Why is Shiva blue? This question comes up into the minds of almost all the youngsters and adults alike when they first him. Not just him, but almost all of the famous deities in Hinduism, from Krishna to Rama, are also depicted as being blue skinned. In this article, we are going to delve into the spiritual significance of this depiction, and also on the cultural importance that has been placed on people being depicted as blue skinned.
Shiva, also known as Neelkanth, is said to have a blue throat. However, we are not going to talk about the churning of the ocean, or the story of how Shiva got this name. We are specifically going to talk about the depiction of Shiva by various artists as being blue skinned, and also the impact that it has had on the Hindu culture. Read along for further info!
In Hindu iconography and art, Lord Shiva is often depicted with blue skin. This portrayal is primarily symbolic and carries various interpretations. One common explanation is that the blue color represents the infinite and the boundless. It is associated with the vastness of the sky and the immeasurable nature of the universe. Blue is also considered a calming and transcendent color, reflecting the serene and meditative aspects of Lord Shiva.
Delving further into the profound symbolism of Lord Shiva’s blue complexion, the representation goes beyond a simple chromatic choice; it serves as a metaphor for the cosmic dance of creation and destruction. The blue hue encapsulates the mystique of Shiva’s role as the cosmic dancer, Nataraja, whose dance sustains the universe.
Since Shiva is also known as Neelkantha, or the blue throated one, it is obvious that his entire body was not blue skinned, otherwise there would be no specific emphasis on the color of the neck. Why is Shiva blue is a question that has been pondered upon by millions across the globe, and below is the answer to this multi-layered question.
The Concept of Auras
In the yogic belief system, people are said to have energetic bodies associated with them along with their physical bodies. The energetic body is always said to be radiating the energy, in the form of light, so feeble that it cannot be seen by the naked eye. This radiation, and the color of the light emanating from different people is said to be their aura.
Auras, in various spiritual and metaphysical beliefs, are thought to be subtle energy fields or emanations that surround living beings. These energy fields are believed to reflect the individual’s physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual states. While the concept of auras is not scientifically proven, it has a long history in esoteric and mystical traditions.
Here are some key points often associated with auras:
- Colors and Layers: Auras are often described as having different colors, and the interpretation of these colors can vary between different belief systems. Some systems propose that each color corresponds to different aspects of a person’s well-being, emotions, or spiritual state. Additionally, some people believe in the existence of multiple layers or levels within the aura.
- Emanations of Energy: It is suggested that auras are composed of subtle energy or life force, often referred to as prana, chi, or vital energy. This energy is said to flow through the body and radiate beyond its physical boundaries.
- Connection to Health and Emotions: Proponents of the aura concept often claim that changes in a person’s aura can reflect changes in their physical health, emotional state, or spiritual development. For example, a vibrant and balanced aura might indicate overall well-being, while disruptions or irregularities could be linked to illness or emotional distress.
- Aura Readers and Practitioners: Some individuals claim the ability to perceive or interpret auras. Aura readers may use various methods, such as clairvoyance (seeing energy fields), empathy (feeling emotions), or other psychic abilities to read or sense the aura.
- Aura Cleansing and Balancing: In certain spiritual practices, there are rituals or techniques aimed at cleansing and balancing the aura. These practices are thought to promote physical and emotional well-being by removing negative energy and promoting positive energy flow.
The Association of Chakras and Auras
The association of chakras and auras forms a fundamental aspect of spiritual and metaphysical beliefs, weaving together the subtle energies that envelop the human existence. In this intricate tapestry, chakras, which are energy centers aligned along the spine, and auras, the radiant energy fields surrounding living beings, are intimately connected. Each chakra is believed to be associated with specific aspects of physical, emotional, and spiritual well-being, and the colors of auras are thought to reflect the state of these energy centers.
For instance, the throat chakra, linked to communication and self-expression, is often correlated with a blue aura. Exploring this symbiotic relationship offers insights into the interconnected nature of the spiritual and energetic dimensions, where the balance and activation of chakras are believed to influence the colors and vibrancy of one’s aura. The exploration of chakras and auras not only provides a lens through which to understand the holistic nature of human existence but also serves as a pathway to spiritual growth and self-awareness.
The Difference Between a Blue and a White Aura
Different states of being are said to be represented by different colors of auras. A fully realized being, who has attained salvation or “moksha” is said to have a white aura. The white aura represents complete spiritual realization. It is also associated with the crown chakra. A blue aura, on the other hand, is said to be associated with the throat chakra.
A blue aura may be dark blue in nature, which represents an imbalanced throat chakra, or it may be electric blue, which represents a vibrant and fully activated throat chakra. Mastery over the throat chakra is said to bless the person with immense occult abilities. Along with that, it is also said to increase communication skills by a huge margin. Shiva, in all of his artistic depictions is shown to be having a blue aura. The blue skin of Shiva in his artistic depictions does not depict his skin, but rather, his aura.
Artist’s Representations of Holy People
Artists for thousands of years have been depicting holy people with their own creative touches attached to it. Sage Valmiki has been represented with a white aura. Rama, Krishna, and Shiva, all have been depicted to be blue bodied. There are many sages and holy people except Valmiki, such as Jesus, who have been depicted to have a white halo or a white aura around them.
In Christian art, the color gold is often associated with divine radiance and holiness. Depictions of saints and angels frequently showcase golden halos, signifying spiritual enlightenment and proximity to the divine. Various artists can have their own reasons for adding creative touches and colors to different portraits, however, there has to be some reason for artists across the world to be depicting Shiva having a blue aura.
Why is Shiva Blue
The exploration has brought us back to the initial question that we started with. Why is Shiva blue? It turns out, that people who have a white aura, usually tend to be very loosely attached to their physical bodies. If they go through immense physical activity, it is believed in the yogic school of thought that they are more susceptible to leaving their bodies accidentally.
However, a white aura is said to be one of complete spiritual realization. So does this mean that Shiva has not attained complete spiritual realization? On the contrary, Shiva’s electric blue aura means just the opposite. Spiritual realization, and mastery over the fundamental human mechanism is a different thing. People who are depicted to have an electric aura, are said to be the ones with complete mastery over the human mechanism, including the energetic bodies, and are said to have changed their auras to be electric blue in nature.
People who have an electric blue aura, can undergo immense physical activity without being in the danger of accidentally leaving their bodies. All of the deities or the holy people who have been depicted as having a blue aura, are said to be completely realized beings, and also having a mastery of the human mechanism at the same time. These people have attained complete spiritual realization, and are still capable of being immensely active in the physical world. It is due to this reason, that they are worshipped. The worship of blue-bodied beings in Hinduism is without a doubt more popular than the worship of other beings at the present moment. They are given more importance in today’s world.
In unraveling the mystery of why Lord Shiva is depicted with a blue complexion, we’ve embarked on a journey through the realms of spirituality, symbolism, and artistic representation. The blue hue attributed to Shiva is not a mere aesthetic choice; rather, it signifies profound spiritual meaning deeply ingrained in Hindu culture.
Delving into the concept of auras, we explored how the color of one’s energetic field is believed to reflect their spiritual state. Shiva’s blue aura, intricately linked to his throat chakra, symbolizes not just balance but mastery over the fundamental aspects of human existence. Unlike a white aura, often associated with detachment from the physical, Shiva’s electric blue aura denotes complete spiritual realization while maintaining an active presence in the physical world.
The artistic interpretations of holy figures, where Shiva is consistently portrayed with a blue aura, echo a universal theme across various spiritual traditions. This common thread suggests a shared understanding among artists about the profound significance of the blue hue in representing spiritual mastery.
In essence, the worship of blue-bodied deities in Hinduism, including Shiva, extends beyond a cultural or artistic preference. It is a homage to beings who have achieved the pinnacle of spiritual realization while retaining a deep connection to the physical realm. As we continue to ponder the question of why Shiva is blue, we find that the answer transcends the pigment on the canvas—it is a celebration of spiritual enlightenment and mastery over the intricate dance between the divine and the earthly.
FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)
Why is the worship of blue-bodied beings more prevalent in Hinduism?
The worship of blue-bodied beings in Hinduism, including Shiva, signifies complete spiritual realization and mastery over the human mechanism. The prevalence of this symbolism underscores the importance of spiritual enlightenment while actively participating in the physical world.
What does the blue color represent in the context of Shiva’s cosmic dance?
The blue hue in Shiva’s depiction also symbolizes the cosmic dance of creation and destruction, particularly in his role as Nataraja. It encapsulates the eternal cycle of the universe, where Shiva’s dance sustains the cosmic order.
Have other deities or holy figures also been depicted with a blue body?
Yes, various holy figures across different spiritual traditions, including Rama, and Krishna, have been depicted with a blue aura. The consistent use of this symbolism suggests a shared understanding among artists about the spiritual significance and mastery associated with the color blue.
What is the connection between Shiva’s blue depiction and auras?
The blue aura associated with Shiva is intricately linked to the throat chakra in yogic beliefs. Auras are believed to be subtle energy fields surrounding individuals, and different colors represent various aspects of well-being. In the case of Shiva, the blue aura signifies mastery over the human mechanism and complete spiritual realization.
Is Shiva’s entire body blue or just his throat?
While Shiva is often referred to as Neelkantha, or the blue-throated one, his entire body is not uniformly blue. The emphasis on the blue throat stems from the mythological episode of the churning of the ocean, where Shiva consumed the poison to save the world, turning only his throat blue.
What are the various reasons due to which artists add a creative touch of the color blue when depicting Shiva?
Lord Shiva’s blue complexion holds profound symbolic significance. The color represents the infinite and boundless nature of the universe. It is associated with the vastness of the sky, reflecting the cosmic aspects of Shiva’s persona. The blue hue also conveys a sense of tranquility, mirroring the serene and meditative facets of the deity.