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Different Colors Meanings in Tibetan Buddhism

Last updated:Apr 27,2023; By: admin; Hits: 109

In Tibetan Buddhism, there are two colors that are sacred, red and yellow. Only temples, Buddhist monasteries and other important Buddhist sites are allowed to use the revered colors. Do you know what the meaning of these colors is? Next, let's learn the meaning of different colors in Tibetan Buddhism.

The Colors Representing Tibetan Buddhism

In Tibetan Buddhism, the colors red and yellow represent sublimity, holiness and faith, and are revered by monks and believers. Red and yellow are the colors of Tibetan Buddhist sacred monastic clothing, and Tibetan Buddhist monks mainly wear red monastic clothing and yellow for vestments.

Some palaces, temples of the shrine, the important Buddha hall most of the outer wall are red, to show the majesty. Yellow is highly revered, ordinary people's buildings basically do not use yellow, only the temple, the living Buddha's residence and the abode of the great monks are qualified to "wear yellow coat".


The Language of Red in Tibetan Buddhism

When yellow meets red, it silently conveys the joy of life. Tibetan Buddhism combines the two perfectly, as if the majestic expression of the face of the Buddha, these two colors are deified in the fragrance of the Buddha.

In the Tibetan Buddhist concept of color, red has its own language.

According to historical books such as the New Book of Tang, the Old Book of Tang and the White History, the Tibetan people's love for red has two sources.

In the first legend, the Tibetan people developed from nomads and eventually became an ecological people combining agriculture and animal husbandry. Even now, deep into some remote pastoral areas, you can hear the expression, "Is there any red?" It actually means beef and lamb meat-based meat dishes. As history went on, the herders moved to the plains and canyon lands and began to plant fields and build houses, and red became one of their favorite colors.

The second legend has a direct relationship with religion. In the primitive religion of the snowy plateau, "benzene religion", the universe is divided into three worlds: "God, man and ghost". In order to avoid the invasion of ghosts, people in the face coated with Chu red dye. With the development of the times and the change of faith, this red no longer painted on the face, but in the building has been retained. Its usage has strict regulations, mainly used in palaces, temples, the temple of the protector of the deity, the temple dedicated to the spirit tower and individual important temple on the external wall to show the majesty.


Today we can still see the special expression of red in Tibetan religious architecture, the Potala Palace is divided into the White Palace and the Red Palace. The White Palace is an important part of the whole building, is the Dalai Lama residence and handling of political and religious affairs, its external walls are painted white and called "White Palace". The red palace is the altar for the Dalai Lama's spiritual pagoda, which is the center of the entire Potala Palace and the soul of the whole complex, and has the important significance of memorial and sacrifice.

Tibetan Buddhist terroir: Sutra Streamers

The various colors of the sutra streamers are fixed and cannot be innovated at will. Secondly, the order of each color is strictly defined and there cannot be any mistake. Because the meaning of sutra streamers is clear, not for beautification, but to pray for good fortune and prosperity, to eliminate disasters and calamities. The top branch of the sutra pole is covered with luxuriant starfire strips, which are composed of a group of five small streamer strips of different colors.


Generally a sutra streamer, according to the number of branches to determine the number of two groups to three groups of star fire strips. The color arrangement of these five streamers and their symbolic meaning is as follows. The top of the blue streamer, which symbolizes the blue sky; blue streamer below the white streamer, symbolizing white clouds; white streamer below the red streamer, symbolizing the flame; red streamer below the green streamer in the symbol of green water; the bottom streamer is yellow, symbolizing the yellow earth, or earth. The arrangement of the five colors is the three-dimensional arrangement of the material existence of objective nature, therefore, like the heaven and earth in nature cannot be reversed, these five colors also cannot be misplaced. The five colors symbolize the five phenomena of nature, which is the material basis for the existence of life.

In addition to the symbolic meaning of the colors, there are words and patterns on the main streamer dense Tibetan letters and lifelike birds and animals patterns are printed on wood carving board, Tibetan can be known at a glance is the Buddha said sutra. The text part conveys the meaning directly, unlike the colors and lines, so the text can be read down to know its content.


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