrimination but discretion.

Maybe the way it is enforced is crude and seems discriminatory, and that is why these women are protesting. If one day, men protest in front of Linga Bhairavi and want to enter the sanctum, I will lock it. I will not let them into sanctum because it is not designed for men unless they are appropriately trained for it. This is not discrimination – it is necessary discretion. The space of Dhyanalinga, for one half of the lunar cycle, is managed by men; for the other half, it is managed by women – as that is the nature of an inclusive consecration, which Dhyanalinga is.

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At certain temples, like the Velliangiri hill temple, women are prevented from going up the mountain, as the path goes through dense forest that was rich in wildlife in the past, and it was considered unsafe for women to take this journey. But today, these rules can be relaxed.

In view of the demand to allow women entry to the Shani temple, we need to educate people about the science behind these temples – what they are about and why they were built. In today’s democratic fervor, we want to establish equality, but in certain contexts, this would work to the disadvantage of women. Otherwise, we are one species and two genders. Except for a few areas such as this one, the only places where gender should matter are bathrooms and bedrooms.

Source: isha.sadhguru.org

7 comments on "Why Women are not Allowed into Shani Shingnapur Temple?"

  1. T.C.SHRINIVAASAN says:

    Sadhguru: At Linga Bhairavi, men are not allowed to enter the sanctum sanctorum, but they never protest. They are married and domesticated – they have been trained not to protest against anything (laughter).
    Respect the values. If don’t agree with them, better one should keep themselves away. There are rule in any play. Play without rules is anarchy. Even the Courts have rules. They don’t make themselves a market place. They want rules to be followed for approaching them. But for God, it seems for them no rules.

  2. Ramnath Babu says:

    perhaps over 800 years of mughal rules followed by over 300 years of British rules had a telling impact on the Hinduism, especially in North India. While in South India, especially in Kerala in all temples vedic system is followed. In no temple a devotee can touch the idol. The santum sanctorm is the exclusive domain of the priest and none is allowed to enter there. Offering are made through the priest and no puja/offering can be made yourself. In all other temples in the country this system should be followed to keep the sanctity of the temple. It is for the Acharyas of the Hindu society to take a firm stand on this issue and neither courts nor the government have any right to interfere in the matters of faith and temple rituals.

  3. T.S.Upadhyaya says:

    Very convincing logical answer and I am fully satisfied. This article should be published in all papers to convince women folk.
    Discrimination versus discretion makes the very logical sound answer.

    Let these types of answers be made more advertised for people to understand the logic behind every act which is normally told by people as superstition.

  4. L.Kalavathi says:

    Women do not like to be told that they cannot approach the deity as they’re considered impure during menstruation. Are all men pure? Are there no bodily emissions for men?
    At Sabarimalai insulting comments were made about scanning women to check if they were menstruating. Do they have any machine to check whether all male devotees have actually observed the vratham for one mandala? I know several who observe just for a week or less, even, and go to Sabarimalai. Several men on returning from Sabarimalai binge on drinks etc. in towns at the foothill itself. Is all this acceptable to the guardians of purity of the deity?
    At Tirupathi temple I was manhandled by a person just because a priest said only couples were to do sankalpa for Kalyana Utsavam whereas our ticket said “Four persons allowed” for my brother, his wife, my doctor sister(professor of
    Anatomy) and myself, a Bank Manager. Why have rules that humiliate the devotees?
    A judge exceeds his brief in a case and prescribes dress code for devotees for temple entry in a country whose Father of the Nation was dressed in a “loin cloth”, not to mention some famous Swamijis. Great that this direction has since been jettisoned on appeal. If God cared about how devotees were dressed would we not be born clothed?
    Since the jeevatma in every human being is a part of the Paratma why not respect all human beings as creations or emanations of the Almighty Spirit and refrain from hurting and humiliating them in the name of religious practices which are after all only man-made?
    Hopefully the women devotees who have prayed at Shani Singnapur have struck a much-needed blow for the rise in respect for women in general in India and might have a telling effect on Women’s Status in India, none too good now!
    L.Kalavathi
    Retired Bank Official
    Chennai, India.
    10th April, 2016

  5. leelasastry sastry says:

    For all these so called rules ad restrictions there is an underlying cause and reason . Invariably the intention is to safeguard the interests of the people concerned.What ever may be the argument men and wome re different and we have to accept the fact gracefully.

  6. Vijay Nambissan says:

    I agree to Leela Sastry’s comments, in the Vedas or our Rishi Munis have kept reservations for certain things and it is kept for certain purpose. General people just don’t understand the language in which it is revealed, they understand simple language , hence it is told to them in that way. They make different meaning of such valuable information and create all kinds of nuisance

  7. Cybil Peril says:

    Very convincing point. I have reblogged it on my blog post. Sadhguru Jaggi is a very respected and learned person. I’m happy to have learnt it. I’m sure, this column is going to help many more people to learn the very fundamentals behind such ancient practices. Unfortunately, today, we see a lot of ego with Anglished education and demeaning own Hindu practices have become more of a ritual to boost own image and play secular face. It pays to humiliate Hinduism. Both Church and Mosque are spending huge sums of money in this regard. No wonder, Modi has become a cynosure of many eyes globally.

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