Flowers and Spirituality
Flowers have been given as symbols of love, affection, intention, accomplishment, friendship and in sympathy for thousands of years. Flowers are often used to express thoughts when words are to difficult to say. Giving or receiving flowers opens the heart to the tenderness of the expression of the gift of flowers.
Flowers symbolize the memories of what they represent and are often preserved, dried or pressed so that we may hold onto those memories. Many religions use flowers. In Hinduism the lotus is a symbol of beauty, fertility and prosperity. For Buddhists the lotus symbolizes the exalted state of man. It is a symbol of knowledge. Christianity associates lilies with the Virgin Mary and the five petals of a rose are believed to represent the wounds of Christ. In Islam flowers are part of sacred ceremonies including weddings and funerals. In Chinese religions flowers represent not only beauty but joy, happiness and fertility. Many other religions use flowers as part of ritual ceremonies. There is evidence of flowers being used in the burial ritual in Europe and Asia dating back over 200,000 years.
There is a strong connection of flowers to the spiritual realm. Some flowers are protective, some ward off intruders while others symbolize discipline and devotion. Hyacinth elevates ambiguity and aides in finding direction in one’s spiritual path. Carnations connect to the wider universe and invokes a maternal relationship with the world. Tulips transcends to higher planes and are seen as portals to joy. A rose is the universal symbol of love.
Like a flower, spirituality blooms. As the mind awakens true beauty and joy is revealed. A life shares the many similarities to a flower….we start as seed, are nurtured, we grow, bloom, fade and die. Many believe, like a flower life begins again in death. There are seasons for birth, growth, death and rejuvenation. We come from the earth and return to the earth. As one may preserve a flower memories of those that have passed stay with us reminding us of the beauty of that life when it was in bloom. When becoming like the flower we teach ourselves there is beauty in silence and giving of one’s self should demand nothing in return. Flowers like spirituality awakens us to see both the simplistic and intricacies of beauty that are ever present in our world if we take the time to see them.