First, I'd like to wish all Buddhists a Happy Wesak Day!
The lotus is one of my favourite flowers. It is so beautiful no wonder many Chinese girls are named after this sacred and lovely flower. They have this word, 'Lian' or 'Lin' in their middle or first name. We regard it as an auspicious flower that is holy and pure. It is also the devine symbol of Buddhism
The pink and white lotus is the national flower of India and Vietnam.
“Nelumbo nucifera - The Sacred Lotus”, a copyrighted post, was written for My Nice Garden blog by Autumn Belle @ http://www.mynicegarden.com/ on May 17th, 2011.
Almost all parts of the lotus can be used.
The most precious part is the cut flower which is used as a prayer offering.
The seeds are edible. In the smaller towns where there are lotus ponds, we can still find people such as the street vendors and fruit pedlars who collect the seed pods for sale. During the days of long ago, we can buy the seed pods and bring them in as snacks when we go to the cinema. This is definitely healthier than having pop corn and aerated water. If the pod is too old, the seeds will taste bitter. If the pod is just right, i.e. not too young and not too old, the taste will be just nice i.e. sweet and juicy. Immature seeds are hollow and there is no flesh inside, so we used it as a toy and press it on our heads to make a pop sound. The empty pods can also be used as a toy in child play and the stalks are made into necklaces.
The flesh of the seeds are used in the making of the filling of moon cakes.
Preserved seeds are used in making desert drinks and herbal or medicinal soups.
The dried pods are used in floral arrangements.
Long before plastic bags were invented, butchers at the wet market used lotus leaves to wrap raw meat.
I have been invited by Rosie of My Garden Haven blog to participate in her weekly meme, Mission Quite Possible. Mission #2 is "What brings you joy". Her link is here.
1. 29 May 2011
To see more varieties of lotus flowers, visit Jennifer Zuri's blog 'Aquascape Your Landscape. Her post 'The Lovely Lotus' is here.
2. 18 Jan 2012
To incorporate the meaning of lotus roots for Chinese New Year