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Flowers in Christianity April 16, 2009

Posted by woodtree0587 in Plants/Civilizations, Uncategorized.
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Flowers can mean different things in different contexts: in religion particularly. For the early Christians, flowers were regarded with great suspicion and associated them with decadent pagans. In Islam, the beauty of each flower is a symbol of God’s spirit. During the Middle Ages, the Christians appreciated the beauty of nature and regarded this as proof that God created the world. In America, church-goers would sniff fennel to help keep them awake during the long sermons. For thousands of years, art and speech were used in culture and religion through flowers. Flowers are also used in many different Christian holidays such as Christmas and Easter.

From the second century, sexual intercourse was considered a “sin” by the Christian church, but animals had no souls so their sex was ok since people needed more animals to survive, especially domesticated ones. Plants were considered the only “pure” life form on earth because people said that they did not have sex. If plants did have sex, then people said that the church teachings were wrong. So, this is when Christian theologies denied that plants ever had sex. Later, the Christians accepted that plants had sex and that it was not that big of deal.

In the five main religions, flowers and plants mean different occasions and spiritual things. The main five religions of the world are Christianity, Hinduism, Islam, Buddhism, and Chinese religions. Each religion has a main flower that they associate with their religion. In the Islam religion, there is no one flower that they associate with their religion. The lotus is the main flower that is associated with the Buddhist religion. In Chinese religions white flowers, Peonies, Orchids, Lotus and Daffodils and a few others are associated with this religion. In the Christian religion, many flowers have a lot of symbolism and representation to the religion and the people of the world. The passion flower, the white lily, the archetypal flower, the pomegranate, and the

The main flower that means a lot in the Christian religion is the passion flower. This flower is mainly a symbol of Jesus’ scourging, crowning with thorns and crucifixion. Every part of this flower has some type of meaning. The spiraled tendrils symbolize the lash of Christ’s scourging. The central flower column is a symbol of the pillar of the Scourging. The 72 radial filaments is a symbol of the Crown of Thorns. The top three stigmas symbolize the three nails. The lower five anthers symbolize the five wounds. The Style represents the Sponge used to moisten Christ’s lips with vinegar. The leaves and some species represent the head of the Centurion’s Spear. The red stains represent Christ’s blood drops. The round fruit represents the world Christ came to save. The Fragrance symbolizes the spices prepared by the Holy women. This flower gives specific reasons and visualizations to the Christian faith. It provides a visual meaning to the teachings of the Gospel story and the eras where there were no printed catechisms. The passion flower has a number of symbols found in flowers individually other religions and traditions (John S. Strokes Jr.).

passion-flower2

The archetypal flower is a symbol of the Christian religion. The archetypal flower symbolizes the purity and is associated with the Virgin Mary. The white pedals represents that she was pure and had a clean body. When seeing an angel or in a vase on the ground of a scene, there you will usually be a white lily placed in the picture. In devotional paintings of the Virgin and the Child with saints, there are usually lilies and other flowers placed in the pictures. Other white flowers including: lily-of-the-valley, leucojum, snowdrops, or white flowers with golden centers like roses and daisies can also reflect this meaning as well (Flowers and Religion). These white flowers keep a sacred meaning to purity and the Virgin Mary.

the-archetypal-flower1

Another flower that has a specific meaning is the pomegranate. The pomegranate symbolizes the resurrection and the hope of eternal life (Pomegranate). This is because of the abundance of seeds (pomegranate.) Another symbol is of royalty and the church and the seeds would represent the believers in the church (pomegranate.) In pomegranates, the seeds are bursting out and this symbolizes Christ bursting out of the tomb (Frosted Skies). The pomegranate is a significant symbol of hope and resurrection in the Christian religion.

pomegranate-fruit-and-flower1

As in many other religions, the rose is a symbol in the Christian religion. Roses have been as symbol of the Virgin. Catholics use rosaries that symbolize and indicate the separate prayers as tiny roses. Roses in nature are really small five petal flowers and come in an array of colors. Representing Christ’s wounds is the white rose with its five petals and the white color representing Christ’s purity and the red rose represents Christ’s sacrificial blood (Flowers and Religion). The red rose also is the symbol of love.

Flowers are important to many religions of this world, particularly as I mentions for Christianity. The passion flower has several different meanings to Christianity. The archetypal flower is a symbol of the Virgin Mary and purity. Roses represent the prayers, wounds and sacrificial blood that Christ shed for us. Flowers in general are symbols of life and are used to decorate. Without flowers, Christians would not have much to remind them of what Christ did and the promises that he made.

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Comments»

1. Deanna - April 16, 2009

This is all very interesting to me. I didn’t realize that these plants were significant to Christianity in these ways. I was most suprised by the pomegranate. I also like how you include a picture of each plant you are discussing.

2. Flowers - July 27, 2009

You have posted wonderful pictures of flowers on your blog that is appreciated.

3. Dr.Mani iyer - March 21, 2010

Ya, its nice to know about Passion flower. Since childhood, I have read regarding this Passion flower and Jesus. The Passion flower has a great meaning in The Holy Bible. Since childhood I was passionated by this Pssion flower and kept in my garden. Now I have 5 colors of Passion flower plants. I like that flower and its fragrance very much.
This plant belongs to Vitiaceae family as it creeps on with its tendrils.
Thanks,
Dr.Mani iyer,
MD
Cnsultant,
60,Parankur, 1st floor, Daulat Nagar,

Dhankawadi,Pune-43,
Maharashtra, INDIA

4. spencerf - December 12, 2014

Very wonderful day to see this flower .


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