This lotus has 1,000 golden petals from which mountains rise and waters flow. In India, the Lotus also represents birth. Vishnu puts forth from his body a single giant navel on which Brahma, the lotus-born Creator is seated.
The Hindu goddess Laxmi, is also called Padma, Kamia and Kamalasana, all names for the lotus. She emerged from a lotus which sprang from Vishnu's forehead. Vishnu himself is pictured holding a conch, a wheel, a mace and a lotus in his four hands.
A statue unearthed at Mohenjo-Daro showing a wide-hipped goddess, lifting her breasts with her hands and wearing lotus blossoms in her hair.
Legend says that when the Buddha was born, he walked seven steps in ten directions and with each step a lotus flower appeared. Look closely at the soles of his feet when you see a statue of Buddha — you may see the imprint of the lotus.
In China,the lotus was honored as the plant of summer. One of the eight immortals holds a lotus, the "flower of open-heartedness" or a lotus-pod wand. It was an emblem of purity, fruitfulness and creative power.
The Buddhist sutras believe that the lotus has four virtues: scent, purity, softness and loveliness.
In China, the envelopes given to the family at a funeral are impressed with the outline of a lotus. And in rural areas, people still burn incense to the Spirit of the Lotus.
In Chinese Buddhism, the lotus became a symbol of purity. "Bathing in the clear water of the spiritual pond, the lotus' roots dig deep into the soil." It represented being able to distance oneself from vulgarity.
The lotus became a popular symbol in Chinese folk custom. Pictures showing fat dancing babies holding lotus leaves or flowers are purchased in the hope that people will give birth to several boys in succession. And since lotus leaves protect the goldfish under them, the lotus also symbolizes abundance year after year.
The lotus was an important symbol in Egypt.It was associated with the sun because it opens in the morning and closes at night. Horus, the sun-god was often depicted sitting on a lotus.
The lotus was also the flower of resurrection, used in funeral rites and depicted on tombs. Mourners would pray that the deceased would have the chance to bloom again, "like a water lily reopening."
The water lily appears all over the tomb of King Tutan-kamen which was built in 1361 BC. Water lilies adorn the tops of columns. The oar King Tut is using to row to the land of rebirth is made in the image of a half-open water lily.
A beautiful woman who resembles Cleopatra offers the water lily she holds in her to another woman to sniff.
In North America. A Star Maiden came down from the night sky and wanted to live with the Dakota. The chief, Red Strawberry Man, sent his son with the maiden to consult the tribe's advisor who lived across the lake. While rowing across the lake in the darkness, the son's canoe hit a log and the Star Maiden tumbled into the waters. In the morning, the first yellow water lily appeared at the same spot.