Narial Purnima is an important festival for those who depend on sea for a living. Varun, the Sea God, is worshiped on this day and coconuts are thrown into the sea as offering to the Sea God. Hence it got the name Narial purnima or Coconut Full Moon.
Monsoon has withdrawn, skies are clear, tides are declining and the sea is calm. Yes; for the people living in coastal areas, it is the festival time. They celebrate the festival, offering coconuts to the Sea God and praying for his blessings.
For the fishermen it is the beginning of the new fishing season. During the monsoon season, when the seas are violent, it is not safe for the fishermen to wade into the sea. Shravan Purnima is a sign of the withdrawal of Monsoon. To celebrate this auspicious occasion, the Fishermen paint and decorate their boats, and putting flags, they carry decorated coconuts to the sea. The whole community gathers together and they celebrate the occasion by singing and dancing. Finally, they worship Lord Varun, offering coconuts. They throw the decorated coconuts into the sea as offering and pray to the Sea God for plenty of fish.
Importance of Coconut:
It is believed that coconut represents Lord Shiva, because both of them have three eyes. Coconut has great significance during all religious occasions and it is usually considered as an auspicious offering to deities. Before beginning any new venture, or successful completion of some activities, usually a coconut is offered to God by breaking it in front of the deities. In a similar manner, coconut is considered to be the best offering for the Sea God.
Pieces of coconut are distributed to the people as ‘prasad’ and coconut rice is served as the main dish on this festival day.