the color purple

Nature always wears the colors of the spirit.

 – Ralph Waldo Emerson

The color purple is my favorite color.

It is also the title of a book, a movie and a Broadway play. The book, written by Alice Walker and originally published in 1982, was a Pulitzer Prize winner in the category of Fiction. A few actor’s careers were enhanced or launched as a result, as well. I studied the book in an English class in the early 1980s. I read the book and saw the movie as required and was challenged in many ways for which I was and still am deeply grateful.

It is also the color that is created when two colors are mixed together in equal amounts – red and blue.

This color has been given many meanings – from spirituality, royalty and nobility, creativity and wisdom to wealth, extravagance, dignity and peace, among many others.

As I continue to observe the goings on in my country (the United States and I use the term “united” only as a proper noun – a name; at present we are not living into that name at all) I am saddened by so many things that simply do not align with what I have come to know that democracy is.

We have forgotten our humanity. There is little comfort for me in the knowledge that there are many countries in our world and on our planet facing similar, if not identical, challenges, too.

I thought it was worth a few moments to research the meanings of the colors which, when mixed, created the beautiful and spiritual color, purple. Below I offer some of what I found in my quick research about the meanings assigned to each color. I invite your thoughtful consideration and reflection.


Red Color Meaning – The color of passion and drama. This color attracts the most attention and is associated with strong emotions such as love and anger. Red is the color used universally to signify danger, courage, strength, and power. Red is stimulating, vibrant and exciting. Red inspires desire with a strong link to sexuality and increased appetites. In Chinese culture red represents luck and prosperity.  Use red when you want to get pulses racing and to inspire action.  However, use carefully as red can evoke feelings of aggression and cause visual strain. Lovers of red are passionate with an enthusiasm for life.

Blue Color Meaning– The color of trust. Blue, the shade of the sea and the sky, is thought to induce calm and convey tranquillity, serenity and peace. The popular color instills confidence and inspires feelings of trust, loyalty, integrity and responsibility.  Cool blue is conservative and can also be perceived as aloof. Blue tends to suppress the appetite – there are not many foods associated with blue in nature.

Violet Color Meaning – The color of spirituality. The energy of red with the calm of blue combine to create violet, a color that inspires reflection and self-awareness. It is the color of the sensitive, compassionate intuitive soul – the introvert. Also, violet has long been associated with royalty, and characteristics of quality and luxury. Overuse of violet can invoke irritability and arrogance.

Copied from the website,; “Color Meaning and Psychology of Red, Blue, Green, Yellow, Orange, Pink and Violet colors.” Retrieved 7.10.18.


I also found similar and additional information on another website:


Red is the color of fire and blood, so it is associated with energy, war, danger, strength, power, determination as well as passion, desire, and love.

Red is a very emotionally intense color. It enhances human metabolism, increases respiration rate, and raises blood pressure. It has very high visibility, which is why stop signs, stop lights, and fire equipment are usually painted red. In heraldry, red is used to indicate courage. It is a color found in many national flags.

Red brings text and images to the foreground. Use it as an accent color to stimulate people to make quick decisions; it is a perfect color for ‘Buy Now’ or ‘Click Here’ buttons on Internet banners and websites. In advertising, red is often used to evoke erotic feelings (red lips, red nails, red-light districts, ‘Lady in Red’, etc). Red is widely used to indicate danger (high voltage signs, traffic lights). This color is also commonly associated with energy, so you can use it when promoting energy drinks, games, cars, items related to sports and high physical activity.


Blue is the color of the sky and sea. It is often associated with depth and stability. It symbolizes trust, loyalty, wisdom, confidence, intelligence, faith, truth, and heaven.

Blue is considered beneficial to the mind and body. It slows human metabolism and produces a calming effect. Blue is strongly associated with tranquility and calmness. In heraldry, blue is used to symbolize piety and sincerity.

You can use blue to promote products and services related to cleanliness (water purification filters, cleaning liquids, vodka), air and sky (airlines, airports, air conditioners), water and sea (sea voyages, mineral water). As opposed to emotionally warm colors like red, orange, and yellow; blue is linked to consciousness and intellect. Use blue to suggest precision when promoting high-tech products.


Purple combines the stability of blue and the energy of red. Purple is associated with royalty. It symbolizes power, nobility, luxury, and ambition. It conveys wealth and extravagance. Purple is associated with wisdom, dignity, independence, creativity, mystery, and magic.

According to surveys, almost 75 percent of pre-adolescent children prefer purple to all other colors. Purple is a very rare color in nature; some people consider it to be artificial.

Excerpted from; Retrieved 7.10.18.


All of this leaves me where I have been for some time. If blue and red, mixed in equal parts, create the beautiful and rich color, purple; what is possible if we begin to mix ourselves outside of our self-identified groups and begin to explore what we might create together – if we listen, suspend judgment, respect the perspectives of others whose views may not align with ours. What is possible?

Red + Blue = Purple.

We can do this. If and only if, we choose to.

Got crayons or colored pencils? If so, get red and blue out and try it and see what you get. If you don’t have crayons or colored pencils, maybe it’s time to go get some…and while you’re at it, get yourself a coloring book.


I kind of view everybody like a rainbow. Everybody on the planet has all the colors of the rainbow inside.

 – Alexia Fast

With gratitude to Loco’s Photos for this and so many beautiful images used on this website, with permission. For more information, see the Images link on this website, or visit Loco’s Photos on Facebook or

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