Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Brahma Kamal - The Night Queen

Brahma Kamal, named after Brahma, the God of Creation, probably blooms only for one night in the entire year, somewhere between July and September. It is a rare plant that flowers around midnight and survives only for a few hours. It is also commonly known as Nishagandhi in India or ‘Queen of the Night’; The Japanese people call it Gekka Bijin, which means ‘Beautiful Woman Under the Moon’.


Most Indians will relate to the celebration surrounding the blooming of the Brahma Kamal. There is a lot of gossip revolving around the same like only lucky people get to see the process of blooming or that ones who see the bloom get rich and prosperous and are showered with blessings! Whatever be the myth all I can say is that I surely did feel blessed by the serene white beauty of the Nishagandhi.


Mom planted the Brahmakamal somewhere around 2007 and finally after a long wait of almost 4 years, Sunday night we gathered around the auspicious plant to enjoy the full bloom of the Queen and her heady fragrance. The vigil started at sunset when he four of us – Mom, Dad, Subhash and I – sat at the dining table, glancing often at the plant with great anticipation.


With passing time she revealed more and more of herself was at her stunning best by midnight. And as if the visual wasn’t glorious enough, she filled the whole room with a bewitching fragrance. We all were totally ecstatic to witness this beautiful creation of the nature. Like we were advised we prayed to the flower and also entertained a few people who came over to pay their so called respects to the Brahma Kamal.


If you take a closer at the flower, you'll see the central white stamen which people believe represents Lord Krishna, while the reddish brown stalks which you can see on the closed bud represent the 100 Kauravas from the Mahabharata. I don’t know how far these myths are true but the Brahma Kamal in itself is truly divine and no wonder the Japanese named the Queen, ‘Gekka Bijin’.


Post midnight the flower began to close, unbloom as I like to call it. By morning she was back to being a bud again. Truly marvellous. Most of the people today argue that this flower is not the original Brahma Kamal but even if it is true, it in no way takes away credit from our splendid rendezvous with our pseudo 'Brahma Kamal' ;)


The entire process of watching the Brahma Kamal bloom and unbloom has made me think of the metaphor for our lives. At her moment of glory the queen didn’t know that her life was only for a few short hours but still she gave her everything for that single blaze of glory and then she was tired and exhausted. She thus teaches us to give our best shot at anything and everything because it is not the length of glory but the glory itself that people reminisce forever.

The five hours that we spent watching her bloom without even blinking for a second made me realize how important it is to watch at the right moment. So many times we miss the smile on the face of our loved ones just because we dint look at them at the time they were smiling.


It is really amazing how watching a flower made me learn such lessons of lives which would have otherwise taken years.

22 comments:

  1. Yes its so true, and I feel proud that I saw it in my neighbour hood. Very true as you mentioned, flawless so adorable, no word to express my feeling

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  2. Prashant Halve August 21-2013

    Yes this beautiful flower blooms in my home garden it is really nice experience.

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  3. Bloomed at my home today.Blessed to see its ethereal beauty.truly the queen of night.flawless and bewitching fragnance. Truly beautiful creation of nature.

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  4. Yes the flower is beautiful, and it bloom twice in just 3 months in my house with 3 flower. Has awesome fragnance.

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  5. Nice one but this is not original one chk this out
    http://brahmakamaldivine.blogspot.com/

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  6. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Selenicereus check this link.

    I think you are referring and picturing 'Selenicereus hamatus' here which is not a 'Brahma Kamal'

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    1. Yes that's other saussurea oblavatta state flower Uttarakhand.
      This is Epithelium oxypetalum

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  7. Hi. Words not enough to write here! Am enjoing the brahma kamal flower beauty,whenever it blooms. I do wait,til the day it blooms! A
    Enjoying this beauty since 8 years! Every month, it is giving flower.seeing this plant and flower,I do say LIfe is there in plant. Because while flower is blooming,u can as well feel the steps! While it is blooming, it gives out sweet fragrance too.

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  8. I have just experience this flower last night when walking in my garden in my backyard, I came across the most beautiful flower and I was so struck in awe at the beauty of this flower, I did not stay up for the sweet fragrance smell, I will do so tonight as I see more of them coming up. Loretta Perth Australia

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  9. Thank you so much for your information about this gorgeous flower. Thank you for sharing :)

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  10. Does anyone know where I can locate the Gekka Bijin. I have been trying to locate some plants for years but have had no luck. I live just south of Dallas,Tx...if you know anything please email me... bevodis@hotmail.com Put the name Gekka Bijin in the subject line so I'll know what it is. thank you...b

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  11. IT BLOOMED IN MY GARDEN LAST NIGHT I.E ON DT 06.07.16 .I HAVE TO WAIT YAERS TOGETHER TO SEE THIS FLOWER .THANKS GOD !AT LAST IT BLOOMED ON THE EVE OF CAR FESTIVAL

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  12. Brahmakamal bloom at Adharshila Learning Centre
    https://www.facebook.com/adharshila.learningcentre/posts/1065199060234199?notif_t=like&notif_id=1470451076013001

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  13. Blessed to see the brahmakamal flowered in our garden it took 2 years for it to bloom we all were so excited it was best experience.

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  14. thank you for sharing valuable information

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  15. thank you for sharing valuable information mam really its interesting ......

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  16. Dear friends, yesterday i got the brahma kalam flower with full blossom after long waiting, its was a wonderful vision i saw at my house after so many days of waiting to see the flower. The flower just came as a bud from the side of the leaf, which is a amazing fact and after few days of bud the flower blossomed yesterday to full shape, awesome and as an artist, i have enjoyed the beauty and the glitter of white with grace of almighty. Thanks to the lord for the divine blessings showered in my plant. Best wishes to all. Please feel free to reach me on 9845114366, Bangalore. Visit my art site www.vesaindianfinearts.com.

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  17. Brahma Kamal refer Sahashrakara,the final chakra in spiritual body.It will blossom only in deep meditation.That will give perfect universal knowledge,then only you can create anything in perfect manner, That is Brahma Kamal.
    By
    Seshya urpfr

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  18. last night near my garden is flowers has raise

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    1. yes we witnessed the bloom yesterday night it was awsome by all means

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  19. we got this flower accidently and planted in terrace garden , it took 4 years, and resemble with the surrounding as we worship vishnu and chant shrisuktam strota in late hours of night in silence may be some spiritual atmosphere has got some mythological connection ,

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