Shani Shinganapur

(This is an old post of 2008 got reposted in today’s date after I edited it a bit.)

 On the way to Ahmednagar Railway station we took the diversion to Shinganapur. The temple here is dedicated to Lord Shani.

The temple is unique, in the sense that the idol is not housed inside any building. The idol is a big black stone slab placed on a high pedestal and it is in the open. The common belief is that all efforts to build a temple around it have been in vain. People who tried to build a structure around it got dreams and visions with messages like, ‘I don’t need shelter and do not want to live in any body’s insignia of royalty.”

Another uniqueness of this temple is that only male devotees can offer prayers. And unlike other temples the devotees can carry out the abhishek (prayersand offerinngs)all by themselves without the intervention or assistance of the priests there.



A neem tree there is almost always leaf less, so they say. The belief is even the shade of that tree is not acceptable to Lord Shani. See the contrast between the two trees in the picture. I would like to add here that I am not sure whether the tree is always like that and this picture is taken on 29 Dec. 2007.

The village around the temple is also one of its kinds, in this world. What is most unique and striking feature of this village is that, none of the houses here have doors, yes NO DOORS. People of this village for centuries have never built doors to their houses. The façade of each and every house and shop has just a rectangular hollow space in the wall and the footwear outside indicate the entry and exit point.

I went around there shocked at the sight. I was trying to remember the number of latches and locks I have in the doors of my house, not only in the main door but also in the doors of each room. The people of this village have never purchased a latch or lock in their whole life. They have never experienced a theft either. Their blind faith that whoever steals will be punished by Lord Shani and whatever is stolen soon returns back to the losers. Gave me goose bumps listening to their story.
The windows of this house had no grills.

This lady told me that even her grandparents’ house had no doors. During severe winters they place a wooden plank, thats all, no latches or locks.


Shinganapur is 6 kms from Ghodegaon on Aurangabad-Ahmednagar road. The road is motorable and in good condition. This is my last travel post on my visit to Aurangabad. Writing about each of these places was like revisiting them again.

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32 Responses

  1. No doors in any of the houses! I am amazed. This is what simple faith arouses in us. I feel humble in the presence of such faith.

    As for Lord Shani not requiring any shade, isn’t he the son of Lord Surya, and maybe he wants his father’s gaze on him at all times? 🙂

  2. AJEYA RAO says:

    I had been here last Nov and performed the oil abishek. We also went to a temple very close to here called – Renuka Matha temple. The interiors of this temple is full of colored glass.

  3. backpakker says:

    ive read abt this village and always wanted to go there …good now, I know whom to ask for directions

  4. Yes Raji, I too was amazed when I saw the houses there. Need to explore India more.

    Ajeya, I guess I missed the temple you mentioned. 🙁

    Sure Lakshmi. Shirdi is closer to this spot.

  5. GMG says:

    Hi Indrani, wonderful post! And lots of interesting things to learn about, including the no doos village story. Incredible!
    «Writing… was like revisiting»; how i understand you…
    Hope you have a great weekend!
    Gil

  6. Maddy says:

    that was simply fascinating – a village with no doors? ah takes me closer to john lennon’s imagine…

  7. shubd07 says:

    Hi Indrani

    Though I have been to Ahmednagar a few times , I have not been to Shinganapur . But I have read many article on it .
    Sounds like an amazing village.
    Great write up you have here .

    P.S. Have put up one more for the WI prompt of “Flight”

    Hope you will look it up 🙂
    Thanks

    http://la-muse07.blogspot.com/2007/11/eagle.html

  8. Thanks Gil.

    Thanks Maddy, that link was an eyeopener.

    Thanks Shubha, staying so close don’t miss out the temple. It is worth visiting.

  9. aalok says:

    found your blog on mysore park…

    nice post. made me remember my visit to the temple and the struggle i had to go through to wear the dhoti!!!

    Aalok
    – Fear knocked at the door. Faith answered and no one was there.

  10. Thanks Aalok.
    🙂 dhoti wearing is an unavoidable act for men to enter most Hindu temples.

  11. Very Good information posted by you.

    Shani shingnapur

  12. Uppal says:

    INDRANI,YOUR PICTURES AND CONTENT CONVEY SO MUCH, WHICH IS REALLY FASCINATING!

  13. Sylvia K says:

    What an amazing place! Fascinating!! Thanks as always for sharing, Indrani!!

  14. I've read about this place in news articles, but this is the first blog post I'm reading by someone who has personally visited the village. Quite amazing!

  15. Hilary says:

    It's amazing how differently the same human race can and does live from place to place. Great pics. I love seeing the world through your lens.

  16. Mridula says:

    Amazing that the village has no door on top of the god not liking a temple!

  17. Very interesting! I likes it!! 🙂

  18. yes ! I read about it that this is the only and unique village that have no door in their houses. But this is really amazing and workable information that only men can perform pooja there . Thnx for Re sharing your post .

  19. Yeah Indrani.. have read about it but your pics made it clear and believable.. planning a visit soon :0

  20. Beautiful settings, love those men in orange. lol.

  21. Prasad Np says:

    Well some things happen only in India… this is one of them

  22. I have never been to that place..Thanks for the wonderful pictures and interesting info 🙂

  23. Deb says:

    WOW.. I never thought that in these days also that type of village exist.. Thank you for this wonderful and valuable information..

  24. Beautiful temple. When we went to Shirdi, we had planned to visit the temple, but couldn't due to time constraint. Thanks for sharing.

  25. I've read about this village..it's really amazing to know about their faith and beliefs…

  26. Carver says:

    Great narrative and fascinating photographs.

  27. Jeevan says:

    Interesting indeed!

  28. Loved the post and you always make me want to each place that you visit.

  29. George says:

    When I was growing up we had doors, but they were never locked, even when we were away from the house. How times have changed.

  30. Alan Vel says:

    When I visited Shirdi last October, I heard about this temple and there are many autos, jeeps busy transporting people from shirdi. This post makes me to visit on next time. Thanks.

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