Lakshmi: mother archetype and the lotus

Shri Lakshmi, bazaar art, 1940's. US public Domain via wikimedia
Shri Lakshmi, bazaar art, 1940’s. US public Domain via wikimedia

The mother archetype can be attached “to vessel-shaped flowers like the rose or the lotus.” (Carl Jung, 9i, para. 157)

In the image above we see Lakshmi the Hindu goddess of spiritual and material wealth.

Lakshmi is seated on the lotus. The Hindu goddesses are often seen rising out of lotus flowers. The lotus is an image of our relation to the material dimension. The lotus grows in water but is not wetted by water. In a similar way, the spiritual initiate finds himself in the material world, but knows that his deepest Self is not touched by matter. The Bhagavad Gita says,

“One who performs his duty without attachment, surrendering the results unto the Supreme Lord, is unaffected by sinful action, as the lotus leaf is untouched by water.”


  1. The Archetypes and The Collective Unconscious (Collected Works of C.G. Jung Vol.9 Part 1)

3 thoughts on “Lakshmi: mother archetype and the lotus

  1. I am a big fan of Carl Jung. Such a unique character.

    As the lotus was chosen by the Hindu, the rose was picked by the symbol of Sufism as I’ve later found out.

    1. Kenneth,
      Well, the serpent is an anima (soul) image.
      The number seven occurs frequently in mythic imagination. One reason may be that ancients saw seven major illuminated objects in the sky: the Sun, the Moon and five planets. Seven is also important because the Trinity plus the Quaternity add up to the number seven. The Trinity and the Quaternity are two vital archetypal constellations representing the development of consciousness.

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