The Lily flower symbolizes many things for thousands of years, geographically, traditionally, and spiritually. It is the perfect flower. The Water Lily in particular, also known as the lotus flower have roots that extend into the mud and the stem grows up through the water and the flower blossoms above the surface. The Lily is a perfect flower. A perfect flower is one that contains both the male stamens and the female pistil and is therefore able to self-pollinate in order to produce fruit/seed. Imperfect flowers, on the other hand, are those that are either males (have stamens) or females (have a pistil). Plants can have both male and female flowers on the same plant or there can be male flowers on one plant and female flowers on the other. Being imperfect, these flowers require pollen to be brought from the male flower to the female flower by method of insects or wind in order to produce fruit/seed.
In the Hindu and Buddhist traditions, the water lilies symbolize resurrection in both spiritual arenas because many of the lilies close their flowers at night and reopen in the morning at first sunlight. Buddhists regard the water lily as a symbol of enlightenment because of the beautiful bloom that emerges from the mud. They also consider the water lily a symbol of purity, spontaneous generation and divine birth. The lotus is one of the most well-known symbols of Buddhism. The lotus flower is one of the ‘Eight Auspicious Symbols’ in the religion, and is one of the most important images in the faith. In Buddhist thought, this pattern of growth signifies the progress of the soul from the primeval mud of materialism, through the waters of experience, and into the bright sunshine of enlightenment. The perfect flower. Though there are other water plants that bloom above the water, it is only the lotus which, owing to the strength of its stem, regularly rises eight to twelve inches above the surface. According to the Buddhist scholar Lalitavistara, “The spirit of the best of men is spotless, like the lotus in the muddy water which does not adhere to it.”
A Biblical reference to lilies from the Book of Matthew is, “Consider the lilies of the field, and how they grow, they toil not . . . And yet I say unto you, that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.” The anemone (Anemone coronaria) look dead during the dry season, then flourishes with brilliant blooms after nourishing rains. It is symbolic of trusting that God will provide for people’s needs. Another Biblical reference from the book of Matthew is, “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin…” It is also symbolic of trust and faith in God, and His provision. This verse is often applied to those who worry. There are many references to lilies throughout both Old and New Testament of the Bible. Examples of other symbols of the lily in the New Testament are the Trinity and Resurrection of Christ. In the Old Testament we see the first three letters of the word lily written by the Hebrews; mans labor, consume, and assimilate. The fourth letter is; fish. This illustrates primarily the death theme that the lily is so well known for as a flower. The lily is a flower commonly used at burials and is therefore regarded by many as a flower of death, the death of the flesh. And yet this death is joyful to us as it results in Life. Death is “swallowed up”- consumed and assimilated – into victory and this victory is illustrated in the last letter of the word lily, the Hebrew letter ‘Noon’ (which means Fish). An example of a New Testament tie into the Old Testament is found in 1 Corinthians; “So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.” So the Lily also illustrates the Life Theme.
Self-worth and value blooms with the lilies. As soul medicine for our spirit, lilies address issues of the feminine and women’s worth: creativity, purity, beauty, spiritual sensitivity, sexuality, motherhood, birth, rebirth, grounding, embodiment, receptivity, compassion, and love. It is said that Lily flower essences can also transform the emotions or traumas that are held in women’s bodies that effect her cycles, organs, and health. The number 3 is significant to the lilies as their parts (petals, sepals) always express in multiples of three. In numerology, 3 is a creativity, birth, and communication number. In the Bible it is the Trinity (The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit).
In simple terms, we can understand in this way; The work we do on this earth, what we feed from, and how we digest all of the things in this world we experience has the potential to grow us and transform us back to self. How we nurture and grow from life experiences determines when we find our true self within that has the potential to blossom into Divine purpose and happiness. You will know this is where you are destined to be. Trust has brought you here. Hard work and probably long suffering has brought here. From the muddy waters, or the dead dry season, when you nourish yourself with compassion and benevolence, and help others by sharing what you’ve learned for a greater good, then you will blossom. So remember, the lotus emerges from the mud. It is the perfect flower. Self-pollinate and produce good fruit!
It is why we are here!
Live in love,