Gemstone History and Properties
The humble Quartz, the crystalline form of oxidized silicon, is in fact the most abundant mineral on earth and includes many of the most popular gemstones in use today. It is relatively sturdy at 7 on the Mohs scale, yet is still softer than many other gemstones. Quartz gemstones normally occur in two growth forms. The first is a single, cohesive and usually transparent crystal like in the case of Amethyst and Citrine. The second is a mesh of tiny crystals known as a cryptocrystalline structure, like in the case of case of Agate or Jasper.
Aside from their structure, Quartz gemstones are also divided by the plethora of colors they exhibit. A colorless quartz is sometimes called Rock Crystal while a yellow one would usually be called a Citrine. In in the case of Gem Therapy, these different colors also dictate which planet the stone belongs to with colorless being associated with Venus, green with Mercury, red with Mars, yellow with Jupiter and purple with Saturn.
The White, Colorless or Crystal Quartz, also known as Rock Crystal, looks quite similar to a piece of glass due to its clarity. It is quite abundant in mountainous regions worldwide, and as such was among the first gemstones to be used by humans. Some have speculated that Crystal Quartz could have been either the Bareket or the Yahalom mentioned in the bible, but currently there is not enough evidence to know for certain.
Legendary properties and historical uses
While historically most gemstones were available only in certain locations and could be obtained in other parts of the world only through international trade, the abundance of Crystal Quartz made its use by ancient cultures almost universal. But despite this plurality of sources and cultures, the legends surrounding Crystal Quartz are surprisingly similar worldwide from the Australian medicine man to the Siberian shaman.
The main power attributed to Crystal Quartz was the ability to aid in divination and contact with the spirit world. Its clarity together with its other optical properties, such as the ability to reflect light shining on it and split into a rainbow light shining through it, made it appear in the eyes of most cultures as a doorway to other worlds. This association also made it a popular talisman among shamans and mystics, and developed in the middle ages into the famous Crystal Ball, which was literally made out of a Quartz crystal.
A popular belief among the ancient Greeks and Romans was that Crystal Quartz was made from solidified ice. As a result, it was sometimes used both in antiquity and medieval times for cooling the body and even as a means to break a fever. Other medicinal properties attributed to Crystal quarts included the ability to alleviate thirst, cure kidney stones and urinary diseases, and improve sleep. Crystal Quartz was also used to make the earliest optical lenses for glasses, literally restoring people’s sight.
A lesser known use for Crystal Quartz was the widespread custom to place its crystals in burial mounds and graveyards. These were believed to serve both as an appeasement for the dead and as protection for the living, as it was believed that in a worst case scenario the dead spirit will be trapped inside the crystal and thus unable to haunt others.
The stone according to Hindu belief
In Hindu belief certain gemstones are connected to certain planetary deities, and these gemstones are able to transmit the energies associated with these deities to a person wearing them, allowing him to enjoy the benefits of those energies in the process.
According to Hindu belief, the Crystal Quartz is a representation of the energy of Venus, the god Shukra, on earth. The god Shukra, who physically manifests as the planet Venus, is considered to be the teacher of the Demons of the Hindu pantheon and the god of beauty, pleasure and relationships. To find out more about Venus please visit “Venus-Ishtar-Noga-Shukra –Princess of the planets”
According to vedic astrology, a Crystal Quartz is suitable for a person if Venus is well positioned in his natal chart, and is especially recommend if its placement is weak as that is an indicator for relationship and money problems. If the position of Venus is harmful however, the use of a Crystal Quartz is considered dangerous and is highly discouraged.
Among the properties ascribed to a Crystal Quartz when it suits a person, are the ability to significantly improve relationships in general and relationships with women in particular, aid in financial matters and help control cravings and addictions. In addition, it is said that the Crystal Quartz can help stabilize emotions, increase passion and help cure diseases related to the lymphatic and reproductive systems.
If however, the Crystal Quartz proves unsuitable it is said to cause health problems, relationship difficulties, greed or overspending, addictions and infidelity.
According to Hindu belief, if one wishes to gain the blessing of Venus, he should wear an eye clean Crystal Quartz that is set in jewelry made of one of the following metals: silver or white gold. The jewelry has to be made in such a way that the stone will be in contact with the skin, hence earrings are unsuitable. If the stone is set in a ring, the ring must be worn on the little or the ring finger of the right hand for right handed people or the left for left handed people and women.
Before wearing such a talisman for the first time, it must be washed in fresh milk and afterwards washed again in Ganges water (or any other holy water). The talisman must be worn for the first time at sunrise on a Friday falling close to the full moon.