In feng shui we always ask ‘what does it mean?’ and ‘how does it work?’ Is there a reason, we ask therefore, why Pantone added the number in declaring Ultra Violet 18-3838 as the color of the year for 2018? Chinese numerology and feng shui, of course, would welcome this because ‘eight’ is one of their most auspicious numbers.

Violet is the color at the end of the visible spectrum of light with a wavelength of approximately 380 – 450 nanometers. The definition of the prefix ‘ultra’ as ‘extreme’ or ‘beyond’ would therefore render ‘ultra-violet’ invisible according to Wikipedia. Pantone explains that “Ultra Violet is a dramatically provocative and thoughtful purple shade that communicates originality, ingenuity, and visionary thinking that points toward the future. In other words, Ultra Violet is futuristic and full of promise.

The singer Prince and other artists have brought shades of Ultra Violet to the forefront as expressions of individuality and creativity. Ultra Violet, Pantone explains, conjures mindfulness, spirituality, creativity, experimentation, and non-conformity. Pantone suggests that Ultra Violet offers a higher ground to those seeking refuge from today’s over-stimulated world.

Not to be confused with purple, violet is a single spectrum color while purple is a double spectrum color since it has a lot more red. Violet is predominantly blue, and Ultra Violet is theoretically invisible. Purple and violet have always had connotations of reaching toward a higher realm. These have been the colors of royalty and priesthood, and Ultra Violet suggests the mysteries of the cosmos. When we look at photographs transmitted by our Hubble space craft, we see multi-colored swirls of colors pulsating into the deeply disappearing violets.

Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of Pantone’s color consulting division states that “from exploring new technologies and the greater galaxy, to artistic expression and spiritual reflection, intuitive Ultra Violet lights the way to what is yet to come.”

In science-based feng shui, we welcome the notion of being affected by invisible aspects in our environment since it is not always easy to explain qi (chi) yin & yang and other energy patterns in our space, and we are always aware of sha qi (sha chi), the sometimes threatening dangers in our surroundings.

All too often we get warning signals about the dangers of ultra violet radiation and exposure to UV rays and sun damage. Our research tells us about the ABCs of UV light. UVA rays age skin cells and can damage their DNA. These cause long-term skin damage such as wrinkles and age spots. UVB rays cause sunburns and cause most skin cancers. UVC rays cannot penetrate our atmosphere. Significant variables are time of day, season of the year, distance from the equator, altitude, cloud cover, and reflection off a surface. In maintaining good health we need to take all of these into consideration. In contrast to such dire warnings we hear about the benefits of UV lights and how ultraviolet devices offer numerous benefits when added to a home’s heating and cooling system, including keeping cold and flu germs at bay while killing bugs and bacteria.

Once again we recognize that feng shui challenges and recommendations always need to be based on careful considerations of science-based research and personal needs of persons and their space.

In view of all of the above, feng shui would recommend that Ultra Violet 18-3838 should be used sparsely and with great care. Fashion will probably dictate the use of Ultra Violet with numerous products from nail polish to sunglasses. And for those who are allergy prone, a UV light in the HVAC air handler might be of great help.

Mindful use of Ultra Violet could benefit those who need strong focal points. Desk accessories or throw pillows might be fun and futuristic additions to the color scheme in your space. For those in need of wood element adjustments, Violets, the humble but beautiful little flowers will enhance a garden or provide indoor enjoyment with one or more potted plants of Violets.

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