The lotus flower has eight petals which correspond to the Eightfold Path of Good Law. It is one of the most common symbols of Buddhism and represents the stages of enlightenment. The lotus flower rises from the depths of a muddy river, blooms and thrives. This symbolizes the human who rises from the darkness of the world into a new way of thinking and living. It is a symbol of rebirth, growth and purification of spirit. The lotus flower also represents faith. The different colors of the lotus flower in Buddhism hold significant meaning.
White: This color symbolizes being pure in body, mind and spirit. It symbolizes the heart of the Buddhas, and also represents overcoming obstacles of the human nature.
Red: This color symbolizes emotional attachments of the heart. It represents love, compassion, passion and other heart-centered emotions. It is usually depicted with its petals open to represent the heart being open and filled with love.
Blue: As a representation of wisdom and common sense, the blue lotus flower is often seen as only partially open. It symbolizes knowledge, learning and intelligence. The blue lotus flower is never fully opened, and its center is not seen. This represents the continual need to gain wisdom, learn and expand the mind in order to reach enlightenment.
Pink: A representation of the Buddha himself, the pink lotus represents the history and legends of the Buddha.
Purple: This is the color that represents mysticism and spirituality. It is shown in several ways such as one stem or three stems. Its petals are shown both opened and closed. It is sometimes a bud and sometimes fully bloomed. All of these differences represent the different mystical and spiritual journeys taken on the path to enlightenment.
Gold: A symbol of complete and total enlightenment, the gold lotus often represents the Buddha. It represents having reached full enlightenment and having achieved all that can be achieved.
The meanings of the different colors of the lotus flower in Buddhism play an important role in the understanding and implementation of the Buddhist teachings. They are meant to be used as a reminder along the journey to personal enlightenment.