A silk tapestry uchishiki for Buddhist altar. Good condition, with some destruction in the tan and black color areas due to the mordents used. 26" x 23". The lotus is an important Buddhist motif. Images of the Buddha and other important persons often are shown seated on a lotus throne. The growth of the lotus, with its roots in mud, growing through water, and emerging as a wonderful plant above the water's surface, is seen as an analogy of the soul's path from the mud of materialism to the purity of enlightenment. The 3 stages of the lotus, bud, utpala (mid-blossom) and the full blossoming throne represent the past present and future respectively. Buddhism regards the lotus as having four possible colors: the pink is the supreme lotus, generally reserved for the highest deity, thus it naturally is associated with the Great Buddha himself. On this textile there is a deep red color band situated about the lotus blossoms: Buddhist believe that red have protective qualities, and is the color of powerful rituals and deeds. The clouds: imbued with religious significance originating from Buddhist and Taoist traditions, clouds (kumo) feature extensively in Japanese design as a symbol of divine authority. A cloud no longer appears as the floating cloud we are so familiar with but as a five-colored cloud representing a Buddha descending to earth. Peonies in Japan are a symbol of nobility. They also symbolize friendship, good luck and feminine beauty.