Why does Buddhism use the lotus flower as a symbol? (GDD-376, Master Sheng-Yen)

The lotus flower is described in Buddhism as pure and undefiled, and as being of great benefit. It teaches us to become a person of pure wisdom, who cultivates the bodhisattva path among ordinary people, learns to be free of greed, hatred, and delusion, and only gives and contributes to our world without seeking to gain anything of this world.

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