Navagraha or the Nine Planets
Navagraha or the Nine Planets are held in reverence in Indian mythology. These are integral part of Hinduism and Hindu rituals. Considered to play a major role in deciding the destiny of man, these planets are believed to be having their own ruling ‘deities’. It is believed that these nine planetary deities influence human lives. The Navagrahas are Sun (Surya), Moon (Chandra), Mars (Mangal), Mercury (Budha ), Jupiter (Brihaspati), Venus (Shukra), Shani (Saturn), North Lunar Node ( Rahu) and South Lunar Node ( Ketu). These paintings are inspired by the mythical attributes of these planets or/and their ruling deities in their various mythological manifestations.
Lord Surya – The Sun God Lord Surya or the Sun God occupies the central place amongst the ‘navagrahas facing the east. Surya is the Lord of ‘Simha Rashi’ or Leo sign in Zodiac and its chariot is drawn by seven horses representing the seven colours of the white light and seven days of a week. It is believed that Surya , in the form of a horse communicated the Yajurveda ( the oldest of the four vedas) to Yajnavalkya before it was written into words. Further, it was Vishwakarma who cut away one eighth of Sun’s effulgence to form discus of Lord Vishnu , the trident of Lord Shiva , the lance of Lord Kartikeya and many other weapons of gods.
Lord Chandra – The Moon God Chandra or the Moon is a lunar deity and is also known as Soma. In Indian mythology ‘chandra’ rides a chariot with three wheels. In the Vedic system of astrology ‘chandra’ has 27 subdivisions known as Nakshatras or Lunar Mansions. Each Nakshatra is ruled by a specific planet in the same way that each horoscope sign is ruled by a specific planet.
Mangala - Planet Mars Mangala, the planet Mars, is a ferocious god. Its reigning deity is Lord Kartikeya, the god of war. The myth goes that ‘Kartikeya’ was born to destroy the demon Taraka. Lord Kartikeya is believed to have been born with six heads and rides a peacock with all his armour.
Shani - Planet Saturn Lord Shani or Saturn is often referred to as ‘dark planet’ and symbolizes longevity, misery and grief. Shani is the one who moves slowly, because Saturn takes about 30 years to revolve around the Sun. This planet is associated with the crow in Hindu mythology. He is depicted dark in colour, clothed in black; holding a sword, arrows and two daggers and mounted on a crow, which is Shani's carrier.