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The Magic of Rocks and Stones


by Patricia J. Martin

As the longest day of the year approaches, when the Sun is at its peak and sits highest in the sky, what better stone to help celebrate the Summer Solstice than Sunstone! 

To start, it is wise to mention that there are several stones that carry the name Sunstone ~ one being a type of Aventurine that is a sparkling reddish-orange to brown color, and another being a transparent orange to yellow crystal that was formed through volcanic activity and birthed within basaltic lava flows - a true fire stone that usually goes by the name of "Golden Sunstone". But for this article I have concentrated on what is considered to be the oldest known and most widely used Sunstone - the shimmering plagioclase Feldspar Sunstone, also formed within lava fields. 

The name "Sunstone" is self-evident of course, but this captivating stone has another name - Heliolite, from the Greek "helios" meaning "sun" and "lithos" meaning "stone". It is a hard stone registering 7 on the Mohs Scale which is right up there with Quartz, and forms in granular masses or tabular euhedral crystals within magmatic and pegmatitic rock. It's luster is vitreous (glassy) to dull, and its streak is white. Favorite locations that host an abundance of this type of glistening Sunstone are India, Norway, Russia, and the states of New York, Pennsylvania and North Carolina in the U.S. Another kind of Sunstone, whose inclusions are of Copper instead of the usual Hematite, is located in Oregon, and is called Oregon Sunstone by the trade. In 1987, this Sunstone was made Oregon's state gemstone. 

Sunstone is most often found in hues of orange, peach, yellowish brown, and sometimes green or gray, but each with areas of iridescent salmon-colored schiller. This sparkle and lustrous shimmer, though revered by the ancients as a captured and imprisoned piece of the Sun itself, is actually caused by the refraction of minute and very thin platelets of Hematite or Goethite inclusions. But none of this takes away from the true magick of this mystical stone, as you will see. 

Myth & Lore

Sunstone has a long list of mythical lore attached to it, but here are some of the highlights. In ancient Greece, Sunstone was used to represent the Sun God, Helios (or Apollo). Ancient Greeks believed Sunstone invigorated and greatly improved the state of the physical body and the spirit, bringing renewed strength and good health to both. They also believed it brought abundance, prosperity, and protection - so much so with the latter, that they would adorn their drinking vessels with this stone in order to prevent poisoning. In India, natives wore Sunstone to protect themselves against any intrusive or negative forces. 

Sunstone was used by certain Native American Indian tribes to assist their medicine men in contacting Spirit Guides. Placing the stone in the center of their medicine wheel, it was believed to assist in harnessing the healing powers of the Sun. It was said that the stone would glow a bright golden color if successful contact was made. Another "glowing" spot of lore regarding Sunstone is that Pope Clement VII was said to be in possession of a piece which held within it a glowing spot, one that would actually move across the surface of the stone from east to west in conjunction with the sun. 

In myth, ancient Vikings used what they called a "sunstone" to aid their navigations... perhaps both in life and death, as in fact this Feldspar type of Sunstone has been discovered in Viking burial mounds and is thought to have been placed there to aid one's journey to Valhalla. Current speculation is that their navigational "sunstone" may have been the Sunstone we know today, but the double refracting Iceland Spar (a form of Calcite) is also a possibility, as is the transparent mineral Cordierite which turns from yellow to blue whenever held at right angle to the sun. Either way, the theory is well thought out, as these stones exhibits the exact property which would be needed to navigate by the position of the sun - the property of refraction. Refracted light makes it possible to locate the sun during storms, fog, or darkness. So just as certain insects use refraction of light to find direction, so may have these remarkable ancient mariners. 

Crystal healers of today use Sunstone to rid one of depression and alleviate stress, anxiety and phobias. Medicinally, Sunstone is said to be helpful with Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), depression, emotional heartache, anxiety, and stress, along with regulating the nervous system and calming the discomfort of ulcers. This stone may also be used in treatment of cartilage problems, spinal irregularities, and for relief from rheumatism and arthritis. 

*NOTE: Stone therapy should NOT take the place of medical evaluation and procedures, and should be used merely to enhance one's health and well-being.

Magickally, you can use Sunstone in all solar workings. This stone excels at attracting wealth, prosperity, promotion and good fortune of all kinds. Its powers are in health, vitality, energy, protection, and sexuality. Sunstones are often used in Solstice rituals. To cleanse and clear these dazzlers, place in fresh running water and then set them in the sunlight to dry.

Metaphysical Properties of Sunstone

Sunstone is a power stone, projecting the male god energy, and is connected with both the Sacral and Solar Plexus Chakras. This stone's strength and vitality are unmistakable, and it can kindle the fire within one's own spirit as it increases its user's own vitality, strength and stamina. Known for its energizing and empowering properties, this optimistic stone brightens the self-esteem and self-confidence of those who wear it or work with it. 

As with any stone, merely holding one will have some effect on its user. A stone's own intrinsic vibrational energy can and will affect a person's aura, physical body, or mood. Sunstone's energy is very vital and uplifting, and its flashes of glowing iridescence can't help but make you want to explore its life force. Like its sister stones, Labradorite and Moonstone, Sunstone exudes an inner light that bursts forth and practically shouts, "Look at me!" Where Labradorite and Moonstone may ask you to look inside, Sunstone will ask you to bring what's inside... out. Working with this stone, that is noted for helping expand one's consciousness and creativity, can help you determine not only what your special talents are, but how best to bring them forth and use them for the benefit and good of all. I do agree with Robert Simmons, co-author of The Book of Stones, who wrote, "Sunstone is the yang which balances the yin of Moonstone." 

Excellent at banishing fears and phobias of all sorts, Sunstone removes inhibitions and releases feelings of unworthiness. It is also believed to be able to clear away any lingering and unwanted entities or energies that may have attached themselves emotionally or physically to another. Independence and freedom are definitely highlighted in the attributes of this stone. 

Many say that Sunstone brings "good luck," but the true definition of "luck" simply means being in the right place at the right time... more so a fortunate synchronicity. The way Sunstone brings on this synchronicity is by prompting its user into the spotlight where he or she is more noticeable and visible to the world. This, enhanced by the stone's projective energy and willful abundance, will provide you with many of the key factors - the courage and strength, the discipline and conviction, the optimism and energy - which are needed to keep things flowing in that "lucky" fortunate direction. 

Sunstone brings warmth and openness, romance and sexuality, clear vision and originality, leadership and ability, and is prized as the bringer of good fortune. It strongly promotes a positive attitude and cheerfulness, not to mention a sunny disposition. ;) 

This bright and illuminating stone says, "Come dance with me and you shall see the veritable joy that life can be." Sunstone is associated with the astrological sign of Leo, and its Element is Fire ~ a most appropriate stone as we gather to honor and celebrate the Sun, and as we look forward to the rich bounty of Summer's offerings.

Sun-Blessed may you be!


"The Book of Stones: Who They Are and What They Teach" by Robert Simmons & Naisha Ahsian

"The Illustrated Directory of Healing Crystals" by Cassandra Eason

Sunstone, itself.

First published in The Controversial Cauldron - the group newsletter of Email Witches

June 2008  ©  Patricia J. Martin

Best wishes and Blessed Be


Site Contents - Links to all Pages


Home Page


A Universal Message:


Let there be peace in the world  -   Where have all the flowers gone?


About me:

My Personal PageMy Place in England / My Family Tree (Ancestry)


Wicca & Witchcraft


Wicca/Witchcraft /  What is Wicca What is Magick


Traditional Writings:


The Wiccan Rede Charge of the Goddess Charge of the God  /  The Three-Fold Law (includes The Law of Power and The Four Powers of the Magus) /  The Witches Chant The Witches Creed Descent of the Goddess Drawing Down the Moon The Great Rite Invocation Invocation of the Horned GodThe 13 Principles of Wiccan Belief /  The Witches Rede of Chivalry A Pledge to Pagan Spirituality


Correspondence Tables:


IncenseCandlesColours Magickal Days Stones and Gems Elements and Elementals




Traditions Part 1  -  Alexandrian Wicca /  Aquarian Tabernacle Church (ATC) /  Ár Ndraíocht Féin (ADF) /  Blue Star Wicca /  British Traditional (Druidic Witchcraft) /  Celtic Wicca /  Ceremonial Magic /  Chaos Magic /  Church and School of Wicca /  Circle Sanctuary /  Covenant of the Goddess (COG) /  Covenant of Unitarian Universalist Pagans (CUUPS) /  Cyber Wicca /  Dianic Wicca /  Eclectic Wicca /  Feri Wicca /


Traditions Part 2 Gardnerian Wicca /  Georgian Tradition /  Henge of Keltria /  Hereditary Witchcraft /  Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn (H.O.G.D.) /  Kitchen Witch (Hedge Witch) /  Minoan Brotherhood and Minoan Sisterhood Tradition /  Nordic Paganism /  Pagan Federation /  Pectic-Wita /  Seax-Wica /  Shamanism /  Solitary /  Strega /  Sylvan Tradition /  Vodoun or Voodoo /  Witches League of Public Awareness (WLPA) /


Other things of interest:


Gods and Goddesses (Greek Mythology) /  Esbats & Full Moons Links to Personal Friends & Resources Wicca/Witchcraft Resources What's a spell? Circle Casting and Sacred Space  Pentagram - Pentacle Marks of a Witch The Witches Power The Witches Hat An esoteric guide to visiting London SatanismPow-wowThe Unitarian Universalist Association /  Numerology:  Part 1  Part 2  /  Part 3A history of the Malleus Maleficarum:  includes:  Pope Innocent VIII  /  The papal Bull  /   The Malleus Maleficarum  /  An extract from the Malleus Maleficarum  /  The letter of approbation  /  Johann Nider’s Formicarius  /  Jacob Sprenger  /  Heinrich Kramer  /  Stefano Infessura  /  Montague Summers  /  The Waldenses  /  The Albigenses  /  The Hussites /  The Native American Sun DanceShielding (Occult and Psychic Protection)  The History of ThanksgivingAuras  - Part 1 and Part 2 Doreen Valiente Witch” (A Book Review) /   


Sabbats and Festivals:


The Sabbats in History and Mythology /  Samhain (October 31st)  /  Yule (December 21st)  /  Imbolc (February 2nd)  /  Ostara (March 21st)  /  Beltane (April 30th)  /  Litha (June 21st)  /  Lammas/Lughnasadh (August 1st)  /  Mabon (September 21st)


Rituals contributed by Crone:


Samhain / Yule Imbolc Ostara /  Beltane Litha Lammas Mabon




Tools of a Witch  /  The Besom (Broom) /  Poppets and DollsPendulums / Cauldron Magick Mirror Gazing




Animals in Witchcraft (The Witches Familiar and Totem Animals) /  AntelopeBatsCrow Fox Frog and Toads Goat / HoneybeeKangarooLion OwlPhoenix Rabbits and HaresRaven Robin RedbreastSheep Spider SquirrelSwansUnicornWild Boar Wolf /  Serpent /  Pig /  Stag /  Horse /  Mouse /  Cat /  Rats /  Unicorn




In Worship of Trees - Myths, Lore and the Celtic Tree Calendar.  For descriptions and correspondences of the thirteen sacred trees of Wicca/Witchcraft see the following:  Birch /  Rowan / Ash /  Alder /  Willow Hawthorn /  Oak /  Holly /  Hazel /  Vine /  Ivy /  Reed /  Elder


Sacred Sites:


Mystical Sacred Sites  -  Stonehenge /  Glastonbury Tor /  Malta - The Hypogeum of Hal Saflieni /  Avebury /  Cerne Abbas - The Chalk Giant /  Ireland - Newgrange /


Rocks and Stones:


Stones - History, Myths and Lore


Articles contributed by Patricia Jean Martin:


Apophyllite  / Amber Amethyst Aquamarine Aragonite Aventurine Black Tourmaline Bloodstone Calcite Carnelian Celestite Citrine Chrysanthemum StoneDiamond  /  Emerald / Fluorite Garnet /  Hematite Herkimer Diamond Labradorite Lapis Lazuli Malachite Moonstone Obsidian Opal Pyrite Quartz (Rock Crystal) Rose Quartz Ruby Selenite Seraphinite  /  Silver and GoldSmoky QuartzSodalite Sunstone ThundereggTree AgateZebra Marble


Wisdom and Inspiration:


Knowledge vs Wisdom by Ardriana Cahill I Talk to the TreesAwakening The Witch in YouA Tale of the Woods I have a Dream by Martin Luther King /


Articles and Stories about Witchcraft:


Murdered by Witchcraft The Fairy Witch of Clonmel A Battleship, U-boat, and a Witch The Troll-Tear (A story for Children) /  Goody Hawkins - The Wise Goodwife /  The Story of Jack-O-Lantern The Murder of the Hammersmith Ghost Josephine Gray (The Infamous Black Widow) /  The Two Brothers - Light and Dark


Old Masters of Academia:


Pliny the ElderHesiodPythagoras





A "Who's Who" of Witches, Pagans and other associated People

(Ancient, Past and Present)


Remembered at Samhain

(Departed Pagan Pioneers, Founders, Elders and Others)


Pagan Pioneers:  Founders, Elders, Leaders and Others


Abramelin the Mage /  Agrippa Aidan A KellyAlbertus Magnus - “Albert the Great” Aleister Crowley - “The Great Beast” /  Alex Sanders - “King of the Witches” /  Alison Harlow /   Allan Bennett - the Ven. Ananda MetteyyaAllan Kardec (Spiritism) /  Alphonsus de SpinaAmber KAnn Moura /  Anna FranklinAnodea JudithAnton Szandor LaVey /  Arnold CrowtherArthur Edward Waite /  Austin Osman SpareBalthasar Bekker /  Biddy EarlyBarbara Vickers /  Bridget Cleary - The Fairy Witch of Clonmel /  Carl " Llewellyn" Weschcke Cecil Hugh WilliamsonCharles Godfrey Leland /   Charles WaltonChristopher PenczakChristina Oakley Harrington Cornelius Loos /  Damh the Bard - "Dave Smith" /  Dion Fortune /  Dolores Aschroft-NowickiDonald Michael Kraig Doreen ValienteDorothy MorrisonDr. John Dee & Edward Kelly /  Dr. Leo Louis Martello /  Edain McCoy /  Edward FitchEleanor Ray Bone - “Matriarch of British Witchcraft” Eliphas Levi /  Ernest Thompson Seton /  Ernest Westlake /  Fiona Horne /   Frederick McLaren Adams - Feraferia Friedrich von Spee /  Francis Barrett /  Gavin and Yvonne Frost and the School and Church of Wicca /  Gerald B. Gardner - The father of contemporary Witchcraft /  Gwydion Pendderwen Hans HolzerHelen Duncan /   Herman Slater - Horrible Herman /  Heinrich KramerIsaac Bonewits Israel RegardieIvo Domínguez Jr. /  Jack Whiteside Parsons - Rocket Science and Magick /  James "Cunning" Murrell - The Master of Witches /  Janet Farrar and Gavin BoneJean Bodin Jessie Wicker Bell - “Lady Sheba” / Johann Weyer  / Johannes Junius - "The Burgomaster of Bamberg" /   Johann Georg Fuchs von Dornheim  -  the “Hexenbrenner” (witch burner) /  John Belham-Payne John George Hohman - "Pow-wow" /  John Gerard /  John Gordon Hargrave and the Kibbo Kith Kindred /  John Michael Greer /  John Score /  Joseph “Bearwalker” Wilson /  Joseph John Campbell /  Karl von Eckartshausen Lady Gwen Thompson - and "The Rede of the Wiccae" /   Laurie Cabot  - "the Official Witch of Salem" /  Lewis SpenceLodovico Maria Sinistrari Ludwig LavaterMadeline Montalban and the Order of the Morning Star /  Margaret Alice MurrayMargot AdlerMichael Howard and the UK "Cauldron Magazine" /  Margaret St. Clair - the “Sign of the Labrys” /  Marie Laveau - " the Voodoo Queen of New Orleans" /  Marion WeinsteinMartin Antoine Del Rio Matthew Hopkins - “The Witch-Finder General” /   Max Ehrmann and the "Desiderata" /  Michael A. Aquino - and The Temple of Set /  Monique WilsonMontague Summers /  Nicholas CulpeperNicholas RemyM. R. SellarsMrs. Maud Grieve - "A Modern Herbal" /  Oberon Zell-Ravenheart and Morning GloryOld Dorothy Clutterbuck /  Old George PickingillOlivia Durdin-Robertson - co-founder of the Fellowship of Isis /  Paddy SladePamela Colman-SmithParacelsus /  Patricia CrowtherPatricia Monaghan /  Patricia “Trish” TelescoPaul Foster Case and the “Builders of the Adytum” mystery school /  Peter Binsfeld /  Philip HeseltonRaven GrimassiRaymond Buckland /  Reginald Scot /  Richard BaxterRobert CochraneRobert ‘von Ranke’ Graves and the "The White Goddess" /  Rosaleen Norton - “The Witch of Kings Cross” /  Rossell Hope Robbins /   Ross Nichols and the " Order of Bards, Ovates & Druids" (OBOD) /  Rudolf SteinerSabrina Underwood - "The Ink Witch" /  Scott CunninghamSelena Fox - founder of "Circle Sanctuary" /  Silver RavenwolfSir Francis Dashwood /  Sir James George Frazer and the " The Golden Bough"S.L. MacGregor Mathers and the “Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn” /  Starhawk /  Stewart Farrar /  Sybil LeekTed Andrews The Mather Family - (includes:  Richard Mather, Increase Mather and Cotton Mather ) /   Thomas AdyT. Thorn CoyleVera ChapmanVictor & Cora Anderson and the " Feri Tradition" /  Vivianne CrowleyWalter Brown GibsonWalter Ernest ButlerWilliam Butler YeatsZsuzsanna Budapest /  



Many of the above biographies are briefs and far from complete.  If you know about any of these individuals and can help with additional information, please contact me privately at my email address below.  Many thanks for reading  :-)



While I have taken due care and diligence to credit all sources where possible, this website may contain copyrighted material which has not been specifically authorized by the copyright owner.  My use of making such material available here is done so in my efforts to advance our understanding of religious discrimination, the environmental and social justice issues etc.   If you wish to use copyrighted material from this website for purposes of your own then you must obtain permission from the relevant copyright owner yourself.

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