As the world starts to wake from its winter slumber, the cherry blossom is at the forefront. Blooming with grace and beauty, adding life and colour back to the world after a cold, dark season.
Cherry blossom has strong symbolic ties within many cultures and traditions but is most prevalent in Japanese culture. Keep reading to discover more about cherry blossom symbolism and what they represent.
What are Cherry Blossoms?
Cherry blossoms are the delicate pale pink or white flowers that bloom each spring on the branches of both flowering cherry trees and fruiting cherry trees. The blossoming of the tree usually takes place in a short 2-week window each year before the petals fall like confetti making way for the new buds of the summer foliage.
What is the Meaning of Cherry Blossom?
The symbolism of cherry blossom is probably the most well-known within Japanese culture. In Japan, the cherry blossom is known as ‘sakura’ and every year in around April time, people will gather to see the spectacle of the thousands of Japanese flowering cherry trees in full bloom. This tradition is known as ‘hanami’ which literally translates to ‘cherry blossom viewing’.
People from all over the world will attend this once in a lifetime cherry blossom festival and the locals with gather with their close friends and family to celebrate under the trees. Viewing platforms are filled with people day and night just to get a glimpse of the infamous pink flowers.
But what are people really celebrating underneath the Japanese cherry blossom tree?
The true meaning of the cherry blossom is somewhat bittersweet, their overwhelming beauty is there each spring to remind us that life is beautiful yet fleeting.
In Japanese culture, these themes can be traced back thousands of years. The pink petals and fallen cherry blossom are the epitome of beauty and our own mortality.
So when we see people celebrating underneath the boughs of the tree, they are living in the moment with the people they hold dearest. Laughing and reminiscing, honouring the loved ones they’ve lost while making good intentions for the new year and what lies ahead.