The clay pot and coconut in front of the effigy of Durga is an essential part of the altar.
The coconut wrapped in a red cloth, then covered with flowers sits on top of the kalash-a round clay water pot. The coconut looks like a wisened old woman wrapped in her shawl.
The coconut and kalash contain the oldest, most basic symbols of life and fertility: Water, food plants, a round pot, red cloth, herbs. It sits on the bare earth at the beginning of the Navaratra.
Watch the transformation:
In the same way, by our repeated Sacred Acts, we water our souls. Watering the root brings growth. Notice how each day the decoration ( the respect that is celebrated) changes. In the background, un-noticed, growth happens.
Yagyas are an intensive way of watering the soul and promoting spiritual growth.