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Magic of Gems We, as human beings, receive vital rays - subtle cosmic radiation from planets t hat influence

our attitudes, behaviour, and environment. This planetary radiatio n has a definite impact on our ever-changing psychological dispositions. Stones and gems, coming into direct contact with the skin, exercise an electromagnetic influence over our cells. Utter the word astrogems, and be ready to be labelled as "that helpless lamb who believes in that misleading thing called astrology" by the cynic who would also deride astrology as "fated pronouncement of stars". But surge a wee bit beyond the mist of pre-conceived notions, shed that cloak of so-called "scientific temp er", and what have you? Reasons not to blithely dismiss what were first endorsed in this holy nation: astrogems -- known as jyotish gems in ancient India. Common Sense About Gems Have you noticed that, when our friends laugh (irrespective of whether or not we have understood the joke they are laughing at) we tend to laugh with them? Howe ver, we may not be inclined to join the laughter of a stranger sitting next to o ur table in a restaurant. Ever wondered why it is so? The infectious laughter oc curs because of our resonant empathy (common resonance frequency) with our frien ds. In simpler terms, our friends are on the same wavelength as us. Power of Prayer Similarly, when we pray, we send out appreciation, or a request for some quality to be improved, or a situation to learn from and, at times, we are amazed at ho w wonderfully the universal intelligence responds. However, look at it in perspe ctive, and things will fall in place. What are we doing when we pray? We are act ually resonating with the abundance of divine love and goodwill that is readily available to everyone, and our prayers act as channels through which the love an d goodwill flow to our near ones and us. Did you know that Prince Charles speaks to plants, and that plants respond by be nding and other ways? It is all a matter of flow of energy from the endearing on e to the plants. Those who practice positive affirmations like chanting of mantr as will testify the wonderful results of such exercises on the body, mind, and s pirit. Now, take a step further back, and let's move on from smaller things to the huge celestial bodies. Isn't it true that the Moon's major phases have such strong e ffects that we are consciously able to experience them? Sunspots, although of mi nor astrological significance, have also been shown to significantly affect us. Thus, the basis of all our problems in life lies in our receptivity (resonance). As our receptivity can either be negative or positive, reactive or proactive, w e must strive to become magnets that attract only the positive aspects. We must increase the positive aspect of our receptivity. Electromagnetic Resonance and Vital Rays: Likewise, we can benefit from the invisible influences if we received the correc t blend of radiation that is helpful to our particular electromagnetic 'signatur e' (corresponding to our karmic weaknesses and strengths). The real significance of karma is not in what happens to us, but in how we react to it. And the great est challenge of life is to react to events in a positive way. This is where gem s come into action. When we wear the right kind of gems, they produce helpful el ectromagnetic rays. We, as human beings, receive vital rays - subtle cosmic radiation from planets t hat influence our attitudes, behaviour, and environment. This planetary radiatio n has a definite impact on our ever-changing psychological dispositions. Stones and gems, coming into direct contact with the skin, exercise an electromagnetic

influence over our cells. The human body contains carbon and various metallic elements also present in pla nts, metals and jewels. People are very sensitive to E-M radiation. If your astr ological chart shows that your receptivity to beneficial planetary radiation is weak or out of balance, it can be rectified and strengthened by the natural elec tromagnetic radiation emanating from the appropriate gems. Just as we need vitamins and minerals to meet our physical requirements, we can also utilise different forms of invisible energy to stimulate and aid our mental , spiritual, and physical dispositions. Gemstones have traditionally been used a s a potent source of these invisible, therapeutic energies. The Sci-Phi (Science & Philosophy) Of Gems No detailed scientific explanations have been offered yet to show how precious s tones are able to rearrange and re-orient our negative karmic patterns into posi tive patterns that can heal and improve our lives. A full scientific understandi ng of the healing potential of gems may well require an unusually wide scope of investigation, ranging from the macrocosm of astrophysics to the microcosm of at omic structure. Gems, as intelligently grown crystal forms, share - by common design - unique, p atterned symmetries in their atomic lattices that contain billions of atoms in g eometric alignment. The precise structure adopted by atoms when they link to for m a crystal depends upon which kinds of atoms are present at the time, which one s end up in the crystal structure and the conditions (temperature, pressure etc) which control the way they link together. Ayurvedic Remedy Gems are considered, by those who study Ayurveda - the traditional medicine of I ndia - to have a particularly potent and stable resonance of energy (consciousne ss), due to an exceptionally free flow of energy from their geometrically aligne d atoms. This resonant energy has either an obvious or subtle effect on the mind (consciousness), depending on the individual wearing the gems. They will vibrat e at a new energy level only if they are exposed to energy of their resonant fre quency. In the human body there may be a low or weakened degree of receptivity to a freq uency of needed cosmic radiation due to a variety of karmic reasons. A gem reson ating at a frequency which is identical to that 'weak link' in the individual's bio-electronic pattern could well be the catalyst for a definite improvement in physical, psychological, and spiritual health. We can infer that gems resonate t o the needed frequencies radiated by the planets and, hence, strengthen or retun e our weakened receptivity to these frequencies. Holistic practitioners believe that disease is generally a symptom of lack, or excess, of a particular form of energy. The correct balance of energy is the remedy that seems to procure the gr eatest health. Where To Start A detailed planetary analysis is the first step. In India, the proper method of determining the right gem is to do a lifetime chart for the person, based on his or her birth information. For finding out your present planetary position, we n eed your time of birth, date of birth, and the place of birth. With this informa tion, we will find out the present planetary positions and your birth star and a dvise you the right kind of gem to be worn for this period. The proper stone is then prescribed. It is necessary that the gem must remain in direct contact with the body. So, wh en getting the ring made from a jeweller, make sure that the design is such that the stone touches the skin when you wear the ring. Also, its surface must be op

en to receive the rays. The rays should be able to pass through the gemstone, in to your body, and no metal should block their path. The stone must be worn in a ring or a bracelet, but never as a pendant as pendants swing and lessen the powe r of the stone. Choosing A Genuine Gem When choosing a gemstone, consult a good gemologist and buy gems from a recognis ed gemstone mart. Only experience will help you distinguish the fake from the re al. It is said that you can check the gemstone by carefully feeling and touching the gem: most of the gems are hard, the duplicate ones are waxy if they are squ eezed between the fingers. However, the correct scientific method is to rely on the specific gravity test and the refractive index test. Artificial and fake gem s serve no purpose except ornamentation and will not create the desired results of the original gem. A Word of Caution Remember, a gem is only a means to end and not the end of sorrows, obstructions, etc. Do not believe anyone who says that all your problems will come to an end after you start wearing a lucky gem. Just as astrology is the torchlight to trut h, and not the truth in itself (which is for you to seek with your own effort), gems can be a valuable aid to life, but not the ultimate solution. The Hidden Magic of Gems In Indian tradition, the sacred gems relating to the nine planets are called The Nine Gems, or "navratna". Each of these gems has a traditional role to play in either strengthening or counteracting the power of its ruling planet. This artic le by Uma Shankar Shukla concludes by examining the Nine Gems. Yellow Sapphire or Topaz/Pushkaraj (for Jupiter). This is one of the most widely used gems to help achieve better financial status . The wearer may expect wealth, good health, name, honour and fame if the Gem su its him or her. It is also believed that if there are obstructions in finding a suitable match f or a girl, she gets married early by wearing a Yellow Sapphire. This is normally light yellow in colour. Topaz or Pushkaraj is a cold gem. It improves vision, gives life security, prote cts ones from poverty, removes adversity, misfortune and melancholy. In diseases, Topaz cures diarrhea, gastritis, ulcer, rheumatism, jaundice, insom nia, heart troubles, impotency, gout, arthritis, pain in knee joints, etc. Topaz should be worn in gold, on 1st finger of right hand on Thursday. The weight sho uld be of 7 or 13 grams. Physical properties Sapphires, are simply crystallized alumina (Al2O3) and in their pure form are de void of colour. Sapphires are found in various colours which include pink, blue, green, yellow, orange and white. In India, Yellow Sapphire is known as Pukhraj and Blue Sapphir e is known as Neelam. It has a specific gravity of 3.99, mean refractive index ( RI) 1.765 and Hardness of 9 on the Moh's scale. Occurrence Sapphires are found in India, Brazil, Sri Lanka, Russia, Thailand, Australia, U. S.A, U.K., Nepal, Mexico, Zambia and Nigeria. In India, Sapphires are found in J ammu. These are considered to be the best in the world. Few sapphires are also f ound in Orissa but they are not of very high quality.

Identification Natural Sapphires carry within them clear signs of slow crystallization. Some of the external elements sometimes remain preserved in the Gem, which helps its id entification. Like all other precious gems it should have inclusions, which shou ld be visible to the naked eye or under magnification. Otherwise, it is a piece of glass or a synthetic substance. The inclusions are generally like 'feathers' or are like finger print impression s. Liquid inclusions looking like lace are also sometimes visible. Synthetic Sap phires are very common in the market and many traders in order to earn fast mone y sell them as originals. These are very clear and under magnification show bubb le like inclusions. Sometimes feather like inclusions have also seen but they sh ine abnormally under light. Blue Sapphire or Neelam (for Saturn) Neelam removes evil effects of Saturn. It is said that this stone has the magica l power to elevate its user to a higher status from all sides. Some astrologers believe that Blue Sapphire or Neelam is so powerful if used properly that it can alleviate even long-term misfortune. However there is a caution. Sometimes this stone may react adversely. It is advisable to first test it for a week before f inal wearing. It could give you everything you could desire - health, wealth, lo ngevity, happiness. It also restores lost wealth and property. This is normally faint or dark blue in colour. Sapphire or Neelam is a very cold gem. They may be yellow also. It brings wealth, name and fame. Also gives good stamina, longevity and security in life. Can improve fertility in a barren woman . Best suited for joy, love and happiness. It cures fainting, fits, virility, me ntal disorder, deafness and baldness. It should be used on 2nd finger of right hand in gold or panch dhatu on Saturday and the weight is 5 or 7 grams. Ruby or Manik (for Sun) Ruby is said to give name, fame, vigor, virtue, warmth and the capacity to comma nd to its user. It can also raise the individual far above the status in which h e was born. Historically, it has been symbolic of love and passion. This is norm ally red in colour. Ruby is a hot stone. On diseases front: Ruby helps cure peptic ulcer, fever, rheumatism, gout etc. Ho wever prolonged use may cause boils, itch and insomnia as well. Do consult an as trologer or a gemologist before wearing this or any other stone. Ladies should a void the use of Ruby as it can destroy the body lustre. Ruby should be used in gold in third or ring finger of right hand on Sunday. Ide ally should be of about 3 or 5 grams in weight. Physical properties The name Ruby comes from Latin 'Rubrum', which means 'Red'. Ruby, which is corun dum, is simply crystallized alumina (Al2O3) and in pure form it is devoid of col our. The rich colour in Ruby is mainly due to small amounts of chronic oxide, wh ich is able to replace part of alumina without disturbing the trigonal crystal s tructure. It has a specific gravity of 3.99. Mean Refractive Index is 1.765 and the hardness is 9 on the Moh's scale. Occurrence Ruby is found in Burma, Thailand, Sri Lanka, East Africa, Kenya, Nepal, Afghanis tan, India and Pakistan. The best Rubies are from the Magok district of Burma. T hai Rubies are comparatively less attractive and the Rubies found in Sri Lanka a re pink.

Identification Natural Rubies are never 'clean' i.e., without inclusions. They contain inclusio ns which look like 'silk'. Natural Ruby encloses small crystals of other mineral s, in the form of pale angular grains, cavities of irregular shapes, patches of fine needle-like criss-crossing canals which give a silky effect by reflected li ght. If these inclusions are not visible to the naked eye, then the eyeglass sho uld be used to detect them. If even under high magnification no such inclusions are visible, then the Gem you are checking is most probably a piece of glass. A synthetic Ruby will either not contain any inclusions or else it will have bubbl e-like inclusions, or cracks, as seen in a glass, will be visible. The cracks wi ll give a milky hue and will be of an even nature. Emerald or Panna (for Mercury) Emerald improves faculties related to the brain such as memory, communication, i ntuition, the intellect, and the ability to learn. It is normally petal green or dark green in colour. Emerald is a hot gem. It increases intelligence and brainpower, removes and cure s fickle-mindedness, loss of memory, stammering, fear from souls and spirits, co ols the harsh speech. One of the interesting observations about Emerald is that it is not prescribed for newly wed couples. It is said that newly married couple s should not use it, as it impairs conjugal happiness due to reduction in sexual desires. It is also useful for curing diarrhea, dysentery, gastritis, peptic ul cer, asthma, insomnia, heart troubles, etc. Emerald should be used in gold of 3, 5, 7 or 10 grams on 4th finger of right hand on Wednesday. An Emerald wearer is likely to find sufficient wealth. Physical properties Emerald, which is a Gem of Beryl family, is a silicate of beryllium and aluminiu m 3BeO.Al2O3.6SiO2. The colour of Emerald is mainly due to traces of chromium re placing aluminium ions in the hexagonal beryl crystal. It has a specific Gravity of 2.71, mean refractive index is 1.58 and hardness is 7.5 on the moh's scale. Occurrence Emerald is found in Colombia, Brazil, Russia, Tanzania, South Africa, India, Aus tralia, Austria, Pakistan, Kenya and Zambia. In India, Emeralds are found in Raj asthan, Orissa and Madhya Pradesh. Identification Emeralds from various mines have different kinds of inclusions. These inclusions can be seen with the naked eye, or else under magnification. If no inclusions a re seen even under magnification, the chances are that the Gem under examination is either a piece of glass or a fake. The inclusions in Emeralds include flakes of mica, inclusions like fibre, milky white spots, straw and bamboos and small cubes of rock salt are also seen sometimes. Black spots are also seen in Emerald s. Emeralds were formed when lava coming out from the volcanoes solidified on th e surface of the earth. At this stage its fast solidification led to certain fla ws in its crystal formation and certain foreign elements also got into it. The s ynthetic Emeralds contain nail-like inclusions, brush-marks or chains of bubbles . Red coral or Praval or Moonga (for Mars) It is said that Red Coral instills courage in its wearer. It also helps in curin g blood -related diseases. It is normally red in color. Coral ensures material h appiness, recovery from diseases indicated by Mars such as fever, cough, bilious complaints, smallpox, chickenpox, headache, loss of vitality, piles, boils, mea sles etc. It should be worn in silver or copper, and should be of 9, 11, 12 gram s, on Tuesday on 1st or 4th finger of right hand. It is a hot stone.

Physical properties Coral is a product of sea. It is formed from the calcareous skeletons of myriads of tiny polyps (which means insect with many feet) which live in vast colonies in warm waters at a moderate depth. It is composed chiefly of calcium carbonate. This is arranged as fibres radiating from the central axis of the curving coral branches. Its specific Gravity is 2.68 and hardness is less than 4 on the Moh's scale. It is an opaque stone. Many forms of coral exist but only high quality R ed, Pink, Blue, Black and white corals are used in jewellery. Occurence Corals are found in India, Italy, Australia, Sri Lanka, Japan, Malasia, South, A frica, Algeria and U.S.A. Identification Coral, being an opaque gem, is very difficult to identify. A lot of eye practice is required to differentiate between a natural and a manmade coral. Natural cor als, if seen under magnification, always tell the story of their origin. They ha ve black marks which are actually holes. A very careful examination is required to identify a natural coral. As real cora ls are not very clear and if clear they are very costly. Manmade corals are very commonly found in the market places being sold as real corals. Diamond or Heera (for Venus) It is said that the one who wears a Diamond has a luxurious life . Diamond is al so supposed to enhance the name, fame and artistic quality of the person. Diamon d is a hot gem. It creates goodness and removes evil and fearful thoughts in the native. It improves financial conditions and blesses the native with comforts a nd peace of mind. It also enhances sexual power. Also helpful in diabetes, disea ses of urine, of private parts, syphilis, skin and uterine diseases. Diamond sho uld he worn on 1st finger of right hand on Friday in gold or platinum. The weigh t should be 1/4 or 1/2 gram. Physical properties The name diamond comes from the Greek 'adamas', meaning 'invincible' in recognit ion of its exceptional hardness which makes it resist any form of abrasion by ot her minerals. Diamond is carbon in its pure form. Chemically there is no differe nce between diamond, coal and graphite. But the unique atomic bonding makes the difference. It has a specific gravity of 3.52, mean Refractive Index is 2.418 an d has a hardness of 10 on the Moh's scale. Occurence Diamonds are found in South Africa, Australia, Russia, Kenya, Ghana, Angola, Tan zania, Brazil and India. In India Diamonds are found in Madhya Pradesh, Orrisa a nd Andhra Pradesh. Identification For a Diamond to be real, it must possess some inclusions. These inclusions are visible by naked eye or under magnification. If no inclusions, black spots or mi lk patches, are visible in a Diamond then either it is a zirconia or piece of gl ass. Diamonds which do not have any inclusions under 50x magnification are very rare and can be found with collectors only. The small black spots visible in Dia monds are crystals of Graphite or other forms of Carbon. These black spots shine under light. Diamonds have an affinity for grease, the surface of a cut Diamond will generally have a film of grease if it had been handled. The most important test of a diamond is that, all light entering the front of th e stone is totally reflected from the back facets which form a series of mirrors . A well cut diamond if viewed from the back and held up to the light, will show only a pinpoint of light from the culet.

In addition, looking down on a brilliant-cut diamond one cannot see the wearer's finger below the stone, as can be seen in other stones. White light entering a diamond is dispersed into a spectrum of colours, giving flasks of different colo urs from the smaller crown facets. Zircon or Gomedh or Hessonite (for Rahu) The shadow planet Rahu is supposed to be responsible for all sorts of delays or very late fulfillment of ambitions. Gomedh can help in achieving speedy success in less time than expected. Gomedh also improves dealing with people and protect s its wearer from sudden misfortunes. This is normally reddish-chocolate in colo ur. Gomedh is cold in nature. It cures diseases caused by affliction of Rahu and Saturn. It also increases appetite, vitality, confers good health, wealth and h appiness and all round prosperity. It is said to be the best gem to avert stomac h ailments, disaster, insanity, and evil spirits. It should be used in silver on Saturday on 2nd finger of right hand. The weight should be 6, 11, 13 grams. Physical properties Its name comes from Greek 'esson' meaning 'inferior', since these gems are suppo sed to be less valuable. Gomedh is a Gem of the Garnet family. Magnets can pull these Gems, which is a very special phenomenon, as magnets otherwise pull only c ertain metals. Chemically it is known as Grossular (3CaO.Al2O3.3SiO2). It is fou nd in number of colours like green and pink but generally it is orange brown. It has a hardness of 7.25 on the Moh's Scale, specific gravity is 3.65 and Refract ive Index is 1.74. Occurence It is available in abundance. It is found in India, Sri Lanka, Brazil, Australia , Tanzania, South Africa, Burma, Mexico, Russia, Italy, Kenya, Canada, U.S.A, an d Malaysia. In India it is found in Andhra Pradesh, Orissa, Rajasthan and Bihar. Gaya mines in Bihar are the biggest source of this gem. Recently, very good qua lity of this Gem has been found in Orissa. Identification This Gem contains inclusions which look like scattered islands or flat bubbles. The colour is like honey shining under a ray of light. The inside, when viewed u nder magnification looks like a thick sticky liquid and certain areas look out o f shape with lesser transparency. Cat's eye or LehsuniyaCat's Eye or Lehunsiya (for Ketu) This protects its wearer from hidden enemies, mysterious dangers and diseases. I t is normally milky in colour. The gem is very hot in nature. In the event that it does not suit the wearer, the gem sometimes gives immediate signals like unea siness, restlessness etc. Cat's Eye is supposed to counter the evil effects of Ketu and diseases caused by Mars. It may prevent unexpected mishaps of life, curing mania, paralysis etc. I t protects the wearer from accidents and secret enemies. For businessmen, it is a miraculous result-giving stone, bestowing wealth by secret means like horse ra cing, gambling, stock exchange market and speculations. It also protects from dr owning, intoxication, and Government punishment. It is said to bring fortunes to those who gamble (horse racing, casinos) and should be worn in gold on 2nd fing er or 3rd finger of right hand. The weight should be 3, 5 or 7 grams. Physical properties Cat's Eye is a gem which displays a band of light at the top which moves when th e gem is tilted. The Mineral is chemically known as Chrysoberyl (BeO.Al2O3). The chemical bonding is rhombic. It is generally found in greenish, brownish, yello

wish and colourless shades. It has a specific gravity of 3.71 and hardness of 8. 5 on the Moh's scale. It is a fairly hard material which wears well as a ring st one, although it is brittle. Occurence Cat's Eye is found in Sri Lanka, Brazil and India on a very big scale. It is als o found in South Africa, Russia, Burma and U.S.A. In India, it has been found in a very big way in Orissa. It is also found in Kerela, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka , Tamil Nadu and Bihar. Identification Being an opaque gem poses certain difficulties in differentiating the natural ge m from artificial material. One striking difference which one can tell after som e experience of seeing natural Cat's Eye Gems is that the artificial Cat's Eye w ill be too clear and the Cat's Eye effect will be too marked. But a closer exami nation under magnification will show signs of a natural gem - like small marks, grains of stone and the small irregularities below the polished surface. The low er part of a Cat's Eye is not polished but only ground, so one can see the rough ness of the stone there. Pearl or Mukta (for Moon) One who possesses or wears a good pearl enjoys the blessings of Laksmi, the godd ess of prosperity. This blessed one will live long and become free of evil, deve loping vitality and intelligence. He or she will achieve much renown and come to a high position due to the wisdom endowed by the pearl. Physical properties The best pearls are moonlike, shining white in colour, with a perfectly round, g lobular shape. They should be compact, with a high specific gravity, spotless an d free from blemishes. The appearance should be lustrous and smooth. Pearls may be white, giving spiritual gifts, rosy, giving intelligence and power, yellow, b ringing material prosperity. Black pearls are rare, but are not ideal for develo pment. Coppery or non-lustrous, dirty, cracked, misshapen or otherwise defective pearls should be avoided as they are inauspicious. Occurence Pearls are found in Sri Lanka, India, Persian Gulf, Venezuela, Mexico and Austra lia. Australian pearls are generally considered less desirable. Sri Lankan pearl s are considered the best, though pearls from Bahrain are highly prized. In Indi a the best pearls come from Bay of Bengal and fom Tuticorin in South India. Identification Pearls grow inside oysters and rarely elsewhere (bamboo, cobra, conch etc). Toda y cultured pearls are available which may be distinguished from genuine pearls b y the bore, which is uniform in the genuine, but thin at the start and wide in t he middle in the cultured pearl. Another difference is the structure, which is c oncentric in the genuine pearl, but parallel in the cultured. Natural pearls are also available. These are created like cultured pearls by the intentional inser tion of foreign matter into the oyster, but mother-of-pearl is used rather than glass bead. natural pearls are better than cultured pearls, but both are accepta ble if a genuine pearl is unavailable. Imitation pearls made from fish scales are also sold, but these are not suitable for our purposes. Misshapen or otherwise defective pearls are not suitable eith er, although very small genuine pearls (too small for jewellery) may be powdered and used for medicinal purposes. One very important factor, which anyone trying to identify a Gem should note, is that some "faults" are always present in a genuine Gem - their absence and not their presence should be a cause for concern. However, as a rule, any Gem should be shaped in a pleasing manner, lustrous, of pure colour and fine texture. Pear ls in particular should not be misshapen.