Flowers · Landscape · Paintings/Realistic

Earthly Paradise


Painted on Hahnemühle 450 gsm watercolor paper measuring about 14*19 inches. Schminke artists watercolors.

              We had been to this river bank recently, and as we sat and watched the river flowing tranquilly , thousands of yellow chrysanthemum petals started flowing along with the waters. They were flowers with which puja had been performed in the temple way upstream. Looking at them reminded me of a spiritual experience that I had had (a little more than a year back) after coming out of the Sivalayam in the Kanaka Durga temple (it sits on top of a hill and is an important temple here). I was gazing at this river in the same way and the Sacred Fig tree had spread out its vast canopy under which I was standing. This tree, which lives for hundreds of years has a religious significance and is found near many temples. What I cannot convey in words, the bliss that I had experienced that evening, and along with it the assurance of it coming into this earthly life is what I wish to convey through this painting…    

        The water drops falling from the hummingbird symbolize the tears, the severe storms that we have to pass through in order to arrive at the land of Ananda, that bliss that is ever progressive and not constant and static, not just a term like ‘Enlightenment’. 

The spiritual significances of these flowers are given by the Mother (Mirra Alfassa). When the gardener used to bring her some new flowers, she entered into contact with the flower (or fruit) and had named them and when they were all compiled and showed to her for correction, she added a sentence or two as an aid in understanding (the ones which I have put in brackets). She had also said that significances change with climate, environment, the person who offers them etc.

Fuchsia – Art (living only to express beauty)

Morning glory, Ipomoea in general, all colors – Nature makes an offering of her Beauty (it is a spontaneous and effortless offering)  

Morning glory (Ipomoea tricolor, sky blue flower with yellow throat) – Pure sense of Beauty (can be acquired only through a great sense of purification)

Morning glory (Ipomoea nil, pink with white border) – Spontaneous Beauty (delicate and magnificent; it has an incomparable charm) 

Morning glory (Ipomoea nil, bright magenta) – Joy of Beauty 

Morning glory (Ipomoea tricolor, blue) – Artistic sensibility or sensitivity (a powerful aid to fight ugliness) 

Blue dawn flower (Ipomoea indica) – Artistic Taste (pleased with beautiful things, it is itself beautiful)

Morning glory (Ipomoea carnea, white to pale pink with lavender pink throat) – Gratitude (it is  you who open all the closed doors and allow the saving Grace to enter)

Merremia quinquefolia – Detailed Gratitude (the gratitude that awakens in us all the details of the Divine Grace)

Yellow morning glory (Merremia tuberosa) – Mental Gratitude (the gratefulness of the mind for what makes it progress) 

White wood rose (Operculina turpethum) – Integral Gratitude (the whole being offers itself to the Lord in absolute trust)

Ipomoea cairica (mauve with deep purple centre) – Detachment from all that is not the Divine (a single occupation, a single aim, a single joy – the Divine!)

Quamoclit coccinea (star Ipomoea, orange red) – Opening of the Physical to the Divine Love (the surest way to happiness)

Ipomoea horsfalliae (princess vine, intense megenta with star in the middle) – Heroic Thought (to the conquest of the unknown without fear of difficulty and incomprehension!)

Ipomoea alba (moon flower, white) – Entire self-giving (fully open, clear and pure)

Rhododendron – Abundance of beauty (A beauty that blossoms abundantly and without any reserve)


Photo Courtesies: Thanks Char for the reference of morning glories, Andy for the Fuschia. Rhododendron for Mary of For the humming birds, thanks to the public domain images of DLS, and Deb, Aleks, Aries of The main photo of the sacred fig tree and the river, I had taken at the same place that I mentioned.


5 thoughts on “Earthly Paradise

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