The history of emeralds features a strong presence in the magical and metaphysical world. Just as other notable gemstones have been heralded for their abilities to affect the human body, there are many instances of individuals and groups with the belief that emeralds hold additional powers of persuasion.
For many centuries, a number of authorities promoted emerald’s ability to help magicians see visions. When placed under the tongue, it was also said to help predict the future. As the stone of truth, emerald was thought to protect against unwanted spells or enchantment, so magicians used them to shield themselves from both malevolent spirits and the conjurations of others.
Eliphas Levi, in his “Rituel de la Haute Magie,” (1861), describes in detail the elaborate ceremonial trappings required of the magus:
On Thursday, appointed for the Works of Religion or Politics, a scarlet robe is worn; upon the forehead of the operator is bound a plate of tin, engraved with the symbol of the planet Jupiter and various mystic characters; the ring bears either an emerald or a sapphire.
In keeping with this tradition, four amulets are considered essential for modern practitioners of magic: a solar amulet, a lunar amulet, a Mercurial amulet, and a Venusian amulet. According to Steve Savedow (1995), ritual magician and author, “these four [amulets] should be considered the minimum ‘armory’ of amulets any magician should possess.”
The Venusian amulet must be acquired and consecrated on a Friday, the day ruled by Venus. It consists of a silver ring set with a precious emerald and it should be worn on the index finger of the right hand only when its powers are needed. When not in use, the Venusian amulet should be wrapped in white silk and stored in a secure place. Care must be taken to prevent it from being touched or viewed by others, especially other magicians, because this could adversely affect its ability to protect the owner.
In A.E. Waite’s Book of Black Magic and of Pacts (1913), many procedural details of ceremonial magic are provided. An excerpt from The Names and Offices of Evil Spirits prescribes the use of emerald to invoke demons:
“As regards spirits, some are superior and others inferior. They must be invoked by means of the characters which they themselves have made known, and these characters must be written with the blood of the operator, or with that of a sea-tortoise. Failing this, they may be engraved on an emerald or ruby, for both these stones have great sympathy with spirits, especially with those of the solar race, who are wiser, better and more friendly than the rest. ”
Emerald is a life-affirming stone. It opens the heart chakra and calms the emotions. It provides inspiration, balance, wisdom, and patience. It is said to promote friendship, peace, harmony, and domestic bliss by enabling the wearer to both give and receive unconditional love. Because it promotes honesty and loyalty, it is also beneficial for business transactions and all types of partnerships.
Emerald fortifies the spirit and helps to overcome misfortune. It brings a sense of joy, recovery, and rejuvenation to the downtrodden. It cures claustrophobia and rage as it inspires a sense of wellbeing. It brings subconscious thought to the forefront, and promotes self-awareness.
E1559 | medium | right| play | “Emerald ID: E1559 – Weight: 4.79 Carats – Origin: Zambia” Creative and mental capacities are enhanced with this stone, as long as it is not opaque. Emerald improves the ability to concentrate and raises consciousness. Because it banishes negative thoughts, promotes self-expression, and restores mental equilibrium, it can also lead to positive action and change.
Emerald promotes health and vigor by eliminating free radicals in the body. It is said to strengthen and heal the heart and kidneys and to promote circulatory and neurological function.
Emerald increases psychic sensitivity and clairvoyance when held over the third-eye chakra. Mystics use the stone to gather wisdom from spiritual planes. Emeralds are most effective when they are worn over the heart, on the right arm, or on the little finger or ring finger.
Emeralds continue to carry heavy influence in other areas of our cultural heritage, and we explore how they do that next in Emeralds in Religion.