Know Your Colors

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Know Your Colors – An Introduction to the Plant Mood Chart

By M.A. Dooley

Luckily, my face turns colors when I feel emotions. Whether I am sad or happy or embarrassed, angry, jealous, afraid, confident, guilty, content, confused, giddy, flirtatious, thoughtful, nostalgic, hesitant, determined, focused, agitated, brazen –or if I feel a song coming on–I can consult the Plant Mood Chart. Rather than grasping at some external label that’s not quite accurate, I hold up the chart at the mirror, or sometimes with a friend, to make sense of the inside of me. It’s quite convenient, saving me lots of time and effort.

Much like the little cannister with the PH and alkaline hues used to test hot tub water, but far more complex, the color chart corresponds to feelings and can even suggest a backstory as in, “What happened that brought me to this point?” 

Although little understood by the public, there is a consistent body of work by Species Translators over hundreds of years.  They were doctors, spiritual leaders, druids, medicine women, scientists, and athletes who uncovered a correlation between emotions, humans (who change color) and plants including trees, fruits, flowers and vegetables. I just checked as I am writing this, and sure enough, I’m a white orchid, focused on explaining how the system works. Later on, I might be a pink lady – a little flushed with excitement to share my research with a broader audience – and then shrinking back in sepia, like an acacia, as some consider me a whacko, which turns me embarrassed into bright tomato.

Yet there is a great deal of science behind the Plant Mood Chart similar to the deeply analyzed Bach’s Flower Remedies. Recent neuroscience has shown how the amygdala strengthens the part of the brain’s cellular memory reaching back to reconnect with earth’s ancients – plant beings. They are the ones that came first, offering life to all that followed. Biologists and healers alike know that plants actually feel and communicate. Plants not only have feelings but create feeling. Like us, they exist partly underground hiding their vulnerable veins, cool and safe, but also seek the sun their heads shining for all to see.

As we breathe in their shifting colors, the more we become like plant beings. Today, we have a growing evolutionary opportunity to adapt as carbon emissions increase along with our CO2 intake. Oxygen transmuted by the sun through chlorophyll makes me turn ivy green with envy of their design to efficiently transfer and store life energy.

With so much wind driven cross pollination, subatomic particles get into genetic codes and distribute globally. Most color changers are part wood fairy (my 24 and Me results indicated Corklorian Sprite at 1.3%). Many people are finding it natural to burrow into a soft barked redwood (sienna – comfort) or hide amongst the autumn fern (pale yellow – shyness) or wave their arms in the meadow like a big sunflower (golden – pride). Since we don’t always have a mirror and the color chart handy to verify our emotional states, listen with the ancients and their children rooted and sprouting from the earth to learn the colors of feeling. Our relationship to plant beings becomes our guide to understanding ourselves.

M.A. Dooley is an architect, mother, skier, runner, and dancer who spent most of her life exploring the Santa Cruz Mountains, Sonoma County, the Sierra Nevadas, and the San Joaquin Delta.

M.A. has been published in The Write Spot: Musings and Ravings From a Pandemic Year, and Poems of a Modern Day Architect, Archhive Books, 2020.

M.A.’s writing has appeared in Sunset, San Francisco Chronicle, and The Press Democrat.

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