Although the lotus flower has always been used in tattoos, its popularity has grown significantly in recent years. The lotus flower is a symbol of the stages of enlightenment in Buddhism; representing rebirth, growth and purification of the spirit.
The lotus flower grows from muddy, murky streams and rivers, but then rises above the water to bloom. This is a big part of the flowers symbolism.
All humans are born into a world of suffering. The suffering in this world teaches and strengthens us, playing an important role in our growth. Through this learning and experience, we can overcome the struggles of the mud to break the surface of the water and reach our own spiritual awakening. The lotus flower is all about those who rise from the darkness of the world into a new way of thinking and living!
Different colors of the lotus flower in Buddhism hold different meanings, representing the different spiritual journeys taken on the path to enlightenment by each of us.
White: Purity of the mind and spirit
Red: Compassion and love
Blue: Wisdom and logic
Pink: History of Buddha & legends of Buddha
Purple: Spirituality and mysticism
Gold: All achievement of all enlightenment
The stage of growth the lotus flower is in represents a different stage of enlightenment as well. A closed lotus flower represents the time before a Buddhist follower found Buddha or enlightenment. A lotus flower fully bloomed and open represents full enlightenment and self-awareness.