Phlogopite is one of the more unusual gemstones in that it can be used for jewelry and healing as well as a property in electrical insulation and many other materials and equipment. It can be found in flakes, masses or crystals. Phlogopite is a stone that deserves a little investigation in order to understand its full potential. Let’s find out more about its characteristics and healing properties.
General Information About Phlogopite
Humans have used various forms of mica since prehistoric times. Cave paintings dating from the Upper Paleolithic Period (40,000 BC to 10,000 BC) were created with various varieties of mica based on their hues. Red and black were the most popular colors although green and white were also used occasionally. They were also used extensively by the Aztecs when building the Pyramid of the Sun in Teotihuacan near Mexico City. In fact, some mica layers found are up to 12″ thick.
Phlogopite was rediscovered in 1841 by Johann Friedrich August Breithaupt and named for the Greek word “phlogopos” which means “fire-like” because of its red hue. It was redefined in 1998 as an end-member of the mica group. Phlogopite is not well-known, even by mineral collectors. It is not considered a valuable mineral specimen because it is rarely available in a gem-quality form.
Properties of Phlogopite
Alternative Names: magnesium mica,
Varieties: Barium-Phogopite, Barytbiotite, Chrome Phlogopite, Chromian Phlogopite, Ferroan Phlogopite, Fluorian Phlogopite and Manganoan Phlogopite
Hardness: 2 – 3
Gravity: 2.9 g/cm³
Luminescence: fluorescent, short UV = Straw to lemon yellow; long UV = weak blue/white to blue/gray
Luster: vitreous to pearly
Transparency: transparent to translucent
Color: brown, gray, green, white, yellowish brown and reddish brown
Crystal System: monoclinic – prismatic
Fracture: uneven – flat surfaces fractured in an uneven pattern but the fracture is not apparent due to cleavage
Crystal Habits: six-sided crystals, thick tabular to prismatic commonly tapered, coarse-grained, platy, scaly masses of pseudohexagonal crystals with small scales and embedded flakes
Associated Minerals: albite, amphibole group, ancylite, calcite, high-alumina basalts, ultramafic rocks, ultrapotassic igneous rocks and fluorite .
How It Occurs in Nature
Phlogopite is a naturally occurring phyllosilicate that is a brown mica. The gemstone is composed of aluminosilicate of potassium, iron and magnesium and is found, primarily, in metamorphosed limestones and ultramafic igneous rocks. Phlogopite forms at the magnesium end of a biotite vein but has a lower iron content. It also shares most of the other characteristic properties of biotites.
Because of its composition, it forms in very large crystal sheets. In fact, in many cases thin sheets of the stone can be peeled off layer by layer while still maintaining a unique metallic transparency. Sources vary widely because it is controlled by the condition of crystallization (temperature, vapor content and pressure).
It can remain stable up to 1,650º. This makes it a perfect option in industries where high-heat stability and electrical properties are required. Phlogopite is also frequently used in joint compound, drywall, paint, the well-drilling industry, the plastics industry, for auto parts, tires, roofing, wallpaper, concrete, stucco, tile, medicine and for many other purposes that we use regularly.
Metaphysical Details About Phlogopite
Phlogopite is considered superior to other varieties of mic for its heat and electrical insulating properties. Since the environment inundates us on a daily basis with electrical energy, the extra magnetic energy contained within the stone can help balance the electromagnetic field in the body. It also helps stabilize emotions you may feel are out-of-control.
Because of its reflective nature, it allows you to see the whole picture and your true self more clearly. It enhances clarity and visions allowing you to make better decisions in everyday life while reducing anger, rage, hysterics, nervous energy, hostility and other negative personality traits. As a result, it can keep the peace in households that have a tendency to be prone to drama.
On a physical level it can be used to reduce insomnia, dehydration, tantrums, hunger while dieting, and symptoms associated with mononucleosis. Phlogopite is also said to enhance energy, stamina, strength, memory, concentration, motivation and the digestive system. Although generally associated with the Third Eye Chakra, the color selected also aligns with the Chakra of a similar color.
When held gently and moved around while the moonlight shines on it, Phlogopite is said to increase psychic awareness while conferring the gift of prophecy. It is also believed to be a powerful healer and protector. In Native American cultures, it is used to bring together the energy of the Sky and Earth with the four elements. It is also believed to be a “life stone” which can bring revolution and evolution necessary for growth in life. As such, it is said to enhance the ability to reveal pathways that can lead you to happiness and great success.
Where Can We Find Phlogopite?
Phlogopite is most often found among magnesium-rich rocks such as calc-silicate, marbles and ultramafic rocks. Aldan, Russia is home to the largest Phlogopite deposit in the world. It can also be found on the Kola Peninsula, Transbaikal Region and elsewhere in Russia. There are also mines in Afghanistan, Canada, Norway, Italy, Switzerland, New Zealand, Madagascar, Sri Lanka, North Korea, the U.S. and India.
In fact, Ontario Canada holds the record for the largest Phlogophite crystal found. It weighed 320 tons and was 33’x14’x14′ although a crystal found in Karelia, Russia came in a close second.
The Final Analysis
Phylogopite is a member of the mica group that is not well-known. Even though it has been used for centuries it is just now becoming a stone sought after for its metaphysical properties. Do you think the American Indians were onto something with using it as a way to bring the four elements together with the Earth and Sky in order to find balance in their lives? We’d love to hear your thoughts so leave your comments below.