This week, we complete our look at the most common Irezumi symbols and their meanings with a focus on flower designs.
The chrysanthemum is one of only four varieties of flowers that appear in traditional Irezumi. It stands for long life and happiness. It blooms in the fall and lasts into the winter, which is where this meaning comes from. It is also the sybol of the Emperor, another meaning of the chrysanthemum being perfection, based on it's round, full shape, indicating completeness.
The cherry blossom is a symbol of the delicate, fleeting nature of life. It has a short life cycle, and reminds us to appreciate the world while we are in it. It rarely stands by itself in Irezumi design.
The lotus flower sybolizes life itself, and the struggle to grow into a more beautiful state. It is deeply tied to many eastern religions, and is often considered a sacred symbol.