Moonstone is named for its silvery schiller, a special kind of shimmer that evokes the appearance of the moon. Unsurprisingly, it’s a favorite among witches whose practices revolve around lunar magic. Its magical properties aside, this special variety of feldspar also has a lot of healing power.
Moonstone is a kind of translucent orthoclase feldspar with a pearly or silvery sheen. It’s a sodium potassium aluminium silicate mineral that comes in a wide variety of colors, including white, gray, pink, green, brown, blue, and clear.
Despite the name, rainbow moonstone isn’t actually a kind of moonstone. It’s a white (or at least light-colored) variety of labradorite. While regular moonstone’s schiller is always silvery or pearly, rainbow moonstone has a much more varied play of colors, called labradorescence.
Rainbow moonstones also frequently have inclusions of black tourmaline, which appear as dark spots or streaks within the stone.
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Moonstone Healing Properties & Benefits
Emotionally, moonstone is a calming, balancing stone. It’s said to help those suffering from mood swings to bring their emotions under control — not by suppressing them, but by gaining mastery over them.
Its energy is cooling, relaxing, gentle, and deep, and so may help any condition that involves intense, explosive, or uncontrollable thoughts or feelings.
Physically, moonstone is said to help with insomnia, nightmares, and somnambulism. It’s also used to regulate and balance the body’s natural rhythms, including the menstrual cycle and excretory system.
Many crystal healers use this stone to relieve everything from cramps, to bloating, to labor pains. This stone is also purported to help slow the degeneration of the eyes, skin, hair, and organs. In a general sense, it detoxifies organs, improves the uptake of nutrients, and soothes the digestive tract.
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Moonstone Magical Properties
In Wicca and other lunar-oriented paths, moonstones may feature in full moon Sabbats. In fact, this stone’s power is believed by some to wax and wane along with the moon itself.
It’s also used as a stone for wishing and manifesting desires. Those who earn their money by making things — from artists, to carpenters, to farmers — can use moonstone to increase production. Frequent travelers can use this stone as a protective talisman against trouble and inconvenience.
Many diviners keep a tumbled moonstone with their divination tools, as it’s believed to strengthen psychic abilities. It’s also a useful stone for dream magic, since it promotes calm, restful sleep.
If you’d like to attempt prophetic dreaming, tuck a moonstone under your pillow before going to sleep. Set your intention to have a helpful, informative dream, and write down everything you remember immediately upon waking. They’re a popular ingredient in gem elixirs for this purpose, but any elixir made of moonstone should be infused using an indirect method only.
As with other colorful stones, the color of a moonstone can tell you where its power lies. Pink stones are useful for drawing love and enhancing beauty. Green stones are helpful for plant magic, ensuring lush growth and an abundant crop. Blue stones are helpful for healing. Translucent, gray, or white stones are excellent for spirituality, meditation, or divination.
For those who work with chakras, moonstone is said to activate the higher energy centers. Pink or green moonstones can be used to open and balance Anahata, the heart chakra. Anahata serves as the gateway to the higher chakras, since it’s the one that stands between the lower, physically-oriented centers, and the higher, thought- and spirituality-oriented centers.
Moonstone History & Folklore
Both ancient Roman and Hindu legends held that moonstones were solidified moonlight. Pliny wrote that the stone’s appearance changed along with the phases of the moon. This is the origin of the idea that the stone’s powers increase and decrease as the moon changes.
At one time, it was believed that you could see your future by placing a moonstone in your mouth during a full moon. Another bit of folklore holds that, if one gives their intended a moonstone necklace on the full moon, it will make them fall passionately in love with them.
Interestingly, cultures around the world associate this stone with the qualities of love, gentleness, and fertility. In the Middle East, women would wear moonstones to ensure fertility, and farmers would hang moonstone charms from trees to ensure a good harvest. In India, it’s a traditional wedding gift.
Moonstones are also a traditional adornment for scrying ball stands and tables, since they’re said to aid in prophesying.
How to Cleanse Moonstone
Moonstone has a hardness of 6.0 on the Mohs scale, so it isn’t particularly soft. That said, care should be taken while cleansing it — it best to avoid immersing it in water, since it can potentially leach aluminum. Instead, try one of the following methods.
Some methods for cleansing Moonstone include:
- Fumigating the stone with cleansing herbs or incense. Mugwort, as a lunar-associated divination herb, is helpful for this.
- Sprinkling it with sea salt, dried cleansing herbs, or a mixture of both.
- Using your personal energy.
- Setting the stone in the light of the full moon, preferably on top of a clear crystal or selenite stone.
- Playing music, bells, chimes, or singing bowls. If you use a singing bowl, don’t place your moonstone directly inside of it — the vibrations can damage it.
Due to its lunar associations, moonstone is said to prefer being cleansed in moonlight. If you do this, be sure to remove the stone before sunrise.
Getting Started With Moonstone
If you want to work with moonstone, it’s important to draw a distinction between genuine and rainbow moonstone. Rainbow moonstones aren’t fake, dyed, or treated by any means, but they also aren’t actually moonstone. Metaphysical shops or crystal sellers generally mark them pretty clearly, so you shouldn’t have trouble telling the difference between the two.
If you can, choose your moonstone in person. This stone generally has a very gentle, supportive energy, but every gemstone is an individual. Some may resonate more strongly with your energy than others. Choose the stone that you’re the most drawn to, and feels the most pleasant to hold.
As with any crystal, make an effort to ensure that your stones were ethically harvested. A good seller should be able to vouch for the origin of their stones. If not, they might have been mined using environmentally damaging or exploitative methods.
When you have your moonstone at home, you might wish to wait until the full moon to cleanse and work with it. There are several cleansing methods that will work for this stone, but the light of the full moon is said to be the best. Set it outside if you can, or on a windowsill, and let it absorb the moon’s rays for a few hours. When you feel that it’s ready, take it inside.
If you’re a diviner, try holding the moonstone in your non-dominant hand as you ground and prepare yourself for tarot reading, scrying, rune casting, or whatever divination method you prefer. If you’d like to try dreamwork, hold the stone in both hands, speak your intention, and place it either under your pillow, on your night stand, or in a sachet with helpful herbs.
If you plan to use your stone as a healing tool, experiment with placing it on whatever part of you needs healing. Experiment with your particular gemstone, and discover where its power lies.
Moonstones are captivating gems. Their pearly schiller and soft, almost pastel colors make them popular subjects for jewelry and carvings, as well as magical tools.
If you’re fortunate enough to have one or more of these stones in your collection, take good care of them. Set them in the light of the full moon, and work with them often. They’ll pay back your efforts several times over.
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