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Colour Therapy

What Is It?
How Does It Work?
What Happens During Treatment?
What Is It Used For?
Side Effects/Cautions
Recommended Books


What Is It?
Colour therapy is the use of colour to promote healing by balancing energy in areas of the body where it is lacking. Also known as chromotherapy or light therapy, colour therapy is used to treat both physical and emotional problems. Therapists use tools such as coloured light bulbs or fabrics, crystals and prisms.

The colours that we see are a result of light vibrating at different frequencies, and it is thought that these unique frequencies can affect our health in different ways. Scientists recognize that colours bring about emotional reactions, both positive and negative, which differ in each individual. Our reactions to certain colours may indicate where energy imbalances lie.

The origins of healing with colour can be traced back to ancient times, when Egyptians and Greeks used coloured minerals, stones, crystals, and dyes as remedies, and in India, practitioners of Ayurveda linked different colours with the seven chakras, the energy centres that represent organs, emotions, and spiritual aspects. Modern colour therapy was established with Edwin Babbit’s publication of The Principles of Light and Color in 1878, where he described his work in chromatotherapy (healing with coloured lights), suggesting it as a treatment for a variety of ailments. More detailed work on coloured light therapy was carried out by Dr. Dinshah P. Ghadiali (1873-1966) who researched the effects of colour on disease and developed coloured filters. In 1947, Swiss psychologist Dr. Max Lüscher introduced the Lüscher Colour Test, a form of colour therapy still widely used by many psychologists. Support for Luscher's theories on colour therapy was provided by the Russian scientist S. V. Krakov, who established that the colour red stimulates the adrenal glands while blue and white light has a calming effect.

More recently, variations of colour therapy have arisen, including Aura Soma, a therapy that uses coloured bottles of essential oils and extracts to bring about a deeper understanding of oneself, and the Liley system which matches the wavelength of a colour to that of a disease, virus or infection, and employs a machine that uses high frequency electronic vibrations.

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How Does It Work?
Light consists of electromagnetic waves of energy, with different wavelengths creating different colours. Light falling on the retina is converted into electric pulses which then travel to the brain. Research suggests that parts of the brain respond differently to these varying wavelengths of light (colours) which interact with the endocrine system to stimulate or reduce hormone production.

Research into the hormones melatonin and serotonin have shown the effects that the presence or absence of light can have on a person’s moods and behaviour. Serotonin, a mood-lifting hormone, is produced during the day, while melatonin, which has a depressive effect and is linked to sleep, is produced more at night. It is well known that a lack of bright sunlight during winter months can cause depression in some people. This is thought to be a result of lower levels of light triggering increased production of melatonin while levels of serotonin are suppressed.

Advocates of colour therapy suggest that if the presence or absence of light can have such strong effects on health, then individual colours that make up light must do as well. However, there have been few clinical studies to support or refute these claims.

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What Happens During Treatment?
A variety of methods are used by colour therapists. Some use special instruments which shine coloured light onto specific parts of the body. Some will provide coloured swatches of cloth or coloured stones for you to focus on. Because colours can have both a positive and negative effect, specific colours and accurate amounts of colour are critical in healing.

Your therapist may suggest techniques to try at home, for example wearing clothing in the appropriate healing colours, or draping a coloured cloth over a sunny window and sitting in the light this creates. You can also visualize or imagine yourself bathed in the colours you need. Coloured light bulbs can be used to beam light onto your body and into the surrounding area.

In your everyday life pay attention to the colours that attract you and take notice of any colours that you strongly dislike as well. Sometimes the colours you dislike can indicate areas where there are blockages.

The length of treatment required will depend on the methods used and the type of ailment you have.

What Is It Used For?
Colour therapists treat a wide variety of ailments, both physical and emotional, including allergies, viruses, arthritis, bacterial infections, skin problems, digestive disorders, colds and flu, aches and pains, nervous disorders and sleeping problems.

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Side Effects/Cautions
Colour therapy should not be used as a replacement for conventional medical treatment for serious health problems.
When coloured lights are used in therapy, avoid looking directly at the light. Instead, look at an object which reflects the coloured light.

References

Find a Colour Therapist

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Recommended Books

Prices are in US Dollars

 

Discover Color Therapy
Helen Graham

This book is the first step to learn how to heal with colors, either in clothing, decoration of furniture, or wall colors. Some examples of color therapy go from cheering a blue day, to the increase of the immunological system. This is an excellent book to learn how to help heal yourself with colors. Carolina Mendez - Amazon Reviewer.

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Healing with the Rainbow Rays: The art of color energy therapy
Alijandra

Alijandra's wonderful new book fills a void. Missing from our lives has been a book that has both information and techniques on color healing, multi-dimensions, hyperspace, alchemy and advanced psychic arts. Until now! 'Healing with the Rainbow Rays' does that and more. Further, it is simply written, well-explained and well-illustrated. More than that, it is practiced (and tested) by the author and others in a classroom setting. Alijandra carefully and cogently explains the philosophies and basis of color healing, and coordinates them with the practical exercises to put this integral therapy to good use...It carries the reader to a deeper understanding of your own life and your possibility of growth by presenting a mirror that exposes imbalance...'Healing with the Rainbow Rays' is a key that can open your door to betterment! (Richard Fuller, Metaphysical Reviews)

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Color Therapy at Home: Real-Life Solutions for Adding Color to Your Life
Mark McCauley

Color Therapy at Home presents an imaginative investigation into the subtle yet powerful effects of color in our everyday lives. Mark McCauley, an accomplished interior designer, explains why we associate certain emotional, physical, or intellectual traits with reds, yellows, greens, or blues. Blues, for example, provide feelings of restoration and clarity. Reds, on the other hand, lend an active, dynamic energy to a room. Dozens of dramatic photos illustrate how colors work alone and in combination to achieve desired effects. A clear vase of vibrant red cherries, for example, forms a witty complement to a wall painted a nurturing pale green.
Practical designer tips, such as how to test your color choices, tint ceilings, or dress your interiors in colors you love to wear, enhance the inspiring photographs and engaging text. The book closes with a chart of 264 traits one may wish to increase in one's life - such as healing, trusting, or understanding - then keys each trait to specific colors. For anyone planning to redesign an entire home or simply repaint the kitchen pantry, Color Therapy at Home is provocative guide to color's profound effects on our interior well-being. -Mary Ribesky

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 More Colour Therapy Books

 

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