In the Mystical Tradition the Tarot colors have specific meanings. The following is a simple listing of these colors and their correspondences to the planets, the four earthly elements, the alchemical metals, consciousness, and the energy centers, or chakras, of the human body. The “alchemical metals” of the Western mystical tradition correspond to the “chakras” of the Yogis of the Eastern mystical tradition. Yes, you really don’t need to go to India to receive the Yogi teachings! Different terms for the same energy centers. The old stories about the “transformation of base metals into gold” is really the transformation of the human body, which is the temple of the Self, into a body of Light. How this is accomplished is explained in the Tarot.
- Red: Indicates action, courage, strength, and physical energy. It represents the element Fire. Red is the nature of the planet Mars. It symbolizes the alchemical sulphur and in Hindu the Rajas guna. It represents the conscious plane of mental activity. It corresponds to the Svadhisthana (abode of Self) chakra, a nerve center between the base of the spine and the navel.
- Orange: This is red plus yellow and indicates positive energy and vitality, and authority. It symbolizes the Sun, with some Mercury influence. It stands for alchemical gold and corresponds to the Anahata chakra (cardiac plexus).
- Yellow: Indicates mental equilibrium and intellect. It represents the element Air and light. It is the alchemical mercury, in Hindu the Sattva guna, and the superconscious plane of mental activity.
- Green: This is blue and yellow combined. It is indicative of growth, increase, emotion, desire. It represents the harmony of nature and the planet Venus. It is alchemical copper, the Visuddhi chakra, a nerve center located in the throat.
- Blue: Here we have represented water, memory, receptivity and reflection. The corresponding planets are the Moon and Jupiter. Blue represents alchemical silver. It represents the Ajna chakra, a center in the brain, behind the nose, called the pituitary gland. It represents the subconscious plane of mental activity.
- Indigo (Blue-Violet): This color indicates the First Matter, before manifestation. It also symbolizes the Akasha, a Sanskrit word meaning an etheric field in which past events are imprinted. The corresponding alchemical metal is lead. This is the traditional color of Saturn. It also represents the chakra Muladhara, identified with the sacral plexus at the base of the spine.
- Violet: The planet associated with violet is Jupiter. It is an indicator of spiritual power, truth. This is the highest visible color vibration. It relates to the Manipura chakra, or solar plexus. Violet represents alchemical tin.
- Silver: This color represents the Lunar currents and the Moon.
- Gold: This color represents the Solar forces.
- White: White is used to represent purity and the Primal Light, pure spirit.
- Black: This is used to represent Primal Matter, the occult unknown and the element Earth.
- Brown: This is used to represent earthly nature.
- Gray: A combination of white and black, it represents the union of opposites and Wisdom.