Meditation at the Museum

The lotus flower is one of the Eight Auspicious Symbols of Buddhism and is a very popular subject in Chinese Art. It is the symbol of mental purity, as the lotus rises out the muddy waters yet itself is not soiled. It is inwardly empty yet outwardly upright and smells sweet.

The Chinese words for lotus have the same meanings as:

  •  to bind or connect, such as in marriage;
  • one after the other;
  • uninterrupted;
  • modesty;
  • to love.

photo by moi, UP Lagoon 2008


Sparrows are regarded as good omens along with the dragon, female phoenix, and tortoise. The utilitarian bamboo plant is rich in symbolism and serves as metaphor for the following:

  • youth and suppleness;
  • strength and endurance;
  • humility and a pure heart;
  • gentlemen.

Bamboo has a homophone that means “to convey a wish” thus the inclusion of a bamboo in a grouping of flowers or landscape strengthens the “wishing” component of an artistic wordless message.

water color on paper rice, 2006, by moi


Texts from the exhibit at the Yuchengco Museum at RCBC Plaza, corner Ayala and Gil Puyat Avenues, Makati City. 

Wishing every reader good luck, a pure mind, and a pure heart. Om.


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