Blogs by E T Waldron
Symbols of what some flowers and colors mean
4/4/2005 8:22:44 PM
I hope you find this of interest!
It's always good to add to our knowledge
base of what things mean!
From earliest times flowers have held a special place in our lives. Flower motifs adorn churches and temples, tombstones and skyscrapers. Many flowers have taken on particular meanings, but what a certain flower means can differ vastly from culture to culture. The use of flowers in Christian iconography wasn't popular until after the death of Christ, suddenly the lily represented more than the poetic love found in Song of Solomon, it now represented Christ's passion on the cross and is known as the Easter flower. The flower and the blossom are universal symbols of young life. In Psalm 103:15-16 Our bodies are referred to as flowers that blossom and wither. Below is a representation of some of the more well known flowers and their biblical significance.
THE DAISY: Originally called the "days eye" because of its appearance, the daisy has become the emblem of Christ's innocence and youth, in Christian iconography it is used for the Virgin Mary.
THE SUNFLOWER: Because of the flowers habit of turning toward the sun, it is emblematic of the soul turning to Christ.
THE VIOLET: Usually found beneath hedges or in the shadow of other plants, the violet is considered a symbol of humility.
THE PASSIONFLOWER: The Spanish believed that this flower grew around the cross, it is emblematic of Christ's suffering. A special meaning has been given to each part of this flower, the ten petals signify the ten apostles who did not deny or betray the Lord, the rays within the flower are the crown of thorns, the five stamens refer to the five wounds of Jesus on the cross, the three styles remind us of the nails, the leaf is shaped like a spear, the tendrils signify the cords with which our Lord was bound.
LILY OF THE VALLEY: Known as the Easter flower because of it's purity and innocence, this flower is most associated with the resurrection of Christ. To the Jewish people it's a symbol of the tribe of Judah (1Peter 2:22).
THE ROSE: More than any other flower, the rose has been used in symbolism through different cultures. It is the symbol of messianic hope, love, and beauty. To Christians the white rose represents water, the red rose represents fire. In Catholicism the rosary was originally made of rose hips strung together hence the name "rosary".
THE LOTUS FLOWER: Since the Lotus lives in muddy waters but raises itself to float on top always clean and pure, this flower is symbolic of how Christians are to rise above all passion and selfish gain. It is highly symbolic in the eastern religions as a sign of birth and rebirth.
THE ORCHID: This beautiful flower is a symbol of perfection, the purple spots on the petals are said to represent the cleansing blood of Christ.
THE PANSY: Linked to thoughtfulness, remembrance and love, because the pansy has three main petals is an emblem for the holy trinity.
THE CROCUS: Also called the meadow saffron, this flower is a symbol of abundance as it grows everywhere, even on rocky surfaces. (Isaiah 35:1-2)
THE IRIS: Adopted during the crusades as a symbol of faith, wisdom and valor, the iris evolved into the fleur-de-lis, this symbol has existed since early Egyptian times as a symbol of royalty.
Throughout most ancient cultures plants have been used to heal, they have also been associated with protection and used in many religious ceremonial rites.
APPLE: One of the oldest symbols in Christian iconography is the apple, symbolic of the first sin of man. When shown in Christian art in the hand of Christ or the Virgin Mary it is the symbol of the fruit of salvation.
PALM TREE: A symbol of prosperity and beauty. (Song of Sol. 7:7)
ORANGE TREE: A symbol of purity, chastity as well as generosity.
POMEGRANATE: The seeds of the pomegranate represent unity in the church. It's a symbol of fertility, immortality and resurrection.
OAK TREE: A symbol of strength, endurance and adversity.
CEDAR TREE: A symbol of incorruptibility, this is perhaps the type of wood that the cross was made of hence a symbol of Christ's incorruptibility.
CLOVER: Like all trefoils, clover is a symbol of the trinity. The shamrock clover symbolizes the evangelizing of Ireland.
LAUREL TREE: Because it's an evergreen it has become a symbol of eternity.
FIG TREE: A symbol of fruitfulness and good works.
HOLLY: Regarded as an emblem of Christ's crown of thorns, holly is symbolic of Christ's suffering.
IVY: Because of it's ability to grow everywhere and the fact that it is an evergreen, ivy is symbolic of immortality.
GRAPES: We use wine or grape juice to symbolize Christ's blood in communion (john ) so the symbol of grapes or the grapevine is symbolic of Christ's blood and sacrifice.
CHERRIES: A symbol of sweet character and good works.
We are surrounded by color, and it's immediate visual effect on us has powerful overtones. The stained glass, wall hangings, doors, alters, everything in the church has a symbolic color revelation. Though it differs from culture to culture, color symbolism is the most universal language spoken. For centuries almost every culture from the east to the west has associated the color gold for the sun, silver for the moon, blue for the sky, black for death, and white for purity.
WHITE: The universal symbol of the creator, light, purity and innocence. White is a sacred color, sacrificial animals were most often the color white. Because white conceals nothing, this is why spirits and even ghosts are associated with it. White is the color used in signaling a flag of truce or peace.
BLACK: To most black is the color most associated with death. The color black can also be associated with grief, sorrow and mourning.
PURPLE: The color of royalty and wealth. A regal color purples refers to the triumphal entry of the King of Kings.
VIOLET: Denotes humility , suffering and sympathy.
BLUE: The color is most often associated with heaven and peace.
RED: Blood, passion, fire, the devil, lust and war are all symbolic of the color red.
ORANGE: Like red orange symbolizes flames, also luxury and spender.
YELLOW: The suns light, and wisdom or the son's light.
GOLD: The glory of God, as well as virtue and wealth.
BROWN: The earth, humility, it is the color most monks wear to symbolize there vow of
GREEN: The universal color of nature, signifying hope and joy.
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