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The power of stones

Can wearing a ruby enhance your love life? Can an emerald help you see the future?
© Janaeken |
Diamonds and rubies for love. Black tourmaline crystals or jade for protection. Pearls for purity. Throughout history, people have ascribed mystical powers to jeweled adornments, and many of these beliefs persist, at least in some circles, in modern times. Is it possible there’s something more than their beauty that causes us to lust after stone beads? Could they be whispering a subtler message than "wear me — I’m gorgeous"?

Let’s take a look at the basis for the idea that stones, in addition to their physical properties, also have metaphysical properties that can heal, soothe, and protect. Can a pendant or a chunk of rock cleanse your aura (if you have an aura)? Do quartz crystals really amplify energy, or is that a bunch of new-age malarkey? I mean, it seems impossible that cultures all over the planet just made up baseless yet similar stories about stones--stories that were so good that some of them are still told to this day. 

Protects against negativity


Cleanses energetic obstacles, intensifies thoughts and feelings, sometimes called a master healer.

© Bwylezich |

Activates the heart chakra


Enhances communication, psychic abilities 

The Science of energy

Gemstones are uniquely stable arrangements of molecules that have formed in the earth over millions of years, durable enough to last millions more years. Why wouldn’t they have special properties? Rather than debunking the myths, cutting-edge research shows that stones do emit various measurable energetic fields, including piezoelectricity and pyroelectricity — and that everything, when you get right down to it, is energy. Quartz, for instance, vibrates at such precise frequencies, it is used in watches, electronics, and to transmit radio and television signals.

Of course, no bead, stone, or piece of jewelry is going to solve all of our problems, however fabulous it may make us feel. But there are things they may actually be able to do. If we accept the quantum physics concept that not only are we surrounded by an energetic field, we, in our essence, are an energetic field, and we constantly create and alter that field with our every thought, our every feeling — wait, what? You don’t accept that? You fear I’ve gone too far this time, and am about to tell you to go find a guru to meditate with in a cave somewhere? Well, my dears, all I can say is, the gurus thought of it first, but it was good enough for Einstein, too. (And if you don’t think his brain emitted a huge energetic force-field, then please explain that hair.)

Sorting fact from fiction

So let’s go with the idea that anything less than radiant health and happiness is a disturbance in our energetic field, and that stones, due to their molecular structure, emit deeply harmonious vibrations that help restore our energy to its optimal pattern. Again: this is real science. But it doesn’t mean all those ancient/new age things said about stone healing are true. Energetic healing is not only subtle, it’s interactive. Rather than a stone having a predictable effect on a certain mood, or body part, its energy interacts with our energy depending on the subtle flow of infinitesimally small particles. Science. I swear.

This understanding allows us to separate out folk beliefs based on things like a stone’s color — aquamarine is said to prevent drowning, because it looks like water. Hmm. I’d still go with a life preserver. But it’s also said to calm fears, promote courage, aid with self-expression, and many other good things. Fear greatly hampers our ability to do just about everything, including react quickly and calmly during an emergency, so if the stone does have a soothing vibration, it really could help with a huge range of situations, even reducing the likelihood of drowning. A number of stones, including amethyst, black tourmaline, and labradorite, are said to protect the aura from negativity. And what is an aura if not that energetic field we mentioned earlier? Funny how many ancient beliefs are actually supported by new discoveries. The oldest concept in human spirituality is the sacredness of nature, and stones are the oldest, most unchanging things in the natural world.

Some of the what is said about jewels — the whole "birthstone" thing, for example, or the idea that a diamond is a necessity for engagement — are clearly marketing ploys designed to sell precious stones. And some of the old folk beliefs — like amethyst prevents drunkenness or that jade conferred high morals on those wealthy enough to wear it — will not hold up to scrutiny. But aura protection? Increased energy? Freedom from fear? Perhaps these are neither outdated superstitions or new-age nonsense, but subtle, yet real, benefits that stones can confer upon those of us who choose to wear, and surround ourselves with, natural gems and crystals. 

Provides aura protection and enhanced awareness of multiple realities

Quartz crystal
Clear quartz

Amplifies energy

Rose quartz
Rose quartz

Promotes harmony, emotional healing


Enhances passion, vitality, life-force


Offers protection, inspiration, and healing 


Improves truth-speaking, physical healing, protection

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