MENTAL HEALTH CARE TIP OF THE MONTH: cOCONUTS WHEN YOU'RE FEELING COOCOO
Coconuts have significance in hundreds of cultures and religions across the world. In Hinduism, coconuts are broken as offerings for prayers and used in countless rituals. Coconuts are also used heavily in the West African Yoruban and Cuban Santeria traditions. In the orisha traditions, coconuts are sacred to Obatala, who is known as the orisha of wisdom, purity & the ruler of all heads. Coconuts are also used for spiritual purification and divination. The act of breaking a coconut as a symbol of humbling oneself is something that surpasses the lines of religion and geographical location. So does the usage of coconut for spiritual cleansings and offerings. Coconuts are commonly associated with spiritual cleanses aimed to balance the mind, emotions & connecting with your highest self. There are many ways it can be used. Coconuts are supremely powerful in cleansing negative energy. Some people will arguably say that purification with coconut is more powerful than cleansing with sage or sea salt. Coconut is the perfect tool for the bruja/o/x that deals with mental health issues from time to time. Anxiety & depression are energetic imbalances in the mind and coconut not only helps to tackle those imbalances but it also connects you to your highest self in order to help KEEP you balanced. You can add fresh coconut, coconut juice/water, coconut milk or shredded coconut to a spiritual bath. I prefer to cleanse my head directly with fresh coconut juice. Applying coconut directly to your head is sometimes referred to as “head cleansing” and in much more elaborate rituals in Santeria or West African traditions, it may be referred to as a “rogation” or “feeding your Ori”. For those of us living in the diaspora who may not have access to receive an elaborate ritual cleansing done professionally by priest or priestess, I will share with you how you can elevate & balance your mind with coconut at home: First, I will typically take a sea salt bath. This first step is optional but I suggest if you are really struggling not to skip this. Start with 2-3 coconuts. I like to sage mine first to avoid any energy they may have picked up from another person handling them. Break open the coconuts & pour the juice into a separate container. Another optional step would be to let the juice cool off in the fridge for awhile or you can simply start with the coconuts already cooled. You’ll want to make sure you are wearing white or at minimum light colored clothing. Black, although a color of strength & protection, should not be worn during this type of ritual. That is due to the color black sometimes attracting too much energy like a sponge. Say a prayer to your highest self that resonates with you or recite an affirmation of healing and strength then pour the coconut juice over your head. Wrap your head in a white or light color cloth & wash out in the morning. It is not advised to smoke, drink alcohol or eat spicy food with the coconut juice on your head so this ritual is best completed right before bed. Doing this helps to balance my mind & curb my anxiety for days to come. I intuitively do this as often as I feel necessary. There’s a plethora of ways you can cleanse at home with coconuts. This way is just one of the most basic & simple ways I use it for purification. From spiritual baths to head cleansings to dressing candles to floor washes, there are endless ways to utilize these head-shaped fruits to balance your mind. Just don’t be afraid to use your intuition when deciding on how you want use them. Remember, some of the most powerful rituals & spells you’ll do will come straight off the dome!