✣… The lotus is the symbol of the ultimate unfolding of consciousness. It is the most beautiful flower in the East, the most fragrant, and it has become the symbol of ultimate awakening, ultimate awareness. It has become the symbol for certain reasons.
One is that it grows out of dirty mud. It is such a revolution — to see the mud, and the lotus growing out of it — it is unbelievable, it is a miracle. One cannot believe that such dirty mud can create such a beautiful flower.
The second important thing about the lotus is that it grows out of dirty mud and floats in water. It is a water flower, but the miracle is that the water never touches its petals. Even if it rains there will be drops of water on the petals but they will be separate. You can see them resting like pearls. The lotus is so velvety that they don’t touch it, it remains untouched; hence it has become the symbol of sannyas.
A sannyasin is one who lives in the world but remains untouched by it, who remains with all kinds of unconscious people — one has to remain with these people, there are no other kind — but who remains untouched, unaffected. One remains absolutely still, restful, cool, as if nothing is happening anywhere. One remains in time and yet beyond time, in the world yet not of the world.✣