Wednesday January 17, 2018

The symbol of Lotus Flower is significant to Buddhism and Hinduism, Find out why!

Lotus is originated from the naval of Lord Vishnu with Lord Brahma sitting on it.

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Lotus Flower. Image source: www.tigerscursebook.com
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  • Lotus means ‘rebirth’ or ‘reincarnation’ in Buddhism
  • Lotus also symbolizes state of self consciousness
  • Lotus is originated from the naval of Lord Vishnu with Lord Brahma sitting on it

Lotus flower is significant both in Hinduism and Buddhism. they are an integral part of all decorations. Lotus flowers are used in all kinds of rituals ranging from a birth of a newborn to marriage.

As Lotus grows in muddy water, environment teaches us the first lesson. Lotus grows and blooms above the gloom to achieve enlightenment. Purification is the second lesson, which means absolving a spirit that is born with murkiness. Last one is faithfulness; it requires being faithful to grow from dirt.

Goddess Lakshmi standing of Lotus flower. Image Source: Wikimedia Commons
Goddess Lakshmi standing of Lotus flower. Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

In Buddhism, Lotus holds a unique place. It is one of the 8 sacred symbols in Buddhism. A closed Lotus denotes the time when Buddha was not there to guide his followers. While a fully opened flower represent that follower of Buddha has met his master. As a Lotus unfolds, each petal denotes a stage to achieve enlightenment and self awareness.

It also symbolizes meaning of life. The mud in which lotus grows represents the sufferings. As we all know, humans are born with sufferings and grow in sufferings. This signifies that suffering is also a part of life. It gives us experiences which are further used to gain more experiences to live life.

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Moreover, Lotus itself means ‘rebirth’ or ‘reincarnation’ in Buddhism. The definition of rebirth not only involves taking birth as a child but also the morning after the darkest day, change of ideas or following Buddha.

In Hinduism, a Lotus represents fertility, prosperity and beauty. It also resembles divinity, purity and eternity. According to Bhagvad Gita, a lotus resembles a man who works without any attachment, who stands out of failure and sufferings and who is far away from any sin.

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Lotus is originated from the naval of Lord Vishnu with Lord Brahma sitting on it. Goddess Lakshmi is also found sitting or standing on Lotus while carrying a small one in her hand. A lotus flower is said to wake and bloom on first ray of sun.

Lotus also symbolizes state of self consciousness. In Hinduism, each petal of Lotus represents the potential of an individual spiritually and describes each petal as levels for achieving self consciousness. A lotus is said to present deep in heart and located deep in lotus is ‘Atman’ which human search in their life to attain ‘Moksha’.

Lotus also holds significance in Yoga. Padmasana, lotus like pose, is done by those who want to attain highest level of self consciousness which is found in Lotus Chakra present at top of the head.

-prepared by Aparna Gupta, an intern with NewsGram. Twitter @writetoaparna99

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  • devika todi

    it is always good to know more about the symbolic representations of natural objects like lotus in the various religions. it is interesting, how we can take lessons from all that surrounds us and apply it in our daily life, like yoga asanas.
    great article!

  • devika todi

    it is always good to know more about the symbolic representations of natural objects like lotus in the various religions. it is interesting, how we can take lessons from all that surrounds us and apply it in our daily life, like yoga asanas.
    great article!

Next Story

Yoga Face-toning May Compete With Fillers, Face-lifts

"The jury is still out on whether or not facial yoga is effective in reversing the signs of aging," he said in an email.

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Yoga face toning is an effective way of reducing the signs of ageing. VOA
  • Yoga face toning may take over botox and face lifting procedures.
  • 27 participants noted changes in their faces after weeks of this experiment.
  • It is still a matter of discussion if this method can reverse ageing or not.

In his toolbox of Botox, fillers and plastic surgery, cosmetic dermatologist Dr Murad Alam has added a new, low-cost, noninvasive anti-ageing treatment: facial yoga.

Dermatologists measured improvements in the appearance of the faces of a small group of middle-aged women after they did half an hour of daily face-toning exercises for eight weeks, followed by alternate-day exercises for another 12 weeks.

Facial exercises are healthier than surgeries. Pixabay
Facial exercises are healthier than surgeries. Pixabay

The results surprised lead author Alam, vice chair and professor of dermatology at Northwestern Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago.

“In fact, the results were stronger than I expected,” he said in a phone interview. “It’s really a win-win for patients.”

Participants included 27 women between 40 and 65, though only 16 completed the full course. It began with two 90-minute muscle-resistant facial exercise-training sessions led by co-author Gary Sikorski of Happy Face Yoga in Providence, Rhode Island.

Participants learned to perform cheek pushups and eye-bag removers, among other exercises. Then they practised at home.

Improvements noted

Dermatologists looking at unmarked before-and-after photos saw improvements in upper cheek and lower cheek fullness, and they estimated the average age of women who stuck with the program as significantly younger at the end than at the start.

Face yoga is a healthier substitute to surgical procedures. Pixabay
Face yoga is a healthier substitute for surgical procedures. Pixabay

The average estimated age dropped almost three years, from nearly 51 years to 48 years.

Participants also rated themselves as more satisfied with the appearance of their faces at the study’s end, Alam and colleagues reported in JAMA Dermatology.

“Now there is some evidence that facial exercises may improve facial appearance and reduce some visible signs of ageing,” Alam said. “Assuming the findings are confirmed in a larger study, individuals now have a low-cost, non-toxic way of looking younger or augmenting other cosmetic or anti-ageing treatments they may be seeking.”

The exercises enlarge and strengthen facial muscles to firm and tone the face, giving it a younger appearance, he said.

Happy Face sells instructional worksheets — promising smoother skin, firmed cheeks and raised eyelids — for $19.95. DVDs cost $24.95.

Some skepticism

But not all dermatologists are rushing to promote the videos or the exercises.

Dr John Chi, a plastic surgeon and professor at the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, Missouri, said the study raises more questions than it answers.

“The jury is still out on whether or not facial yoga is effective in reversing the signs of ageing,” he said in an email.

Chi, who was not involved with the study, said he would recommend facial yoga to patients who found it relaxing and enjoyable but not for the purpose of facial rejuvenation.

“While the premise of facial exercises to improve the facial appearance or reverse signs of ageing is an appealing one, there is little evidence to suggest that there is any benefit in this regard,” he said.

Chi said facial yoga had not been rigorously examined in peer-reviewed scientific studies. Asked whether procedures such as face-lifts, Botox and fillers had been rigorously examined in peer-reviewed studies, he replied: “Great question. Attempts to do so have been made in the scientific literature with variable levels of scientific rigour.”

Alam agrees that his study raises additional research questions, such as whether the exercises would work for men and how much time people need to commit to doing the exercises for them to be optimally effective. He would like to see a larger study. VOA