From Buddhist monks to Indian Yogis, you would have noticed every spiritual person wear Saffron colour dress. Have you ever wondered why just Saffron and nothing else? Well, You probably would have wondered the same. Hence are here reading an article about it unless you are a regular subscriber of my Blog. Thanks to my supporters and welcome my newbies. Well, in this blog, I will be talking about “Why do monks wear Saffron colour dress?”. We will also talk about what saffron colour represents.
Initially, when I was a small boy, I assumed it to be purposeless. Maybe, the Saffron colour was just a random pick or the favourite colour of the first-ever famous monk of India. But it turns out I was wrong. After a deep dive into our culture and customs, I realised how even the choice of colour was very thoughtful. So, continue reading to find out the reasons I found for monks to be wearing Saffron Colour dress.
Spiritual Reasons for Saffron Colour Dress
Monks are closely associated with nature and the cosmic energy of nature. In order to emphasize the touch of nature’s speciality in monks life. Therefore, they chose Saffron Colour Dress. If you were an early bird, you would have noticed the beautiful red, orange and saffron preset colour of Sun during Sunrise. If not, during the sunset. But you must have realised by now that Saffron is a colour of the majority in Nature. Even fire an important element of earth is a mixture of red and yellow. So monks wear Saffron depicting the Natural Forces. Since it signifies the synchronization of Nature and spiritual monks.
Social Reasons for Wearing Saffron Colour Dress
From ancient times, Monks were people in search of spiritual enlightenment, unlike normal people who search for materialistic life. Monks or Sanyasis seek God and wisdom. They prefer a peaceful environment contradicting the majority of a noisy and busy life. One needs a suitable environment to follow their path to enlightenment and co-exist. To achieve this Monks has to differentiate themselves from the public. This was possible by having a different coloured attire like Kavi Vastra.
Spotting a man in a saffron colour dress, the public would identify them as monks. Identifying would help the public to respect the monk’s privacy.
In ancient times, the processing of cloth dye was no work of ease. As no synthetic colours were available at those times, they obtained the from plants and herbs. This limited the availability of colours. The clothes wear originally only in white colour as the cotton from which the majority of regular use cloth manufactured was white. White attire was very common in those times.
As I already discussed, some social needs force the attire of monks to be different from the general public. Saffron was a colour available easily from natural herbs. It was mostly obtained by boiling the white cloth with saffron in water. Sometimes, they made Saffron cloth by boiling a part of a Jackfruit tree in water with a white cloth soaked in it. These are the scientific reasons behind monks wearing a saffron colour dress.
Advantages of Saffron Colour
As mentioned above Saffron colour was available abundantly in nature. Despite the availability of several colours, the Human eye recognises amber and orange colours with the most accuracy. This human psychology and optical science were used in favour of identifying monks in public.
Optical science makes it evident that amber and orange light can be identified and differentiated even in long distances. That is the same reason why sodium vapour lamps are in wide usage in villages. Especially in misty and foggy places, in hill stations like Ooty and Kodaikanal. If you have noticed, even the vehicle and traffic blinkers are in amber. Added to this, the Rescue signal smoke is orange coloured. Also, the lifejackets are in orange colour, as it victim has to be spotted from a distance. Now you know why monks wear saffron colour dress mostly.