Editor’s note: We could not have introduced this video lecture in Hindi on the spiritual significance of flowers without recalling for ourselves and our readers the following conversation of the Mother. It is sourced from the book ‘Sweet Mother: Luminous Notes’ – Conversations with the Mother recollected by Mona Sarkar’, published by Sri Aurobindo Ashram, pp. 86-87
Bonjour, Sweet Mother.
Take this. (Mother gives me a flower) Do you know what it is?
Yes, Mother: ‘Aesthetic Beauty’. [Ipomoea, Morning Glory]
How tender and fresh it is…
Mother, are You giving it to me so that I may cultivate aesthetic beauty, or is it because it corresponds to a part of my being?
It is in answer to the aspiration from the very depths of your being that I give the flowers. It is a need or an aspiration, it depends on the individual. It may fill a void or else give an impetus for progress, or find the inner harmony in order to establish peace. Do you understand?
Be like a flower. One must try to become like a flower — open, frank, equal, generous and gentle. Do you know what it means?
Not exactly, Mother.
The flower is open to all that is around it — Nature, light, the rays of the sun, the wind, etcetera. It exerts a spontaneous influence on all that is around it. It radiates a joy and a beauty.
Frank: It hides nothing of its beauty. It lets it emerge freely, openly, frankly. What is within, what is in its depths, it brings out so that all can see it.
Equal: It has no preference. Everyone can enjoy its beauty and its perfume without rivalry. It is equal and the same for everybody. There is no difference, or anything whatsoever.
Then, Generous: How it gives without reserve and without restriction, the mysterious beauty and the characteristic perfume of Nature. It sacrifices itself entirely, even its life — to express this beauty and the secret of the things that it contains.
And then, Gentle: It is so tender, sweet, also close and affectionate towards us. Its company makes us so happy. It is always cheerful and happy.
Happy is he who can exchange his qualities with the profound qualities of the flowers. Try to cultivate in yourself these refined qualities.
I give you flowers so that you may develop the divine qualities they symbolise. And they can directly transmit to the psychic all that they contain, without admixture. They possess a power and a very subtle and deep influence. Do you understand?
(In a teasing tone) Now, it seems to me that you wish to become like a flower or else cultivate these qualities.
And, you know, each flower symbolises an aspect, an emanation, an aspiration and a progress in the terrestrial evolution.
In this inspiring talk delivered in Hindi, Ritam Upadhyay of Sri Aurobindo Society, Ratlam Centre, gently guides us through a beautiful journey of learning about the spiritual significance of flowers in the Mother’s Light. She speaks of the twelve attributes as given in the Mother’s symbol and specific flowers which symbolise each of the twelve soul qualities.
We also learn about how the Mother inwardly identified with the consciousness of the flowers and how she used the simple act of giving out flowers to transmit her divine force to the disciples and devotees. In addition, Ritam also emphasises the necessity of cultivating a deeper appreciation of beauty and love for flowers as part of our inner journey.
This lecture by Ms. Ritam Upadhyay was recorded on November 8, 2020.
Watch the recorded lecture in Hindi:
About the speaker:
Ritam Upadhyay is a post graduate in English literature and works as a guest faculty in Govt. Arts & Science College at Ratlam, Madhya Pradesh. But her real place of work as a devotee and child of the Mother is the Auro Ashram at Ratlam. As an ardent seeker of ‘Beauty’ in its original pure and natural form, she paints, writes, sings and does all which can keep her in touch with Beauty and Delight.