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edited August 2009 in Meditation
What does colour mean in meditation?

e.g I came across a meditation exercise which briefly suggested visualising a light then the light entering you and going through the spectrum.

What does each colour represent, or is that form of meditation nothing to do with buddhism?



  • DhammaDhatuDhammaDhatu Veteran
    edited July 2009


    8) The choice of a suitable colour to practice with may be determined by the teacher based on the student’s temperament. The commentaries indicate that colour kasinas are particularly suited for greedy temperaments (see Ref. 3d). If the meditator has strong aesthetic inclination towards a particular colour, it may be a good first choice.

    In general, white would be suitable for most temperaments; yellow has an energizing quality and is a good subject for those who are lethargic or tend to be depressed; blue is suitable for one of greedy or angry temperament due to its cooling quality (but the reason one may use it may be that it also has a refreshing quality when one practises in a hot climate); red is a warm colour that may be suitable for a person who is apathetic or who practices in a cold climate. One may experiment by practising with a particular colour for a few days, then switching to the next for the same number of days, and so on, until one is able to assess by experience what is personally more suitable.
  • edited July 2009
    Hi Bluesky,

    It might be possible that the color meditation you describe has nothing to do with Buddhism, so if you wish to follow Buddhist guidelines for this you could explore the kasina links given by DhammaDhatu.

    In general, and not necessarily connected to Buddhism at all, color meditations can be used in a variety of alternative therapies, including Color Therapy.


    Kind wishes,

  • edited July 2009
    Thanks for replies.
    I asked, because I did "meditate" on colour and the colour red seemed appropriate for me.
    I am not a buddhist, I am a practising christian, yet I see similarities with meditation and prayer....surely they are from the same source and a means to still your mind? (What's in a word??)
    I would not chant a mantra, but to visualise a colour is a peaceful and positive experience.
  • DhammaDhatuDhammaDhatu Veteran
    edited July 2009
    Medicine Buddha

    His color is lapis lazuli blue, the hue of the dark, gold-threaded stone called lapis for short -- lapis is Latin for stone -- has been associated with healing at least since the time of Sumerian goddess (>Mt. Sumeru = Meru) Inanna (Ishtar) who descended to the Land of the Dead to revive her brother/lover, and then returned. Interestingly, ashi- is the Sumerian root for heal; in Tibetan amchi is a healer.


    "His radiant body is azure blue. His left hand is in the meditation mudra and holds a begging bowl full of long life nectar in his lap. As a sign that he gives protection from illness, his right hand is outstretched in the gesture of giving and holds the "great medicine", the myrobalan plant (a-ru-ra)"
  • DhammaDhatuDhammaDhatu Veteran
    edited July 2009

  • edited July 2009
    bluesky wrote: »
    Thanks for replies.
    I asked, because I did "meditate" on colour and the colour red seemed appropriate for me.

    In color therapy red is associated with physicality and the chakra at the base of the spine. This chakra is associated in color therapy with the seat of the life force energy which gives us physical strength and vitality. A negative imbalance in this chakra is said to result in the individual becoming ruthless, quick tempered, and pushy, and not able to realise their full potential.

    In Tibetan Buddhism the color red is associated with the meditational deity Amitabha and the purification of the negative emotion of anger.

  • jinzangjinzang Veteran
    edited July 2009
    I'm not familiar with color meditation, but since you are a Christian, wouldn't it be better to have a picture of Christ and visualize that? At the end of the meditation, you could have Christ dissolving into light and entering your heart.
  • edited July 2009
    jinzang wrote: »
    I'm not familiar with color meditation, but since you are a Christian, wouldn't it be better to have a picture of Christ and visualize that? At the end of the meditation, you could have Christ dissolving into light and entering your heart.

    that's a nice idea jinzang.


    It's hard to explain why I would not do this though. For one thing, many depictions of Jesus (paintings) are westernised, and far removed from what he actually looked like!!(lol).
    A colour cannot be imagined the "wrong" way, it is just a colour. It is not symbolic of anything, nor could be considered idolatous and falling short of what Jesus / God actually looks like.Hope you know what I mean.
    I think catholics are more comfortable with images/icons, I'm not a catholic.
  • DhammaDhatuDhammaDhatu Veteran
    edited July 2009

    Christ regarded the Holy Spirit as the foremost thing. The Gospels state one can blaspheme against the Son and be forgiven but to blampheme against the Holy Spirit will never result in forgiveness.
    Anyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but anyone who speaks against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven.

    Matthew 12:30-32
    And with that he breathed on them and said, "Receive the Holy Spirit".

    John 20
    From a Buddhist perspective, to move away from the 'personal' and into the 'spiritual' is important.

    The task is to become whole mature spiritual individuals rather than remain like dependent children.
    We do, however, speak a message of wisdom among the mature.

    The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God. For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the man's spirit within him? In the same way no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God.

    "For who has known the mind of the Lord that he may instruct him?"

    But we have the mind of Christ.

    1 Corinthians 2
    To cultivate one's own inner spirit & spiritual conscience is recommended. In Buddhism, this is called bhavana.

  • LincLinc Community Instigator Detroit Moderator
    edited August 2009
    Personally, I do not visualize anything during meditation, I simply concentrate on (without controlling) the breath to clear my mind. That is simply how I am taught and choose to practice.

    A nice point of this practice is that it is explicitly non-denominational. Everyone believes in breathing :) There are many people of many persuasions who meditate on many things (chants, images, ideas, colors, etc) with many connotations associated with those things. It's not wrong or bad, I just prefer sticking with breathing.
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