Why Hindus break coconut during prayer and all rituals?

For prayer or pooja performed by Hindus, many rituals and customs are being followed. One among them is the practice of breaking coconut in the rituals as a sign of offering to gods and goddesses.

The reason for offering Coconut is that it is very pure as rainwater. It is also the symbol of completely submitting oneself to God by letting go of the ego and pride.
Also, according to Aadi Shankara, coconut is considered and chosen as the best alternative to
Narabali, a practice of giving human beings as an offering to the pooja or Homa rituals at the end.
Also, there are few other benefits as below

Fruits in Coconut Shell
Source: Unsplash

Coconut is comparatively good and similar to human anatomy. The three markings on the top of the coconut are compared to the three-eyed Lord Shiva. The outer hard covering is compared as the head of the human whereas the inner one is the skull of the brain. The juice present inside the fruit is equivalent to the blood flow inside the head.

Again stressing the fact that coconut is considered as a best and sacred offering to god during pooja or other rituals like weddings, building a home or other beginning process in the life. The Homa or prayer whilst is performed using the coconut as the best offering. Later at the end of the pooja, it is distributed as sacred Prasada to everyone.

Reason for choosing coconut

One should know what is the reason hidden behind offering coconut to the pooja? It is only that coconut is very pure as rainwater. It may not be adulterated by artificial flavors and sweetening agents. Coconut is edible by all and it is suggested to be taken by sick, children that are even toddlers, elder people that are diabetic as such. Leaving behind the technical reason, coconut is the ultimate choice of Hindus to offer in their pooja because of its varied characteristics and features.

Coconut in Hand

Coconut can be an easy offering thing that can be bought from shops or plowed in the garden itself. The other foodstuff is found as a complicated one compared to coconut instead. The watery liquid found inside the broken shell of coconut is highly nutritive and energetic. Because of its lower sugar content, it is recommended to intake even by diabetics and elder people.

Coconut is also being the best offering in the pooja and other rituals as the fruit replace the curse of harming other beings during pooja. Narabali is highly horrible that need to weed out and to convince those who owe the practice while pooja to correspond their wishes and prayers. Thereby, compromising the people who do not want to give up their custom of sacred ‘Bali’ and related inhuman activities carried out during rituals and pooja.

No other possible means are available replacing coconut finding its place in Hindu prayers and rituals. The practice of breaking coconut ensures the demolishment of the ego that is ahamkara, literally known in Sanskrit. One who offers coconut while pooja and prayer are ready to give up his/her ego, inhuman being, cruelty, etc. The liquid found inside the coconut is discarded while breaking the coconut that symbolically representing the devotees is surrendering to the god with a pure and clean heart leaving the dirt and mischievous thoughts out of them.

Sanskrit names

Hindu mythology offers different terminologies and names to represent coconut and it is being used in Sanskrit for various means. Below are few Sanskrit names representing coconut:

  • Narikela
  • Mahavriksha
  • Driddhaphala
  • Mahaphala
  • Trinahva
  • Trinaphala
  • Trinaraja
  • Driddhabijaka

The above said Sanskrit names are used rarely and not familiar to common people however vernacular names are used locally to represent coconut. Despite the names of the fruit differs from place to place, the purpose of coconut is the same throughout. Many beneficial features are provided with the fruit and juice of coconut. It is also proven medically that the white skinny region and the liquid portion of coconut are used extensively for its medicinal value.

Evidence of observance

All places found rich in water content are prone to give high productivity of coconut. In India, the production level of coconut is at a higher proportion than it gives a good and decent look in the turnover per annum. The small area is surplus planting a coconut plant. Need to water daily and regularly to ensure quick growth of the plant.

Origin of coconut

Hindu religion myth logically narrates an interesting story about the origin of coconut. Ancient years, a ruler named thrisanku lived with all of his wise attitude and behavior. The wise king desire to visit heaven in the mortal body and attempted several times. He was denied entering heaven with mortal a body as it is against the divine rules and regulations. The kind insisted to visit heaven and thereby surged Vishwa Mitra the one was once rescued by the wise king years ago. As a turn to his thankfulness, the saint decided to help the wise king and started yagna and rituals bringing up the king to heaven.

By offering all of his powers gained over yagna and mantras, Vishwamitra let the king rise above entering heaven. But Lord Indra denied the visit of the king and threw him down. Surprising at the attitude of Lord Indra, Vishwamitra shouted not to do so but unfortunately, the king started downing. As a solution to stop him, the sage propped him with a pole that was proven as the origin of the coconut tree.

The tree holds the king from going downwards to earth thereby the king settled in the mid-air heaven that was created for him alone.  According to myth, the fiber cropped around the coconut aspires as the beard of the king. It was if removed then you may observe the markings starring at you. The markings are comparatively the eyes of a wise king.

Cultivation and growing

Coconut Tree

Cultivating, caring and bringing up coconut is not the complicated one but easy to all. Few liters of water are sufficient to grow a coconut tree. Even the other parts of the tree find its distinct uses in various means. The article excludes the uses of leaves and other parts and focuses only on the coconut to attract the reader’s attention.

Few hectares of an area rich in water content are more than enough to cultivate and take over the crop of coconut. No technically sound enough in cultivating coconut but simple planting knowledge is more than sufficient. Periodical and regular watering to plants lead to the successful growth of the whole tree within three years and the tree starts giving yield after the recommended period throughout years.

The life span of a coconut tree

The particular tree is perennial inhabit so the life span of coconut tree extends more than 6-8 decades. Economically, the crop is beneficial and devoid of over-concentration and care so that ensures everyone that shows interest in cultivating coconut plants.

In India, people start caring ecological importance and hence started issuing the seeds or crops of plants to carry out the planting process. This practice of planting trees is culminating recent years with ecological cautious. Hindu mythology also insists on the practice of planting tress one of the steps carrying out rituals. As every practice and process carried out in Hindu religion is related to ecological endurance and environmental development. Every plant has its value whereas the coconut tree gains a lot of benefits hence the importance of people in turn.

Benefits of coconut as edible

Even today kitchens of Indians are not functioning without coconut. Indians use coconut as raw material that is added to dishes. Grated and fried coconut is used as a flavoring agent in the foodstuffs. The cholesterol present in coconut is highly beneficial and considered as good cholesterol.

Coconut Food Pina Colada

The liquid that oozes out when a coconut is broken is rich in nutritive content and recommended to intake by all devoid of age factor. The liquid does not contain artificial colors and sweetening agents that may poison the natural taste. Even today, the marketing of coconut is carried out across the world for its beneficial properties. The tender coconut is a highly rich and natural drink that gains an ecological factor.

Sweets, savories, various recipes are prepared with raw, grated, fried and cooked coconut. However, the food product rich in coconut enhances digestion and releases bowel evacuation, easily. Despite incredible and countless benefits, it is also observed with patients reporting diarrhea on the surplus quantity of water inside the coconut. This inconvenience is rare and uncommon but the prevalence of using coconut is increasing invariably throughout the world.


The article explains clearly the uses of coconut in Hindu prayers and rituals. Perhaps, it also narrates the importance of coconut in the Hindu prayers, too. Fortunately, the Hindus are blessed with the use of coconut that may also render the satisfaction of appetite after the completion of prayers and yagna. Overall, the article is useful for you in all ways as it depicts the other literal terms of coconut in different languages with its beneficial effects. Medically and dietary utility of coconut is stated obviously besides the recommended level that is to intake every day. Also, coconut rescued human life that is being sacred while carrying out yagna and pooja by the people that are want to fulfill their desire.

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