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Levitating Lotus Position

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"I finally came upon the sage floating cross-legged in the air with no visible means of support, for he had no need of a job."

When seated in the Lotus Position, a character may levitate to demonstrate that he or she is meditating particularly profoundly. The Levitating Lotus Position is also used to show that a character is displaying his or her Psychic Powers/Enlightenment Superpowers, intensely concentrating, healing, or is just especially calm.

Levitating while in the Lotus Position may also be a sign that a character is powerful or that he or she is far from normal. However, especially when Played for Laughs, if someone wakes them from their serene inner calm, they'll often spontaneously lose their floaty power and collapse in an undignified mess on the floor.

For bonus points, they may chant "om", a real life Hindu and Buddhist mantra. It's usual too to keep the hands in a mystic gesture, called mudra in real life (usually the chin mudra, with the hands laying separately on the knees and each index finger touching the thumb, or alternatively shunya mudra, with the middle fingers instead). This is in spite of these mudra being far from universal among meditators in real life.note 

Note that despite its name, the exact posture is not always quite a Lotus Position, as there are several other meditation postures in Yoga that look superficially similar, and many authors aren't familiar enough with them to tell the difference (it also happens that achieving true lotus position or padmasana actually requires a lot of flexibility and training in real life, so an easier pose comes in handy for live-action media). The most popular variation has the character seated on a simpler cross-legged position called sukhasana.

See also Meditation Powerup. Compare Chunky Updraft and Love Floats for other uses of levitation.


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  • Used in an advert in which a guru can't levitate until he tries the low-fat yoghurt (as the normal stuff makes him too heavy). Of course instead of saying "Ommmm" he says "Yummmmmm..."
  • Red Rock Deli's ad for their Himalayan Pink Salt chips features a climber walking on top of a cave, before it breaks and she falls in. In the cave, she finds a giant floating chip. After taking a bite, she is enlightened to the point where she can meditate like this.
  • During one of Safe Auto's "Terrible Quotes" commercials, three women in a park float in the air as they meditate. The woman in the middle says a strange quote, depending on the version of the ad you watch. At the end of the main ad, the woman in the middle is seen telekinetically controlling a phone, seeing that Safe Auto can give her a great quote.

  • Mahaguru from Gaju Bhai is constantly floating in the air in the lotus position.
  • In the Oye Golu episode "Yoga Competition", every time Golu does the lotus position, he floats in the air. The yoga teacher sees him while he is floating in the position and is so impressed that she chooses him to compete in the international yoga competition.

    Anime & Manga 
  • In 3×3 Eyes, this is the default position for Kelarla (a Cute Monster Girl) whenever she appears, floating above the ground.
  • Berserk: The Kushan sorcerer Daiba practices yoga as a way of focusing his magical powers, and likes to float high in the air sitting lotus-style while he lets his magical conjurations do the fighting.
  • In Dragon Ball Super, Jiren spends a large part of the tournament he's involved in doing this, because he doesn't consider any of the other participants worth his time.
  • Fist of the North Star: Ken's rage Toki's "face breaking fist of compassion" attack has him sitting in this position, floating, while using his arms to direct the waves that break his opponent's face. Compassionately. The dramatic after-picture has him the same way, but arms in his lap.
  • In Fushigi Yuugi, Miboshi appears in this position. It is revealed that Miboshi has possessed and overtaken a young Buddhist monk (or monk-in-training.)
  • In episode 2 of Joshiraku, while Kigurumi is having an imaginary date, Kukuru randomly floats in the air in this position, amazing the other girls. Gankyou points out that Kukuru is "floating, undisturbed, on a imaginary sea."
  • Saint Seiya:
    • Virgo Shaka awaits for the intruders to the House of Virgo like this. No surprise here for someone who seems to be the reincarnation of a Buddha. Bonus points for keeping the pose while wearing the Gold Cloth armor of the Gold Saints.
    • Krishna Chrysaor of Poseidon's Marine Shoguns does the same thing when Shiryu destroys his spear, and he's forced to use his chakra instead. Shiryu uses Excalibur on him and his vital points anyway, and Krishna dies as a result.
  • In episode 190 of Urusei Yatsura, the students are forced to hold a meditative position. After Ataru attempts to hit on Shinobu, Lum is angered. She floats in the air and chases Ataru around with her lightning bolts, keeping her position the entire time.

    Comic Books 
  • Black Moon Chronicles: The priests of the Black Moon faith are often found floating in a lotus position when they're either meditating or accompanying their leader Haazheel Thorn's forces.
  • B.P.R.D.:
    • Liz talks to a monk from The Shangri-La while he's in the lotus position three feet off the ground.
    • Later on, in the Plague of Frogs arc, she herself ends up doing this. While psychically turning frog monsters' tongues into dragons with her pyrokinesis. It Makes Sense in Context.
  • DC Comics:
    • Robin:
      • The member of one of the families of the map that Merlyn kills in #168 was floating sitting lotus style and meditating when the evil archer approached him.
      • When Ra's flunkies try to kill I Ching he doges them by floating above their heads lotus style after taunting them into all attacking at once.
    • When Raven took Supergirl to Azareth, the priests had Supergirl meditating as she floated in the air. One of the priests says she must not be awoken during her meditation, or she "will never know peace for the rest of her life."
  • Leonard of Léonard le Génie encounters an entire squadron (yes, flying in squadron formation) of Tibetan monks flying like this. One even shouts mayday because he has a leg cramp, meaning he can't get the landing gear out.
  • Marvel Universe:
    • Scarlet Witch has done this on several different occasions, such as when she is trying to learn more about her powers.
    • Satana uses the lotus pose to float above a pentagram.
    • Used by Doctor Strange for purposes of study, meditation, and sometimes Astral Projection. (And Rule of Cool, of course.)
    • This extends to Magik in an alternate reality where she is the Sorcerer Supreme.
    • Used by Moondragon as her standard meditation pose, often when making use of her telepathic powers.
    • X-Men:
      • Jean Grey, being both telepathic and telekinetic, can do the lotus and float. Her adult self, that is. Her teenage self tries it... then gets pins-and-needles after about thirty seconds, to the mild despair of Psylocke, her teacher.
      • Her son, Nathan Summers a.k.a. Cable, prefers to do it upside-down. While casually holding off a grand-scale multinational assault with his telekinesis.
      • Magneto, during the Nation-X arc, assumed this pose as he concentrated on locating the Breakworld bullet and drawing it from deep space back to Earth, in order to free Kitty Pryde from the bullet.
      • During the Intergalactic Empire of Wakanda arc, Storm meditates while levitating to train her power over micro-climates. After she manages to make plants around her grow, she uses her power to attack enemy ships.
      • Kwannon, the current Psylocke, meditates like this on Krakoa.
  • Monster High: Spectra does this in the Power Ghouls comic, Polterghoul.
  • Robert Crumb's Mr. Natural actually shows some mystical powers by levitating in the lotus position and traveling to the city that way — of course he's tracking down disciple Flakey Foont, who owes him money.
  • In Tank Girl, the titular character pulls this off in the Carioca series.
  • Tintin: Tintin in Tibet. The monk Blessed Lightning levitates involuntarily as he's uttering a prophetic warning (and doesn't remember anything afterwards, including levitating) but does so while standing upright. Then he drops down on another monk's foot.
  • Dr. Manhattan in Watchmen does the levitating version of the Lotus Position while creating his fortress on Mars.

    Fan Works 

    Films — Animation 
  • Gali has a similar pose to this while meditating in the first BIONICLE movie, managing to levitate despite not having psychic powers of any sort, except for telepathy between herself and Takua.
  • Discworld: The Hermit Guru in the Animated Adaptation of Soul Music is in a levitating lotus (with, strangely, a cushion levitating underneath him). He later appears in the Flower Power pastiche, floating over the crowd. In the book it just says he's sitting under a tree (quite possibly a Bodhi tree) with his legs crossed.
  • Performed by Laira in Green Lantern: Emerald Knights.
  • Master Oogway of Kung Fu Panda has an interesting version of advanced meditation: he uses the crook at the top of his walking stick as a place to rest his head, while he balances the rest of his body on top of it.
  • In the Rainbow Magic movie, Heather does this. At one point she does it upside down.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • The hero of Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) is doing a lotus position in midair for his meditation practice in the opening scene.
  • The first time we see Tom "The Astronaut" of the far future in The Fountain, he is performing the full lotus floating in the air above his small planetoid spaceship (artificial gravity fields may be assisting him). During the climax, when Tom comes to his personal realization of the ultimate truth of life and death, he climbs out of his bubble-like spaceship (while still enveloped in a smaller, person-sized bubble) and assumes the lotus position again in order to meet Xibalba head on. In the midst of his catharsis, he suddenly appears to the ancient Mayan priest guarding the Tree of Life, who is awed by his presence.
  • Subverted in God of Cookery when it is revealed that the character has actually left the ground thanks to the security guards who are in the process of carrying him out.
  • The Golden Child. The title character's astrally projected image does this when it appears to Chandler Jarrell.
  • Jade Dynasty: Tian Ling Er is skilled at this.
  • Jennifer's Body: Near the end, Needy's shown to have the levitation ability Jennifer had by floating up from the floor of her isolation cell to the window in lotus position, after which she escapes by kicking through it.
  • Marvel Cinematic Universe:
    • Avengers: Infinity War: On Titan, Doctor Strange is seen floating in the lotus position while he's using the Eye of Agamotto to peer into the different possible futures.
    • Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness: Wanda Maximoff does this while performing the Dreamwalker spell that allows her to project her consciousness into the body of a version of herself in an alternate universe.
  • In The Scribbler, Hogan (Garrett Dillahunt) — the only guy in an otherwise all-female halfway house for psych patients — tries out his friend's heavily-modified electroshock therapy device. He not only does a blissed-out Levitating Lotus, but also exhibits a Power Glows aura.
  • Star Wars:
    • The Last Jedi: Luke Skywalker is shown floating above the rock he's meditating on when doing Astral Projection. He then collapses onto the rock in exhaustion, then fades into nothingness with his robe blowing away in the wind.
    • The Rise of Skywalker: Rey is introduced floating in lotus position several feet above the jungle floor, with a double ring of rocks orbiting around her, as she attempts to commune with the spirits of past Jedi.

  • In the Callahan's Crosstime Saloon story "The Wonderful Conspiracy", Jake glances behind the bar and sees that Callahan is actually hovering above the floor, seated in the lotus position. It is one of the first indications that there is a lot more to Mike Callahan than meets the eye.
  • In the Doctor Who New Adventures novel Sky Pirates!, there's a scene where the Doctor's companion finds him "sitting in a lotus and... levitating three feet off the deck — something he swore blind that he could only do occasionally and with concentrated mental effort, but which Benny had lately come to suspect was the result of being so engrossed he simply forgot to stay on the ground." (They're in a pocket universe with weird physics, which may or may not explain it.)
  • In the Dragaera novels, Daymar the Hawklord tends to do this whenever he appears via teleportation, or is simply staying still for a while. Lampshaded in Iorich, in which Vlad wonders why Daymar bothers with a feat that's not especially impressive in a society of sorcerers.
  • This actually serves as the plot in Nerissa Marie's Princess Kate Meditates. The meditation-loving Princess Kate is often found floating around the castle. Yet, one day, she ends up floating too high and out of reach of her family and friends.
  • In the Star Wars Expanded Universe, Jedi can't exactly fly on their own — excepting a character in Dark Forces Saga — but they have this trope, which they call Rising Meditation. In Shadows of the Empire: Evolution, it appears Luke Skywalker has figured it out. Han pranks him by shouting "Hey! How'd that rancor get in here?" and makes him topple. In the official pseudo-documentary book The Jedi Path, Luke comments on this but doesn't elaborate.
  • Swellhead has Diogenes Club hero of The '70s, psychic detective Richard Jeperson, come out of retirement in the modern era to take on a reality-warping supervillain. In their final confrontation Jeperson gets into this position for a battle of willpower, but not without some assistance from his pretty female sidekick as he's not as flexible as he used to be. The position comes in handy though when the supervillain tries opening a Trap Door to his pit of alligators beneath our hero, who just floats in mid-air. However the trope is subverted because it's the villain's belief in a Worthy Opponent that's enabling Jeperson to tap into his power; not the chanting or Lotus Position.
  • The cover of Sharon Gannon's Yoga and Vegetarianism features a six-armed yogi who sits like this while she holds various items.

    Live-Action TV 

  • National Lampoon depicted this in one of their Foto Funnies (like a comic strip, but using captioned photographs instead of drawings).
    "How do you do that? Is it levitation? Telekinesis? Astral Projection? Transcendental meditation?"
    "Nope... hemorrhoids."

    Music Videos 
  • Demonstrated by a yogi and Nick Hexum in the video for 311's "Down".
  • Numberock: In the "Prime Numbers Song", the boy floats in the lotus position, complete with candles, while explaining composite numbers and at the end of the video.

    Puppet Shows 
  • There's a video on the official web site of The Muppets showing what the character Animal does on his days off. One of the things he does is meditate in the levitating lotus position. The video also includes the "Om..." element: Animal's meditation chant is "Wooooomaaaaan..."

  • Done by refrigerators and washing machines of all things in a screen saver packaged with the various After Dark screensaver packs. (As seen at around 1:30 in this compilation.)

    Tabletop Games 
  • Issyria, a Retribution Warcaster in Iron Kingdoms, does this, with her hair and cape dropping below her.
  • One of the examples of Vulgar Magic in Mage: The Awakening 1E is a mage levitating in this position. Doing this in the game itself is Awesome, but Impractical, since it's risking Paradox for absolutely no gain.

    Video Games 

    Web Animation 
  • AstroLOLogy: Since Libra floats in the air, when he's seen meditating in "Mad-itation", he's in a floating lotus position.
  • In a RWBY Chibi skit, Ren levitates in a lotus position after completing his training... and then the camera zooms out to show him being lifted off by a fan.


    Western Animation 
  • In Adventure Time's finale, during the final montage, Huntress Wizard does this very high in the sky.
  • Animaniacs:
    • The Wally Llama, who tries to escape the Warners by essentially floating away like this. They then catch up to him via the same method.
    • Dot also performs this for a brief moment in "The Senses Song".
  • Avatar: The Last Airbender, The Legend of Korra:
    • Varrik thinks he can do this when he's first introduced, largely due to no-one being willing to tell him he can't. He responds well to Bolin's blunt honesty.
    • Zaheer manages to pull this off after the death of his lover P'li severs the last of his earthly bonds and allows him to achieve the ancient airbending power of flight.
  • The DC Animated Universe's future Green Lantern of the Batman Beyond time (also in Justice League Unlimited) flies around this way.
  • In the Ben 10: Alien Force episode "Busy Box", when Gwen tries to calm down the Naljian Destructor, she sits in the air and begins meditation, inviting the Destructor to meditate with her.
  • In China, IL, Steve and Ronald Reagan do this after being in stopped time for the equivalent of 100 years.
  • Dan Vs.: In "Technology," Barry Ditmer, a one-off character parodying Steve Jobs, spends the portions of this episode he would be sitting down in this position instead.
  • In The Fairly OddParents!, Timmy pulls this off when he's fooling his parents into thinking he's been responsible alone.
  • The Blue Lanterns in Green Lantern: The Animated Series use this often. Warth even uses it rather than walking.
  • On Jimmy Two-Shoes, Jimmy does this with levitation when growing a tomato for his Dagwood Sandwich.
  • Sensei of Kim Possible is capable of this, lampshaded by Ron when he uses it to survive a trip over a waterfall. Then parodied when Sensei proceeds to speed around in a display of aerial acrobats that prompts Ron to remark that "Okay, now he's just showing off."
  • In The Mighty B!, "Dang It Feels Good to Be a Gamester", Bessie hits this sort of zone, where she becomes telekinetic but only for the final level of this video game. She does a floating lotus during this period, then gently drops back down to the floor of the Hive and comes out of the state.
  • While practicing buckball in My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic, Snails holds a lotus position while levitating himself on buckets used to catch the actual buckball. He's doing it again in "2, 4, 6, Greaaat", using telekinesis on himself to float while he's blindfolded and doing a (close-approximation-of-because-pony-legs) Lotus Position while teaching the buckball players (and later, the cheerleader squad) how to empty their minds.
  • In "Jack and the Monks", Samurai Jack meets a monk doing this.
  • The animated Spirou & Fantasio has two such characters who make several appearances: One is a Magical Aborigine capable of astral projection, and who must tie himself to a rock to avoid flying too high. The other is an Indian scientist who's always about a meter from the ground, possibly even when sleeping.
  • Antauri in Super Robot Monkey Team Hyperforce Go! is shown levitating in this position a couple of times, including for a brief while in the opening credits.
  • Maguro in Sushi Pack often does this, which is fitting, as she uses psychic powers.
  • Teen Titans:
    • Raven from the Teen Titans animated series. In the one instance she is showing doing so, Starfire is also capable of sitting lotus and floating. Justified: both Raven and Starfire can fly. (Though, Genki Girl that Starfire is, it was unlikely she fit the "calm, serene" part of this trope.)
    • Raven also does this in Teen Titans Go! In fact, she rarely touches the ground at all.
  • Shirley the Loon from Tiny Toon Adventures does this with levitating as part of her psychic powers.
  • Bloom of Winx Club meditates while training with Maia, in the episode "From the Ashes". When finally earning her Enchantix, Bloom floats in the air.
  • Annapurna, a background character in Wishfart resembling a Hindu goddess, does this all the time. A major character, Fireball Cat, is also often seen doing this (most prominently in the show's intro), in accordance with his "wise oriental mystic" schtick.

    Real Life 
  • Several practitioners of Transcendental Meditation have claimed to be able to levitate while in the Lotus position, and there are even photographs showing them in midair in this pose. However, when investigated by the likes of James Randi, it has so far turned out that these claimants merely know how to bounce while in Lotus position, and have somebody take a photograph while in mid-bounce.
  • Self-proclaimed ninja Ashida Kim has filmed a video where he does this quite unconvincingly.


Video Example(s):


Fahai's Barrier

The snake sisters try to destroy Fahai's temple by creating a tidal wave, but he deflects it using the powers of his Buddhist cloak.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (3 votes)

Example of:

Main / CloakOfDefense

Media sources: