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Colours of the Rainbow - 2 spiritual wisdom logo

Noah's Ark

The correlation of the rainbow and its colours with human spirituality is brought out in the powerful spiritual allegory of Noah's Ark: often mistakenly written off as a children's bedtime story.

Swedenborg, in his pivotal work Arcana Caelestia, expounds this story to reveal the ancient wisdom relating to overcoming trial and temptation. Even in this darkened age the allegorical meaning is not entirely lost: we all recognise what is meant by 'just about staying afloat instead of sinking under your problems'. But in the Noah's Ark allegory, 'every cloud has a silver lining' becomes 'against the darkest clouds the rainbow shines most brightly'. The rainbow is called, in this transformational story, a divine covenant sign - in our terms a life and death promise ... a divine pledge of:

a) a new beginning when the old is swept away

b) unbroken divine love and care

c) the cyclical evolving of a new world

Swedenborg further explains that the rainbow represents the regenerate spiritual person - one who has lived out the path of enlightenment, whose potential has opened out like the lotus flower of the east, each stage represented by a new colour developing out of the one before. The main seven colours symbolise wholeness or holiness. Swedenborg also speaks of the variety of rainbows sometimes seen around those in the spiritual realms - the rainbow of the 'aura', as it is sometimes called, picturing the spiritual state of the person.

Yoga teaches that there are seven centres or chakras in the human body. These are spiritual centres - you will not find them described in a materialistic medical book.


These centres begin with one at the base of the spine and extend up to the seventh at the top of the head, as in the diagram above. Linked to the rainbow, commencing with red at the base of the spine, they become active in relation to the rainbow colour sequence, with increasing spirituality of life. The implication of a complete rainbow is abundantly clear - every aspect of the soul now vitally alive and shining in the life of the body.

"the fact that 'the bow in the cloud' represents regeneration and means the state of a regenerate spiritual person, nobody is able to know unless he is allowed to see ... that there appears round their head a rainbow, so to speak: that the rainbows which appear accord completely with their state, and that from this also their characters are recognised in heaven"   Arcana Caelestia 1042


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