Spiritual Meaning of Color White
When we talk of colors, white is seldom mentioned possibly because a lot of people live under the misconception that white doesn’t fit into the color category. They aren’t to be entirely blamed, actually. Well, that’s exactly what they’ve grown up learning – right from the kindergarten days when the teacher handed over blank white sheets asking to fill out with “any color of choice”. And what about the box of crayons where white was the first one to be kept aside and then other shades picked up to fill coloring books?
All this somewhere unintentionally embedded notions in young minds (which kind of lingered as they grew mature) that white is deprived of any color, or that white can’t really be termed a color on its own. But just like these opinion groups, there are also people for whom white is a “favorite” color. They look at the shade as a symbol of peace and serenity, something which isn’t found in abundance around. Adorning their bodies in white attire, they intend to pursue these virtues.
Here we aim to explore more on the varied spiritual meaning of color white.
What Does the Color White Represent Spiritually?
Interestingly, this color which ironically is the most colorful of all shades, considering that it encompasses all the colors of the spectrum, has several spiritual connotations. Some of these are discussed here.
The color white is believed to be a symbol, a representation of the following spiritual traits:
Spiritual awakening in an individual
Sense of completeness or wholeness
Rebirth or renewal
It may not be possible to explain all of these in a single post but we tried to elaborate on at least a few important ones here.
How is White Related to Divinity?
While nobody has really seen the divine, everyone likes to perceive and understand it in their own way. Generally speaking, the divinity presents a mental image of light and invokes a sense of wholeness or completeness deep within (a feeling often experienced during meditation). This is why the color white is often taken to mean light in the spiritual sense.
Also, it’s therefore believed to be the most spiritual among all other colors and is often spotted in images of the divine – God’s beard or robe, His attire, and even in angels’ wings. Besides, divine beings in movies or images are often showcased with a white light or aura around them, for the same reason again. Even according to Hindu belief, the dead body is wrapped in white with the belief that the soul merges into the light after death and light is represented by the color white.
Light Represents Goodness
Light is the exact opposite of the color black – a shade that is more often than not picked to represent something bad, ugly, dark, ignorance, sorrow or depression, evil, dense, etc. So if one were to portray illumination, spiritual awakening or enlightenment, knowledge, wisdom, or love through images, movies, or anything similar, white would be an obvious choice.
White Marks a New Beginning
Do you know why a whitener is used to erase mistakes made with ink on a sheet of paper? Because it can rub off all old errors and make way for new and apparently correct revisions. Until the old mistakes are done away with, new beginnings cannot be made. Think of this and you’d know that the same way white represents a fresh start on a path you choose. Have you seen a clean slate or a blank sheet of paper? They are also white. Thus the expression “wipe off the slate clean”.
It’s only when you wipe off old and unpleasant memories from your mind, you can proceed to make new, fresh and happy beginnings. This is white is understood as having strong psychological connections with a new start. If you want to recreate a newer you, letting go of your older, ignorant self, time to pull out some white clothing from your closet.
White Means Clean
Have you noticed we often paint the wall white to hide or get rid of dirt, grim, or stains over it? This is because the color white has the strength to clean off anything. And white itself lends out a very clean, spick-and-span impression. So if you’re in the habit of seeing things spotless around you, white is your color. A perfect example of how we associate white with cleanliness in our day-to-day lives is tissue towels or toilet paper. They are white meaning clean until they’re used and become dirty.
White Represents Purity
This is why brides in the West are dressed up in white bridal gowns at the time of their marriage because an orthodox, conventional school of thought believes that women should be pure and virgin at the time of their marriage. There’s yet another way of looking at it though – marriage is believed to be the purest institution in the world. The couples who enter this institution of love must ideally possess virtues of purity, innocence, virginity, and fidelity towards each other.
Some Negative Connotations of the Color White
While white has all of the above positive spiritual meanings associated to it, there are a few negative representations of this color too.
For instance, some people may associate white with something that’s plain, bland, or boring. As such, clothing like plain white shirts or sneakers may not be necessarily liked by all. Then there’s a common (though misconceived) notion that white is colorless and so some people also look at the color white as representing emptiness.
Where white is used in paintings, for example, some people may think of it as an unimaginative piece of art, simply because white is used to showcase simplicity.
The positive or negative opinions associated with the color white are all subjective of course and for different people, the color means different things differently.