I saw red meaning. I saw red meaning

Red Color Psychology

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Amy Morin, LCSW, is a psychotherapist and international bestselling author. Her books, including “13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do,” have been translated into more than 40 languages. Her TEDx talk, “The Secret of Becoming Mentally Strong,” is one of the most viewed talks of all time.

In color psychology, red provokes the strongest emotions of any color. While cool colors like green and blue are generally considered peaceful and calming, the color red is considered the warmest and most contradictory of the colors.

In fact, this fiery hue has more opposing emotional associations than any other color: Red is linked to passion and love as well as power and anger. Here are some of the most common feelings and qualities that the color red can stimulate psychologically.

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The Color Red Conveys Danger and Warning

Thanks to its long wavelength, red is one of the most visible colors in the color spectrum (second only to yellow). Its ability to instantly grab people’s attention is the reason why it’s often used to warn people of impending danger. Think: stop signs, sirens, fire engines, and red traffic lights.

Red is also used to convey danger in a non-literal way. Some examples include using the phrase “in the red” to describe financial loss or “red flag” to indicate when something is wrong with a person or situation.

People tend to associate red with negative, danger-bearing emotions. This could be because it is the color of fire, blood, and sometimes poisonous or dangerous animals.

The Color Red Stimulates Excitement and Energy

This stimulating color is also associated with excitement.

Studies show that being exposed to or wearing red can cause some of the following physical effects:  

All of these physiological changes naturally cause your energy levels to spike.

The color is also known to increase your appetite by increasing your metabolism, which is why red is such a popular color in restaurants.  

Dead by April. Can You See The Red

Red Color Psychology and Aggression

Across cultures, people intuitively associate red with the concept of anger. This relationship makes sense given that many people get red in the face from increased blood flow when they’re angry.  

The expression “seeing red” is thought to be based on the physical characteristics associated with anger, including redness of the face and neck, which are caused by elevated blood pressure.  

The Color Red Is Associated With Dominance

It’s not just mood and emotions that the color red can affect. In the arena of sports, wearing the color red can also increase your chances of winning.

In the 2004 Olympics in Athens, competitors in four sports—boxing, Greco-Roman wrestling, freestyle wrestling, and taekwondo—were randomly assigned red or blue clothing. In all four competitions, red-clad contestants won more fights.  

Many think these results are due to the link between red and perceived dominance. For instance, donning a red uniform may cause an athlete to feel dominant and perform more aggressively. Alternatively, athletes in red may be seen as more aggressive, more dominant, and more likely to win a physical competition not only by their opponents but also by the referees.  

Whatever the reason, it is clear that red-clad athletes tend to have a significant advantage over their opponents. (Maybe this is why so many athletes, including the great Tiger Woods, wear red clothing when they compete.)

The Color Red Symbolizes Passion and Desire

But red does not always signal danger and aggression. Perhaps not surprisingly, red also symbolizes passion, love, and desire. These associations could explain why people wearing red are consistently rated as more attractive by the opposite sex.

In a landmark study published in 2008, researchers showed men an image of a woman and asked them to rate her attractiveness. Some men saw a woman wearing a red shirt while others saw the same woman wearing a blue shirt. Results showed that men rated the woman in red as more sexually desirable than the same woman in blue.


Some researchers theorize that the reason the color red is associated with sexual arousal is that blood flow increases during arousal, leaving the skin—particularly the face—with a reddish tone.

Red Color Psychology and Power

Red can also represent power, a relationship that can be found all over modern-day society. The “power tie” worn by businessmen across the globe is, traditionally, red. And don’t forget the hallowed “red carpet” that is only rolled out for the most prestigious celebrities and dignitaries.

According to some, this association with power and wealth is the reason why women find men dressed in red so attractive.

One potential explanation for the color red being associated with power is that this color is often used to draw attention. This increased attention signifies that something is important, and power and importance often go hand in hand.


A Word From Verywell

Like other colors, responses to red often depend upon past experiences and cultural influences. Some may find red fun and playful, while others feel it is too bold, exciting, or even dominating. Consider your own feelings for the color red and think about how these factors may have contributed to your reaction (or lack of one) to this color.

Verywell Mind uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.

  • Kuniecki M, Pilarczyk J, Wichary S. The color red attracts attention in an emotional context. An ERP study. Front Hum Neurosci. 2015;9:212. doi:10.3389/fnhum.2015.00212
  • AL-Ayash A, Kane RT, Smith D, Green-Armytage P. The influence of color on student emotion, heart rate, and performance in learning environments. Color Res Appl. 2015;41(2):196-205. doi:10.1002/col.21949
  • Thorndike AN, Sonnenberg L, Riis J, Barraclough S, Levy DE. A 2-phase labeling and choice architecture intervention to improve healthy food and beverage choices. Am J Public Health. 2012;102(3):527-533. doi:10.2105/AJPH.2011.300391
  • Peromaa T, Olkkonen M. Red color facilitates the detection of facial anger. But how much? PLoS One. 2019;14(4). doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0215610
  • Fetterman AK, Robinson MD, Meier BP. Anger as “seeing red”: Evidence for a perceptual association. Cogn Emot. 2012;26(8):1445-1458. doi:10.1080/02699931.2012.673477
  • Hill RA, Barton RA. Psychology: Red enhances human performance in contests. Nature. 2005;435(7040):293. doi:10.1038/435293a
  • Little AC, Hill RA. Attribution to red suggests special role in dominance signalling. Journal of Evolutionary Psychology. 2007;5(1-4):1789-2082. doi:10.1556/JEP.2007.1008
  • Elliot AJ, Niesta D. Romantic red: Red enhances men’s attraction to women. J Pers Soc Psychol. 2008;95(5):1150-1164. doi:10.1037/0022-3514.95.5.1150
  • Elliot AJ. Color and psychological functioning: a review of theoretical and empirical work. Front Psychol. 2015;6:368. doi:10.3389/fpsyg.2015.00368
  • Elliot AJ, Kayser DN, Greitemeyer T, et al. Red, rank, and romance in women viewing men. J Exp Psychol Gen. 2010;139(3):399-417. doi:10.1037/a0019689

By Kendra Cherry, MSEd Kendra Cherry, MS, is a psychosocial rehabilitation specialist, psychology educator, and author of the “Everything Psychology Book.”

I saw red meaning

Red is the color of extremes. It’s the color of passionate love, seduction, violence, danger, anger, and adventure. Our prehistoric ancestors saw red as the color of fire and blood – energy and primal life forces – and most of red’s symbolism today arises from its powerful associations in the past.

Red is also a magical and religious color. It symbolized super-human heroism to the Greeks and is the color of the Christian crucifixion. Red was almost as rare and as expensive as purple in ancient days – a fact that may explain its magic and power. Paradoxically, today’s intense red dyes come from crushed insects (the lac beetle and the cochineal).

Global Meanings of Red

Red’s global similarities are significant:

Red is one of the top two favorite colors of all people.

Red is the most popular color used on flags in the world. Approximately 77% of all flags include red.

Red is the international color for stop.

Red districts sell sex and pornography in every European culture.

The history of languages reveals that red is the first color after black and white. (All languages have words for black and white. If a third hue exists, it is red.)

Unique Meanings of Red in Different Cultures

Red is the color of good luck in Asia and is the most popular color in China.

Most Japanese children draw the sun as a big red circle.

In East Asian stock markets, red is used to denote a rise in stock prices. (Note: In North American stock markets, red is used to denote a drop in stock prices.)

Red is an auspicious color for marriage. Brides in India and Nepal wear red saris; in Japan, a red kimono symbolizes happiness and good luck.

Designing with Red

All reds are not created equal. Aside from light and dark shades of red, there are two kinds of red:

Yellow-based reds are “tomato” reds. Blue-based reds are “berry reds.” Some say that males are more attracted to the tomato reds: females to the berry reds.

Context is everything when using red. For example, when red is place on a black background, it glows with an otherworldly fire; on a white background, red appears somewhat duller; in contrast with orange, red appears lifeless. Notice that the red square appears larger on black.

Regardless of how it is used in a design, a little bit of red goes a long way.

How Red Affects Vision

Red captures attention. It is one of the most visible colors, second only to yellow. which explains why it is used on fire engines and stop signs to trigger alertness.

Red focuses behind the retina which forces the lens grows more convex to pull it forward. Therefore, we perceive that red areas are moving forward. This may explain why red captures attention.

Note: Eight percent of the male population has a red-green color vision deficiency and cannot see red at all

Myths about Red

“They” claim that red raises your blood pressure and quickens your heartbeat. Yes, red is a strong color but its immediate effects are only temporary and do not apply to everyone.

Tidbits. Points to Ponder

In Russia, the word for “red” means beautiful.

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Red Snake in Dream Meaning and Symbolism

Have you ever dreamed of a red snake? If the answer is yes, then you probably wonder about the meaning of this symbol.

To get the most accurate dream interpretation, first, you need to look at your current life situation and your associations with the red snake.

Then, think about the emotions you experience inside the dream. Depending on your feelings, each symbol can have a positive or a negative connotation.

And last but not least, get to know the meanings behind the snake and its color. Below you can see a rich interpretation of both and, finally, the symbolism of a red snake inside a dream.

The Meaning of A Snake in Dreams

When you see a snake inside a dream, it can carry both negative and positive associations with it. This animal is known for its cold-bloodedness and cunning nature, but it can also signify healing and wisdom.

Snakes in dreams are related to our primal urges, like sexuality and aggression. They also connect us to our instincts. This animal can also represent toxicity or fear, treachery, or unconscious emotions of all kinds.

On the other hand, a snake in a dream can be a spiritual guide or a sign of transformation, deep renewal, and connection to the source. To get a better idea of what the snake inside your dream can represent, take a look at the color symbolism below.

Red Color Meaning in Dreams

The color red in dreams can carry both positive and negative feelings with it. In general, it is associated with fire and love.

Red can represent feelings of passion, lust, hatred, and anger. It is associated with health and illness, blood and violence, and life and death. This color is related to our primitive urges like sex and aggression. Red is also the color of a warrior spirit and the outgoing side of the personality.

In Christianity, this color is associated with the Blood of Christ. It is related to sacrifice and martyrdom. It also represents the eternal flame of the love of God for all humanity.

The red color in dreams can symbolize warmth and aliveness. Its negative meaning can be related to violence and danger. Red can also soothe or irritate the senses, depending on its nuances.

Red Snake Dream Meaning

The combination between the snake and the color red in a dream offers various interesting interpretations. Depending on your emotions while asleep, you can determine if the meaning is more positive or negative for you.

Hidden Danger

Seeing a red snake inside a dream can alarm for something dangerous outside of the personality or in it. This symbol may serve as a warning to pay more attention to the people and situations in your life at the moment.

A red snake in a dream can also represent built-up emotions that threaten your mental or physical health. As this animal is symbolic of the unconscious, it can point toward unresolved conflicts or psychic tension that can cause you harm.

Vitality and Strength

Dreaming of a red snake inside a dream can also be symbolic of your inner power. Seeing this animal can represent a boost of energy that is now accessible to you.

A red snake inside your dream can symbolize your connection to life itself. It can offer inner fire and warmth. This is especially valid if you feel refreshed and motivated after you wake up.


Seeing a red snake in a dream can signify sexual urges hidden in your unconscious mind. Such a dream may appear to a person with high levels of libido (sexual energy) and difficulty getting intimacy in real life, for example.

Did you feel exhilarated inside the dream? Or did you fear the snake and try to run away from it? In this scenario, your attitude toward the snake in the dream can show how connected you are to your sexuality and how to fulfill your need for intimacy.

Romantic Feelings

A red snake in a dream can also represent unrecognized feelings of love for someone. You may cherish this person and not consciously realize that there is something else in your relationship.

The red snake can also represent the person themselves. This animal is generally seen as symbolic of divine feminine power. A red snake in a dream can represent your mother, partner, or another woman you are fond of.

Aggressive Impulses

Dreaming of a red snake can be related to buried aggression. Do you feel more irritable or angry lately? Do you let these feelings show?

If you do not feel angry in real life, your dream can also compensate for such feelings and helps you vent them at night. It is also possible to dream of a red snake if you have experienced physical or sexual violence. With this dream, your unconscious is trying to work through the traumatic experience using the language of symbols.

Scenarios of Seeing a Red Snake in Dreams

Spiritual Meaning of A Red Snake in A Dream

In Kundalini yoga, red is the color of the Root chakra at the base of our spine. This energy center is related to our sense of groundedness and stability.

If you see a red snake inside your dream, it can mean that you need to pay attention to your basic needs of financial and physical security. Think about whether you need more stability in the material world and how you can achieve it.

Big Red Snake in Dreams

Seeing a big red snake at night can represent passion and a desire for closeness. As a phallic symbol, this animal can symbolize sexual arousal and hidden urges. If you feel unease and feel a sense of danger, the red snake can also represent a potential threat in your life.

Small Red Snake in A Dream

Dreaming of a small red snake can mean that you are facing a little obstacle on the way toward your goals. Think about the people and circumstances around you that may hinder your progress. Such a dream can warn you about a danger that you may not see in your life.

Red and Black Snake in A Dream

Black is symbolic of the unconscious, death, transformation, and strength. It is the color related to the shadow side of our personality and everything repressed or denied by our consciousness.

In this sense, dreaming of a red and black snake can point toward a hidden aspect of your personality that wants to be integrated. This part of yourself may be related to emotions or urges that are considered unacceptable by society or yourself, such as lust, aggression, or sexuality in general.

Being Bitten by A Red Snake

Dreams of being bitten by a snake can offer various possible meanings. An attack by a red snake in a dream can symbolize passion or anger that you need to integrate into your personality. Being bitten by a red snake can also indicate autoaggressive tendencies or violence from someone else in your surroundings.

Killing a Red Snake in A Dream

Killing a snake in a dream can also be indicative of different things, depending on the animal’s color. Defeating a red snake can represent the need to deal with passionate feelings or toxicity in your current situation.

Such a scenario can also appear if your unconscious is detecting a hidden danger in your life. Your dream is encouraging you to get rid of everything that may pose an inner or outer threat.

Red Cobra in A Dream

Cobras are symbols of aggression and terror in dreams. They are fierce animals that connect us to our primal survival instinct. Cobras also symbolize enormous strength and authority.

Seeing a red cobra in a dream can indicate feelings of aggression and anger. It can also represent a situation of violence that you are currently into. As cobras are royal animals, such a dream can indicate a repressed need for control and domination in your life.

Red Snake Shedding Its Skin

Having this dream can indicate a deep inner transformation. You may feel rejuvenated and even discover new meaning in life. In this case, the color red represents vitality and warmth, a sacrifice of old viewpoints for the sake of psychological renewal and rebirth.

Final Thoughts

Dreaming of a red snake can evoke many different interpretations, depending on the individual circumstances of the dreamer. Such a dream can carry a sense of danger, fear, and anger. At the same time, it can point toward passion, hope, and a new gateway into life.

Red snakes are powerful symbols that can guide you toward psychic balance and well-being. Follow your intuition and emotions, and you will not fail to discern what these animals are trying to tell you.

Seeing Red Chakra Energy as a Red Aura: Meaning and Illustrations

Since this is a blog in which I create educational drawings about both language and life, let’s define the phrase “seeing red” as it is used figuratively and idiomatically FIRST, before we dive into the experience of literally seeing red light during energy work like reiki or acupuncture: a red aura from the red chakra. Understanding the former definition will be key in distinguishing the meaning of the latter, so don’t be scared off by the opening English lesson — it will come into play as we go deeper.

What is an Idiom?

An “idiom” is defined as a type of figurative language in which a common phrase in a specific language and culture is understood to have a different meaning than the literal one. For example, “It’s a piece of cake!” is an idiom in English that means “It’s easy!” — not that the thing in question is literally a delicious pastry to eat. Idioms usually don’t translate from one language to another; each culture has its own… and some are quite funny and random!

Meaning of the Idiom “Seeing Red”

The idiom “seeing red” means “extremely mad.” For example, “When the octopus tore my book apart, I was so furious, I was seeing red!” Now, “seeing red” is an interesting and unique idiom, because unlike “piece of cake,” which only makes sense figuratively, “seeing red” actually has a true literal component to it: sometimes when people get into a truly angry mood, they really do get so much blood rushing to their face that their vision takes on a red haze!

Kristen Cruz. I See Red. Best Audio. America’s Got Talent. Auditions 4. June 21, 2022

Literally Seeing Red Light

Now the most obvious LITERAL interpretation of “seeing red” would be plainly seeing an object in real life that is colored red, such as a red heart drawn on a page, a bright red dress worn by a woman walking by, or a stoplight on the street-corner. This isn’t what I want to talk about, however; instead, I want to talk about red emerging during the phenomenon of seeing colors during meditation, reiki, acupuncture, or energy work.

Yes indeed — as you can see from the Комментарии и мнения владельцев section in the article linked above, there are a whole lot of us who visualize colored light moving in very specific energy flow patterns during those specific liminal space states of bodywork! In that popular article, I talk specifically about how I see purple, yellow, and white, and hypothesize about their possible meanings… but what about seeing RED light behind closed eyes during bodywork? When does that occur, and what does it indicate? My recent experiences compel me to share some theories.


Red Chakra Color and Meaning

In the world of energy work, each chakra (energy center in the body) correlates with chakra colors. The color red is associated with the First Chakra: the muladhara, or root chakra. This energy center is located at the base of your spine.

About the First Chakra (Root)

The red, First Chakra is linked with feeling grounded and rooted in the earth, community, and yourself. It’s about having your basic needs met, and feeling safe and centered. Having the muladhara aligned helps with freedom from fear.

Seeing a Red Aura in Energy Work

Now, red is not a usual color that I see during energy work (I see purple above all, with greenish yellow and white mixed in), but since I started my Boston Reiki practice, I’ve started to see a read aura during quite a few instances with clients that I’d like to discuss, and to investigate whether any of you have insights, or have had similar experiences.

Visualizing the Red Chakra

The most common way I see pure red is when doing Reiki on a client with very strong fearless energy. When I put my hands on people with this trait, the flood of red light is clear and pure. It’s usually in a bright, dense Cloud with a black hole in the middle (as I illustrated in my drawing right above this paragraph) — a form that’s very different from the intricate and more delicate designs I usually see with purple, yellow, and white.

My hand position on the client’s body doesn’t always correlate with the location of the red chakra if the person’s red energy is strong enough. Yes, I’ve seen that red Cloud when my hands are doing reiki around the hips (First Chakra region), but I’ve also seen it when placing my hands on the shoulders of a man who clearly had vibrantly rooted earth energy, and on the head of a female client who was powerfully opening her own business.

The Meaning of Seeing Red Chakra Energy During Meditation or Reiki

I hope you see now why I started this article with an English lesson about the common idiom “seeing red.” The reason was to distinguish that the meaning of the idiomatic figurative expression “seeing red” (“being angry”) does NOT correlate with what it means to literally see red light during bodywork.

Rather, if you’re seeing clouds of red color while doing Reiki, meditation, acupuncture, massage, or other energy healing, I’m 99% sure that it does NOT indicate anger. Instead, it makes much more sense that it’s correlated with the first (root) chakra, indicating a strong and powerful rooted energy, and a freedom from fear — OR (particularly when the color is present in the “wrong” chakra) — seeing red might indicate misalignment or blockage in that first chakra, which could indicate the presence of fear in some area.

A Red Aura with Other Colors

Next, I want to talk about two variations of seeing a red aura that I recently saw while doing Reiki energy work on clients. Each appears to have a different meaning and function.

Seeing Red and BLACK in Reiki

First, let’s unpack the meaning of seeing black alongside red during energy healing. I have a whole other article focusing on seeing black energy during Reiki (and the associated Earth Star Chakra), but it’s important to bring up here in the context of seeing red, because I’ve now seen the two colors together with certain clients.

Now, it may seem like nothing special to “see black” when your eyes are closed, but the black color I’m talking about is very different. The other day when working with a client for Reiki, the moment I touched the man’s head, a much darker black Cloud swirl poured into my vision (almost like ink being poured into dark water) and I felt like I was falling and sinking into it. I relaxed myself and began to look carefully into the black pool to see what there was in it. Upon my gaze, I began to see swirls of dark red moving through the black, as I drew above.

Meaning of Red and Black Energy

What might be the meaning of this? It really got me thinking. In our society, we are quick to associate black and other dark colors with negativity, but I’m not sure that’s the case here. It seemed more positive. Yes, the client was talking about dealing with anxiety, but the feeling I got from these meditation colors and the depth of the “falling” feeling was one of truly expansive power — that the person had a formidable soul and spirit which was so deeply grounded (as the red chakra is about being grounded in earth) that it was almost subterranean. I’m curious to hear your thoughts on the meaning of the black and red color combination during Reiki or bodywork!

Seeing Red and ORANGE Colors

The next variation of seeing red that I experienced this month is orange light mixing with the red. I saw this recently with a client when my hands were between their hips and waist. This makes sense because the Second Chakra — Sacral Chakra or Svadhistana — is connected with the color orange, and is located right above the first (red) chakra, directly below the bellybutton. (See my full article on the orange chakra here.)

In seeing a Cloud of orange light and red aura together, I was likely tapping into a mix of the vibrations of those two energy centers. I’ll write more about orange specifically later, but the orange chakra is connected with pleasure, sensuality, and creativity, and when it’s blocked, it’s associated with guilt.

One of the most satisfying Reiki moments I’ve had recently occurred while working with a client who at first had no visible color energy in their hips — indicating a blockage of that creative and sensual joy. (At first, the red and orange were actually present in the “wrong” chakra — in their head and chest.) After an hour session with this client, however, I returned my hands to their hips… and very clearly saw red and orange flowing! I actually teared up with delight; the session had done the trick to fix the flow and put the colors back in the right chakras!

Seeing Red Chakra Aura Energy, in Sum

Clearly, there is a lot to dig into here about the phenomenon of seeing red chakra energy during healing work like Reiki. There have been so many people writing in about seeing purple, a yellow aura, green aura, and white chakra energy during mediation that I’m truly curious what characteristics of people see red auras instead. Do share your thoughts and experiences, and thank you for connecting!