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The Cottage April/Beltane 2002
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This Month ~ Sapphire

SAPPHIRE

SCIENTIFIC INFORMATION: Sapphire is a member of the Corundum family, along with ruby. Both are basically aluminum oxide. It's chemistry is Al2O3. All colors of Corundum are considered to be "sapphire" unless they are red (Ruby.) It ranges in color from pink, blue, green, violet, gray, yellow and many shades in between. Black sapphire is colored by an admixture of magnetite, hematite or spinel (emery). Corundum is one of the hardest stones, rated at 9. The streak is white.

ENVIRONMENT: The crystals are Hexagonal; sometimes tapering prismatic; also pyramidal, tabular. It is often striated.

OCCURRENCE: Gem quality sapphire have been found at only a few places in North America: at Yogo Gulch, Judith Basin Co., Montana, and at several places in North Carolina. Thailand, Ceylon, and Burma are the principal sources.

NAME: Corundum is from [kuruntam], a Tamil word derived from Sanskrit [kuruvinda,] meaning "ruby." (I have not been able to locate a source for the word "sapphire".)

LEGEND and LORE: Sapphire has been associated with divine favor. The Buddhists believed that the sapphire favored devotion and spiritual enlightenment. It is the birthstone for the month of September:

"A maiden born when autumn leaves
Are rustling in September's breeze.
A Sapphire on her brow should bind;
'Twill cure diseases of the mind. (5)

MAGICAL PROPERTIES: The ancient Greeks linked sapphire with Apollo, and wore it as an aid to prophecy when consulting oracles. For this reason, it is considered an aid for developing the "third eye". It was also considered to be able to guard its owner from being captured. It is worn and utilized in rituals to strengthen the ability to tap and send forth power.

HEALING: Sapphire has been use as an aide to healing ailments of the eyes. It is also considered a booster for the immune system, protecting the body in general from disease.

PERSONAL EXPERIENCE: I've only recently acquired two sapphires. One of them is from Saudi Arabia, and is faceted. The second one I bought on March 13, 1993, and is probably from Thailand. As a result, I haven't really had a chance to work with them, so I have no comments at the moment.

NOTES: Corundum is used as an abrasive. It is also used as the "jewels" in watches with "jewel movements."

-------bibliography-------

1. Scientific, Environment, Occurrence and Name are from (or paraphrased from) "The Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Rocks and Minerals".

2. Legends and Lore, Magical Properties are from "Cunningham's Encyclopedia of Crystal, Gem & Metal Magic", by Scott Cunningham.

3. Some of the healing information may come from "Color and Crystals, A Journey Through the Chakras" by Joy Gardner.

4. Personal Experience is from MY personal experience, journals and notebooks, by Tandika Star.

5. Birthstone poem from "The Occult and Curative Powers of Precious Stones" by William T. Fernie, M.D.


Sapphire: Strengthens heart and kidneys. Activates pituitary gland, thereby aiding entire glandular system. Aligns body/mind/spirit. Stimulates psychic abilities, clarity and inspiration. Creative expression, loyalty, love. Aids connection with Higher Self/Spirit Guides. Strengthens will. Expands cosmic awareness. Dispels confusion. Excellent for meditation. (5,6)

By Legion of Light

092199sapphire460.jpg

Sacred to the god Apollo, the sapphire was often called the "celestial stone" because of its deep blue color. Religion plays a large role in the lore of the sapphire. It was an ecclesiastical gem, symbolic of purity. To derive the most benefit from this holy stone, therefore, it was necessary to be pure oneself. Sapphires were used to cure all eye ailments, purify the blood, fortify the heart, and relieve flatulence. Mixed with milk, this gem dried up ulcers, boils, and pustules. Sapphire was lethal to venomous insects and reptiles.
Sapphires were believed to have gender: dark stones were designated female, light ones were male. September's birthstone is thought to make its wearers amiable, wise, virtuous, and strong.