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Jayendra Saraswathi passed away recently. During his funeral at Kanchi, one of his followers, hit coconut on the head of Jayendra Saraswathi's body. Why did they do so?

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    This is a very ancient belief that hitting coconuts on the heads of sages was to make sure that the soul of the dead person escapes the divine body through the head. In earlier days, the sages used to know that their death was approaching beforehand and would arrange for such a ritual before their death. Nowadays, they just smash the coconut on the body after they have passed away. I will add a proper answer once I find a valid source for this. Mar 1 '18 at 6:57
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    Did they actually break the coconut by hitting on his head? Or they just placed it near his head and broke it separately? Related: Which Hindu scriptures discuss Kapāla Mokṣa? It's possible that since they bury sannyasis instead of the usual cremation, breaking a coconut has the same effect as a dead person's skull popping during cremation. Mar 1 '18 at 17:36
  • Kapaala bhedana ritual Mar 1 '18 at 23:56

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