Coconut is the purest form of offering that one can render to god. The fruit is unique in many respects. The sweet, nectar-like water that it holds is pure and untouched by the human hand. The coarsely knit outer fibres of the coconut represent jealousy, greed, lust, selfishness and other vices of man, which must be broken and removed if one is to penetrate and reach the white inner purity and thereafter taste the sweet untouched nectar of spiritual purity and bliss.
The marks on the coconut make it look like the head of a human being. The coconut is broken, symbolising the breaking of the ego. The juice within, representing the inner tendencies (vaasanas) is offered along with the white kernel - the mind, to the Lord. The eyes also represent the three eyes of man - the two physical eyes plus the third or 'inner eye' can penetrate the false, outer facade and reach the ultimate truth. It alone distinguishes right from wrong.
The composition of the coconut is characteristic of the three elements of man. The hard, outer shell, with its coarse fibres represents the physical composition. The inner white fruit represents man's psychological element, and the untouched water signifies his spiritual composition.
It is also offered on occasions like weddings, festivals, the use of a new vehicle, bridge, house etc. It is offered in the sacrificial fire whilst performing homa.
Having been offered to God by way of prayer, the coconut is then eaten by Hindus as blessed food or prasad in the belief that it has now received divine vibrations from God and will therefore give us good health and prosperity.