Sunday, December 4, 2016

The Color Purple

We are now in the Second week of Advent - the liturgical color most often used to decorate Catholic churches and liturgical vestments is purple - also referred to as violet. As a color -  purple is very interesting. According to Wikipedia - In the traditional color wheel used by painters - violet and purple are both placed between red and blue. Purple occupies the space closer to red - between crimson and violet. Violet is closer to blue -is usually less saturated than purple. While the two colors look similar - from the point of view of optics -there are important differences. Violet is a spectral color – it occupies its own place at the end of the spectrum of light - first identified by Newton in 1672 - and it has its own wavelength (approximately 380–420 nm) – whereas purple is a combination of two spectral colors - red and blue. There is no such thing as the "wavelength of purple light" - it only exists as a combination. Purple is generally identified as a single color - yet - if you study violet - it has some fifteen different shades!  Those who study the color wheel know that people respond to different colors in different ways.  For example - red - the color of fire and blood - is associated with energy - war - danger - strength - passion - desire - love. Some colors are calming - others - the opposite effect. In regards to purple - it combines the stability of blue and the energy of red. Purple is associated with royalty. It symbolizes power - nobility - luxury - ambition. It conveys wealth and extravagance. Purple is associated with wisdom - dignity - independence - creativity - mystery - magic.  According to surveys - almost 75 percent of preadolescence children prefer purple to all other colors. Purple is a very rare color in nature.  Analyzing all the characteristics of purple - one can understand why the color of Advent is purple.  In Advent in which we respect the dignity of the individual - acknowledging the royal nature of each - as a child of God - blessed with the creative - mystery - magic of the Divine - we see the unlimited potential of each person - young and old - to improve their individual life - to remove bad habits - activities - to redefine - who they are - how they act - think - treat themselves and others - to become the people that God has intended.

As children of God - we are given this liturgical season offered by the Church - to renew ourselves - to become more - all - that we are intended to be. 

Deacon Dale