Disarming, magical and serene .... that is the lotus flower for many people around the world. You see the lotus flower a lot in yoga articles, such as yoga clothing, mats and other supplies and even regularly as a tattoo with yogis. But what is the origin and meaning of the lotus flower?
The influence of the lotus flower is far-reaching, both through time and over the world. Thus the symbolism of the lotus flower was already recognized by the Ancient Egyptians. Also in Hinduism and Buddhism the symbolic meaning of the lotus flower has taken its place. Where the flower in Hinduism is mainly for prosperity, it symbolizes purity and enlightenment in Buddhism. In Buddhism, the story that Buddha is born from a lotus flower.
The growth and flowering of the lotus
The meaning of the lotus flower is inextricably linked to the way it grows and blooms.
The seeds of the lotus flower find a place in marshy soils to settle. Depending on the depth of the water, the stalks of the lotus flower can grow to 5.5 meters long and stop growing as soon as they reach the surface of the water.
Once at the surface, the lotus leaves begin to grow and the lotus flower. The flowers can be up to 25 centimeters in diameter, but the leaves can grow up to 60 centimeters long.
The flower blooms with the rhythm of the day; in the morning she opens her leaves to close again late in the evening.
Meaning lotus flower
That whole cycle from the nesting of the seeds to the unfolding of the flower is also a symbol of inner growth and the path to enlightenment. From the darkness a pure flower emerges, unaffected by the darkness from which she has found her way to the light. She lives in the light with her roots in the dark. This symbolizes human illumination in which darkness stands for the past.
The fact that the roots always remain in the dark indicates that your past will always be there, but the contrast with the purity of the flower above the water indicates that despite (or perhaps because of) your past can find relief and you can connect with the universe.
As soon as the lotus flower rises above water, it also joins the four elements. Where it was already connected to the earth and the water, it is also connected to the air and the fire (the sun) after it has emerged. This creates an ultimate connection, unity and balance with nature.
The lotus and its colors
Each color is associated with different meanings:
The white lotus symbolizes peace, purity and perfection. Despite the fact that 'perfect' does not exist, it often symbolizes the pursuit of a certain, self-chosen goal.
The pink lotus stands for human growth and the contact with the soul. The pink flower specifically symbolizes the road from an unconscious life (the dark swamps) over a life pass (the stem) to enlightenment (the flowering flower).
The red lotus is associated with love and passion, but also with growth, loyalty and friendship.
The purple lotus symbolizes the eightfold path which according to Buddha and Buddhism will lead to enlightenment. Because of this link, the purple lotus is often depicted with eight petals.
The blue lotus flower is associated with the spirit. Knowledge, wisdom and learning are concepts associated with this blue lotus. The fruit of the blue lotus is always completely or partially hidden under the petals. This is said to be the symbol for the infinity of spiritual growth.
The lotus flower is widely seen and used in Hinduism and Buddhism, it is in these cultures a sacred flower that symbolizes purity, purity, your beauty, inner growth and the connection with the universe.
This symbolic meaning is the 'growth towards enlightenment' and will mainly stem from the growth process of the flower. The lotus flower settles in the mud under water and then grows very powerfully towards the light, after which we can observe a beautiful flower on the water.
We can also go through this process as a human being, see the mud as ignorance and suffering and as you grow you will become wiser and once the lighting is achieved, you will shine like that beautiful lotus flower.
Another story that is circulating is that Buddha would have been born from the Lotus flower, this would also be the reason why Buddha would often be portrayed with or on a lotus flower.