In recent years, the mysterious udumbara flowers have been sighted all over the world. This flower is ultra-mystical and it is said to bloom once every 3,000 years. Strangely, it grows on any medium and on some really surprising surfaces, such as glass, paper, Buddha statues, and so on. The blossom of this plant is an amazing phenomenon that contains infinite secrets and divine messages.
The udumbara flower is also a synonym for something that is exceedingly rare, sacred, and special.
According to Buddhist scriptures, the udumbara is a sacred flower. The flower’s name comes from Sanskrit and it means “auspicious flower from heaven.” The supernatural arrival of this flower, which depicts a plant with no chlorophyll and no roots, is beyond imagination or understanding. The Buddhist scripture Fahua Wenju does tell of “a flower that blooms only once every three thousand years that heralds the advent of the King of the Golden Wheel.”
The eighth volume of Huilin’s Yinyi (a composite collection of all the glossaries of scriptural words and expressions compiled in and before the Tang Dynasty) also relates that: “When the King of the Golden Wheel appears in this world and with his great merits, the flower appears.”
Back then, Buddha Sakyamuni mentioned to his disciples about the Wheel Turning King and the udumbara flower. When the Buddha brought his disciples to practice, disciples asked the Buddha whether they could remain as part of everyday society and do their practice while living as ordinary people in the human world. The Buddha replied: “You have to wait until the day when the Holy King of the Wheel Turning appears in the world… At that time, you must not miss the eternal opportunity.”
After the disciples listened to the Buddha’s words, the female disciple Lianhuase respectfully asked the Buddha: “Master, in the future when the Holy Wheel Turning King appears in the world, what if people do not know about it, what do they do then?” The Buddha replied: “At that time, there will be a kind of flower called udumbara blooming everywhere that can remind people of the coming of the Wheel Turning King to the world to spread his teachings and to save sentient beings in the world.”
“This flower does not come from the world.”
The Buddha further explained: “This flower is a flower that does not come from the world. It is a manifestation of the merits of the Holy Wheel Turning King. This kind of manifestation is a symbol for the rare experience of encountering a Buddha or hearing a Buddha’s teaching.” The Buddha advised his disciples to accumulate merits and said he would protect them until the day they would meet the Holy Wheel Turning King.
Buddha disciples and all sentient beings are looking forward to this day!
In 1997, South Korean media first reported that udumbara flowers appeared at the Cheonggye-sa temple. The crystal clear flowers attracted countless people to see this rare phenomenon. Later, the South Korean media reported sightings of this mystical flower in many places, including at Buddhist temples in South Korea.
Soon afterwards, news of multiple sightings of udumbara flowers began to spread throughout China, as reported by the media.
In addition, the blossoms of these wondrous flowers were also sighted in Taiwan, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Singapore, Australia, the United States, and other parts of the globe.
Udumbara flowers are beautiful, elegant, and refined. The flower is bell-shaped, its stem is as thin as gold silk and it has a light, unique fragrance. The flowers are snow-white in color and their existence fills the surrounding area with an auspicious aura that makes the one who sighted the flower feel calm and refreshed.
The most peculiar characteristic is that the udumbara flowers can grow anywhere — on glass, steel pipes, offices, paper, Buddha statues — without any soil. The flowering period lasts for weeks, months, or even years. They usually appear in Buddhist temples and the residences of Buddhist practitioners.
The extraordinary moment has arrived
Recently, udumbara flowers have been blooming all over the world and this signifies that the extraordinary moment which sentient beings have been waiting for has arrived. At this time when humankind’s morality has declined to the lowest level, plagues are rampant, and signs point to everything having reached the final limit, it is only through emphasizing virtue and doing good, respecting heaven and believing in God, that we can be blessed by God, avoid disasters, save ourselves, and enter into the future.
Translation by Chua BC and edited by Michael Segarty