After writing previous opinion pieces for this blog on the hidden messages in movies such as Planet of the Apes, X-Men, Avatar, and Black Panther it is rather obvious that Hollywood movie directors use film the same way writers like George Orwell and Arthur Miller use literature. Film like literature and comic books can be used in a metaphoric way to teach lessons through symbols. So is there a symbolic language in Avengers Infinity War, and if so what is it? The answer to that is yes, and the key to truly understanding the message of Infinity War lie in understanding the Infinity Stones/Gems, and how they are similar to the Avengers, as a team, and how they are different. Also I want to highlight how the message in Avengers: Infinity War through the ingenious use of color also connect us to questions about our existence as a human family, and even deeper questions about the universal laws that govern our very planet.
1. Thanos has only six rainbow like stones, shouldn't there be seven? In the movie Infinity War we see the Titan Thanos on a power quest to unite the six color coded Infinity Stones as a way to achieve ultimate godlike power. It is by capturing the stones and placing them in his glove like gauntlet that Thanos can accomplish his real goal. What goal is that you might ask? The answer is two fold. Thanos is motivated by a love for death and destruction, as well as a selfish ego driven desire for complete power. Thanos in the end accomplishes what he sets out on which is destroying the population, and becoming an all powerful omnipotent being, but in doing so he only has succumb to his lower self and baser desires.
Thanos power is omnipotent, and yet stifled by his narrow vision driven by ego, selfishness, and taste for death. A ruler of death is no longer really a ruler at all.
Much like a kindergartner who does not want to share in the sandbox Thanos fails to truly unite. What good is taking all the toys, if it leaves you with no one to play with. For those that follow the comic books (Marvel: The End) story arc Thanos is eventually left unfulfilled by his "accomplishment." Yes, he becomes the ultimate ruler, but the ruler of what? Thanos brings peace by leaving everything in pieces. Thanos stones are colorful like the rainbow, but they are lacking something. There are seven colors in the rainbow. Thanos stones use rainbow colors, yet they are only six in number not seven, so they seem incomplete. Is this all coincidence? The thing that Thanos is lacking will be discussed later in the article when the topic of chakras and true awakening is addressed.
2. Thanos stones seem to lack what Sir Isaac Newton's prism reveal. Before Sir Isaac Newton came on the scene most people believed that sunlight was colorless. It was Newton through his experiments with prisms that proved that light is indeed colored.
Newton was a man of science. Some call him the first modern scientist famous for his investigations into higher mathematics like calculus, and his theory on gravity and how laws in space also govern us on Earth. As they say "as above so below." What is lesser known about Newton is he also studied the occult, and was not shy about giving praise to the philosophers from the ancient Egyptian and Greek world who came before him. Newton knew all to well that when it came to science he was "standing on the shoulders of giants." Newton knew that the light from the sun appeared as white light; however, when the suns rays went through a prism the prism revealed that the suns rays were really united by colors just like those found in a rainbow. When Newton's friends challenged him by saying the prism is only changing the color of light. Newton performed a brilliant test. He had light go through one prism, but left a slit in a sheet that only separated green light. He then set up a second prism to see if the prism would indeed change the separated green light into a rainbow of colors. The green light stayed the same unchanged, thus proving that the prism did not make the light change the sunlight was already an array of beautiful rainbow colors. It is this unity of seven colors that Thanos was ultimately lacking.
A hint that the secret message in Infinity Wars is the key to understanding light and color is the fact that the green Hulk in the movie was also separated from the Avengers unable to use his powers and unite with them. Hulk is indeed separated from the Avengers in the exact same way that Newton separated green light in his prism experiment. Of course in the future I'm sure the Hulk will be able to reclaim his powers, but the symbolism was clearly made.
3. Why does Captain America have an all black costume and shield? This is suppose to be the most patriotic Avenger (red, white, and blue right?) and he is dressed in all black?
A black uniform and shield for Captain America?
This doesn't seem to make sense, unless there is a deeper symbolism at play. Are Earth's Mighty Avengers a symbolic representation for the laws of primary color? Though Captain America is dressed in all black in the world of primary colors, or artistic color, you can make the color black by mixing red and blue, so in essence Captain America is symbolically still as patriotic as ever no worries.
It's not ironic then that it is the King of Wakanda the Black Panther who gives Captain America his new shield, an all black shield at that. Some say in the world of color according to sunlight black is not a color, and this may be the case, but black acts as an absorber of color. Does not the Black Panther and Wakanda absorb the Avengers in as they participate in a final battle against the villain Thanos. A once closed Wakanda is now willing to form alliances with the world. This is of course the opposite of what both Killmonger and the former isolationist Ta'Challa wanted, but this is a new reformed Ta'Challa more of a pragmatic Obama/Mandela type than a Malcolm X. Will this be to Wakanda's benefit, or detriment time will only tell.
This is a great photo of Avengers final attack, but also comical because we all know that green Hulk was not a part of the final attack because he was separated from his powers in much the way Sir Isaac Newton separated green light.
Color is all perspective where one person may see black someone else may see red and blue. Where one may see the color white another person may see the color of the visible spectrum. It just so happens that the Avenger's uniforms, or costumes represent a multitude of color.
Beautiful reds and blues can be found in the costumes of Thor, Spider-Man, Scarlet Witch and Dr. Strange. Vibrant orange, yellows, and greens can be seen among characters like Iron Man and Vision. According to the laws of science, and symbolically throughout the film the color black (Wakanda) absorbs them all. The Avengers then are somewhat of a United Nations blonde Asgardian Gods like Thor united with a nation of ebony black warriors led by a Wakandan King. Ultimately then the Avengers power resides in their united colors and their vision to protect Earth contrasted by Thanos limited vision driven by ego and selfishness.
4. Has the rainbow symbolism found in sunlight, Thanos's Infinity Stones, and primary colors been applied by humanity in the past? Of course it has one need only look at the famous rainbow flag and how it has been applied throughout history by different social and political movements to teach the Avenger's message of oneness.
This is the Cusco Rainbow Flag. Some historians date the origin of the rainbow flag (wiphala?) to as early as the Inca Empire, and its probable association with the sun god Inti, and the spectrum of the suns rays. Since then different variants of the rainbow flag have been used by many different social movements to promote unity.
Most people are familiar with the rainbow flag as the symbol for the LGBT community. The idea for the rainbow flag becoming a symbol for gay rights came about during the 1970s after artist Gilbert Baker was charged by gay rights activist Harvey Milk. Milk would become a martyr for the LGBT movement as he would be assassinated while fighting for the rights of gay people to work in schools.
Harvey Milk the very first openly gay elected public official elected to office in California. He was assassinated fighting for gay rights. The LGBT rainbow flag becomes popular after Milk's murder.
What is even more fascinating is that as early as the 1960s the Black Panther Party's Chicago chapter also employed the power of rainbow symbolism in order to highlight oneness. This was lead by none other than the charismatic Fred Hampton who with Bobby Lee created what was known as the Rainbow Coalition.
Charismatic Black Panther Fred Hampton the originator of racial coalition politics (Rainbow Coalition) utilized by everyone from Harold Washington, Jesse Jackson, to Obama.
Fred Hampton's Rainbow Coalition was based on the fact that many different groups of people no matter what color they were faced discrimination. This oppression took the form of police brutality, and poverty which was brought about by racism, classism, and unregulated capitalism. Hampton and Lee hoped to unite all poor people regardless of color because their commonalities exceeded their differences. Hampton's Rainbow coalition consisted of a group of poor Confederate Flag wearing white youth known as the Young Patriots, as well as a group poor Hispanic youth known as the Young Lords. It is interesting to note that Fred Hampton and the Black Panther's cared very little about the Confederate Flag. They saw it as a symbol of hate, but trivial. Hampton believed that if symbols can be used to turn people then so be it. It goes without saying that many of todays rappers everyone from Andre 3000 to Kanye West have also tried to co-opt Confederate Flag symbols to either turn peoples hearts, or take the power of the symbol away. Little did we know that this started with Fred Hampton and the Panthers.
In many ways much like Harvey Milk, Fred Hampton was deemed a dangerous man who was ahead of his time as well. Just like Harvey Milk ,Fred Hampton was also assassinated, but this time by law enforcement officers who viewed the Panthers ideas as dangerous. One person who did not view the Panthers ideas as dangerous was none other than politician /activist Jesse Jackson who borrowed Fred Hamptons Rainbow Coalition idea and then turned it into a political slogan in order to try to win a presidential election. Fred Hampton's philosophy of racial solidarity or race coalition politics has been used by everyone from Harold Washington Chicago's first black mayor, and has even been employed by Chicago politician David Axelrod who helped Obama win the White House. Obama received his votes from a diverse "rainbow like" group of people of all races and ethnicities while the Republican Party clung solely to mainly only a white vote. Obama and the Democrats approach to winning the White House and political seats in general is rooted in this rainbow approach of race coalition politics utilized by Hampton and the Panthers.
Jesse Jackson borrowed Fred Hampton's rainbow symbolism to empower his political campaigns.
David Axelrod a Chicagoan and political advisor to Obama used the "Rainbow Coalition" politics employed first by Fred Hampton, and Bobby Lee of the Panthers to help get both Harold Washington and Obama elected to office. Obama's use of the rainbow in his logo, and specifically the word "hope" were not coincidental at all.
Even before the LGBT community and the Black Panthers used the symbol of rainbow unity this idea was probably first used in South America among the Inca Empire. Inca revolutionaries would carry flags into battle that were painted with rainbow stripes according to the Spanish chroniclers of the time. This rainbow pattern was most likely based on the Inca god Inti who was a sun god. Did the Inca know that light was really a multi colored spectrum even before Sir Isaac Newton?
Today the Rainbow Flag of the Inca can be seen in different variants used by indigenous Native Americans throughout the Andes known today as wiphalas. Though wiphalas appear as squared checkered flags they are also very similar to the Inca Cusco Flag in that they employee the color of the rainbow.
The symbolism is likely two fold. First it is a symbolic representation of the power of the suns rays, and secondly it also symbolizes the uniting of various indigenous Native American tribes. President Evo Morales of Bolivia the first modern day indigenous President of Bolivia used as his political symbol a variant of the rainbow flag in the form of a wiphala.
Bolvian President Evo Morales using a wimphala a Rainbow Flag variant to unite people. The Inca Empire was aware that the sun (Inti) and light was represented by a multitude of colors, so they employed this concept in their flag and political system to unite different tribes.
5. Finally does Thanos colored Infinity Stones have a connection to Eastern and Egyptian kundalini chakra philosophy? and what's with the Mind Stone on Visions forehead?
I must mention that some of you may want to stop reading now, as I attempt to shed light on some of the more abstract concepts in Avengers: Infinity War that may not keep everyones interest, but if you are interested in the philosophies of the East, and like that sort of thing please continue on. One of the things that caught my attention is how Ryan Coogler's Black Panther, and now with Avengers: Infinity War are comfortable bridging comic book mythology with Eastern and African philosophy. Vision's Mind Stone just so happens to be located at the same place on the forehead as the Egyptian pharaohs snake crown known as a uraeus.
It was the belief of the Egyptians as well as those who follow Hindu kundalini philosophy that the seat of awareness and consciousness can be found in seven levels of energy that flow through the body collectively known as chakras. This kundalani energy was viewed by the ancients as a snake that coiled and then shot up the spine, and awakened the consciousness at the level of the brain (pineal gland) in those that mastered their lower self. Vision quite possibly because he is a synthetic android not a flawed organic human being has evolved into a higher state of consciousness than our favorite flesh and blood super heroes. This is why the mind stone resides on his crown and is very difficult for Wakanda's chief scientist Shuri to pull off. Also the very name "vision" hints that he views the world from a different perspective, or higher plane.
The Caduceus with the snakes wrapped around the rod is famous for being a symbol of medicine, but it also was symbolic of the snake energy that was associated with the higher state of consciousness.
The winged sun disk (heru bedhet) on Egyptian temples was associated with the higher state of consciousness and the ability of becoming one with the divine. Notice the two cobras representing kundalini energy, and the wings representing higher consciousness.
The Kundalini snake energy of the Egyptians and Hindus rising up the chakras passing the 33 vertebrae in the spine. 33 symbolically has been a symbol of higher state of consciousness. Is it coincidental that Christ dies at age 33, and one of the highest degrees to reach in Freemasonry is the 33rd degree? Is it also a coincidence that 33 multiplied by 3 gives you 99 (98.9) the normal human body temperature?
These chakras of energy flow from the bottom of the spine up to the pineal gland at the level of our forehead which represent higher consciousness, or higher self. Beyond the level of the pineal gland is the crown of our head which represent transcendent spirituality where we become one with the divine, and our thoughts become free and nonjudgemental of others.
Each of the seven energy levels coincide with the colors of the rainbow and each chakra represent different emotions to be mastered such as survival, pleasure, power, love, speech, awareness, spirituality. It is at this level of spirituality not just worshipping the divine, but becoming one with the divine that the color of the crown chakra becomes violet or ultraviolet. It is also at this level man/woman discovers the God within. It is no wonder then that the name Thanos actually translated out of the greek means god, for this is what Thanos hopes to achieve a godlike state. When reading many of the older comics that Thanos appears in it is apparent that he has power, but lacks true higher consciousness. This is shown in a number of ways for one he only has six rings and their are seven chakras. Also Thanos skin color in many ways hint at the chakra that alludes him.
Thanos is born with violet skin which is symbolic of higher chakras.
Thanos skin is the color of the crown chakra which is violet. Violet is the color of a higher state of consciousness and spirituality. These happen to be the same qualities that allude Thanos. It is of interest to state that ultraviolet is a color the human eye can not see it is only visible to some bees and birds, and just like ultraviolet light true consciousness and awareness is a concept most humans are blind to as well.
In many ways we are all Thanos failing to be united as one, and failing to reach a higher state of consciousness. We succumb to artificial differences in race and religion that are really not differences at all. The way that there is no scientific explanation for race, a serious study of religion shows us they all blend together. Newton showed us that this applies to color as well. True consciousness comes in the realization that we are all connected, and we are all one. Oneness then is the message found in Avengers: Infinity War. It is this simple idea that unlocks the key to understanding light and color.