Light Therapy for Learning Support
One new field of research for enhancing the texture of education is with light, especially colored light. Light has the ability to naturally turn on receptors in our brain and cells, where new information can be assimilated. Further, each color in the spectrum is a specific frequency which in turn activates a specific part of our intelligence. Colors have the ability to stimulate our intelligence, so that we can both learn more, and recover the innate “knowing” that each person has. Based on these realizations, color therapy is a useful tool in the field of education.
My career in color therapy began with an introduction by Dr. Neeresh Pagnamenta. Dr. Pagnamenta is a Swiss pediatrician. After 20 years of conventional allopathic practice, he began treating children with colored light. His results were so good that you don’t find medical drugs or even needles in his office.
One common complaint in his practice is that children are having difficulty with school. Dr. Pagnamenta’s answer is shining yellow lights on the base of the big toe (SP2) for 1-3 minutes per point. He says that two, perhaps three of these 10 minute treatments, almost always result in a call from the teacher saying that the child is more organized and present in school. He says that his success rate is over 80%.
Some years ago, he discovered, by accident, an additional benefit. When the child’s parents are in the room at the time of the treatment, often there is a perceptible change in the relationship between the kids and their parents. Children become more affectionate, and join in the family life in a new way.
While this sounds remarkable, it is understandable. Yellow is the color which activates the rational, orderly side of our mind. Yellow light on the spleen meridian is especially effective, since the spleen meridian controls assimilation of both food and mental input. Putting the color yellow on the spleen meridian is a recipe for strengthening logic. For adults as well as children yellow light makes for a more attentive, organized learner.
For people in school situations, yellow is especially valuable because we are thinking so much. Thinking consumes energy, and part of that energy is the yellow frequency in our body. When we use our minds a lot, we can run low on yellow. For this reason, having a yellow light (or being in sunshine) can revitalize our body and mind. It is especially helpful to have a yellow light for studying late at night.
On the other hand, when we are continually locked in rational thinking, we can lose our ability to imagine. This is the right brain activity, where individual creativity arises. The color that turns on the right brain is violet. Violet is the complementary color to yellow. It opens our access to the parts of us that learn through contact, imagination, creativity, and dreams.
In my practice, I commonly instruct patients to use yellow light in the morning and violet light at night before bed. The yellow gets us ready for the day’s activities, and the violet opens us to dreams where we can synthesize our experiences, and develop creative insights into the greater directions we are going.
While yellow and violet are the primary colors for education, actually all the colors can help. Let’s look at some of these other possibilities as well.
In Chinese medicine, a clear mind is based on a relaxed heart. Green is the color for this. Green nourishes the heart. Green light is very calming (like before tests). It leads to centered, focused thinking. Green helps us slow down to the right pace. It is good for all precision work.
Red, the complement to green is seldom used because it can lead to aggression. In fact, this often happens inadvertently in classrooms with fluorescent lighting. Conventional fluorescent lights over emphasize the orange-red end of the color spectrum, and make it very difficult for some sensitive people to relax. However, red is right for rejuvenating a tired body. In cases where the body’s lack of energy is a drag on mental functioning, red can be very helpful. Small doses of red are best; red is a potent stimulator, and over stimulation is not good. Orange is a very good color for body-oriented education. Orange color makes people feel happy and alive. Further, it enhances many metabolic activities that give the body good tone and attentiveness. Orange transforms shy, reluctant energy into happy activity. Orange is the color which gets slow starters going in the morning. Wear it to work or school and you will arrive with a smile on your face. Dancing, physical education, even competitive sports are enhanced by orange.
Blue, the complement to orange, is the color of wisdom. Blue helps us to evaluate material in a cool, dispassionate way. Further, it reminds us that there is much in life that we already know. It stimulates the wisdom that each individual carries. Similar to the yellow-violet colors, I recommend orange in the morning and blue in the late afternoon or evening. Blue at bedtime promotes a deep, restful night’s sleep.
One of the main benefits of color is that it not only opens the doors for new information to come in, but it actually stimulates the intelligence that is already present. In this sense, colors truly serve the original meaning of education. In the original sense of the word, edu-care meant “to draw out.” Colors do that. They draw out what is innate. They remind children, and adults alike, that there is already a natural intelligence. For those of us who think our intelligence is measured by how much information we can take in and then repeat at a later date, color light is a welcome reminder that intelligence is in everyone, appearing in different forms. For each person, this intelligence has a unique quality. Being friends with our unique intelligence is the first step to finding our unique path in the world.
Color can come into your life in many simple ways. One of the easiest is exposure to sunlight in the mornings and evenings. Sunlight is very balanced, and opens the doors to whole brain learning. For specific colors, you can buy colored light bulbs and put them in the lamps at home. Or, you can buy colored sun glasses (don’t use the glasses for over 30 minutes a day because they can affect the endocrine system). For specific color therapy, there are Molimed light pens available today which allow you to focus colors on an acupuncture point, or a reflex zone, or other energy centers. This work is exceptionally effective, and simple enough to be done by health professionals or parents.
I worked in a mental health outpatient facility in the mid to late nineties. While I was working there, one of the doctors brought a new piece of equipment in to try on some patients (and staff). It involved an eye mask and when the mask was turned on, the patient saw colors when asked questions. While I was using the mask, a coworker (that I didn’t care for, came into the room and I instantly saw a very bright red color. When I mentioned that experience, the dr commented that I must not like that person much. After that experience, I started using the eye mask for calming myself. Another staff person used it to accelerate learning a new language. Is your light therapy used for those purposes as well and can they be purchased somewhere? Light and sound therapy sounds like a great tool.
Sincerely, Gloria Henderson