Worshipping the planets

Planets are solely responsible either for our sufferings or happy life. In order to alleviate the sufferings, the propitiation of planets is one of the best measures suggested by the astrologers. Propitiation of the planets is by various means and rituals.

On auspicious occasions and festivals Navagrahas are duly worshipped and to propitiate all the planets following Sholaka is recited :

Om Brahma Muraristripurantakari Bhanu Shashi Bhoomi Suto Budhasch |
Gurusch Shukrah Sani Rahu Ketawah Sarve Grahah Shantikara Bhavantu ||
O lord, Brahma, Vishnu, Mahesha, Sun, Moon, Mars, Mercury, Jupiter, Venus, Saturn, Rahu and Ketu!
Please bless us with peace and welfare.

As a matter of fact, Navagrahas leave their impact on every human being according to his/her time of birth and Zodiac signs at that time. Some planets cast good while some others cast bad effects on the native. To ward off evil effects of a particular planet, it is worshipped. Worship, Yajna and donation pacifies the planet and thus the native gets good results and evil days go off simultaneously. Worshipping the planets and chanting the appropriate mantras are quite helpful. In continuation, one should perform havana of dasamsa; dashamsha tarpan of havana, dashamsha marjan of tarpon and dashamsha brahman bhojan of marjan. All these must be performed under the able guidance of a Brahmin scholar to have desired result without fail.

Procedure of worshipping the Navagrahas

At first, arrange all the things essential for the worship of Navagrahas. One shouldn't get up to get things once the worship begins. The native who is to worship the Navagrahas, should leave his bed meditating his own God-Goddess. He must then ease himself off and take a bath. He must sprinkle water of Ganga in his water for bath. While performing the pooja the native should sit facing east where the priest must face north. Both must sit cross legged. Once again the native should sprinkle the water of Ganga on himself contemplating his 'Ishta Deva'. He should chant the following mantra simultaneously in order to purify himself.

Om Apavitrah Pavitro Va Sarvavastha Gatopi Va. |
Yah Smaret Pundarikaksham Sa Bahyamyantrah Shuchih.||
O Lord of this Universe, Jagdishwar!
We make ourselves sacred by contemplating you.
After this, the following steps are performed while chanting various mantras.
  • Aasan (seat) should be purified by sprinkling water on it.
  • In various provinces sacred thread is changed during the worship of Navagrahas. The native in that case wears a new sacred thread.
  • If wife and husband sit together, the priest should tie them with their clothes.
  • Now sip water thrice from your right hand and chant the mantras all the while:

    Om Keshavaya Namah, Om Narayanaya Namah Om Madhavaya Namah

  • Once you have done the ablution you should purify your head with this mantra:

    Om hrishikeshaya Namah

  • Light up a Deep of ghee.
  • Now take a Sankalp for Navagraha Pujan and pray :

    0, light like lord, kindle good ideas in myself.
    O lords - the Sun, Varuna, Indra, Brihaspati and Vishnu! Kindly bless usand ensure our welfare.

  • You can now start worship of Navagrahas - obviously with sankalp.
  • First of all Lord Ganesh is invoked and his worship is performed.
  • Once you are through with the worship of Ganesh go for the worship of all the planets according to the scriptures.
Worship of Sun

Of the Navagrahas, the Sun is at the top. He bestows energy on one and all. Those desirous of his worship should do so on any Sunday - but after worshipping lord Ganesh. After Sthapana of the Sun, his worship should be accomplished according to Ganesha pujan. In course of worship one should meditate about Sun and chant his mantras and beeja-mantras. The worshipper must recite Surya Gayatri mantra, Sri Aditya Hridaya Stotra and Surya Dwadash Naam stotra.

After all these, the native should donate some wheat, jaggery, copper, clothes, ruby and red piece of cloth according to his capacity. As per the scriptures lord Vishnu too should be worshipped along with Sun. Note that Sunday is the day of worship for Sun and fast in his name. But this fast i.e. Ravivariya Vrata should commence on first Sunday of Shukla Paksha of Jyestha and be continued on 12 Sundays or till the wish is fulfilled. The worshipper should have wheat bread (rotis) along with jaggery or sugar before sunset. He should not eat salt.

Worship of Moon

Moon is nearest to the Earth. It has a great impact on our body and psyche. To start worship of Moon, take some white flowers in your folded hands and meditate that "Kshir-saagar-born lord moon, along with Rohini come and accept my offering and bless me with well-being." Later on, perform worship according to that of Lord Ganesha. Chanting and reciting mantras of Moon, his beej-mantra, Soma - Gayatri and Chandra-Kavach stotras are must. On Moncilays, one should keep fast after the worship. One should donate silver, pearl, white clothes, camphor, ghee, rice and a pot full of water. Monday fast should commence on first Monday of Shukla Paksha of Jyestha or Shravan month. Those who keep fast on four Mondays in the month of Shravana get benefits of 16 mondays' fast. Monday fast is kept in three ways:

  1. On each Monday
  2. Somya Pradosha Vrata
  3. 16 Monday-fasts

On this day one should listen to Katha after worship of Lord Shiva. Remember to take your meal once in course of day and night.

Worship of Mars

Mars is also known as Bhoomi-Putra i.e. son of the earth. Devotion towards Mars and latter's worship, fast, etc. help us achieve conjugal bliss and a peaceful life. Worshipping Lord Hanuman too helps in pacifying Mars. To worship Mars, invoke him with red flowers in your folded hands and recite. "0 Lord! Descend here and drive away all our miseries." After this, perform his worship as you did for lord Ganesh and then chant and recite mantras of Mars, beej-mantra, Bhoum-Gayatri and Mangal┬ČKavach. Keep fast on Tuesdays and donate red clothes, copper, lentils (pulse), coral and gold as per your capacity. Fast on Tuesday should be observed with one meal of wheat and jaggery products only. This fast should be kept at least 21 times. On Tuesdays Lord Hanuman should also be worshipped.

Worship of Mercury

Situated closest to the Sun, planet Budha leaves impact on individuality, learning, sense of humour, and voice of a person. Invoke planet Mercury with green flower in your folded hands and pray - "0 Lord! Come and rid me off my miseries." Now worship him as you worshipped Lord Ganesha. Recite mantras of Mercury and also perform japa, Budha gayatri and Budha Kovach. Observe fast on Wednesdays and donate green-clothes, emerald, bronze-vessels, gold, etc. Fast on Wednesdays should start on first Wednesday of Shukla-Paksha of Jyestha. It must be carried on to at least 21 Wednesdays. Make sure you do have only one meal the whole day.

Worship of Jupiter

Jupiter is best known as the guru of the deities and a scholar of jurisprudence and Vedas. His worship should commence only on a Thursday of any Shukla Paksha. The girls desirous of marriage, whose marriage gets delayed or who face obstacles, must perform worship of lord Jupiter. To perform his worship one should keep yellow flowers in ones folded hands and then pray- "0 lord Jupiter! Kindly take your seat here and accept our Pooja." Then, perform worship as you did in case of Ganesh. Then start reciting mantras (of Jupiter), beej-mantra, Brihaspati-gayatri, and Brihaspati-Stotra. At the end of worship donate yellow clothes, grams (pulse), topaz and gold. Observe fast on Thursdays. One should start this fast on first Thursday of Shukla-Paksha and do it at least 16 times or till wish gets fulfilled. Use yellow objects on this day. Banana tree is also worshipped on this day. On days of fast, meal must be without salt. Gram-based meal is advised.

Worship of Venus

Planet Venus is related to Shukracharya - guru of monsters. With white flowers in your folded hands, invoke lord Venus and pray - "0 lord Venus! You are the scholar of all Shastras. Please do come, take a seat and relieve us off our troubles". Now commence worship as you did for lord Ganesh and then start chanting mantras, beej-mantra, Shukra-Gayatri, Shukra-Stotra, and Shukra Kavach. Thereafter, donate white clothes, rice, ghee, incensed-objects and cow. Observe fast on Fridays. This fast too should start on first Friday of Shukla Paksha and should be observed on 21 coming Fridays. On this day put on white clothes; offer pudding (made of milk-sugar-rice) to the lord and have it yourself thereafter.

Worship of Saturn

Lord Saturn, son of Sun, is a big-eyed and over-sized god. Sadhesati of lord Saturn casts its impact on everyone's life. Worshipping and fasting for him should be done on Saturdays. During his worship, take some blackish flower in your folded hands and then pray - "0 lord Saturn! Do take a seat and rid us off our troubles". Now perform the worship the way you did for lord Ganesha and keep on chanting mantras (of Saturn), beej mantra, Shani Gayatri and Shani Kavach etc. Thereafter, according to your capacity, donate black sesame, black clothes, horse bean (Urad), oil, and gold. Lord Saturn is worshipped on this fast and so donate the items mentioned above as they are his favourite. In the night take Khichari of black horse bean (Urad). Offer the same to others as well. This fast too should commence on first Saturday of Shukla-Paksha and continue the same on coming 21 Saturdays.

Worship of Rahu

At the time of Samudra - manthan (churning of the ocean) even Rahu tasted some nectar along with other gods. He, too is being offered his share in Pooja from that time only. Worshipping Rahu on Saturdays bears auspicious fruit. With blue flower in folded hands Rahu is invoked - "0 lord Almighty Rahu! Do appear and take your seat and free us from all our worries." Now perform his Pooja as you did in care of Lord Ganesha and then chant mantras (of Rahu), beej-mantra, Rahu-Stotra, and Rahu┬ČKavach. Lastly, donate oil, gold, gomed, and black clothes as per your capacity.

Worship of Ketu

Rahu and Ketu are called shadowy planets. Planet Ketu is offered Pooja on Tuesday. Worshipping Rahu gives result as one gets in case of Saturday fast whereas Ketu bears fruit like a fast on Tuesday. Start worshipping Ketu with some flowers in folded hands by invoking him - "0 headless, aggressive-looking God! We invoke you here. Please do take your seat and put an end to our miseries." Now perform Pooja as you did in case of lord Ganesh and then chant mantras (of Ketu), Beej-mantra, Ketu-Stotra, and Ketu Kavach. Later on donate blanket, Kasturi (musk), sesame oil and gold according to your capacity.

After performing Pooja of all the planets, they are individually given a warm send off (Visarjan). We should apologise to them that if there was any mistake in course of Pooja, Awahan, chanting of mantras and Visarjan, they all should forgive us and finally put an end to all of our miseries. Make it a point to invite guidance of a qualified Brahmin to complete the affair.