Eight is a special number in Buddhism, most notably used to refer to the Eightfold Path. This lotus flower has eight petals on both the inside and outside, and 64 petals (eight x eight) in the middle. Different colors of lotus blossoms have their own meanings, and a purple lotus is symbolic of spirituality and mysticism. Purple lotus flowers are not as commonly depicted as other colors like pink and white, and are traditionally associated with esoteric Buddhism. This association of purple and spirituality is also common in color theory, because it is a combination of both soothing (blue) and stimulating (red), and promotes inner reflection. It also happens to be my favorite color.
Would you like to see other lotus colors & designs?
On a peaceful day in Wuhan, China, the still waters of a pond perfectly reflect the many arches of a bridge. In the shallow parts of the pond there are so many lotus plants growing that the lotus leaves completely cover the water. A few pink lotus blossoms rise up proud and strong, transcending the pond and the canopy of leaves, but not the scene itself. The same still waters that allow for such a nice reflection are also what allows the thin stem of the lotus to grow straight up, unhindered by currents.
Are the conditions for inner reflections the same as that which we need to fully bloom?
Here are a few of my other favorite reflection photos from previous entries – click to see a larger view and read more:
Inspired by my Illuminating Lotus photo, but with a very different feel from my similarly-inspired Rainbow Etching Lotus, this art piece has a glow that radiates outward. Of the three, this one seems the most otherworldly and mysterious, akin to a latent inner nature just waiting to shine.
Inspired by my Illuminating Lotus photo, this art piece also has a way of popping off the page with its colorful rainbow outline.
Although I created this piece digitally, the effect reminds me of a type of paper art that I’ve done before:
Get a piece of multicolored paper (works best with a stiff paper like card stock, and colors that are attached to the page in a way that won’t easily scratch off – dyed into the paper, printed, marker, colored pencil, etc.)
Lightly paint over the paper with a thin and EVEN coat of paint (works best with something that can easily be scratched off like acrylics; dark paints may cover underling color easier than light paints)
Let the paint dry
CAREFULLY (don’t cut yourself or the paper) use something with an edge to etch a design onto the page. As you remove thin lines (and/or wider sections) of the paint, the colors underneath will shine through, and your design will have multicolored lines!
If these directions inspired you to create something, post a link to it in the comments! (Even after this becomes an old post, I enjoy hearing from my readers, so don’t be shy!)
This photo of a pink lotus just radiates with an inner glow. Lotus blossoms have been a symbol of purity throughout Asia for millennia, and have become a symbol for Buddhism. Although lotus plants spring forth from, and have their roots in, the murky depths of the mud, their flowers are always clean and pure. People likewise may have their “roots” in the distractions and attachments of the physical world, but their true nature awaits the opportunity to illuminate from within.
Lotus flowers like this one are a common site at many temples. This particular pink lotus flower was photographed at the Guanyin Temple in Honolulu’s Chinatown (檀香山觀音廟). Also see the art pieces I did (Rainbow Etching Lotus & Dazzling Glow Lotus) based on this photo.