In the process of writing the fourth book in my Enchanted Bookstore Legends, entitled Staurolite, I’m expanding and developing the foundation of the magical lore of my fantasy world. It’s based upon a group of four mystical gemstones that connect with the four Chinese elements of air, earth, fire, and water. The book’s title is actually a known gemstone, staurolite. The gem corresponding to air that I have chosen to work with is the moonstone. In my series, it serves as one of the powerful keystones that can empower the good Alliance to overcome the threatening attacks by the evil Dark Realm. When I selected my keystone which corresponded to air, I considered many attributes that would make it an empowering symbol.
I’ve long been fascinated with blue-white opalescence of the stone, sometimes described as ‘billowy light’ gliding over the smooth cabochon surface. Gemologists refer to this characteristic as adularescence, and a synonym for the stone is adularia. Moonstone can be colorless, white, yellow, green, brown, orange, pink, or grey, but it always has a white or blue sheen. The best moonstone is colorless with a blue sheen. The colored varieties mainly come from India.
The mystical connections of the gem intrigue me. Moonstone is considered a birthstone for February, a mystical birthstone for June, an astrological birthstone for the star sign Cancer, and the Ayurvedic birthstone for September. I’ll soon be studying Ayurvedic yoga during my teacher training this year and am eager to learn how this stone is used in that science.
Traditionally, some believe moonstone can be used to balance a one's yin and yang. The gemstone is thought to soothe and balance emotions and evoke calm responses. Called a visionary stone, moonstone brings inspiration, strengthens intuition and sensitivity, enhances creativity, allows the wearer to see situations from different angles, and helps one to see things more clearly. It has even been said that moonstone has the power to grant wishes. Some believe this stone will build self confidence, enhance compassion, and promote happiness and longevity. It is also thought to be a stone of protection, especially for travel at sea, pregnancy, and childbirth.
It is also considered an ideal stone for lovers, since moonstone is reputed to bring forth tender feelings, protect true love, support a person's emotional and dreamy tendencies, and increase sensitivity to others. It is said to attract friendship and loyalty to the wearer, encourage personal attachments, help obtain romance, and arouse tender passion.
With all of these positive characteristics combined with a captivating appearance, it’s no wonder this stone is often attributed with magical properties in fantasy fiction. One series I especially love that uses moonstones as a foundation for mysticism and spirituality is Sharon Shinn’s The Twelve Houses. Her goddesses are guided by gemstones, the most widely followed being the Pale Mother/Silver Lady/Goddess of the moon who uses the moonstone as her symbol.
What other works of fantasy do you know that use moonstones in mystical or magical ways?
Photo credit: By Memecry2 (Own work) [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC-BY-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons