209 – The divine fruit

The coconut is called the divine fruit, Shri phal. Who does not venerate the coconut? It is used as an object of worship. It is delicious in food, used in medicines and cosmetics. Every part of the tree is utilized.

“The mind has its own place, and in itself can make a heaven of Hell, a hell of heaven”, Milton.

The coconut has been compared to the human mind. It is split and the reason for the split is that it represents the human mind. We all refer to our mind constantly and the phrase used often is she knows her mind. He is a very strong minded person. The coconut has three parts. The outer surface is covered with husk. Below the husk is the hard shell. Inside is the fruit. The husk represents our tamasic mind, which is sluggish and slow. The hard shell represents the rajasic mind which is egotistical and ambitious. The white kernel represents the sattvic mind which is at peace. When we examine our mind, we see it oscillating between laziness, restlessness and tranquility.

How do we now treat our mind?

When we are in our tamasic frame, we are lazy. We are told to practice daily. But inertia overtakes us and we may be satisfied by just attending the class and whiling our time away. Our rajasic frame goads us and we feel that our practice will enable us to be effective in whatever we do. We take it as a challenge, a competition and how to attain a polished body. Our clothes, our yoga mat all add to our self-image. Here it is totally about me. Then the boasting that one can do 108 surya namaskaras and shirasana for thirty minutes. The Yoga master watches all the students. There are some, who are slow and steady. They practice with breath awareness, visualization and concentration. They are not racing against themselves or others. They are in a sattvic frame of mind. We can see the three stages in ourselves. It is how we perform our sadhana.

Be free of ahamkara and ignorance

The coconut is offered in the temple to the priest, and he cracks it. This signifies that our ego is vanquished, and the beautiful, white fruit is offered to God. Then the priest returns the coconut and the kernel is shared with everyone. Our life is blessed and we are on the path. Our wish to be free of ahamkara and ignorance is granted. I have seen persons offering hundred and eight coconuts to Ganesha to remove obstacles from life. This puja is conducted outside in the temple courtyard. Also the coconut is considered the purest thing that an individual can offer to a deity. The coconut is also considered as the symbol of the three Gods, Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva. The three dots in the coconut symbolize the three eyes of Shiva. When Vishnu met Lakshmi, he brought with him a coconut and a cow.

Aim Hrim Klim

Photo by Jonas Dücker on Unsplash

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