It is common to see Hindu Gods and their Avatars in blue color. In Hindu culture, blue is also an indication of the dusky hue of skin. But that’s not all, there is a vast symbolism behind portraying Gods in blue color. Lord Shiva, Lord Vishnu, Lord Ram, and Lord Krishna are depicted in blue color. Let’s unravel the history behind the blue color of Hindu Gods.
What Is the Significance of Blue?
Blue as a color in Hindu Mythology signifies divinity and infinity. Both of which attribute to the purity of the Hindu Gods. Divinity here represents the supreme being and the supreme reality. Infinity represents endless possibilities, just like the sky that is formless and has an infinite expansion. Blue also is a color that has a pure, spiritual, blissful aura. And this is why Hindu Gods are depicted in the color blue because to see a God is beyond our perception.
There are many other characteristics that the color blue indicates such as protectiveness, bravery, honor, goodness, and determination. The natural elements like the vast blue sky and ocean also signify peace and calm.
Faith holds a great significance in Hinduism and it is also believed that a dusky complexion could be represented by a deep blue hue. This is a genuine effort of a common man’s mind to perceive the Hindu God as a formless aura than a mortal creature of nature.
Everything in this world is energy. While some parts get manifested in a physical form, the rest remains in an energy form. This energy surrounds the physical form everywhere; this is an aura. So, when we see a blue-bodied Hindu God, it is not the color of His body on a human level but the color of His aura on a cosmic level. The blue aura is a tranquil energy that is intuitive, generous, and compassionate.
The Legend Behind the Color Blue
Blue holds a great significance in the Hindu religion. There is something magical and regal behind this color. Some questions still hold great relevance like why are Lord Krishna, Lord Shiva, and Lord Vishnu depicted in blue? This is also backed up by science as the larger-than-life perception of anything in nature is represented by the color blue. It is due to its all-inclusiveness nature. So, when Hindu Gods are shown as blue-skinned, it is not because they were born with this color; it is only a perception.
Why Is Lord Shiva Shown in Blue?
Lord Shiva or Mahadeva is hardly even shown in normal human complexion. The blue color of Lord Shiva is symbolic of a significant episode. While you already know that blue is limitless, formless, and immeasurable. Blue is the perfect color to portray the formless Supreme Being.
Lord Shiva is also known as Neelkanth—the one with the blue throat. It is said that the Demi Gods and Demons came together to churn the ocean of milk to retrieve the nectar from the bottom of the ocean bed. This was known as the Samudra Manthan. And while they churned the ocean, there were many materials and heavenly deities that came to the surface like precious gems, animals, silver, gold, and Goddess Lakshmi. All of this was divided among the Gods and demons.
And among the numerous and countless by-products, Halahala, a toxic poison, is also derived from it. It easily destroyed whoever and whatever came in contact with it. Soon, a prayer for help was made to Lord Shiva, the destroyer. He immediately drank the poison to save the universe and the deadly poison started to spread in His body, slowly turning his body blue. This is where the Goddess Parvati emerged and took the form of a Mahavidya and stopped the spread of the deadly poison.
Why Is Lord Vishnu Shown in Blue?
Lord Vishnu is among the Supreme Deities of The Holy Trinity. He is The Protector, the one who sustains, and the Divine Arbitrator. Lord Vishnu is perceived in blue since He is seen residing in the deep blue ocean. And while he rests on a five-headed serpent, He is the omnipresent God who is known to be immeasurable and infinite with the deep blue waters surrounding Him.
Why Is Lord Krishna Depicted in Blue?
Legend has it that when Krishna’s mother asked Him to open His mouth when he was a child, she saw the entire cosmos in Him. This is also among the indications why Lord Krishna is shown in blue. It is a known fact, that He enlightened the world about Dharma, Karma, and the way of life. He has been the ultimate source of wisdom and knowledge. He is also known to be an incarnation of Lord Vishnu, and therefore blue.
The story behind Him depicted in blue begins when Putana, the demoness who tried to kill the toddler Lord Krishna by offering Him poisoned milk. After drinking the milk, He turned blue but did not die.
Another story behind Krishna’s blue skin is when He fought a five-headed snake in Vrindavan near the Yamuna River. During the hustle, Lord Krishna got exposed to the deadly venom of the snake and that’s how His skin turned blue.
Hindu Gods were born or created in the same complexion as humans. It is the common man that wants to change this perception to the world that the supreme beings change the course of the cosmos throughout times. Just like the humans, they were born fair or dusky or dark but it is their aura and their energies that made a difference in this world. And that is how they should be remembered. Just as we meditate and we believe that there is an aura that surrounds and affects us all, Blue is the color of the energy that they hold. If ever they are prayed to or witnessed their miraculous blessings, the blue hue aura can be felt and sometimes even seen. It is no coincidence that blue was suddenly decided to depict the supreme beings. It only shows that even today, they watch over us in the most immeasurable possibilities.