Lotus Flower: Its Meaning, Symbolism, & Influence

Saffron Marigold - Updated: October 12, 2021

The lotus flower meaning–there’s more than one! Do you know what the lotus represents? The lotus is significant in cultures across the globe, and there are several ways you can interpret the lotus symbol. Find out more about the lotus flower’s meaning, its aesthetic beauty, and its influence on our block print collections.

blue and purple lotus flower with banner "all about the lotus flower"

All about lotuses

The lotus plant is a perennial, aquatic plant that thrives in nutrient-rich, murky conditions. Found across India, east Africa, southeast Asia, and Australia, this plant enjoys an active and interesting daily life cycle. Lotuses root themselves in the mud, their lengthy stems reaching upward to find the top of the water. There, the lush blossoms grow, and as the lotus blooms, the blossoms unfold one by one.

Petal by petal, each one emerges pristine from the mucky water thanks to a protective outer coating that repels dirt and water. These day-blooming plants submerge and close up at night, and reawaken above the water every morning. The petals last for just a handful of days before shedding.

white lotus flower in bloom

Lotus flower meaning across cultures

The lotus flower meaning varies from culture to culture. In general, however, the lotus commonly serves as a sacred for purity, rebirth, and strength. Because lotuses rise from the mud without stains, they are often viewed as a symbol of purity. Since they return to the murky water each evening and open their blooms at the break of day, lotus flowers are also symbols of strength, resilience, and rebirth. Still another lotus flower meaning is transcendence: the lotus represents the transcending of man’s spirit over worldly matter since it blooms from the underworld into the light.

drawing of lotus flower meaning by  Victoria Borodinova
lotus flower drawing by Victoria Borodinova

The lotus flower meaning in India

The lotus appears in sacred texts and spiritual imagery from ancient Egypt to some early Buddhist texts. With that, it comes as no surprise that the lotus flower frequently symbolizes the Divine. Hinduism in particular finds rich meaning in the lotus flower. The lotus is referenced in Vedic texts dating back to 1400 BC! Several Hindu deities are frequently depicted with lotus flowers (or are otherwise associated with the lotus flower in some way). As the national flower of India, the lotus has long served as a symbol within the country’s arts, culture, philosophy, and religions.

The lotus: a source of pattern inspiration

Saffron Marigold’s co-founder and head designer Anisha Ghosh finds nature intriguing and irresistible, and it provides her an endless source of design inspiration. Born and raised in India, Anisha grew up with a fondness for the lotus, finding herself drawn to its symbolism as well as its grace.

“The lotus is my absolute favorite flower,” she says. “I often visualize the blooming lotus flower and use its eastern spiritual meaning as a metaphor for life.”   

full white lotus blossom

Meet our lotus print fabrics

In homage to her favorite flower, Anisha created two strikingly different lotus-inspired collections for Saffron Marigold. The first is our Midnight Lotus print fabric. The design of this blue lotus flower pattern is intended to transport you to a lotus pond at midnight. Here, white lotus flowers bob gently beneath the deep waters.

blue lotus flower print fabric curtain

Ethereal white lotus blossoms drift gently on a deep Persian blue ground in the main colorway. It’s altogether calm, peaceful, and dreamy. Wouldn’t you just love to be able to glimpse a lotus pond bathed in silvery moonlight?

blue lotus flower and poem quote from Naidu

Shop Midnight Lotus

Our other lotus-inspired collection celebrates the graceful dragonfly (another symbol for self-realization) alongside white lotus blossoms. A mihrab cocoons each design element, creating immersive focal points for reflection within the pattern.

white lotus flower print and dragonfly fabric curtain

Our Dragonfly and Lotus flower pattern comes in two colorways: white on white as well as white with gold lotus flowers. It’s altogether stylish and elegant while still carrying a sense of mysticism. The essence of this lovely lotus print is captured in Child Fancies, a poem by notable Indian writer Sarojini Naidu.

Shop Dragonfly and Lotus

Using the lotus flower meaning in your home

The spiritual and cultural meaning of the lotus goes even beyond what we’ve covered in this short article. Still, the more we learn about the lotus flower, the more it speaks to our sense of connectedness to the earth and to our existence. If you, too, have found inspiration in these lotus flower meanings, then consider ways you can incorporate this sacred symbol into your home and your life.

Lotus print fabric and decor is particularly inspiring in a home yoga space or a meditation room. Use the lotus symbol to promote a sense of peace and purity in your living room. Try covering your bed in lotus flowers (with our prints) to bring feminine energy and beauty into the bedroom. Whichever your approach, our handmade, fair trade lotus print linens offer a lovely way to fill your home with elegance and intention.

blue lotus flower print bedding

See our lotus print fabric collections in real homes

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