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Monday, February 21, 2005

Colors: Blue

Using (of course!) the Blueletter Bible, I find that the word, blue, occurs 50 times in the King James Version of the Bible. All of these refer to fabric of some sort. Most of them are in Exodus and Numbers, and refer to various fabrics associated with Divine Worship. There is no reference to the blue of the sky, or the blue of water.

So why is the sky blue? Basically, because molecules in the air bend blue light more than other colors, so the blue is spread around.

Why is water blue? Here's one explanation. Here's another. Basically, both of them explain the blueness of water in almost the same way as that of the sky. Blue light is spread more, and reddish light is absorbed.

The Wikipedia says that blue gets its name from a word meaning "shining."

Moving to another type of sense modality, there is a variety of music known as the blues. George Gershwin wrote a ground-breaking piece entitled "Rhapsody in Blue." People refer to themselves as being blue, when they are sad or depressed, and I believe that the blues is music about bad times.

There's a hockey team called the St. Louis Blues (as of this writing, the NHL isn't playing). Duke and North Carolina are Atlantic Coast Conference basketball rivals. (Both, now and historically, have been very good teams--Michael Jordan played for one of them.) Both have blue uniforms, but the colors are different.

Blue blood refers to being aristocratic. (Blood in the veins, seen through fair skin, does look blue.)

Why doesn't the Bible mention either sky or water as being blue? I don't know. I speculate that it was because they were taken for granted. Things that we take for granted are seldom discussed. There is next to no discussion of ordinary meals, or of clothing, in the New Testament, for example. I suppose that people then, as they do now, took the color of the sky, and of the water, for granted.

I try to remind myself of things that I take for granted, and to be thankful for them. Water and air, whatever their colors, should not be taken for granted. How long has it been since I was thankful for them?

I hope you aren't blue.

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