What Seeing The Color Red Means Spiritually & Psychologically

Photo: Onehourhappiness Creative, Oksana Vejus, kaisorn, Valua Vitaly and stuartbur / Getty Images
woman with red details

Colors hold a lot of significance for everyone around the world. They have an impact on our emotions and also have several different meanings related to religion and culture.

We are constantly surrounded by colors, but we often don't take the time to think about what they mean or how they make us feel. When it comes to spirituality, colors can impact healing and energies.

People often find themselves wanting to use the color red because of the strength that it holds, but many are unaware of the spiritual meaning of red.​

RELATED: What Seeing The Color Blue Means Spiritually & Psychologically

What does the color red symbolize?

Red symbolizes passion, courage, strength and creativity. It also represents life, health, vigor, war, anger, love, and religious fervor.

In color psychology, the color red is the most intense color which evokes the strongest emotions: excitement, passion, danger, energy, and action. It is often used to capture attention and stands out among any other color.

The color red encourages people to act, to press that "order now" button, to click the "play" button, to buy that red brand. It is a bold color that can give an extra “pop” to anything that may be dull. This dominant color is used to add flair to outfits or warn us of danger (think: stop signs or hazard signs).

Red also symbolizes blood and the vastness of life as well as fire or a burning desire.

Red is associated with the root chakra, also known as Muladhara. This first chakra is located at the base of your spine and acts as a foundation for your life. It signals stability and a sense of security. This chakra makes you feel grounded and able to take on challenges.

As for the color of auras, if you have a red aura, it means you are passionate and strong. You may also be a bit intense to be around.

The pigment for the color red comes from natural red ochres, which are derived from piles of earth that contain high amounts of hematite, a blood-red mineral.

Red Spiritual Meanings & Symbolism

1. Confidence

Red makes people come off as confident and ready to own any room they walk into.

Often, people choose to wear red when they go on dates because it attracts their romantic interest even more. Red lipstick, red dresses, and even red nail polish attract potential mates. Red accents such as jewelry with red stones or a red bag also do the job.

Doing this not only makes it appear that you put a lot of effort into your outfit and look, but it shows that you're confident and self-assured enough to pull off such a vibrant and bold color. Red attracts romance because of the passionate energy the color is filled with.

2. Passion

Red is a warm color, so we often associate it with hot things like fire, burning, and sex. Passion can be felt in all of those things. Fire symbolizes burning desire.

We associate red with passion because it stimulates us into action. It encourages us to act on our desires and take what we want. It urges us to be a bit more aggressive, which can turn the bedroom into a wild adventure.

3. Attraction and Sensuality

Red is a color to use when you want all eyes on you and all ears open to what you have to say. Red demands the spotlight and makes it impossible for it to fall into the background.

A phenomenon called the “red effect” suggests that the color red can influence perceptions of attractiveness. In a 2008 study, conducted by psychologists Andrew Elliot and Danielle Niesta, performed five experiments involving men rating the attractiveness of women.

Little did they know, these studies were being recorded to show how men react to women in photos where the color red was also present. The women in the photos where the color red was present had higher ratings.

4. Strength

Because red is the color of blood flowing through our bodies, as well as life itself, this color evokes our survival instincts. It makes us stronger than we think. We associate it with adrenaline, which makes us stronger in certain dangerous scenarios.

Red gives us resilience and inspires us to take action. In the mid-19th century, red became the color of Socialism to represent strength and dominance. The color is also associated with war, where you need to have the strength to survive and win.

5. Energy

The color red encourages us to take action. It bubbles with energy, which is why many brands use the color red in their marketing schemes. This color calls for people to act or move towards the color because it attracts our attention psychologically.

Red focuses behind our retinas, forcing the lens of our eyes to become more convex to pull the color forward. Scientifically, the color gives us the energy to move towards it.

6. Danger

Red is associated with danger and is often the color of warning signs. There's a reason stop signs are red, our brake lights are red, and hazardous materials are marked red in hospitals.

Anything red means we call attention to it, so when things are dangerous, we want the warnings to stand out from the crowd so people can stay safe. Hence, we associate the color red with danger.

7. Anger

Anger is another emotion we associate with the color red. This is mainly because red symbolizes aggression and war from even the early days of humankind. It represents dominance as well.

You can even see the use of red for anger in many cartoons. The character becomes angry and their eyes or face turn red.

RELATED: What The Colors You Wear Secretly Say About Your Personality

Meaning of the Color Red in the Bible

The most common use of the color red in the Bible is to represent bloodshed. In Christianity, red wine is used during communion as a symbol for the shedding of Jesus’ blood.

Mark 14:25: "He said to them, 'This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many.'"

In the Catholic Church, the color red is the color for martyrs or people who are willing to sacrifice themselves. Moses parted the "red sea," symbolizing a new life out of the bloodshed.

Hebrews 11:29: "By faith, they passed through the Red Sea as on dry land. When the Egyptians tried to do so, they were swallowed up."

​The Bible uses the color red to symbolize several concepts like life, blood, sin, flesh, earthiness, bloodshed, war, power, and wealth. With over 100 mentions of the color within the text, there is no wonder why it has so many different meanings.

Meaning of Red in Other Cultures

Red Symbolism in Far East Asian Culture

In China, the color red is a symbol of good luck and prosperity. However, in East Asian stock markets red is used as a way to warn people of a price increase.

In Japan, the color red means good luck but also happiness. A bride on her wedding day would traditionally wear a red kimono.

Red Symbolism in African Culture

In South Africa, red is known to be a mourning color that citizens wear when grieving. It is present in the South African flag to represent the loss of life in their fight for freedom.

In Western Africa, the color is used in sacrificial rites and represents bloodshed and death.

Red Symbolism in Latin American Culture

In Latin American culture and communities, the color red is associated with passion, religion, the sun, and death.

Red Symbolism in Indian Culture

In India, red symbolizes good fortune, well-being, love, and, surprisingly, purity. Bries wore red on their wedding day in this culture.

Red Symbolism in Greek Mythology

In Greek mythology, red symbolizes a life change. For example, young boys who were on the threshold of adulthood wore red cloaks, while brides wore red veils, and red was also worn in mourning.

In the Greek tale of the red rose, the color symbolizes the cycle of growth and decay as well as love and affinity.

Shades Of Red Spiritual Meanings

Dark Red

Dark red is associated with energy, willpower, rage, anger, leadership, courage, longing, and evil.

Light Red

Light red represents softer tones and concepts. A light red color symbolizes joy, sexuality, passion, sensitivity, and love.

Reddish Brown

A reddish brown color, like maroon, symbolizes masculine qualities. It is also used to represent the harvest and Autumn season.

Pastel Red

Pastel red is the shade of red used most often on Valentine's Day. It is associated with softer concepts like love and romance.

RELATED: The Psychology Of What Your Favorite Color Says About You

Sarah Jones-Smith is a writer who covers astrology, spirituality, love, and relationship topics. Her work has been featured in NFL Network, Andscape, and Seattle Medium.