Ratnagarbhas ( Sanskrit word) are precious gemstones (crystalline minerals or petrified material). Mother earth is the real source of all the gems that people use hence it is called “Ratnagarbhas” (mother of all the jewels). [1- DIVINE GEMS AND JEWELS, Gems and Jewels and their Creation [] ]

They have significance from the ancient Vedic point of view. In Amarkosh, [ [http://www.languageinindia.com/june2004/amarkosh.html Amar Kosh] at LanguageInIndia.com] Canto 2, Earth, the Sanskrit dictionary, thirty eight synonyms have been mentioned for earth, out of which three synonyms - Vasudhaa, Vasumati and Ratnagarbha - mean that the earth bears gems in her womb. Further, Amarkosh states that gems are unique creations which charm every human being on earth. [ [http://www.gemstone.org ICA - Startpage - International Colored Gemstone Association ] ] [ [http://www.azad-themystique.blogspot.com/ The Mystique of Gems & Stones ] ]

It is said that gems and jewels have some kind of the innate metaphysical powers, which can affect people, beneficially or otherwise. Good quality gems bestow success, bliss and happiness while the defective or impure gems end up giving misery.

Hindu historical facts

According to ancient and medieval history, India has been one of the major centre of trade in gemstones. References to gems of the Indian subcontinent are numerous and well documented in literature in India and other countries. [E.g. Varahamihira, referenced at [http://www-groups.dcs.st-and.ac.uk/~history/Biographies/Varahamihira.html University of St Andrews] and in G Ifrah, "A universal history of numbers: From prehistory to the invention of the computer" (London, 1998)]

The Rig Veda, one of the ancient scriptures mentions the word Ratna, in its first sloka (hymn).Varahamihira, who expounded Astrology, in his magnum opus, Brihatsamhita in the chapter titled ‘Ratna Parikshadhhyayang’ has referred to the gemstones as per quotes below.

1] :- ... descriptions of heavenly bodies, their movements and conjunctions, meteorological phenomena, indications of the omens, their movements, conjunctions and phenomena represent, what action to take and operations to accomplish, sign to look for in humans, animals, precious stones, etc.

In the same chapter, it is further stated:

"Ratnena shubhena,nripanaa manishri bhashubhena yasmaadataha parikshyang doibang tajj gzhaiyha"."

That means, if the good gems are worn the princes or any royal man would face blissful consequences, and if the gems are evil then would meet with evil consequences.

The Ratna-Pariksha of Buddhabhatta, a Buddhist scholar of the late sixth century B.C, also refers to gemstones.

According to Garuda Purana:. [Garuda Purana, Garuda Purana. http://www.dharmakshetra.com/literature/puranas/garuda.html.]

“There are many types of jewels. Some of the more important ones are vajra (diamond), mukta (pearl), mani, padmaraga (ruby), marakata, (emerald), indranila, (sapphire), vaidurya, pushparaga (topaz), karketana, pulaka, rudhira, spatika (crystal) and pravala (coral).”


The Brihatsamhita of Varahamihira contains a list of twenty-two stones classified as Ratnas (gems), but it does not mark the difference between Maharatnas (very precious stones) and Uparatnas (less precious stones), a distinction that seems to have developed later. Of these, the Brihatsamhita deals with four gems in great detail - Diamond, Pearl, Ruby and Emerald. The Sapphire, Chrysoberyl and Garnet are also mentioned.

The twenty-two ratnas or gems

The twenty two gems referred in Brihatsamhita [Gem described in Brihat samhitahttp://www.urday.com/gemo3.html] are tabulated.

Formal procedure of wearing Ratnagarbhas

Ratnagarbhas or Gems are worn in jewelry as rings on fingers or as lockets around the neck.Wearing gemstones as birth stones according to one's sidereal horoscope is a fundamental theory of Vedic astrology and the majority of people wear gems, singly or in combination of compatible gems on their hand or around their neck or wrist related to the strongest planet of their horoscope. Gems related to malefic planets in the natal horoscope are not used. Gem is advised to be worn to harness beneficial planets or counteract harmful planets. There are two views in this regard. Gems are also purported to have certain healing properties, although this has yet to be scientifically proven. [cite book|title=Ancient Astrological Gemstones & Talismans|author=Richard Brown|publisher=A.G.T. Co.|year=1995|id = ISBN 9748902242] "Sri Agni Puranam", chap. 246, slokas 7 & 8:states, "A gem free from all impurities and radiating its characteristic internal luster should be looked upon as an escort of good luck; A gem which is cracked, fissured, devoid of luster, or appearing rough or sandy, should not be used at all". [cite book|title=Agni Puranam|author=M.N. Dutt (translator)|publisher= The Chowkhamba Sanskrit Series Office, Varanasi-1, India|year=1967] Again it is stated, "If anyone wears a gem with many flaws (even) out of ignorance, then grief, anxiety, sickness, death, loss of wealth and other evils torment them."--- "Sri Garuda Purana": Chapter 70, Verse 19.

The general practice suggested in Astrological treatises is to wear the gemstone that corresponds to the lord of the first house or the Ascendent, which is the most important house of a horoscope, by which the person strengthens his image, confidence, well-being, self-esteem, good luck and the ability to gain recognition. However, if the lord of first house is weak, the effect of the gem related to that lord is stated to be not strong. The effects of gemstones are less effective. [Gemology - Classificationhttp://www.urday.com/gemo2.html] . [Sri Navaratna - The 9 Planetary Gemshttp://www.p-g-a.org/9gems.html]

= Fingers which suit the Gems [http://azad-themystique.blogspot.com/2006/08/process-of-stopping-bad-luck-ways-as_06.html Fingers which suit the Gems] at azad-themystique.blogspot.com] =

•For Jupiter - the index finger is considered most suitable

•Saturn, Rahu,and Ketu - the middle finger

•Sun and Mars – the ring finger

•Mercury and Moon - the little finger

•To cover shortcomings of depressed mounts of two or three planets - rings made of seven metal alloys on ring or middle finger are worn.

It is also said that if one wears a ring, with a devout heart and in full faith, his aspirations can be fulfilled within three days, or three fortnights or at best within three months. The rings should be made at auspicious moments under thorough observation of the process according to their basic tenets prescribed in Tantra and Vedic disciplines.

Relgious prayers

In Hindu religious belief, after wearing the ring in the assigned finger, every day the individual recites the following Sanskrit mantra (prayer) soon after getting up from the bed. The native rubs his palms forcefully for some time so that these are flushed up enough to make all lines (even minute lines) visible and looking at the life, heart and the luck lines and recites as under. [http://azad-themystique.blogspot.com/2006/08/process-of-stopping-bad-luck-ways-as_06.html Fingers which suit the Gems] at azad-themystique.blogspot.com]

"kauragrey vasatey lakshmi, kaurau mauddhye saraswatikaurau mooley tu Govindaha,probhaatey kaurau-daurshaunam"

That means, at the forefront of the palm, within the line of wealth resides Goddess Lakshmi (Goddess of Wealth). In the middle of the palm, on the head line resides Goddess Saraswati (Goddess of learning). In the wrist on its centre resides the God Himself (Lord Govinda - Vishnu). If a man gazes at the palm daily while saying prayers for his preferred deity, observes his favoured ring, his courage grows everyday, the evil effects of the planet withers gradually and the unfavourable time turns into a favourable one.

Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeia of Ratnagarbhas or Gemstones

Ayurveda and to some extent Unani (both Indian branches of medical science using natural curative methods) lay great emphasis on the use of gem stones in medicinal preparations. Dravyaguna Vigyana (medicianl science) advocates use of both bhasma (Residue after incineration – calcined preparation) as well as in pishti (powdered gem) form along with herbs for treatment of critical ailments. The procedures for preparing these medicines are time-consuming and complicated. [Gem stones and their various medicinal uses. http://chennaionline.com/STYLE/jewellery/medicinaluses.asp]

Bhasma is a calcined preparation in which the gem or metal is converted into ash. Gems are purified to remove impurities and treated by triturating and macerating in herbal extracts. The dough so obtained is calcinated to obtain the ashes. ["Major Herbs of Ayurveda", Elizabeth M. Williamson. ISBN 0443072035]

Pisti is powdered gem. Gems are treated by triturating and macerating in juices of plants followed by drying to obtain a micro fine powder.

All medication, however, should be under the strict supervision and advice of a qualified Ayurvedic or Unani physician.The gems used for various treatments in bhasma or pisti form are listed in alphabetical order in the table below.

Medicinal qualities of gems administered in Bhasma (ash) or powder form

Source: [http://www.divyaratne.com/Articals13.html] ] [http://www.bernardine.com/birthstone/ayurvedic.htm] [Gemopathy: Treatment of Diseases with the Help of the Gems http://www.urday.com/gemo6.html]

Note: The cures mentioned are only indicative. This kind of treatment is to be under taken strictly under the guidance of an Ayurvedic or Unani Doctor.


# Vishnu Purana
# Garuda Purana
# Bhrigu Samhita
# Jyotisha
# Nakshatra
# Varahamihira's Brihatsamhita - Ratna Pareekshadhhyaya
# "The Mystique of Gem Stones" by Dr. Bhojraj Dwivedi, Diamond pocket book Pvt Ltd, New Delhi
# "Planetary Gemology: The Science of Planetary Gemology", Howard Beckman [http://www.experiencefestival.com/a/Planetary_Gemology/id/48777]
# "Directory and journals of the Planetary Gemologists Association," Bangkok, Thailand

See also

* List of famous gemstones


External Links

* The Garuda Purana at sacred-texts.com (Wood and Subrahmanyam translation, 1911) [http://www.sacred-texts.com/hin/gpu/index.htm]

* Planetary Gemologists Organization [http://www.p-g-a.org/choose.html]

* Gemology: The Mystery Hidden in Stones [http://www.urday.com/gemo.html]
* The Garuda Purana summary [http://www.dharmakshetra.com/literature/puranas/garuda.html]

* The Garuda Purana excerpts English translation of important verses [http://veda.harekrsna.cz/encyclopedia/garuda-purana.htm]
* [http://www.farlang.com/gemstones-diamonds-books History of Gems, Gemology and Mining Library] 25.000 pages, most of the books used as reference, found online here.]

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