The sun is the brightest giver of light in this universe. Consider the actual colour of the sun as being white, and it is only when the light from the sun passes through the Earth’s atmosphere that it changes to the yellow we perceive when we look up in the sky. The perception of colour through the eyes is a very complex process that wasn’t understood fully until recently.
The most complete colour is represented in its ultimate form by the white light of the sun; it is the pure Prana, or life-restoring energy of nature, which in its essence contains the full colour spectrum: violet, indigo, blue, green, yellow, orange and red. These can be seen as the seven rays of the sun, physical and subtler bodies. Ayurvedia recognises colour as the Pranic life-force nutrition that energises each cell and keeps them alive.
Ayurvedic Concept of Colour Therapy
The concept of colour therapy or ‘chromotherapy’ goes back thousands of years to the Egyptians and to Charaka, one of the exponents of Ayurveda, who suggested the positive influence on sunlight in the treatment of particular diseases.
In essence each colour…
has its own energy vibration, which can either increase or reduce the flow of energy through a specific organ.
has a very specific effect on the different organs and organ systems of the body, thus balances any organ or system that may have become abnormal in its functioning or condition.
Colours are like gems that increase your energy field and raise your frequency. Any object, such as plants, animals or human beings, has its own characteristic frequency. Ill-health is nothing but an altered state of physiological functioning where external stressors such as environmental influences, medicines or food either raise or lower the vibration of living cells, organs and organ tissues. By introducing a corrective frequency, be it in the form of food, Ayurvedic therapies, herbs or for this matter, colours, help is given to the body to restore its homeostatic pattern.
In my clinical practice I use colour therapy in three different ways:
Prescription of gemstones based on your Vedic Astrology horoscope
Gem Frequency Therapy, using modern technology combined with precious gemstones.
Elemental Colour consultation to balance the flow of prana between the physical and subtler bodies.
Some colours can make you mentally and emotionally dull, heavy and inert. Others are more energising and some colours enhance the feeling of joy, harmony and serenity and bring you mental peace. By knowing the colours you favour and those you dislike, you are telling a story about your personality and behaviour to the external world.
Getting an understanding of your own elemental colour scheme, helps you to get closer to your real self, the person you are in essence, by stripping away any mental and emotional behaviour patterns that could suppress your true nature and prevent you from being well and living a life to your fullest potential.
The three Doshas –Vata (space and air), Pitta (fire and water) and Kapha (water and earth)–are a condensed expression of the five elements. Each of these elements has its own primary colour.
Air – blue for Vata
Fire – red for Pitta
Earth – yellow for Kapha
Space – indigo
Water – silver
In my clinical practice I have some clients who find it very difficult to break through their fixed mind-sets and to shift some of their behavioural patterns. Even asking some people to go for a brief walk on a daily basis is a major issue, not because of lack of time but because of lack of drive and inspiration. It is often in these cases where I sense an openness to work form the ‘outside in’, which will allow them to surrender to change more readily.
A young woman, age 33 came to see me in my clinic, suffering from eczema, poor memory and what she called ‘mood swings’. Upon taking her pulse I realised the amount of heat and aggression that was stored inside. Her condition was very much influenced by her stressful life as a finance manager of a big company. Over a period of four months, we were able to improve her physical condition considerably; however, her mood was still mostly down and she lacked confidence despite her successful career in a highly positioned job. One day I asked her if she always wore black, even outside work. The answer was yes, and when I asked her why, she said it was because it made her feel safe. We agreed to do an assessment where we discussed the relationship between her exterior appearance and her mental/emotional state.
Here is a shortened summary of my analysis and suggestions:
General: lack of the elements of space and air, excess of the element of earth
Emotional type: earth– withdrawal and mood swings, tendency towards depression, lethargy, lack of motivation and flexibility, too serious and unapproachable.
Mental type: ‘fire’ – internal heat, analytical and critical of herself, rigid in her thinking, serious and intense in nature. Wearing mostly black prevents lightness to come in on all levels, enhancing her rigidity and lack of openness and responsiveness.
General: increase the elements of space and air.
Emotional Type: suggested introducing colours from the space and air scheme (blue and indigo tints) to allow her to get in touch with her higher self and to cool her down her emotional turmoil.
Mental Type: adding the blues and indigo tinted colours of the air and space scheme will allow her to increase her creativity, her readiness to change and allows her to be more playful. This would also be supported by wearing dresses that are flowing and less stiff.
After a few weeks I saw a different person sitting in front of me. She walked with confidence and mentioned that, by wearing the colour purple, she now felt that she was no longer alone and felt somehow more connected to herself. People started talking to her and complimented her on her transformation. She was able to open herself up to be seen and valued for what she does and who she really is.
How to use colours from an elemental perspective:
Indigo – colour of the awareness body
It instantaneously links your individual self with your higher self and thus activates your very own inner self-repair mechanism.
Blue – the colour of the mental body
Blue, the first of the three primary colours, representing Vata Dosha in Ayurveda, brings clarity, enhances creativity and intelligence.
Red – the colour of the energy body
Red, the natural colour of Pitta Dosha, known to enhance digestion and all metabolic activities. Improves absorption and self-confidence.
Silver – the colour of the emotional body
Balances the emotional body, brings a sense of serenity and detachment, enables you to relate and understand others with ease and comfort.
Yellow – the colour of the physical body
Yellow, the final of the three primary colours in Ayurveda, is related to Kapha Dosha. Grounding earthy yellow hues provide a sense of harmony, safety and security.
Anything we do in life, be it exercise, eating or the colours we may choose to wear on a daily basis, the key is ‘balance’. Like an unobstructed flow of prana supports the experience of wellbeing, choosing a specific colour with a specific purpose not only helps in aligning the five elemental bodies but more importantly as a result of that allows the full flow of prana. Which colour do you choose?
This article first appeared in Om Yoga Magazine in March 2015