Scientific Name and etymology
The scientific name of lotus flower is Nelumbo nucifera. The precursor of the word “Lotus” is a Greek word “lotos” of Semitic origin. It was first used in the 15th century when a number of plants and trees went by this name. It also finds mention in Greek mythology where the “lotophagoi” are a group of lotus eaters, who were using the plant as a narcotic perceived to induce forgetfulness. The alex and ani lotus flower meaning at different points in history – a genus consisting of upright leguminous herbs, a clover used as horse food, a bean, or a jujube. In this article you will learn more about lotus flower meaning and its different types.
Where and how does it grow?
The Alex and AnI lotus is an aquatic perennial plant found in small ponds, shallow lakes, lagoons, marshes and river deltas. Its roots fix in the soil waterbed and account for its inability to float on the water surface. It prefers a loamy soil with good nutrient content. Although it is a tropical plant, it can also grow in temperate regions that are sufficiently sunny. The plant is naturally found in various stretches and pockets of South East Asia and some parts of Australia. In regions with amenable climate, its cultivated for its edibility and medicinal properties.
It is better to grow lotus from tubers. The seed sown plants don’t flower soon. Take the tuber and place it in a bowl of water. Now place the bowl in a place which is warm and sunny but doesn’t get direct sun. Remember to change the water every 4 – 7 days. When the tuber germinates place it on a pot with a 3:2 clay:sand potting mix leaving 1-4″ distance between the pot edge and soil level. Remember not to bury the tuber completely. Just put a enough sand on it to prevent it from floating up when you put it in the pond. Now place this pot in the pond and wait.
What do Lotus flowers symbolize
Different civilizations and religions have incidentally had one common feature in their myriad versions of interpreting the flower and weaving stories or traditions around it. They have always associated lotus with purity. Sometimes, certain characters of its anatomy or growth habit were used as an ideal model for spiritual seekers to learn from. For example, we can emulate the lotus stem with respect to its ability to be flexible without breaking or how it manages to bloom in the filthiest of waters. The latter example symbolizes a ‘constant itch for purification’ which Buddhism prescribes as the way to reach nirvana indicated in the “successful blooming” of a lotus.
Thousands of Hindu devotees throng to temples with lotuses as offerings to deities. The Egyptians were familiar with two different colors of the lotus, and they often drew it in their paintings. Interestingly, the flower when drawn in combination with papyrus flowers will represent the integration of Egypt. This fact is based on the premise that both flowers are associated with different parts of the country and when painted together uphold their unity.
The alex and ani lotus flower meaning in different cultures varies – peace, mysticism, patience, beauty, enlightenment and tranquility . Hence, it is no surprise that the flower and its inanimate reproductions have made a place for themselves inside and out of present day living establishments.
What do the various colors of the Lotus flower mean?
Buddhists call the white lotus as the “Womb of the World.” For the Hindus, the white alex and ani lotus flower meaning is fertility. Its a favorite of the Hindu goddess Saraswati – The preserver of wisdom. The Hindu god Brahma contemplates while sitting on his white lotus seat and Vishnu has the flower arising right from his navel.
According to Buddhist principles, each petal of a white lotus coincides with one of the paths among the Noble Eight-fold paths of Good Law. An eight petaled white lotus will perfectly align with the goal of spiritual enlightenment – A state of Bodhi, which too is linked to a white lotus. White pacifies, and so the zen Buddha is always depicted sitting in calm meditation on a white lotus. In Ancient Egypt, the meaning of a white lotus is strength and belief in the incredible power of creation.
The central core of a fully opened white lotus is the pinnacle of purity. The unopened bud signifies a folded soul that has the ability to unfold and open itself up to the holy truth. When it does so, it resembles an open white lotus flower. Like it, this soul too has reached the end of its cleansing process and found meaning. It is pure now.
The meaning of the blue lotus flower is rebirth. Paramahansa Yogananda, in his cosmic chant addresses the Divine Mother through her blue lotus feet attributing her origin to the Kutasha Intelligence which links with the color blue.
The flower prevails in a space where the spirit has achieved mastery over the senses. Unlike the idealization of the open core symbolism of the white lotus, the blue lotus is often drawn as a half open flower. It emphasizes on the fact that as beautiful as the destination might seem, the path too has a charm of its own. Maybe that is why the Chinese call it as “The Rising Soul”. For the Egyptians, there is no plant more sacred than the blue lotus of the Nile. They call it by various names – Blue Water Lily or Sacred Narcotic Lily of the Nile. Followers of Buddha connect it with qualities like intelligence and wisdom. It denotes the three jewels of Buddhism.
The pink lotus is the true flower of Buddha. These flowers were believed to materialize on every surface that Buddha would put his foot on. The pink alex and ani lotus flower meaning is complete devotion to Buddha. It can also be used to indicate a sense of nurture or love between individuals.Traits like passion, affection and tenderness are amalgamated in it. It can also be said that the pink lotus represents almost all the generic symbolism seen in the white lotus, but with more intensification.
This flower shade is again subdivided into a transitional range of tones – soft to bright to vibrant. In China, the pink lotus symbolizes the perpetuation of creativity in the unlikeliest of places while Hindu mythology mentions the flower being dearest to goddess Laxmi – the guardian of wealth and prosperity. This flower had a comparatively late entry into the Egyptian world and wasn’t as popular as its counterparts.
The purple alex and ani lotus flower meaning is the Eight-fold path. Its associated with royalty and reverence. It rouses a sense of mysticism but has sadly not aroused as much interest as the other color variants.
When we exchange red lotuses, it usually means that the other person is someone we want to keep close to our heart. This flower compounds passion and love, their intensity being more towards the extreme end. It might be called as an amplified version of all the qualities that a pink rose has. By any means, this flower forms the strongest connection with the beautiful world of emotions.
If white lotus stands for hope, the black one shuts out every possibility of it. The flower could have any meaning – from death to darkness, its meanings carry a common theme of strong impact. It is sometimes connected with power too. It helps us in understanding the role of dark in the life of a person in pursuit of light. As much as its existence might be considered a bane, its necessary to help build mental strength.
Interesting facts and Characteristics of the Lotus flower
- It is an extant species. It propagates by vegetative means through stolons which are also harvested for food. Dried starch rich rhizomes are ground to make flour. It has black seeds used to make moon cake and wine with healing properties. The petals are uses for garnish. The flower plant presents a very sustainable example of food resource utilization in the best way possible. Japan and China are its biggest consumers.
- Its extremely popular among Asian countries as a source of food – interesting examples include seed noodles, embryo/flower/leaf tea, stem salad and rhizome pickles. Its medicinal properties are well documented – it is used to treat diarrhea, diabetes, inflammation and hematuria. With a high albumin and globulin content, it also shows tremendous potential as a nutraceutical.
- Its a belief among Egyptians that humans transform into the lotus flower as soon as they die – this bit of information is also present in the “Book of the Dead.” They even bury their dead with lotuses.
- Lotus is the National flower of India and Vietnam. The Vietnamese make soup out of it. They consume it as a vegetable too. Even the leaves come in handy. When wrapped around rice they impart an aroma to it. The ‘kamal kakdi sabzi’ is famous in North India, particularly Kashmir. Its made of lotus stems.
- In India, a shrine of worship called The Lotus Temple opens its doors to people of all faiths and religions. Its architecturally designed to look like a half bloomed lotus flower and is located in the capital city of New Delhi.
- The Alex and Ani lotus plant can germinate after centuries of drought. The climatic resilience of their propagation structures is unparalleled. It is a symbol of longevity.
- A lotus can have a coverage as wide as 10 feet.
- It mimics homeothermal beings in its ability to regulate its temperature.
- The flower stays open all day long but closes by night.
- Even though its consumed in a number of ways, it must always be cooked for a long duration to kill all the parasitic and fungal organisms that frequently find refuge in its parts.
- The Egyptian white lotus is not a member of the lotus genus. Rather, it belongs to the family of water lilies.
- A poem written by Homer in his work “The Odyssey” tells a tale of how Ulysses and his soldiers usurped the island of the lotus eaters.
- Another fascinating use is the creation of lotus silk from the plant fibers.
- The flower is popular among tattooists as it equates with a lot of good virtues. There is a company named after it too. The padmasana aka lotus position in yoga is also inspired from this flower.
- The canopied structure of the floating leaf blocks a steady supply of sunlight to microbes under water and prevents their proliferation which if unchecked will lead to eutrophication.
- The pods of Alex and Ani lotus seeds are used in flower arrangements.
- Egyptians think that the lotus has given birth to the sun. Some other legends talk of a love affair between the sun god, Ra and the flower.
- The scent of the flower resembles that of myrrh.
- There are three kinds of lotus – rhizome lotus, seed lotus and flower lotus.
- It is also grown as a fundamental part of the food chain in aquaculture where various marine organisms are reared in its presence.
Best time to gift someone Lotus flowers
Not all countries have olive trees. So if one wants to put forward a gesture of reconciliation, a white lotus can be a great alternative to an olive branch. Lovers in love can look for more exotic flowers to gift each other when they get bored with red roses. Red lotuses might come in handy. Sometimes it pains us to see the suffering that our loved ones go through. A morning greeting accompanied by white lotuses soothes the nerves and instills a feeling of calm in the troubled soul. Blue roses are an ideal present to an individual or organization working hard for a cause. It will help them in appreciating the relevance of the process needed to reach the end goal.
A lot of flower enthusiasts lust after rare varieties of flowers. Black or purple lotuses can be the best choice while considering gift options for them. Pink lotuses will contrast well with white ones. They can be weaved together in bouquets and be presented to anyone – they are universally likable. Mystics will love a purple rose, Spirituals will fawn over a white one while children will be equally ecstatic about all of them.
Here in the article, we mention the various alex and ani lotus flower meaning and enumerate ways to grow it. We also present facts about the flower and the symbolism it represents. The different colors and characters of the flower are also enumerated. It is indeed a very beautiful flower and should be a part of every garden.