Sriphala :God’s own fruit – Why is breaking coconut considered auspicious?

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shubhpuja.comThe wish fulfilling tree or also known as ‘kalpa vriksha’ in Sanskrit is considered auspicious for providing the necessities of life. It is said, that Adi Shankara replaced the ‘bali’ sacrifice of human beings by coconut, to achieve the fulfilment of desire by performing religious ceremonies. Coconut is referred as human head, where the outer hard shell is similar to physical body and the kernel to the subtle body. The marks on the hard coconut body are also considered to resemble the three eyed Lord Shiva, who is the Lord to fulfil our wishes and desires.

Significance of offering Coconut:

The purest offering to Lord is coconut, which is unadulterated and pure due to the outer hard shell. Devotees please the Lord by making a pure offering and portraying the intensity of their prayers. We have often seen people breaking coconut before the beginning of auspicious ceremonies or at the beginning of a profitable venture; it is because the coconut is loved by Lord Ganesha. Devotees remember Lord Ganesha by breaking the coconut and getting rid of all the evil energies and negative hurdles.

It is also said that the ceremony of breaking the coconut resembles the breaking of human selfish motives like greed, ego and pride. As the coconut breaks, the human ego or ‘ahankaar’ is broken and shattered in front of lord, by achieving the oneness with supreme God in the Universe. As the physical myth or ‘maya’ is smashed away, one can taste the sweet untouched nectar of divine bliss.

Scientific relevance:

Every part of the coconut fruit along with its tree is beneficial for human existence. Parts like trunk, leaves and coir are used in making of thatches, mats, furniture, oils and soaps. The coconut tree soaks the salty water from the ground and transforms it into sweet nourishing water which is especially recommended for patients. Special parts of the tree and fruit are used in the preparation of ayurvedic medicines and the consumption of the fruit is really healthy.

Water the plant for five years, reap coconuts for life” is an appropriate saying to define the significance of this auspicious fruit.

Contributed By: Meenakshi Ahuja

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