The Symbolic Meaning of the Color Red

Red is a very important color to us. This is because red is the color of blood and fire which makes it symbolic of life force and power. It is symbolic of the human heart because its primary function is to pump life-giving blood throughout the body. When it is symbolic of fire it represents one of the hottest elements on earth: red-hot lava. Red is considered a Solar Symbol because the sun is always on fire. Masculine symbols are known as Solar Symbols.

The color red is a masculine, active color. It is symbolic of vigorous health, strength, love, passion, leadership, courage, vigor, anger, danger, willpower, action, and vibrancy.

In rituals red is always used as an activator. It may be represented by a flame or any red object. It also may be represented symbolically by red light. Red is usually used in rituals used to infuse someone with needed life force and energy or to attract love.

Studies show that the color red can create physical effects in the human body such as elevated blood pressure, enhanced libido, increased respiratory rates, enhanced metabolism, increased enthusiasm, higher levels of energy, and increased confidence. Red causes faster heartbeat and breathing because it stimulates the senses.

The color red is the basis of the traditional red power tie or the red suit in business. We also see it in the red carpet that is used to usher celebrities and VIPs into important events. Red’s symbolic meanings of courage and bravery makes it a color that is used often in national flags, on shields, and in achievement patches.

Red can have many different cultural meanings such as purity, joy, celebration, good luck, happiness and prosperity. In some cultures it can be the color of mourning. Whatever the cultural differences may be, red has Universal meaning. That is, it universally represents fire, power and blood universally.

I will continue with color symbology in my next post.

© 2015 Cheri Mancuso and John Scarano. The contents of this post may be used only by express permission of the authors.

 

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