Thursday, April 19, 2007

Lapis Lazuli

Lapis Lazuli, a mineral consisting of lazurite, silica, aluminum, Calcite and Pyrite, is the result of stones like Limestone and Granite becoming liquified by flowing magma. Many of the finest deposits are found embedded in layers of these stones.

It is one of the very first gemstones mined. Ancient mines in Afghanistan have been worked, according to one resource, since 6000 BC. Some of these mines are worked today using the same techniques utilized thousands of years ago.

In rare instances, Lapis will form tiny rhombic dodecahedron (12 sided) crystals. Usually not much larger than a peanut or fingernail. It has been found in greens, reds and violets, but the blue has always been the most prized color.

The historic mines in Afghanistan are still the most productive source for Lapis today. Significant deposits have been found in Chili, though these tend to be more green. Smaller occurrences of this precious blue gem have been found in Turkey, California, Canada, Russia and just outside Rome near Mt. Vesuvius.

Originally called Sapphire, Lapis Lazuli’s history is long and colorful. During the middle ages in Europe powdered Lapis was used to create a distinctive blue pigment known as ultramarine. This brilliant blue paint was used in many masterpieces and to decorate the hand written manuscripts of the day.

The Egyptian Book Of The Dead describes a monthly ceremony using a Lapis Lazuli carved in the shape of an eye and decorated with Gold. It was believed that Ra, their supreme God, would put a similar image on his forehead at the same time.

Egyptians also used the gem to create the original blue eye shadows and as a dye for clothing. It was extremely popular as a carved scarab and countless pieces of jewelry have been found in the pyramids with Lapis stones.

King Solomon was given a Lapis ring by an Angel which enabled him to control legions of demons. He used this powerful ring to build his great temple.

The Romans used pulverized Lapis Lazuli as an aphrodisiac; it was also taken as an antidote to poisons.

A word of caution if you enjoy wearing this gemstone in jewelry. Lapis is very soft and easily affected by cleaning agents and solvents. Even wearing it in a hot bath can change the color or damage the stone. It can be scratched by almost any other stone, so it is recommended that it be stored away from other pieces.

Lapis Lazuli is a frequently imitated stone. There is a man-made stone call Gilson Synthetic Ultramarine that is very convincing as Lapis. Jasper from Switzerland is often dyed blue and sold as “Swiss Lapis” and a synthetic spinel has been grown in laboratories that recreates the grainy texture of the true gemstone.

The sparkling Pyrite inclusions against the deep blue backdrop of Lapis creates a striking resemblance of the night sky. Early spiritual uses of the gemstone included prophetic dreaming or inviting a peaceful sleep.

This is an excellent meditation tool. Lapis Lazuli is highly effective at opening the Third Eye or 6th Chakra. The stone will allow for better communication with the different dimensions or use it for looking into the future. Keep this psychic stimulator with your divining tools such as Crystal balls, Tarot cards, pendulums etc.

Sleeping with this gemstone can help you see the meaning in your dreams more clearly. Allowing you to use the messages or information that your subconscious is providing.

Lapis Lazuli will attract true friendships into your life. If your youngster is painfully shy, a small piece of Lapis will give them courage. Use it yourself for better judgment and insight to make tough decisions or to see the truth in misleading situations.

A perfect wedding stone, Lapis promotes fidelity between partners. The same is true for business partnerships. It will give you wisdom and protect you from dangerous emotions like envy and fear.

It can also be worn as protection against danger or to change destructive energies into useful ones. The stone will assist you in balancing your yin yang, allowing you to take advantage of both male and female strengths within you.

As a healer, Lapis Lazuli will aid in overcoming insomnia and as mentioned earlier, used as an antidote for poisons. It can assist in treating eye disorders or pulverized and mixed with water to create a poultice.

Lapis will reduce fevers, help with diseases of the blood or aid in repairing broken bones. It imparts physical strength to the arms and legs and can be used to tranquilize frayed nerves. It provides relief from pain or help you overcome melancholy.

No comments: