Why Is The Sun Yellow, And The Sky Blue?

A holistic view of health and medicine turns many commonly held ideas either inside-out, upside-down, or both. Medicine which is curative of the root cause rather than suppressive of the symptoms; seeing the interrelationships of different systems, rather than single body parts which are ‘broken’; or even the radical concept of being able to remove past shocks or traumas from the cellular memory with energy medicine, just to name a few.
The conceptual building blocks of Heilkunst were not chosen in order simply to be contrary, but rather emerged out of the scientific thought process of a number of researchers over the past couple of centuries. At root behind all of these contributions is a methodology of science which begins with the holistic nature of life, and likewise, with a mode of thinking and consciousness which knows how to see the parts through the whole, rather than as a haphazard collection of separate items. Any true life science needs to function in terms of a form of thinking which is itself alive.
The difference between this holistic mode of thought, and the usual Allopathic mode is illustrated in the historical difference between Goethe and Newton, in terms of their respective theories of colour. Newton’s theory is the one which continues to be adopted, as it conforms with the dominant Allopathic mode of thinking in science. His famous observation of pure white light passing through a prism and being broken apart into all the separate colours of the rainbow is an illustration of this mode of thinking which seeks to break a phenomenon down into its component parts. If you just thought of a prism as the basis of a clever Pink Floyd album cover, you may be interested to find out that there’s a lot more to it!
Goethe saw something very different when he looked through the prism — he was led to a radically different conclusion about light and colour, which is that there are actually two spectrums — a spectrum of light and a spectrum of dark. We no longer need to be stumped when our three year old asks us “why is the sky blue?”, if we use Goethe’s theory rather than Newton’s. The colour of the sky at different times of the day (the spectrum from the pale blue at noon, to the almost black ‘midnight blue’ at midnight) results from the darkness of space (the spectrum of dark) being progressively lightened according to the strength and relative position of the sun. The colour of the sun, in contrast, is the result of a relative darkening of the spectrum of light — the high noon, pale yellow appearance of the sun is a very small darkening of the spectrum of white against the background of the darkness of space, while the orange-red sun of sunrise or sunset is produced from a much greater darkening effect of this same spectrum of light.

Aside from actually being able to answer your three year old’s questions, I provided this as an illustration of the more general pattern of holistic thinking in health and science, which always finds the living polarity of any phenomenon, rather than conceptually killing everything through a one-sided abstraction, like the proverbial butterfly collector.
If you like, I can also help you with the other famous question of three year olds, of “where do babies come from?

4 thoughts on “Why Is The Sun Yellow, And The Sky Blue?

  1. Jeff,
    Great explanation of Goethe’s approach, especially in relationship to understanding that everything has a polarity; to understand this phenomenon in our approach to life.

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