SIGNIFICANCE OF MYSTICAL COLOURS
By: Sir Godfrey Gregg ROMC, OHPM
WHY is The Mystical Court said to have a particular colour of transcending importance?” “Why is that particular colour said to be blue?”
The Mystical Court member who pauses in his Mystical journey to ask himself these questions, or equivalent ones, has thereby set himself in the may of investigating yet another phase of Mystical symbolism. For, in the attempt to answer his two queries, the self-questioner’s first thought is that the Court is not possessed, in a physical sense, of a particular and transcendingly important colour, blue or otherwise; and, when he reminds himself that there are rational explanations for practically everything in The Mystical Court and that most of those explanations are founded in symbolism, his second thought is that a colour, a particular colour, is assigned to his Court for symbolistic reasons and that that colour has a symbolic meaning. Just as there are colours associated with different “saints”, so it is within The Mystical Court. Thus he (she) is brought to a consideration of the symbolism of colours and, more particularly, to a consideration of the symbolism of blue.
If, now, he (she) investigates the matter very briefly, running over almost superficially the general subject of the symbolism of colours and considering somewhat more deeply the symbolism of blue, the inquiring Court member will, it is probable, arrive at substantially the following:
The assigning of symbolic meanings to colours is probably as old as symbolism itself. To cite but one set of examples from the practices of an ancient people: The Egyptians, those ancient masters of symbolism to whom I referred for investigation of the symbols used in The Mystical Court first looks for explanations of those symbols, made use of colours in their hieroglyphics to convey certain definite ideas, each colour being expressive of certain conceptions. Hieroglyphs of the spirits of the dead were characterized by white. Men were marked out by having their flesh red, while the flesh of the women was yellow. Sapphire was the colour of the Egyptian god Amon. Green was the colour used for the flesh of the god Ptah, founder of the world, the active creative spirit and the divine intelligence, and was also the colour used for the flesh of Lunus, the moon. Russet- brown was the colour given to the flesh of Thoueri, the concubine of Typhon. And black was the colour of Anubis, the god of the dead and of embalming.
The colours symbolically significant in the upper levels of The Mystical Court are purple, red, white, black, green, yellow, violet and blue. Each colour has for its purpose the teaching to the member of The Mystical Court a valuable moral lesson or the calling of his (her) attention to some historical fact of interest Mystically, certain of the colours serving both purposes at one and the same time.
Purple, being a mixture of blue and red, is, to the Mystical Court member, the symbol of the fraternal union because it is composed of the colour adopted for The Mystical Court. For this reason, purple is adopted as the proper colour for distinguishing the upper ranks within the Court and by extension those that affiliate with the teachings of The Mystical Court.
Red is the colour of fire, and the fire was to the Egyptians the symbol of the regeneration and the purification of souls. Hence, in the Mystical Court Structural system, red is the symbol of regeneration. Thus red is the colour assigned to the Royal Order of The Mystical Court Degree since that degree teaches the regeneration of life.
White is the symbol of purity, the reasons for adopting this conception being obvious. Therefore, in The Mystical Court, it is, properly, the colour adopted for certain of the garments of the investiture of the candidate. Especially the apron for a great reminder of our calling.
Black from the remotest antiquity has been the symbol of grief and such is its significance to The Mystical Court. It is also a formal colour for meetings with the distinguished regalia.
Green, being the unchanging colour of the various evergreen trees, shrubs, and so forth, is, in the symbolistic system of The Mystical Court, the colour symbolic of the unchanging immortality of all that is divine and true. This conception M has received from the ancients, more particularly the Egyptians. For example, with the Egyptians, as noted above, Ptah was pictured as having green flesh. Also, the goddess Pascht, the divine preserver, and Thoth, the instructor of men in the sacred doctrines of truth, were both painted with green flesh. So the Mystical Court member, adhering once more, as he so often does, to the conceptions of the Egyptians, chooses for his symbol of the immortality of the soul which he knows to be divine and true an object, the acacia, whose colour is unchanging green.
Yellow was to the ancients the symbol of light. Though unemphasized and seemingly almost unrecognised in The Mystical Court yellow is, nevertheless, a true Mystical symbolic colour since it symbolizes to the Mystical member that Great Thing to the finding of which his Mystical Search is devoted and to the source of which his Mystical pathway leads the Light of Truth.
Violet is the symbol of mourning, the Mystical Court member here adopting yet another of the conceptions of an ancient people, this time the Chinese.
Blue is the supreme colour of The Mystical Court. First, because it is that colour which, among all those used in The Mystical Court, is the unquestioned Mystical possession of every treasonable member. The true members of the Royal Order of The Mystical Court may attempt to appropriate to himself (herself) the red, the Perfect Master member may feel himself the exclusive proprietor of the green and the black, and so on, but blue is acknowledged by every Mystical Court member to belong to us all and no member, whatever his degree, questions the Supreme Grand Commanding Officer ownership of blue. Second, blue is the supreme colour because it has coupled with it universally, a place in symbolism which, both as regards the importance of lessons taught and as regards legitimacy as a symbol, is second to that of no Mystical colour.
The use of blue in religious ceremonials, and as a symbol, comes to The Mystical Court from many of the different peoples of antiquity. Among the Hebrews various articles of the high priest’s clothing were blue. one of the veils of the tabernacle was blue. In his initiation into the Druidical Mysteries, the candidate was invested with a robe one of whose colours were blue. The Babylonians clothed their idols in blue. The Hindoo god Vishnu was represented as blue. And among the medieval Christians blue was considered a peculiarly important colour.
Blue was the symbol of perfection to the Hebrews, to the Druids the symbol of Truth, to the Chinese the symbol of Deity, and to the medieval Christians, it was the symbol of immortality. So, for the Mystical Court, the colour of his Mystical Court is the symbol of perfection, truth, immortality and Deity.
Finally and preeminently, and following the teachings and conceptions of the Egyptians aald the Hindoos, blue is the symbol of that which the Shipwrights must, since he (she) is a member of The Mystical Court, always revere and of that which his (her) Master Mystical Court must, when its work and its teachings are properly understood and accepted, cause him (her) to Progressively revere the more Divine Wisdom.