The gemstone Amber is one of the birthstones listed for the Sun Sign for Taurus.
Amber is fossilized resin from trees, mostly that grew about fifty million years ago, in the Eocene and Oligocene Periods. Some deposits have been found that range between 360 and one million years old and belong between the Carboniferous and Pleistocene geological periods. As sticky resin oozed from ancient pine trees, small insects, plant material, feathers and other small objects in the path of the flow became entrapped. Over time, the resin was encased in dirt and debris and through a process of heat and pressure it fossilized to become amber.
Copal, known for containing excellent insect specimens, is geologically younger and hasn't fully fossilized into amber. It is usually only thousands of years old, instead of millions of years. There is strong debate about some deposits of African amber as to whether it is copal or true amber. Baltic Amber, named for the region of its source, is the older and finer type that is typically set into jewelry. Amber increases in value with the rarity and perfection of the entrapped object. Complete insect specimens are rare though and command top price.
Amber is very soft, and can be scratched easily. Bracelets and rings with amber cabochons should be worn with care to prevent marring the stone. Much of the amber used in commercial jewelry is actually reconstituted which makes it harder and less prone to scratching. Reconstituted and processed amber usually doesn't have natural inclusions.Amber can range in color from dark brown to a light almost clear lemon yellow. Most colors range from golden yellow to honey and deep reds, with very rare findings of green and blue.
Amber rubbed with silk or wool becomes electrically charged, and ancient Greeks called it “Elektra”. It has been found in Neolithic graves in Europe, dating to 15,000 BC. It was popular with the early Greeks and Romans, Phoenicians and Etruscans. It is highly valued in Morocco, Somalia and Egypt and in Tibet and China. Its use is ornamental and protective. Once thought to be the golden rays of the sun congealed by the sea, it brings the joy and happiness of the sun to all who enjoy it’s warmth and beauty. Baltic Amber is most often seen, while Amber from Burma, Sicily, Rumania, Mexico and the Dominican Republic is also available.
Amber helps remove energy blockages, strengthens physical body. and is excellent for enhancing altered states of consciousness. It helps balance the Endocrine system and digestion, and stabilize other body organs. With its high vibration, Amber helps open energy channels to aid in raising the Kundalini, and helps connect us to our own fire energy centered in the solar plexus. Used in meditation, it can be used to gain knowledge of past cycles on earth, as it stores ancient DNA. Amber’s vibrant hues are energizing and uplifting. It can be useful as a talisman during dark times of emotional pain or disturbing thoughts, and can help one reconnect with their willpower and personal strengths. Small bits have often been burned as incense.
Chakra: Solar Plexus.
Composition: Fossilized tree resin,
Specific Gravity: Approximately 1.1 (extremely light and can float in salty water).
Transparency: Transparent to translucent.
Mohs-Scale Hardness: 2.5 - 3.0