Most people are familiar with the moonstone variety of Laboradorite but are not aware of its many other interesting qualities. When moved in the light a wide array of colors emerge giving it a sparkle and depth of dimension unlike any other gemstone on the market today. The only one that even comes close is the Fire Opal.
Whether seeking information on its metaphysical properties, characteristics or the myths and legends surrounding it, it is well worth investigating if you’re looking for something a little different to add to your collection.
General Information About Labradorite
Labradorite was first discovered around 1770 when missionaries found that it was a popular gemstone to use when trading with the local people who inhabited the Isle of Paul near Nain in Canada. It was coveted by shamen, diviners and others because it was believed that it had magical powers that would protect the owners while shedding light on questionable situations. The gemstone ended up being named after the mine where it was first found, Labrador in Canada.
Eskimos have long told stories about how Labradorite came to be. It was said to be a gem bestowed by the Universe. As a matter of fact, the gemstone has recently been discovered as an element in meteorites. For the Eskimos, however, it was believed that the lights from the Aurora Borealis were sucked up into regular rocks.
When a warrior found them he took his spear and struck the rocks with a mighty blow. Most of the lights returned to the sky. Still, some remained trapped within the rocks as can now be seen with the gemstones found today. It’s also interesting that, today, the array of colors will differ depending on where in the world it’s mined.
Properties of Labradorite
Alternative Names: Fire Labradorite, Golden Yellow Labradorite and Madagascar Moonstone.
Varieties: Rainbow Moonstone, Spectrolite, Golden Labradorite and Andesine Labradorite.
Hardness: 6 – 6.5.
Color: Gray to smoky black or colorless stones with colors that play in arrays of white, yellow, orange to red or blue to green.
Transparency: Rarely transparent. Mostly found opaque to translucent.
Luster: Vitreous to pearly.
Habit: Labradorite in crystal form are rare. They are more often tabular and twinned. The gemstone more commonly occur in massive, grainy, elongated fragments, chunky masses or rounded stones.
Cleavage: Perfect in one direction and good in another forming prisms at nearly right angles.
Fracture: Conchoidal to uneven.
Crystal System: Triclinic meaning they are platy and prismatic.
Tenacity: They tend to be somewhat brittle.
Labradorite is found among basalt and gabbro rocks that are super-heated by magma just beneath the earth’s crust. It then becomes holocrystalline masses as it cools. Occasionally, it can also be found attached to metamorphic rocks. Rarely does it ever develop free of a host stone.
Since it forms in a process called twinning, it has a tendency to be a darker rock, usually ranging from gray to black with opalescent colors that play through the layers as it’s turned in the light. These thin, parallel striations create an interference when light plays across the surface of the stone resulting in the array of hues that become clearly visible once the stone is cut and polished.
That display can take the form of yellows, blues, greens, oranges, reds or any combination of colors imaginable. Labradorite develops as a block-like crystal appearing in chunks rather than in their crystalline forms in the mines which makes it especially difficult to identify.
Metaphysical Details About Labradorite
Labradorite is believed to be a magical gemstone that provides many benefits. It can serve to protect the wearer so they experience good fortune. The gem also allows them to collect energy from the environment which makes them more mindful and perceptive. Labradorite is also believed to enhance the magical powers everyone possesses and will enhance gifts such as telepathy, clairvoyance and prophecy.
One of the greatest deterrents to productivity and a stress-free life is negativity, which surrounds us on a daily basis. With Labradorite, however, behaviors which tend to be spontaneous, foolhardy and unfriendly can be kept in check. It’s especially so in the workplace where keeping the stone close will help ensure the maintenance of harmonious relationships with customers and colleagues while encouraging all present to become more invested in the organization.
The stone is believed to work on individuals spiritually, mentally and physically. Biological processes like metabolism and digestion increase, respiratory problems diminish, and all systems in the body will be enhanced. It has also been used to lessen aches and pain along with conditions such as gout and rheumatism by increasing the body’s immune system and lowering blood pressure. When it comes to detoxification it can reduce the effects of drugs, tobacco and alcohol.
How to Wear Labradorite
Labradorite is associated with the throat and third eye chakras. It is best worn as high as possible on the body in order to receive the most benefits from its many gifts but there are exceptions. For those that heal with their hands, for instance, wearing it as a ring will maximize the energy that flows through the hands. It’s especially important for those that practice such arts as Reiki healing.
For others, the gifts desired can be associated with where it is worn. For example, as earrings it could bring the gift of psychic hearing or telepathy. Even if just falling in love with the gemstone, wearing it in any form of jewelry will enhance any outfit.
Where Can We Find Labradorite Today?
Labradorite can be found throughout the world with one of the largest quarries still located in Canada. Some of the more colorful varieties can be found in Finland in the Ylamaa Quarries. The gems from this mine are the only ones that come in darker hues with a display of colors blending reds, yellows, oranges, greens and blues. As a result, the gemstones sparkle.
In the US the gems are mined in New York, Nevada, Oregon, California, Utah and Texas. When it comes to moonstones, the mines of Madagascar produce some of the most resplendent varieties while other forms of the gem are mined in Italy, Greenland, Australia, Scandinavia, Mexico and Russia.
Final Thoughts About Labradorite
Labradorite is a type of Feldspar. Like other gems in the family it is a semiprecious stone but is unique in that it is multifaceted and has a tendency to dance in the light. It is one of the most recognizable gems on the market today making it popular among amateurs and professionals alike. Whether seeking it as a healing stone, in jewelry or for it’s many metaphysical properties, few stones on the market today are as in demand as Labradorite.