Coconut is Considered to be as the Most Satvic FruitThe coconut is considered to be the most satvic fruit and the most purest form of fruit one can offer to God according to the Hindu religion for it has many unique features. It is described as God's fruit and is used to symbolize God. People wonder why of so many fruits available why only coconut is considered so dear to God. In Hinduism the offering of coconut as Prasad has become an indispensable part. Coconut plays a major part not only in as offering to the God but also it is a very significant fruit in almost all religious festivals or anything which is going to start. Also at the time of wedding coconut is used in welcoming the people. The usage of coconut has lot of significance adhering to it. One can devote himself to God by understanding the underlying significance attached to this custom of offering coconut to God. Hindus declare that human ego is one of the biggest hurdles in the path of one attaining Moksha or get himself relieved from the cycle of birth and death. They also strongly believe that we can become a part of the Almighty who governs the entire universe only by throwing away our ego. Thus there are lots of ways by which one can diminish his ego to reach God and one such way is by the use of coconut.
Coconut was Mainly Chosen for it is Compared to the Human Head-The most renowned spiritual Guru, Adi Shankara played a major role in denouncing the idea and practice of Narabali and instead he suggested the use of coconut as a substitute for it for those who still wish to continue the practice of 'bali' sacrifice of other beings, but wanted a similar ritual for fulfillment of their wishes. Coconut was mainly chosen for it is compared to the human head in many ways. The human hair is compared to that of the coir of the coconut and the skull to that of the hard nut and finally the water inside the coconut akin to the blood and the kernel to that of the mental space. Another explanation defined the outer shell to the human being's large physical body and the kernel to the delicate body. The role of coconut as an offering to God plays a very vital role. The removal of the hard outer cover of the coconut means that one should be totally devoid of desires in order to reach God. Since God wants his devotees to be egoless and as emphasizing it we break the coconut which means shattering of our ego, which will then lead to the inner juice which is usually removed before offering to God and this shows that the internal tendencies of our brain to be jealous, egoist and selfish human being which has to be removed.
The Most Vital Element in Pujas is a Coconut
-The most vital element in most of the puja ritual is a coconut and the most found offering in temple both to the God and to the devotees as Prashad is the coconut. The fruit by itself is considered to be very pious, hygienic and healthy endowed with rich properties. At the time of any homa we can witness the offering of coconut in the sacrificial fire.
Also the marks on the coconut is said to symbolically represent the three-eyed Lord Shiva who can bestow us with the best of knowledge and health. There are various legends associated to coconut in Indian mythology.
Legend behind the coconut-The coconut is believed to be created by the great sage Vishwamitra to support King Satyavrata who wished to gain his entry into heaven with his mortal body which unfortunately didn’t happen because he was thrown by the Gods. Satyavrata was a famous and a pious king of the solar dynasty who once happened to save Vishwamitra and his family at the time of great drought and thus as a gratitude the sage blessed him with the King's wish. But the Lord of Gods, Indra did not permit this and he pushed Satyavrata from the heaven. As Satyvratha descended down he cried for Vishwamitra, who cast a spell to stop him mid-air.
The very angry sage decided to design a heaven for Sathyavrata. But soon the sage realized that as the power of the spell weakens Sathyavrat might fall down. So, he held him with a long pole. In time this pole became the trunk of the coconut tree and Satyavrata’s head became the fruit. This is how Sathyvrata got the name of Trishanku which means one who is neither here nor there.
The in-depth study of the knowledge of coconut helps us in knowing the significance of coconut not only in the daily usage of it but also its relation with God. Coconut is offered to God along with its white kernel which stands for purity of mind. This is one main reason why a coconut is offered to God and this is done with the fullness of a devotees mind and his thought process as depicted by the coconut will not only result in the spiritual growth but also gives us an easy access to God. Coconut is an ensign of selfless service for all the parts of it is used in many ways like it gives a tasty fruit along with shadow for the living beings. The wonder is though it can be grown on salty water too it has the ability to give as output the sweet nectar like juice. Thus it makes sense to offer this selfless fruit to the almighty God. Most of the holy rituals which are conducted by the Hindus start with the breaking of a coconut or it leads the Abhishekam for the God. The use of coconut keeps varying depending on the religious festivals. The breaking of coconut is considered to be a good omen in cases like beginning of a new business venture, before the first ride of vehicle, etc.
Coconut as a prashad
-For the success of any venture ego has to be first shattered like the shell of the coconut and thus the negative factor will not come in the way of welfare of an individual. There is also certain practical note behind the fact of offering coconut and one such is its high nutritive values. Both as on oil and as a fruit it is highly nutritious and when offered to public as prashad they will not hesitate to eat and this will in turn inspire or force them to improve the culture of eating this healthy food and also the mind of worshippers. Thereby eating the coconut as a prashad will help in receiving the heavenly vibrations from the supreme power and blessed by God for our good health and well being. Thus an in-depth study of the usage of coconut in all the rituals can narrow down to one single factor which is for the betterment of human existence. It is the only sativic fruit, which has three distinct eyes which each to it states or signifies the Trinity of Evolution - Creation, Preservation and Dissolution. Of the three eyes of the coconut the first two represent the physical eyes whereas the third inner eye symbolizes the fact that it can penetrate the wrong, exterior face and target the ultimate truth. Thus it has the power to distinguish the right from the wrong.