“Be a rainbow in someone else’s cloud.” – Maya Angelou
From ancient times humans in various cultures throughout the world have been enchanted by rainbows. In our modern times we understand that rainbows are optical illusions create by the refraction of light through droplets of water. However, for thousands of years humans have explained the phenomenon of rainbows in different ways through their mythology.
The Australian Aborigines tell tales of the rainbow serpent or creator energy that is a part of the Dreaming or infinite time. Likewise, in Navajo and Japanese traditions rainbows play a major role in the creation of the world. In Chinese legends the rainbow is seen as a two headed dragon that brings the rains and the blue skies that follow. In the pre-Incan cultures of Peru the rainbow was a jaguar, who could provide a bridge between the heavens and the earth. In Nordic and Siberian traditions the rainbow is also a bridge to the afterlife and the sky gods. In the Hindu tradition the chakra system reflects the colors of the rainbow and legends tell of the gods using the rainbow as a bow to shoot arrows of lightning. In Buddhist legends the rainbow is the symbol for the highest state of being without individual consciousness which precedes Nirvana. In Judeo-Christian mythology the rainbow is the sign of God’s promise not to destroy the world with floods. And, in Celtic tradition the rainbow is a sign of good fortune to the one who can find the pot of gold at its end.
The No Regrets Project proposes that rainbow colors serve to remind us to create our own legends of who we truly are in this life. When you see a rainbow, remember to check in with yourself to see if you “Choose Joy” in your life. The colors can give you “Courage to Be Me.” The abundance of the color spectrum will remind you to “Be Grateful Everyday.” The ancient connection that we all have with the rainbow will help us “Trust – Take the Risk.” And, when you cannot find a rainbow you can still “Love Yourself & Share It” with the world.