Used for thousands of years in jewellers to make pendants, necklaces, earrings and all kinds of accessories, garnet is a healing stone whose name comes from the 14th‑century Middle English word gernet, meaning 'dark red'. It is derived from the Latin "granatus", from granum (meaning or seed or grain). This is a possible reference to the pomegranate fruit, whose fruits contain vivid red arils (the red seed covers) in abundance, which are similar in shape, size, and colour to some garnet crystals.
In this article, we're going to explain the role that garnet plays in gem therapy, the possible health-improving benefits it can bring to us. We'll also discuss which zodiac signs it affects the most and reveal many more curious facts about this mineral.
Garnet refers to group of minerals belonging to the silicate family. According to gemmology, these garnet stones are translucent but not quite transparent.
When we think of these stone we usually visualize a deep red colour, but you may be surprised to know that they can also have a wide range of tones such as green, yellow, orange and purple. This is because their chemical composition varies and the colours and hues of the stones follow suit.
These minerals are found in igneous rock, in pegmatites and especially in metasomatic rocks by contact with magma. There are deposits all over the world, and the countries which extract the most are Tanzania, India, Madagascar, Russia, Mali, Canada and Brazil, amongst others.
Each area has its own tones, that's why we see ruby garnet from Mozambique, but orange garnet with raspberry and caramel tones from Malaysia. There are even some stones from Madagascar which change colour in candlelight!
Much like many healing stones, we 've found many tales from ancient civilizations in which they had special powers. In Rome, Greece and Ancient Egypt, garnet was carved to represent animals or faces. In the Old Testament, Noah used a garnet lantern to illuminate the ark and guide it safely through the darkness of night.
Psychologically, garnet has a wide array of benefits, such as transmitting happiness, willpower, security and energy. It's said to strengthen your willpower, boost your confidence and success. According to gem therapists, it can be a strong ally to someone suffering from depression, from mental exhaustion, or someone who feels creatively stifled.
It boosts the respect we have for ourselves and encourages us to face many day to day obstacles with a more positive attitude, it has also been said to give people the power to regress to a past life.
On a physical level, garnet has the power of strengthening the heart and regulating our blood circulation. It increases the amount of blood plasma and white blood-cells in our bodies, further increasing out capacity for haemoglobin absorption.
Garnet is has also been linked to sexual appetite, genitals, and basically everything surrounding sex. It's said to make us better in bed, stimulate our reproductive organs and protect us from illnesses. It can also help us find new dimensions for our sexuality by liberating it from all taboos and freeing us from wanting to conform to what society deems acceptable.
These types of healing stones (or gems or crystals), absorb all the vibes they come across, and are always emitting and receiving energies. When we touch one, both our physical and emotional energies influence each other as we absorb the stone's energy and the stone absorbs ours.
We would ideally purify healing stones after each time it is worn, although many people opt for a weekly clean out of convenience.
In garnet's case, all we have to do is submerge our stone in a recipient full of water which covers the stone in its entirety, any tap in your house will do. That said, we recommend not using a plastic recipient, but instead a glass, metal or ceramic one. After being submerged for a few hours, we take it out and dry it with a soft cloth or a towel. Simple... Right? Ah, and make sure to use fresh water as salt water causes a loss of colour in these stones.
If there is a full moon, garnet can be left soaked in honey overnight, and at dawn, cleaned under a tap until it is spotless.
Each chakra is typically associated to one or more of these healing stones. This allows us to balance and magnify the energy centre we are working on.
When choosing one of these stones, we must first consider various each stone's various attributes, including their energy, their colour, and how they interact with us.
To be specific, garnet is said to have a deep connection to our fourth chakra (the heart chakra), our third chakra (the solar plexus chakra) and to our first chakra (the root chakra).
There are many variations of garnet, depending on where it comes from, and each one interacts differently with us. Demantoid, a green variation of garnet, interacts with our third eye chakra (the sixth).
The signs of the zodiac have always been associated with specific healing crystals, which transmit energy and power to the wearer. In garnet's case, it's linked to Taurus, Aries, Scorpio and Leo. In China, garnet is linked the Rat sign.
For this group of zodiac signs, garnet allows them to connect with the universe the same way they could when they were a new born, and through this, calm and extinguish negative habits or tendencies that we pick up through our day to day lives, while at the same time reinforcing positive habits.
Saint Hildegard von Bingen, a German Benedictine abbess from the IX century, thought that garnet strengthened the heart.
Sleeping with a red garnet amplifies your mental horizons, motivates you and gives you the willpower needed to chase after what you want in life.
As it is red, it has always been linked to blood, and was used to make bullets for a while, it was thought that it inflicted more serious and more painful wounds than a normal bullet.
The Vikings however, used garnet to decorate their funerals, as they believed that its light would guide the spirits of the dead into the afterlife.