The Parable of Saturn – Indian Proverbs

The Parable of Saturn - Indian Proverbs

There is a parable describing the pernicious aspects of Saturn. I believe that there is a deep inner meaning in it, and I will tell it to you so that you too can feel it.

Parvati makes sure that all divine creatures live in prosperity, and at the same time she and Lord Shiva do not have their own abode. Parvati asked Shiva to build a palace where they could live comfortably. Shiva tried in every possible way to explain to Parvati that since they live a simple life, they do not need a luxurious palace. He also advised her not to compare them to others, because each creature makes its own choices. But Parvati insisted, and Shiva erected a magnificent palace. All the Devats were invited to the ceremony of entering the new house (Grihaparvesh). They praised the luxury and beauty of the new home. Lord Brahma alone remained silent. After some delay, he discovered that he foresaw a cruel aspect (drishti) of Saturn on their new home and advised Shiva and Parvati not to act hastily.

Concerned Parvati asked Shiva to go to Saturn and ask him to cancel his influence. Parvati added that if Saturn responds to the request, let Shiva return to her. And if Saturn refuses, Shiva should give a signal by hitting his drum (damaru). In this case, she will have time to burn her house before the influence of Saturn touches it.

Shiva went to Saturn and expressed his desire. Saturn immediately agreed. Then Shiva asked Saturn what reward he wanted for his generosity. Saturn wished that Shiva would give him pleasure to see Shiva dancing his dance of destruction (tandava mritya). Shiva immediately agreed and began to dance, playing the damaru. Parvati heard the agreed signal, thought that Saturn had refused their request, and set fire to her house.

Parvati was about to curse Saturn, but then Shiva returned and told what really happened. Not Saturn is to blame, but Shiva himself, who carelessly forgot about his intention not to beat the drum.

Usually people understand this story as an indication that no one can escape the harmful influence of Saturn. But I am sure that this story has a different, deeper meaning. A person himself, with his unconscious actions, attracts adverse events into his life, and in case of failure he turns his anger on innocent planets.

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