The spiritual meaning of the lotus flower

January 31, 2017

In addition to giving its name to Padmasana, one of the most famous Yoga postures, the lotus flower has a spiritual meaning that encompasses the symbolism of several ancient Eastern cultures. A native flower of India and Vietnam, the lotus flower grows in swampy places, however it openly expresses its elegance and great beauty. It is proof that a bold and bright life can emerge from the darkest of places. Do you know the symbolism and spiritual meaning of the lotus flower? What can inspire us in our lives and for this year 2020?

What is lotus flower

The lotus flower is the only flower that is fruit and flower at the same time.
Lotus flower, also known as sacred lotus, Indian lotus or rose of the Nile, is the common name for an aquatic plant called Nelumbo Nucifera, which is characterized by having floating and fragrant leaves, in addition to a unusual fruit in the form of a wasp. The lotus flower is considered a sacred plant in China and India, for which multiple meanings and symbolisms have been attributed to it.

Meaning of lotus flower

Symbolism of the flower for the ancient Egyptians
According to the ancient Egyptians, the lotus flower is associated with the rebirth, as it retracts into the water at night, and emerges in the sun the next day. The Egyptians associated the lotus flower with the sun, which also disappears at night, only to reappear in the morning. Therefore, the lotus came to symbolize the sun and creation. In many hieroglyphic works, the lotus is depicted as emerging from the Nun, the primordial water, which is carried by the Sun God.
lotus flower in greek mythology
In Greek mythology, the Lotus Eaters were a people who lived on an island near North Africa and were characterized by eating the fruit of the lotus, which, according to stories, had a narcotic effect, causing peaceful sleep and amnesia. In the work The odyssey of Homer, where lotus eaters are first mentioned, three men are sent to the island to investigate. However, by consuming the lotus flowers offered by their hosts, they forget that they have to return to the ship. Time later, Ulises manages to rescue the men. Throughout this story, Homer appeals to the symbolism of the lotus flower to describe a human desire: the possibility of erasing the past to start again.
Lotus flower in Buddhism
In Buddhism, the meaning of the lotus flower is purity of body and soul.
The muddy water that shelters the plant is associated with attachment and carnal desires, and the immaculate flower that blooms in the water in search of light is the promise of purity and spiritual elevation. The flower is considered pure, as it can emerge from murky waters in the morning and be perfectly clean. Therefore, in common with Egyptian mythology, the lotus is seen as a sign of rebirth, but, in addition, it is associated with purity and with spiritual illumination.
Symbolically, the lotus flower is associated with buddha figure and with his teachings. Legend has it that when the boy Buddha took his first steps, lotus flowers grew everywhere he stepped.
Its meaning in Hinduism
In Hinduism, the meaning of the lotus flower is associated with beauty, fertility, prosperity, spirituality and eternity. The most common lotus shape seen in Hinduism is the white lotus flower.
Many of the gods and goddesses of Hinduism are linked to the flower: for example, the goddess of prosperity, Laxmi, is usually depicted sitting on a fully opened lotus flower. Similarly, Brahma, the god of creation is depicted as emerging from a lotus.

Color also has its signited

  • blue lotus: it refers to the triumph of the spirit over the senses, it means wisdom and knowledge. This flower never reveals its interior, since it is almost always completely closed.
  • White lotus: it is related to the perfection of the spirit and mind, a state of total purity and immaculate nature. It is usually depicted with 8 petals.
  • red lotus: it reveals the innocence and original nature of the heart. This flower represents the qualities of the heart, such as love, passion and compassion. It is also known as the Buddha Flower of Compassion.
  • pink lotus: Although it is often confused with the white lotus flower, the pink lotus is the most important and special of all the lotus flowers, and is related to divine characters, such as the Buddha himself.

Lotus flower in Yoga

In Yoga, there is the lotus Mudra, posture that is performed with both hands where the edges are joined like the little fingers and thumbs, the other fingers remain extended to the sides forming a flower. The closed or buttoned lotus flower is a symbol of the infinite possibilities of man, while the open lotus flower represents the creation of the Universe. Using the Lotus Mudra is a powerful way to cultivate the spiritual meaning of the lotus flower in a practice.
towards enlightenment
In the same way that the lotus flower goes through much of its growth before emerging from dirty water to become a beautiful flower, the individual consciousness does the same on its way to enlightenment as the so-called impurities of thought no longer exist. illuminated gradually fade. It is said that the human being must pass through three stages clearly defined in the spiritual life. ANDThe lotus also exists in three levels: mud, water and air. It germinates in the mud (ignorance), grows through the water in an effort to reach the surface (aspiration and effort), and finally reaches the air and direct sunlight (illumination). Thus, the lotus symbolizes the growth of the human being from the lowest states of consciousness to the highest. The culmination of lotus growth is a beautiful flower. In the same way, the culmination of the spiritual search of the human being is the awakening and the blossoming of his potential.
The Padmasana posture
In Yoga, the lotus position or Padmasana It is the traditional posture of meditation in which the person crosses his legs, each foot placed on the opposite thigh and places his hands on his knees. Named for its similarity to the lotus flower, the lotus position is a Yoga posture designed to open the hips and gain flexibility in the ankles and knees. Posture helps us connect with our root chakra. This chakra is associated with our creativity, emotions and intimacy. This characteristic posture is known as one of the most advanced Yoga postures, it makes us feel firm, stable and alert.
Padmasana is very stable and invites meditation.
Why is Padmasana good for meditation?
In the lotus, the legs are "knotted" leaving a firm base, where no action is required. It is a posture in which the hands are released. This allows the shoulders to be relaxed. By relaxing your shoulders, you also relax your back and neck muscles. All this induces a state of tranquility and peace of mind, which helps when meditating. With the spine in alignment, the weight is carried by the bones and not by the muscles. The energy expenditure is minimal. With a straight spine, complete breathing is facilitated, as well as the flow of blood to the brain and organs, favoring the sublimation of energies and combating mental fluctuations. This makes it possible to internalize and alignment of the seven chakras.
The yogic teaching that addresses the energy centers within the human being, known as the chakra systemuses a lotus with a varied number of petals to represent each particular chakra. The crown chakra is the thousand-petalled lotus, so its blossoming indicates enlightenment.

"The lotus flower does not think: 'I don't want the mud'. It knows that it can bloom so beautifully only thanks to the mud. For us, the same thing happens. We have negative seeds within us, the element of mud; if we know how to accept it, we accept ourselves. The lotus flower does not need to get rid of the mud. Without mud, I would die. If we don't have waste, we can't flourish. We should not judge ourselves or others. We just need to practice acceptance and thus progress without struggle. The process of transformation and healing requires continuous practices. We produce garbage every day, and for this reason we need to practice continuously to take care of our garbage and turn it into flowers."

Thich Nhat Hanh

This allegory that embodies the lotus flower, it is important to keep it in mind when we adopt a meditation posture within our Yoga practice, and even in any difficult circumstance of life, to evoke the image and symbolism of the lotus, to focus our thoughts towards the search for the liberation from suffering, to understand that we can walk the path of our existence with wisdom, despite the challenges and obstacles that stand in our way, and rise towards the purity of our soul.
YogaYe wishes you a happy new year full of inspiration, liberation and joy. Namaste!

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