What is garnet?
Garnet is a gemstone generally known for its lustrous blood-red color, and for fostering devotional love and friendship. There are many different types of garnets, but one thing they have in common is that they all are no stranger to pressure and can take the heat! This crystal is often created through metamorphic fashion, which subjects a mineral to intense heat and pressure in an alchemical process. Garnet can help you deal with anger and stress in a productive way, especially when this energy is directed at yourself. Known as a stone capable of activating and engaging the survival instinct without up-regulating hypervigilance, Garnet can bring hope, courage and encouragement to situations that involve trauma or danger.
Garnet is a popular gemstone that was especially prominent during the period of the Roman empire. It can be found in numerous examples of a gold jewelry inlay technique called cloisonné. The term “garnet” is likely a variation of “gernet,” meaning dark red. This word shares similarities to the Latin word granum; as in Punica granatum, which is the pomegranate. This sacred fruit shares a myth with our blushing crystal, as well as the dazzling crimson color that Garnet is known for.
The name “garnet” refers to one of many silicate minerals; the most well known is the iron aluminum-silicate variety called almandine that can form with minerals like Kyanite and Andalusite.
What are the properties of garnet?
The science of Garnet not what you are looking for? Skip to the metaphysics and healing properties by clicking here!. The Garnet family is widespread and manifests in many vibrant variations and energies, thanks to a large range of possible chemical compositions. Because of this, the range of dazzling colors is myriad, and hardness on Mohs scale can range from 6.0-7.5. Almandine Garnet is also known as ‘carbuncle,’ ‘oriental garnet,’ and by the misnomer ‘almandine ruby.’ The biggest source of garnet in the world is an almandine mine out of North Creek, New York, USA. This mine supplies 90% of the world’s garnet.
Pyrope Garnet can be deep red to almost black, and is also known as ‘Cape ruby,’ ‘Bohemian ruby,’ ‘Arizona ruby,’ ‘California ruby,’ and ‘Rocky Mountain ruby.’ Peridotites will often contain some form of pyrope. There is a kind of purple garnet named Rhodolite discovered in Macon County, North Carolina, USA that is a mixture of almandine and pyrope Garnet. This mineral can also be found mixed in spessartine-type Garnet formations, and this combination creates the rare color changing or ‘blue garnet.’ Spessartine formations can also manifest with vibrant green colors.
Industrially speaking, Garnet has applications involving water blasting with sharp, tiny crystals to cut steel and other materials, or for finishing wood! Garnet is definitely capable of handling some heavy lifting, and is in it for the long haul. Pyrope Garnet knows how to act under pressure because it can be a geological sign to scientists that the surrounding geography sustained high amounts of heat and pressure during metamorphic formation conditions. Garnet can also form tell-tale crystal structures that can be used to effectively date geological events. Rarely, this gem can also be created in igneous formations.
Crystal Energy and Lore
What is the meaning of garnet?
Through association with the primal Root Chakra, this mineral can ground us in the most profound way by elevating our self-esteem and tapping into our survival instinct. This attribute can make the wearer feel safer. There are numerous examples in lore and mythology where Garnet is used as a symbol of hope, constant fidelity and faith that can overcome tremendous odds. In some accounts of the story of Noah’s Ark, Noah uses the crystal Garnet to make a holy light so that he may steer his ark to safety. Garnet in this situation, can be interpreted as an endearing symbol for the love that Noah has for God and the animals, as well as safe passage and dedication to his cause. This is also why Garnet is often given as a stone of safe-passage.
The origin of Garnet is also heavily associated with the Greek myth of Persephone. Persephone was the daughter of Demeter and Zeus. She was a Goddess of Spring who was out picking flowers when she was abducted by Hades, the brother of Zeus. Hades was the King of the Underworld, and swept her away to his underground palace in the Underworld, full of riches of every kind. There was a luxurious feast set out with every kind of delicious food you can imagine. She was told to touch nothing, but her curiosity drove her to sample a few pomegranate seeds that looked like garnets, glinting in the firelight. Because of this, Zeus couldn’t rescue her and she was fated to return to the Underworld as Hades’ Queen. Hades’ struck a deal with her and made a compromise. In Fall and Winter when the world tends towards cold and barren, Persephone lives by Hades’ side. And when Spring and Summer blossoms forth, we know that Persephone has returned to the surface. It is this blossom of vibrant vitality that the world experiences in Spring and Summer that we also associate with Garnet.
This association with the underworld is perhaps where the Scorpio association comes from! Scorpios are known to be one of the deepest and darkest Zodiac signs.
What are the potential benefits of garnet?
Garnet is widely known to be a gemstone that represents love and commitment. Energetically, this is a very protective crystal that will defend you fiercely. In the darkest and most challenging situations, working with this gemstone can bring a ray of hope and a courageous framework that will help you find the silver lining in any cloud without delusion. This shining optimism can be a great asset to any relationship, (including the one with ourselves) as it helps us have faith that the situation can and will improve. This can especially be useful if any person in the relationship has lived through traumatic experiences that might make this process difficult. Trauma has a way of convincing us that nothing will change, and that the situation is hopeless. This feeling of hopelessness can sometimes prove to be a self-fulfilling prophecy and a little fierce optimism can be really helpful in gaining momentum to reversing this unfortunate affectation.
For those such as Virgo, and those who have a tendency to be highly self-critical, Garnet can help us lighten up on ourselves. Garnet is also associated with Leo, and can be used to help remediate circulatory problems
Is garnet a birthstone?
Garnet is the birthstone for the month of January, making it a must have gem for many Capricorn and Aquarius Zodiac placements.This beautiful crystal can connect us back to ourselves and help us address any subconscious self-sabotage that might be present. For Capricorn and all signs, Garnet can solidify the necessary boundaries that keep you safe. On the other hand, for signs like Aquarius who can be a little distant sometimes, Garnet can also connect you directly with your true source of fire and light up your world with passion you didn’t know you had. Garnet is the kind of friend that is flexible, and will show up with what you need the most to balance yourself in any given circumstance.
Associated with the element of fire as well as the heart, Garnet is also known as being a supportive gem for Leo who is ruled by the Sun.
What colors can garnet appear as?
Garnet is often thought of as an exclusively red gemstone. In reality, Garnet can also be shades of yellow and orange, pink, blue, green, brown, and black. A veritable rainbow! The rarest type of Garnet is even known to change colors in different light — these are called blue garnets which emulate the aesthetics of a mood ring. The different colors of this gemstone family each all possess their own special meaning and metaphysical attributes.
*** Crystal healing is not a suitable replacement for regular visits to your physician or therapist, rather a complementary article to the process. If you are experiencing symptoms, please see a doctor immediately. Results of crystal healing may vary person to person, not all results will be the same. The claims made in the above statement are not intended to be curative and are not approved by the FDA.