COLOR MEANING IN CULTURES AND RELIGIONS
Color meaning in cultures and religions.
In Western cultures, brides are usually dressed in white, originating in ancient Greece, where a temple dedicated to the goddess Athena was built of white marble and thus became the color of virginity. China, India, and Korea are using white as a color of mourning and death (as the symbol of infinity). In the western world, it was also a color for mourning until the 16th century. The Catholic church symbolizes light at Lord and Mary’s feasts. In the Evangelical church, it symbolizes Jesus Christ. White got its name from the wheat (in English, white means white, wheat is sort of grain, Swedish “vit” and “vete”). In other languages, white is associated with the gloss of light: Italian – Bianco, blanc in French, Greek – leukos. White animals are said to be close to God: the Holy Spirit appeared as a white dove, Christ as a white lamb. Zeus revealed himself to Europe as a white bull; white cows in India are the embodiment of light. Heron and Ibis are birds of immortality in China.
YELLOW COLOR MEANING IN CULTURES AND RELIGIONS
Yellow means summer in Italy, benevolence in Ukraine, envy in Germany. In Mexico, Egypt, and Ethiopia, it is the color of mourning. In South Africa, it means health, in Japan, courage
In Ireland it represents Protestantism. Official dignitaries in China wear orange. In the Netherlands, it is the color of freedom. Dalai Lama and other enlightened Buddhists are dressed in orange (for them, orange means humility). In Japan and China, orange is considered the color of love and happiness. On some paintings of Adam and Eve, an artist draws oranges instead of apples on the tree of knowledge.
RED COLOR MEANING IN CULTURES AND RELIGIONS
In Japan, red is the color of women; in China, it is the color of happiness (it expels evil forces and spirits) and wealth. The bride is dressed in a red wedding dress. They are carried around on a red stretcher to the place of the wedding ceremony. When the couple gets children, others are bringing them red eggs for the happiness and well-being of a baby and the entire family. In Korea, the deceased’s name is written in red. In a Catholic church, it symbolizes blood and fire (Pentecost, Christ’s suffering, fests of Martyrs); in Evangelical church, red symbolizes martyr’s and apostolic fests. In Oceania and certain parts of Central Africa, it is a color of life (rub the patient with red to stimulate life force). Aborigines in Australia are using red as the color of earth, for Maori in New Zealand, it is the color of nobility and divinity. Wearing red ribbons or scarves in some nations is reserved for wedding traditions. Even in Roman times, the bride was wrapped in a bright red piece of textile. Albanian, Greek, and Armenian brides still wear the red bridal veil. In ancient Egypt, red color was valuable and o used for make-up for the daughter of Pharaoh (cheek, lips, nails). The first man, Adam, was created by God from red soil (in Hebrew red is the synonym for alive). Red is the color of ancient gods: Amon Ra in Egypt, the god of war for Romans. In some parts of Africa (South, Côte d’Ivoire), red is the color of mourning.
It is very popular with less cultural people who are not under the influence of more cultural civilization. In civilized and sophisticated cultures, it is not that much popular. With Buddhists, in addition to yellow and orange, it is also famous for clothing. Purple is the color of Hinduism and feminism (symbolizing the right of women to power and equality with men). Purple symbolizes the situation of the bishops. It is the color of penitence and fasting before Easter and Christmas. Violet connects the physical world (red) with the spiritual world, the sky (blue) in the magical world of mystery (purple), where completely different rules apply. Usually, kings, rulers, and priests were dressed in scarlet-violet. This expensive dye could only be afforded by wealthy, due to it was produced in tiny amounts out of sea-snails (Murex). So purple (scarlet) has always been associated with nobility and spiritual power. Small children were often wrapped in violet textiles since this would bring prosperity and success to a child. In Brazil, it is the color of mourning.
BLUE COLOR MEANING IN CULTURES AND RELIGIONS
In India, the gods are painted with blue heads and blue skin color (e.g., An elephant painted in blue stands as a sign of the highest spiritualization and divine enlightenment). In the Oriental provinces, doors and windows are painted in blue to attract good spirits and gods. From this also originates the custom about babies that are supposed to be wrapped in blue textile. This tradition of patriarchy extended only to boys. Virgin Mary is often adorned with a royal blue cape and thereby embodies calmness, loyalty, tradition. In ancient Egypt, dark blue color represented water, and thus life. Egyptians wore blue jewelry because it was believed that blue had healing power. In China, blue symbolizes immortality and heavenly forces. In Iran, it symbolizes immortality and spirituality, holiness in Israel, and South Africa’s happiness. Blue, in Roman mythology, is associated with Jupiter and Mercury. In the Old Testament, God is shown in dark blue color. In Islam, the blue and turquoise are used for decorating mosques, as both of the colors represent faith and community. Blue is the safest and most positive color that symbolizes trust, so many banks use it.
GREEN COLOR MEANING IN CULTURES AND RELIGIONS
In Ireland, it represents Catholicism. The green color is a symbol of hope and survival. The European and Chinese traditions both associate green with spring and new growth. For ancient Romans, it was the color of Venus, the goddess of love. In Islam, a green color is sacred because Allah is present in nature (Allah is never drawn or represented in any form). In ancient Palestine, brides wore green wedding dresses, meaning happy life and fertility. In China, it is associated with infidelity in the US with money in North Africa with corruption, in Indonesia is forbidden color, and in Malaysia with danger.
Brown is the color of Aboriginal land. In India, it is the color of mourning.