Sunstone - Meaning, Origin and Healing Properties

All you want to know about the gemstone connected to the Sun

Life appears a bit monotone lately? Things you usually enjoy just do not bring so much fun anymore? You can only vaguely remember the anticipation you used to feel when something special was coming up? Sunstone, the stone of openness and joy, can be a great supporter in bringing back the glee into everyday life. But what is Sunstone? We want to give you a short overview of its origin, history, and meaning.

What is Sunstone?

Like Moonstone, Sunstone is a mineral of the feldspar group but of a subclass called plagioclase. These minerals contain translucent to transparent crystals which have a spangled, glistening appearance when viewed from a certain angle.

Sunstone is commonly known for the glowing, bright orange color with beautiful sparkle. Even though the color range goes from transparent to red, sometimes even green. It often appears to have small metallic flashes that become visible when exposed to light. These bright dots are caused by tiny, flaky mineral inclusions inside the stone. They usually are oriented in the same direction and reflect entering light simultaneously. This effect looks to us like a flash and is known as aventurescence.

Types of Sunstone

There are many different kinds of Sunstone. Some colorless, others white with only a few sprinkles of orange, or deep red and even green. Stones mined in Scandinavia are often transparent with only a slight hue of red or orange, sometimes even completely colorless.

The most extravagant variant is the Oregon Sunstone sourced exclusively in Oregon and declared gemstone of the state in 1987. It is famous for its unique star-shaped “schiller”. And is the only Sunstone that contains copper. However, the schiller makes it more complicated to work with as you do not want to destroy the pattern by cutting it the wrong way. Further, it is also fairly pricey.

Easier to get are stones that show flaky inclusions that appear as golden, flashy spots inside the stone. They come in shades of orange to red and look particularly stunning as large faceted stones or cabochons.

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History of Sunstone

Sunstone is said to carry the energy of Ra, the Egyptian sun god. Having said that, most of the documented references are not older than a few decades. Some going back a few hundred years but nothing even close to ancient Egypt.

Oregon Sunstone was discovered first by Native Americans in an area called Warner Valley. They collected the stone, traded with it, and sometimes buried their dead with a small bag of the sparkling stone. According to a legend, a great warrior was wounded by an arrow. His blood dripped on pieces of minerals, coloring them in shades of red and transmitting sacred power into the stone.

However, quite recently scientists discovered that more than 1000 years ago, Viking seafarers might have used the stone to navigate.

It appears they used a transparent variety of Sunstones to find their way when sailing under cloudy skies or twilight when neither sun nor stars were clearly visible for orientation. The Vikings discovered that by holding a Sunstone up they could locate the sun in the sky even when obstructed from view. Nordic saga says this was how Vikings managed to cross the Atlantic Ocean from Scandinavia via Iceland to North America. This theory has not yet been proven, though.

Sunstone - Meaning today and healing properties

Sunstone is the stone for positivity, passion, and joy. It holds the energy of the sun, our major source of light and vigor. Having Sunstone close by supports you in clearing away negative energy and in overcoming inner barriers that hold you back.

Wearing a Sunstone close to your body during the day will keep your intention present in every moment. We all have times where it is hard to motivate ourselves or we suddenly feel numb and incapable of enjoying things or activities we used to love so much. Sunstone helps to get back your mojo and remember to appreciate the small things. 

With its property to attract good luck Sunstone is an excellent gemstone to use as a talisman during exams or competitions. And it is believed to increase vitality and stamina. When you plan to start and maintain a fitness program, learn a new language, or other projects and activities where high energy levels are needed, Sunstone is a great benefactor.

Sunstone Jewelry

If you’re looking for something extraordinary and new for your jewelry collection, Sunstone Jewelry is perfect for you. In contrast to other gemstones where inclusions are often seen as a flaw, Sunstone becomes more desirable the more inclusions there are. Sunstone is suited for faceted cuts as well as for cabochon cuts. With a hardness classification of 6.5 on the MOHS scale, it is in the midfield for semi-precious gemstones. Therefore we recommend wearing Sunstone Rings with care as they could scratch when doing labor-intensive work.

To get out the most of your Sunstone Jewelry: A Sunstone Ring will help to receive what you desire and find more joy in your actions and daily tasks. Sunstone worn as a pendant brings wisdom to the heart and will lift your spirits.

Where Sunstone can be found

In the early 1800s, Sunstone was a very rare and costly gemstone but became somewhat more affordable and common when there were large finds in South Norway and Siberia. Since the beginning of the 20th century, Sunstone also could be mined in larger quantities in North America. That made the stone more popular and attractive for Jewelers like Tiffany.

Today, there is no principal source for Sunstone. But there are larger mines in Norway, Tanzania, Russia, Australia, India, and the US.

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