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Colour in magical workings
Colour is a very important attribute in magical workings. Be it the appropriate correspondence for your candle magic or for your spell casting, getting the right colours to align with your workings can not only help but also boost your magical endeavours. So, why is colour so important? Well the simple answer is that colour affects our moods, our unconscious mind. Thus, it directly manifests itself into how effective our magical workings are.
'Red is the colour of the Element of Fire, and is ruled by Mars; hence is represents all things associated with the passions', writes Kate West, who is one of my favourite magical writers. Indeed, red is, therefore, associated with energy, strength, passion, courage, career goals, fast action, lust, blood of the moon, vibrancy, driving force, love and survival. Red is 'the colour of blood, it has always been associated with life and death, and in many cultures is considered sacred to the Gods. It is linked with bloodshed, war and violence, but also with sexual energy, procreation, birth and motherhood.' Red is one of the colours of the Goddess as Mother, and 'therefore, the Full Moon, as well as being a colour of the Solar God.'
In spells red is used for all of the above, as well as for 'defensive and protective magics. It is a positive and energizing colour, so wear red when you need extra energy or 'lift', when you need courage, and when you want to make an impact on others. Red stones are used to draw out and drive away aggressive feelings and conflicts. They were also thought to guard against fire and lightening. Because it is the colour of blood they are also used to heal wounds and burns, reduce inflammation, stem bleeding and prevent miscarriage. Red thread was tied to children and livestock for protection as well as around the appropriate part of the body to heal it. It used to be thought that a red thread around the neck prevented drowning. Red hair in a woman has long been thought to be a sign of a Witch, whilst a red birthmark indicates a person with special powers. Red lighting, as well as being the sign of a house of ill-repute, causes sexual energy to rise.'
'Orange is the colour of the Sun and Solar power.' It is linked to the advancement of business goals, property deals, ambition, career goals, general success, justice, legal matters, selling and attraction. 'It is linked to the time of the ripening harvest. It is also associated with the Element of Fire but in a more gentle and personal way than red. Orange is created through blending red and yellow which indicate the effects of Fire, or the passions, being tempered by those of Air, or thought. Orange is an energizing colour, bringing inner illumination, increased energy, personal power and growth.
Wear orange to increase your sense of self-worth and when working on personal development. Wear it in Solar Rituals to attract the energy of the Sun to your magic. As orange is protective, wear it when you feel negative outside influences affection you. Use orange stones such as Orange Calcite, Citrine, Amber and light Carnelians to help you access your personal power. Take one in each hand and open your mind to feel the flow of power between them. Then focus on this as it awakens your inner resources. Add the power of the stones to your personal power. This can be used prior to working magic to enhance your energy, or afterwards to recharge your inner levels. IF you are feeling particularly low take an orange stone and hold it in your right hand, fold your left over it and project all your negativity into it. When you feel that it has absorbed all it can hold, take it and case it into running water. Collect orange leaves and place them on the Altar for Autumn Rituals or use them in spells for personal enhancement at this time.'
Copper is the colour of passion, money goals, professional growth, career manoeuvres and fertility in business.
Gold is the colour linked to the Sun and to the Element of Fire. 'It is used in spells for success, power, prosperity, protection and wisdom. Symbol of the Sun and the Solar Gods, gold is strongly linked to the male.' It is, thus, the colour of wealth, the God and promotes winning, safety and power of the male. It also stands for happiness and playful humour. In magic, gold is usually in the form of burning gold candles or writing with a gold pen. 'However, gold itself is sometimes added to spells, usually in one of the following ways:
'Gold water' can be made by taking a piece of gold (usually jewellery) and placing it in a quantity of rainwater. this is then left in the light of the Full Moon for 3 nights, the jewellery removed and the water kept for use.
Seawater is sometimes used in recipes requiring gold. This is because seawater actually contains minute amounts of gold. If you have enough patience, collect a quantity of seawater and allow it to evaporate naturally. The remaining crystals, although mostly salt, will contain gold, albeit in infinitesimal quantities.
Small sheets of gold leaf can be obtained from art supply shops and pieces brushed off for use in dry spells, or applied to candles. As gold leaf is very tricky to handle, it is a good idea to practice first!
When it is impossible to use gold in any of the above forms then golden oranges and yellows can be substituted.
Wearing gold increases your personal power and energy, and will improve your self-confidence and self-control.' In Feng Shui, gold is the colour of wealth, and is ideal when decorating your wealth sector, which is at the far left of your home or room.
'Yellow is the colour of Air and is ruled by Mercury, hence it represents thought, intelligence and creativity' notes West. Indeed, it also symbolises the Sun, accelerated learning, memory, logical imagination, clearing mental blocks, selling yourself, well being and intuition. Yellow is 'one of the colours of the Goddess as Maiden and is associated with the East, Spring, fresh starts and new beginnings. Yellow is a brightening colour in more than one respect: not only does it cheer and lift the spirits but it also lifts the intellect. Also a solar colour, it is protective and strengthening.'
West notes that you should wear 'yellow clothing when you feel down or when in the company of those who are saddened or depressed. Yellow is used in healing problems of the digestive and nervous systems and of the skin. Wearing or carrying a yellow stone, particularly around the neck, will increase confidence and eloquence if you have to speak in public. Also wear one if you have an interview or feel the need for assistance in communication of any kind. Wearing a yellow stone will also enhance the ability to visualize, so use them when meditating as well as when working magic. When studying place a large sheet of yellow paper under your books to increase mental awareness. Writers will also find that it increases creativity. Bring yellow flowers into the house in the spring to dispel the gloom of winter. A single pressed Buttercup, that most yellow of flowers, can be sewn into the clothing of a loved one to ensure constancy.'
For people of a darker skin tone, like me, I'm a cool and deep [have a look at my hub on clothes and colours] most yellows are not very attractive and make us look washed out or slightly jaundiced. This can be avoided by being careful to only wear primrose yellow. It's light, but not too yellow, having enough white in it to off-set the actual yellow. Indeed, if you can't find primrose, lemon yellow will do, but make sure you don't end up wearing bright yellow. You will look slightly ill.
West goes on to say, 'If you would like inspiration before starting a new project, make a small circlet of yellow flowers and place it around a yellow candle. Light the candle and let it burn right down before commencing work.'
In Feng Shui, yellow is the colour of health. Use this in the centre of your space or bagua to represent the earth element.
'Pink is one of the colours of Venus. It is the colour of friendship, affection, romantic love, respect.' It is also the colour of planetary goodwill, healing of emotions, peace, romance, partnerships of emotional maturity, caring and nurturing. 'It is also the colour of the self and is used to bring self-understanding and acceptance, thereby to develop self-respect, self-esteem and hence self-confidence. It is used in all kinds emotional healing, and to bring peace and harmony. Pink is calming, soothing and removes physical and mental stress. It is used to strengthen relationships of the heath, whether with family, friends or a loved one, and can help to resolve difficulties in long-standing relationships. Pink also positively stimulates the emotions, attracting friends and bringing laughter and happiness.
Pinks are often used in places where it is felt needful to reduce tension, aggression, stress, concern or worry, such as prisons, hospitals and so on. The tradition of surrounding female infants in pink is done to enhance the gentle qualities of love, respect and affection, whilst dressing boys in blue is intended to encourage a more outgoing personality.
Use pink lighting, the very pastel pinkish-white light bulbs are ideal, to encourage a more harmonious atmosphere at home. Wear pink, especially on your top half, if you feel you may need to calm those around you. Pink stones, especially Rose Quartz, can be worn to attract friendship and love. Use it in spells to bring emotional healing for others. To bring self-acceptance and understanding burn a pink candle surrounded by small pieces of Rose Quartz.'
Indeed, in Feng Shui, pink is the colour of romance. Use it in the far right corner of your room or home to boost your romance and relationship gua.
'Green is the colour of nature, life, growth and fertility.' It is the colour that stands for Mother Earth and the Earth Element, as well as for physical healing, money success, abundance, plant and tree magick, growth, the Green Man and personal goals. It is a colour of the physical realm. It is also another colour of the Goddess Venus, and 'is linked to fortune, prosperity, money and good luck. It is also the colour of the God. Dark greens relate to the Holly King and the light ones to the Oak King.'
'Green is used magically for all of the above and also in spells relating to maintaining or improving good health, for balancing and grounding. Wear green when you need to focus on the practical and keep your feet on the ground. Green stones are said to draw money and are often carried or placed in a till. Likewise green candles are burned to bring the opportunity to earn. Empower green stones and place them around your plants to encourage growth. Wear green stones, or sleep with them under your pillow to strengthen your eyesight and reduce headaches caused by eyestrain. Interestingly, it has been found that using a pale green background to your computer screen will help to reduce eyestrain, headaches and other related ills.
Green fell out of favour around the 18th century when it was sometimes said to be the colour of fairies, and therefore to wear it would bring their wrath. Likewise it was associated with Witches and again considered an unlucky colour, especially at weddings, but this probably relates to its earlier use as a colour to advertise sexual availability! Green eyes were also held to be the sign of a Witch.'
In Feng Shui, green is both the colour of wealth, as well as of family.
'Blue is the colour most usually associated with the Element of Water and it is ruled by Neptune. It is the colour of the West, the emotions and of Autumn. It is one of the colours of the Goddess in her role as Mother. IT is also a colour of peace, tranquillity, sleep and good health.' It is also associated with good fortune, opening blocked communication, wisdom, protection, spiritual inspiration, spiritual healing, calm, reassurance, gently moving, creativity and memory.
'Blue is a good colour for the bedroom, despite its reputation for being 'cold', as it enhances sleep and pleasant dreams. If you have concerns which give you trouble getting to sleep, hold a blue stone in your hand whilst you wait for sleep to claim you. Wear blue when you need more peace in your life, or if you wish to calm those around you. Blue is also purifying, so place blue stones like Sodalite or Lapis Lazuli in the bath and burn a blue candle alongside whenever you feel the need. Blue is particularly kind to the eyes, and research has shown that if you alter your computer's settings so that you have dark blue text on a light blue background, you will be able to work for longer periods with less chance of eyestrain.'
'Blue is an excellent colour to aid meditation. Paint a large sheet of paper in shades of blue from very pale at one edge to very dark at the other. Try to graduate the colours evenly. Place this in front of you and gaze at it to enter a meditative state.'
In Feng Shui, blue is the colour of knowledge and skills.
Purple and Indigo
'Describing any colour in words is not easy, let alone those shades which result as a mix of red and blue,' notes West. However, before we get into defining the colours, let me state that purple and indigo are used in magic to influence people in higher places, stand for the third eye, psychic ability, spiritual powers, self-assurance, hidden knowledge and wisdom.
If you consider 'purple to be a straight mix of blue and red, with no white included, then indigo is a darker and bluer colour, as close to black as the deepest blue of the night sky. Purple stones include dark Amethyst and Suglite, whereas Indigo is represented by Sodalite. Both colours represent the Element of Spirit and are associated with spiritual and psychic development. However, whilst purple is also associated with magic for healing, indigo is more useful in money and success spells. Purple, because of the difficulty in creating it from plant dyes, has long been associated with royalty and high office in male-dominated systems, whereas indigo is more often associated with Wise women and more matriarchal belief systems such as the Craft. This subtle difference means that the two colours are very good in enabling us to access, and hence balance, our male and female aspects.
To create a balancing meditation aid, draw and colour in a purple circle inside an indigo square. Make it as large as you can. Place it upright in a place where you can comfortably sit and contemplate it. Burn a purple candle on the right and an indigo one on the left. Extinguish all other lighting and focus on the image. Do this every evening for a full week for at least 10 minutes per time. Alternatively, create a necklace of alternating purple and indigo beads, with an equal number of each, and wear this under your clothing next to your skin.'
In Feng Shui, purple is the power colour of wealth and fortune.
'Silver is the metal of the Moon and sacred to the Goddess, and has been so for thousands of years.' As a colour it symbolises telepathy, clairvoyance, psychometry, intuition, dreams, astral energies, female power and communication.
'As it can be found in its pure form, silver was one of the earliest metals used in decoration and jewellery. It was also used for Ritual implements and offerings. Highly-polished sliver was used as early mirrors and up until quite recently the backing of mirrors was very thin silver. It is the metal of choice for most Witches' jewellery, especially for Pentacles, Pentagrams and the symbols of Degrees of Initiation. May High Priestesses wear a silver crescent Moon on the forehead during Ritual. Silver is associated with the Element of Water and with the emotions, and it made into friendship rings and exchanged between those with strong ties.
Silver is used in magic for protection, travel, money, love, and to develop psychic abilities. It is also used to invoke the Goddess; silver bells being rung to invite her presence. It enhances psychic powers as it opens the door to the subconscious. Some may find wearing silver leaves them too open to psychic emanations but this can be countered by also wearing some gold. Silver is also soothing and calming: if feeling over-wrought lie down with a silver disc over your third eye. If this is not possible, for example at work, visualize a silver disc spinning over the same spot. To ensure that money comes into the house, keep a silver coin above the door. Silver is protective, especially for travellers, so wear or carry a disc with the symbol of the Goddess upon it.'
In Feng Shui, silver is the colour of the Helpful People and Travel gua, found in the near right hand corner of your room or home.
West notes that 'brown, and all shades of it, has long been a colour associated with those who are poor and who work on the land. These people would not have had the resources or inclination to spend money on fancy colours for workday clothing. It was also worn by those who eschewed wealth and worldly success. It indicates a desire for links with nature and the land. Brown is the colour of the Earth, and in some systems brown candles are burnt, instead of green, to invoke this Element. Brown candles are also used in healing spells for animals and other living things.' Brown is also the colour for influencing friendships, special favours and tree spirits.
West also notes, that 'Brown stones such as Agate, Jasper and Tiger's Eye used to be worn for protection and victory in battle. They were also worn or carried as a wealth talisman, often engraved with symbols of success. Brown stones are also very good for grounding and centring and to re-balance the energies after magical workings. Brown robes are often favoured by Witches who work a lot of earth-healing magic and by those who practice Hedge-Witchcraft. It is also a very useful colour for outdoor workings, showing little dirt as well as blending easily into the background. Brown is a colour which should be worn by anyone who customarily has their 'head in the clouds'. It is particularly useful for those who are habitually clumsy or badly co-ordinated. Although considered by some to be a bland or dull colour, some of the richer shades are particularly useful if you are feeling stressed or overanxious. Create a circular swirling pattern of shades of brown with finger paints when you need to recharge your batteries.'
The colour black is associated with protection, repelling negativity, hex-breaking, binding and shape shifting. 'In the Craft we understand the need for balance and hence the need for darkness to balance light, we do not fear it or consider the colour to be negative. In the spectrum black absorbs all light and energy, hence for Witches it is the colour which represents the absorption, balancing and control of energy and magical power. To the ancient Egyptians black was the colour of life, being the colour of fertile soil. It is a colour of concealment, and favoured by Witches working outdoors, making it easier to fade into the background. Black makes the wearer more receptive to psychic emanations and is worn for many forms of magical working, especially divination. Black stones are likewise receptive and symbolize self-control, endurance and the harnessing of power.Linked to the earth they are grounding and stabilizing. Despite the popular image, black candles are not a sign of working evil; they are mostly used for remembrance and sometimes for banishings. Black is a colour of the Goddess as both Mother and Crone.
In this day true darkness is very hard to come by, even without a Moon. At the dead of night there may still be residual light from nearby towns, if not from street lamps. In the home there is still the standby light of the video or computer. This is a shame for we need the absence of light on a very basic level, as it helps us to rest and renew our energies.'
In Feng Shui, black is the colour of your career gua. Use it in the sector found in the near centre of your home or room.
'White is one of the colours of the Maiden. It is from this that it links with purity originate as it is only from the Victorian era that white became a popular colour for a wedding dress.' The colour thus symbolises spirituality, peace, higher self, purity and virginity (as in the woman's mind, which is owned by no man).
'In magic white represents the Moon, particularly the New Moon. It is linked to sleep and psychic abilities. Placing a white stone under your pillow will drive away nightmares and is particularly useful for children, as long as they are old enough to be trusted not to swallow it. White is protective and carrying a white stone in your pocket will give you extra protection during the hours of darkness, although it is no substitute for caution! Carrying a white stone in your pocket is also said to relieve headaches. White reflects back all light and is therefore illuminating, and the wearing of white, especially to sleep in, is said to enhance the ability to see clearly on both the psychic and physical planes. Whenever you feel that you cannot clearly see the cause and solution of a problem, place a white stone under your pillow, wear white to bed and sleep in the light of the Full Moon. The answer will come to you the following day.
White is also said to contain all colours and therefore white candles and white stones can be magically charged to represent any colour. To do this you need to visualize the colour you are intending and, in your mind's eye, change the colour before use.'
In Feng Shui white is associated with the element Metal, and is used to enhance your creativity and children gua.