Colors make up such an important part of our life. We see this huge spectrum of colors, splashes of vividness in everything we see. Colors are everywhere around us. Colors can be cathartic to us, soothing to the eyes, pleasant to the heart. You know that.
But do you know that colors can also be therapeutic?
Well, they can.
Color therapy can be used to cure people at many levels. Let’s look further into it.
Chromotherapy, sometimes called color therapy, colorology or cromatherapy, is an alternative medicine method, which is considered pseudoscience.
Chromotherapists claim to be able to use light in the form of color to balance “energy” lacking from a person’s body, whether it be on physical, emotional, spiritual, or mental levels.
Avicenna (980–1037), seeing color as of vital importance both in diagnosis and in treatment, discussed chromotherapy in The Canon of Medicine. He wrote that “color is an observable symptom of disease” and also developed a chart that related color to the temperature and physical condition of the body. His view was that red moved the blood, blue or white cooled it, and yellow reduced muscular pain and inflammation.
American Civil War General Augustus Pleasonton (1801–1894) conducted his own experiments and in 1876 published his book The Influence of The Blue Ray Of The Sunlight And Of The Blue Color Of The Sky about how the color blue can improve the growth of crops and livestock can help heal diseases in humans. This led to modern chromotherapy, influencing scientist Dr. Seth Pancoast (1823–1889) and Edwin Dwight Babbitt (1828–1905) to conduct experiments and to publish, respectively, Blue and Red Light; or, Light and Its Rays as Medicine (1877) and The Principles of Light and Color.
In 1933, Indian-born American-citizen scientist Dinshah P. Ghadiali (1873–1966), published The Spectro Chromemetry Encyclopaedia, a work on color therapy. Ghadiali claimed to have discovered why and how the different colored rays have various therapeutic effects on organisms. He believed that colors represent chemical potencies in higher octaves of vibration, and for each organism and system of the body there is a particular color that stimulates and another that inhibits the work of that organ or system. Ghadiali also thought that by knowing the action of the different colors upon the different organs and systems of the body, one can apply the correct color that will tend to balance the action of any organ or system that has become abnormal in its functioning or condition. Dinshah P. Ghadiali’s son Darius Dinshah continues to provide information about color therapy via his Dinshah Health Society, a nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing non-pharmaceutical home color therapy, and his book Let There Be Light.
Science writer Martin Gardner had described Ghadiali as “perhaps the greatest quack of them all”. In 1925, Ghadiali was accused of rape and arrested in Seattle and sentenced under the Mann Act for five years at the United States Penitentiary, Atlanta. According to Gardner, photographs of Ghadiali at work in his laboratory are “indistinguishable from stills of a grade D movie about a mad scientist”.
Throughout the 19th century “color healers” claimed colored glass filters could treat many diseases including constipation and meningitis.
We all know that light is composed of colors. Along with colors, light also consists of chemical and emotional elements since it emits heat, electricity and magnetism. Thus, light, along with its component colors, can be used for healing the mind, body and spirit. This is the basic principle behind Chromotherapy or color therapy.
Different colors have different effects on the mind and body. Today, there is enough evidence that has documented these organic reactions in the flora and fauna of earth. The potencies and qualities of every object are determined by the color of that object.
For Mind and Spirit
According to author Carol Jackson, in her book “Color Me Beautiful”, chromotherapy or color therapy, can be used to enhance one’s mind and spirit. She gives the example of how certain colors used in one’s attire can help bring out the color of the wearer’s eyes hair etc. Since some colors help flatter and compliment us, we naturally feel more confident wearing them. By choosing a color palette that suits our personality, we can actually perform better in professional and personal lives.
Today, there is enough scientific evidence that shows how we respond emotionally and psychologically to colors. Even in the past; artists like Rembrandt and Michelangelo used colors to symbolically convey messages in their paintings. Likewise, modern color therapy is known to stimulate emotions and feelings such as:
1) Vitality and passion (Red)
2) Optimism and expansion (Orange)
3) Healing and growth (Green)
4) Joy and Creativity (Yellow)
Chromotherapy, when used for healing the body, utilizes colors based on their electrical and heating properties. Some colors actually cool and soothe the nerves (e.g. dark-violet, indigo etc.) while some can excite or heat the blood (e.g. red-orange or dark red etc.).
Let us see a few examples of chromotherapy for healing the body:
1) Red, in color therapy, is used to stimulate and increase the action of arterial blood. Hence, drugs which are red, such as Capsicum, cloves, balsam of Peru, red cedar and musk etc. are used for stimulating oxygen in the blood. Likewise, red glass or red paint used in rooms can be used for exciting and cheering patients. Red colored baths and red light therapy have actually helped patients recover from complete paralytic state.
2) Yellow drugs are mainly emetics. Indian hemp, Blood root, May apple and Senna etc. are a few laxatives and purgatives that are yellow or yellow-red in color. Yellow sunlight can be enhanced through yellow glass to help treat patients suffering from chronic bronchial irritation and colds etc. Drinking water stored in yellow wine bottles is known to help treat severe constipation.
3) Blue and violet colors have cooling and electrical properties. Drugs like belladonna, aconite, foxglove, ergot etc are used to treat diarrhea, delirium and diuresis that are a result of overheating of the body. Green tea is actually a mix of blue and yellow and is known for its antioxidant and astringent properties that help boost immunity. Blue light color therapy has helped heal sciatica, and even complex case of lung hemorrhage. Blue and white used together in chromotherapy has helped heal rheumatism, nervousness and invalidism where conventional medical treatments have failed.
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The list of ailments that can be cured by chromotherapy includes –
- High Blood Pressure
- HIV and AIDS
- Low Blood Pressure
- Nausea and Vomiting
Best colors used in Chromotherapy to heal different body parts
Brain and nerves– Nerve soothing colors like blue, violet and indigo.
Neck and thorax– Cobalt blue for its cooling and heating properties.
Digestive disorders– Red and yellow to stimulate digestive juices as well as blue and violet to stimulate saliva.
Lower limb disorders– Warm colors like orange and orange red.
Color therapy proceeds systematically to find out:
(1) which color has what effect on individual organs, parts, systems etc.
(2) which color has the desired effect on the symptoms of illness and
(3) causative effects associated with a particular color and what bodily effects it produces
In its simplest definition, radionics believes that every animate object has a particular level of energy, which it radiates. If the energies are at their optimum level, it is said that, that animate object’s etheric body is in balance.
There are 3 layers or bodies encapsulating an animate objects physical body.
Etheric or Emotional
Etheric body is an extension of physical bodys spiritual essence. It is established that nothing happens to the physical body of an animate object until it occurs to the etheric body. Every color of light vibrates at a range of wavelength. The appropriate colors vibrations affect the etheric body and energize it to function normally.
It is a technique in which ultraviolet-radiation of a drug is applied so much so the drug becomes more effective in curing carcinogenic ailments. Clinical studies conducted reported favorable results.
Color therapy on body system and organs:
We list below colors identified and used with good effect on some of the important organs:
- The Heart for Soothing: Indigo, Blue, and Violet. Apply recommended color light to chest, over heart, arms and feet. For blood and nerves stimulation: orange light exposure
- The Brain for soothing nerves and blood: Blue, Violet and Indigo. Apply recommended colored light to scalp, neck, feet and face. It has a calming effect on brain
- The Skin: Shine yellow light on the affected skin area
- The Endocrine System: Use green lights on particular gland to bring them to comfort zone. If you want to activate, shine start with yellow light followed by blue
- The Circulating System: To calm down use dark shade of green light on whole body. To stimulate: Bright red light to energize use grass green light
- The Cerebro-Spinal System: Shine yellow and violet lights on the right side of the head
- The Urinary System: Shine yellow light on groin, hips, feet, loins and lower back
- The Respiratory System: Shine yellow and violet light on the middle of the breast bone
- The Nervous System: To soothe the left-brain, shine violet color light. To energize use grass green color light
- The Neck Area: Shine violet light
- The Musculoskeletal System: Shine on the left side of a head, red color light
- Sex organs (testes, uterus, ovaries and prostate gland) Shine yellow color light on these areas
The duration of color light shining will be decided by the Therapist according to the severity of the ailment.
Practitioners of ayurvedic medicine believe the body has seven “chakras”, which some claim are ‘spiritual centers’, and which are held to be located along the spine. Chakra is the Sanskrit word for ‘wheel,’ ‘circle’ or ‘cycle’ and is primarily a Hindu concept. New Age thought associates each of the chakras with a single color of the visible light spectrum, along with a function and organ or bodily system. According to this view, the chakras can become imbalanced and result in physical diseases, but application of the appropriate color can allegedly correct such imbalances.
The seven Chakras
- Root Chakra – RED
The Root or Base Chakra serves to draw energy from natural sources and nature and helps transform it into life energy. The root chakra is also referred to as the ‘base chakra,’ ‘the first chakra’ or ‘Muladhara’ (Sanskrit name).
2. Sacral Chakra – ORANGE
The Sacral Chakra, also known as the ‘the second chakra,’ is the center of sexual energy and the joy of life. In Sanskrit the word ‘Svadhishthana’ means sweetness, and in a metaphorical sense, this relates to the sensual and sexual pleasures of life.
3. Solar Plexus Chakra – YELLOW
The Solar Plexus Chakra, also known as the ‘the third chakra,’ is the repository of energy from which the power of life and vitality flow throughout the entire body. In Sanskrit, the word Manipura means “lustrous gem,” also “jewel city.”
4. Heart Chakra – GREEN
The Heart Chakra, also known as ‘the fourth chakra,’ is in the center of the chakra system and the center of the human body. It is a link between the lower three chakras and the higher three chakras.
5. Throat Chakra – BLUE
The Throat Chakra, also known as ‘the fifth chakra,’ represents the transition to the two higher chakras located in the head. It is positioned in the neck, in line with the throat and tasked with keeping the balance between emotions and intellect.
6. Third Eye Chakra – INDIGO
The Third Eye Chakra or Brow Chakra is ‘the sixth chakra’ and a spiritual center of the body that is strongly related to concentration and consciousness. The two most important energy channels Ida and Pingala meet and conclude in the sixth chakra area.
7. Crown Chakra – VIOLET
The Crown Chakra symbol is a lotus flower with a thousand petals. The number one thousand symbolizes perfection and accomplishment and signals the seventh chakra’s significance as the most important energy channel.
1- Healing of the husband of Olga Horvat, MA
Olga was a painter and hence very familiar with colors. She did not know much about healing with colors, but one day, a miracle of sorts happened. She developed a headache and found that looking at the green shades in her current painting really helped soothe her headache. Curious, she researched more into healing with colors.
Her husband was sick with muscular atrophy, so sick that she would often check up on him at night, just to see if he was still breathing. He couldn’t walk, he was confined to a wheelchair. One day her cousin called and recommended color therapy to her.
With color therapy, Alex, her husband, began to heal. He gained weight and could soon walk with the help of a cane. Soon he was healed to miraculous extents.
Color therapy is distinct from other types of light therapy, such as neonatal jaundice treatment and blood irradiation therapy which is a scientifically accepted medical treatment for a number of conditions, and from photobiology, the scientific study of the effects of light on living organisms. Hence some may argue that it is not really a science at all.
The potential risk of retinal damage linked to chromotherapy has been discussed by French skeptic and lighting physicist Sébastien Point. Although Point considers that LED lamps at domestic radiance are safe in normal use for the general population, he also pointed out the risk of overexposure to light from LEDs for practices like chromotherapy when duration and time exposure are not under control.
Colors can heal, but they can also have injurious and disastrous effects. For example, when the nerves are over-excited or irritable, or when a patient is suffering from palpitations, high fever, inflammation and neuralgia etc. yellow or orange reddish tones must not be used. Similarly, blue, indigo and violet must be avoided in cases of paralysis, gout, rheumatism or cold etc. as these colors are extremely cooling and constructive in nature.
Are you ready for it?
So now you know everything about chromotherapy! Are you ready to try it out for yourself?