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Sapphire Lore

Sapphires and Jyotisha (Vedic Astrology)

The Vedic Zodiac

The cultures of the Indian subcontinent have studied different aspects of gemstones for many centuries.  Ancient Sanskrit texts give us a great deal of information on sapphire’s ability to influence the cosmos.  Jyotisha refers to an ancient Indian system of astronomy and astrology, also known as Vedic Astrology.

Jyotisha is a form of predictive astrology; prognostication centers on an evaluation of the natal horoscope as it relates to the moment and subject of inquiry.  The practice of Jyotisha is based on the sidereal zodiac, which is different from the tropical zodiac used in Western astrology.

Jyotisha is primarily concerned with the sun, moon, five visible planets, and two lunar nodes (called Rahu and Ketu).  These “planets,” as they are collectively called, impact our lives on many levels and contribute to our mental, physical, material, and spiritual wellbeing.  Each of the planets emits colored rays of light: the rays of the Sun are red, Moon orange, Mars yellow, Mercury green, Jupiter blue, Venus indigo, Saturn violet, Rahu ultraviolet, and Ketu infrared.  When the rays are out of balance or “afflicted,” physical or emotional sickness occurs.  Imbalances result when the planetary rays are distorted or improperly received by an individual.

Gemstones have long associations with astrology because as crystalline forms of energy they retain the astral influences of the sun, moon, and planets longer than any other known substance.  Because gemstones have the ability to absorb, reflect and radiate different frequencies of light, they can be used to correct or amplify planetary influences.  Practitioners of Jyotisha prescribe different gemstones to (a) promote the positive effects of favorable birth planets or (b) ameliorate the effects of unfavorable birth planets.

Although substitutes or secondary gemstones may be used on occasion, the primary gemstones include:  ruby, which is associated with red light; pearl-orange light; red coral-yellow light; emerald-green light; yellow sapphire-blue light; diamond-indigo light; and blue sapphire-violet light.  The vibrational wavelengths of hessonite garnet are associated with ultraviolet light, and cat’s eye chrysoberyl is associated with infrared light.  It should be noted that white (colorless) sapphires might, on occasion, be substituted for diamonds because they too are associated with indigo light.

an ancient Navaratna

One of the most universal of all amulets is the Navaratna, or “nine gems.”  Navaratnas are set with the nine gemstones of Jyotisha, which are known to influence the health and destiny of the wearer.  Because yellow sapphire is associated with Jupiter, and blue sapphire is associated with Saturn, they are found in all Navaratnas.  White or colorless sapphires are never used in Navaratnas, because they are only considered as substitute, not primary, planetary gems.

A radiant cut yellow sapphire

Yellow sapphires will strengthen a weak or afflicted planet Jupiter in the natal chart of an individual, especially when considered in conjunction with an individual’s ascendant, or rising sign.  Since Jupiter is the planet of material prosperity, progeny, and spiritual growth, many consider this planet of critical importance to their lives.  People who suffer from depression, poverty, bad luck, blood or immune disorders, respiratory ailments, and liver problems may find their problems ameliorated by yellow sapphire.  Although yellow sapphires can be effective if they are two carats in size, experts typically recommend that they be at least three carats.

A radiant blue sapphire

Care must be taken in prescribing blue sapphire to treat a weak or afflicted planet Saturn in the natal chart of an individual, and it must be considered in conjunction with the individual’s ascendant, or rising sign.  Saturn is considered a malefic planet; if poorly positioned, the individual may live a short lonely life full of sorrow, disappointment, bad career choices, and fear.  Saturn rules the nails, teeth, bones, and nervous system.  Blue sapphire can be used to treat heart disease, tuberculosis, rheumatism, deafness, mental and nervous disorders, and baldness.  Blue sapphires of five carats are typically recommended, but effects will be realized if the stone is at least two carats in size.

Although diamond is usually recommended for an ill-positioned or weak Venus, white (colorless) sapphire may be used as a substitute, or secondary gemstone.  If the planet is afflicted, there may be problems in marriage or other relationships, lack of passion and sexual drive, or an absence of beauty and luxury in life.  Venus also rules the reproductive system, kidneys, eyes, cheeks and throat.

There are several ways to harness the healing powers of gems.  Some practitioners make elixirs or tinctures, which are taken internally.  However, most experts agree that the most effective means is to wear gemstones that touch the skin.

It is important to note that Jyotisha benefits the wearer of gemstones; crystals do not have the same effect.  Jyotish gemstones must also be natural, untreated gemstones.  Synthetic sapphires have not been exposed to planetary rays over countless eons, and therefore cannot be used in Jyotisha.  Heat treatment also negates a sapphire’s inherent energy, rendering it useless for therapeutic applications.

To harness the power of sapphires, they must be eye clean.  Wearing flawed sapphires, even in ignorance, can have dire effects—especially in the case of blue sapphires.   Since severe adverse results can occur, only experienced Jyotisha practitioners should be consulted for the wearing of sapphires and other gemstones.  These experts will prescribe the correct gems or combination of gems for your personal chart or condition, and they will also be able to prescribe the correct location to wear the gems.  An experienced Vedic astrologer will also inform you of the means to purify your gemstones, the best time and day to wear the gemstones, and the length of time they should be worn to have the greatest effect.

Vedic Astrology Today

Sapphires, if worn, ingested, or otherwise applied to the body, have long been credited with an ability to heal numerous medical and mental conditions. These claims have not been verified by the Western medical establishment … but their influence in the philosophies of the East cannot be disputed. Vedic astrology has a venerable history. Why not explore it for yourself?

Since ancient times, sapphires have been used to protect the wearer by boosting the immune system. They were said to calm overactive body systems, treat disorders of the blood, and regulate the glands. They were believed to alleviate the suffering caused by rheumatism, allergies, biliousness, hiccups, and cancer. They were known to cure chronic fevers and epilepsy. Blue sapphire was thought to increase the life span and to end headaches, nightmares, and nosebleeds when placed on the forehead.

If you have any questions about which natural sapphire could be right for you, please fill out the form at the bottom of our Vedic Astrology services page.

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