Sunday, July 22, 2012

Gemology: Amethyst, the Sobriety Stone

Amethyst is actually a form of Quartz. The purple color comes from iron deposits within the crystal. Imagine, a highly valued gemstone that is so beautiful because of impurities. It is usually found in Africa, Australia, Russia, South America, Brazil, and Uruguay.

It is the birthstone for February.

Amethyst and Crystal Earrings
I found it fascinating to learn that the word amethyst comes from the Greek word "amethystos" which translated means "not drunken." In fact, amethyst was considered to prevent drunkenness which is why wine goblets were often adorned with amethyst or even carved out of the stone itself. It is called the stone of sobriety and it is symbolic of sobriety.

Amethyst Rosary Bracelet
There is a Greek myth associated with amethyst. Dionysius was the god of intoxication. Angered one day by an insult from a human, he swore revenge on the next mortal that crossed his path by causing wild tigers to tear apart the victim. Amethyst, a beautiful young maiden on her way to pay tribute to the goddess Diana, was to be that victim. Diana turned Amethyst into a stature of pure crystalline quartz to protect her from the tiger claws. Dionysus wept tears of wine in remorse for his action at the sight of the beautiful statue. The god's tears stained the quartz crystal purple, creating the gem we know today.

Anglican Rosary with Amethyst Beads and Bronze Russian Cross
Amethyst is a popular stone in meditation and crystal healing. Considered to be one of the best stones to use for meditation. it is "a stone of divine love" as I've read several times. It assists the user to turn away from self-centeredness and turn toward deeper understanding. Said to have a calming mental effect, amethyst is used for stressed out and overwhelmed mental states. It is thought to offer protection against negative energy to those who wear it. Amethyst is used in crystal healing for treating headaches, migraines, insomnia and recurrent nightmares, bringing peaceful balance to mental and emotional energies.

Simple Amethyst Bracelet
During the Middle Ages, amethyst was considered to promote piety and celibacy, which is why you find amethyst among religious adornments during that time period.

Scottish Thistle Amethyst Rosary

Purple is associated with the royal bloodline of Jesus from King David to Saint Joseph. The purple thistle, like the Scottish national flower, is associated with the passion of Christ. As you see in my Scottish thistle rosary, amethyst suits this piece perfectly.

I personally love using amethyst in my work. It's a beautiful, rich looking stone that is actually quite affordable. Not everyone loves purple, but it's definitely a statement-maker.

1 comment:

modern hippie said...

Great post! Just beginning to learn about crystals for vibrational medicine and I find it fascinating! :)