22 August

lotus-flower

Lotus Flower Means…

Botanical Name – Nelumbo nucifera

The lotus is a flower of antiquity and has long been associated with the history, culture, religion, ancient literature and arts and crafts in Asia.

Waterlily (Nymphaea spp.) is another aquatic flower which resembles the lotus and people sometimes confuse the two.
The family Nympheaceae has two important genera having aquatic species with beautiful and attractive flowers i.e. water lily and lotus. The former belongs to the genera Nymphea and the latter is from Nelumbo. Moreover, the genus Nelumbo has only two species, N. nucifera (Indian lotus) and N. lutea (American lotus or yellow lotus).

Nelumbo nucifera is a large, perennial, aquatic, herbaceous plant. The rhizome of the plant becomes elongated, about 60 to 120 cm in length, 6 to 9 cm in diameter. It is farinaceous, white to buff-orange in color and edible. Leaves are large with a central stalk, blue-grey in color, peltate and coated with wax. The leaves of the lotus have a water repellent leaf surface and which has led to the termed the “lotus effect.” The leaves have self-cleaning capacity which is a result of dirt particles being picked up by water forms droplets due to the complex nanostructure of the leaf surface, which minimizes adhesion. Flowers are solitary, borne at or above the leaf level, single or double, fragrant, white, rosy or deep pink in color.

The lotus symbolizes divineness, purity, beauty of the eyes and face, kind-heartedness, fragrance, coolness, fertility and prosperity. In the classical literature of many Asian cultures the lotus is represented in figurative form, representing elegance, beauty, perfection, purity and grace, being used often in poems and songs as an allegory for ideal feminine attributes.

The roots of a lotus are in the mud, the stem grows up through the water, and the heavily scented flower lies pristinely above the water, basking in the sunlight. This pattern of growth signifies the progress of the mind from the primeval mud of materialism, through the waters of experience, and into the bright sunshine of enlightenment.

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