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A plethora of gemstones symbolize and emits protective energy, imbuing the aura with peace and calm. But none are as effective or as poignant as serpentine. Found throughout the world, this green snake-patterned crystal offers a range of healing and practical applications people have used for centuries.
Its most recognizable function is in asbestos production, aside from the recent discovery of its link to cancer. But, apart from these associations, serpentine has many insulating and aesthetic functions. It looks gorgeous as jewelry or in sculpture. What’s more, this is a unique stone because it’s its own mineral group with several varieties and types.
What Is Serpentine?
Also called false jade or Teton jade, serpentine is a group of magnesium silicate minerals. This means there are many different kinds, which depend on the inclusion of other minerals like iron, chromium, aluminum, zinc, manganese, cobalt, and nickel.
Serpentine appears in two different structures: fibrous (chrysotile) and leafy (antigorite). It has a silky to greasy luster with a high sensitivity to acids. In fact, it’s incredibly soft, ranging between 2.5 to 6 on the Mohs scale of hardness. So, you can easily scratch it with a fingernail.
Do You Need Serpentine?
Serpentine is a superb stone for protecting against negative energies from other people. So, if you live in a home or go to work in a hostile environment, you definitely need some serpentine. It’s also great for providing stability in a person’s life that seems severely imbalanced or spiraling out of control.
History and Lore of Serpentine
Serpentine’s name comes from Georgius Agricola in 1564 from the Latin “serpens” due to its scaley pattern akin to snake or serpent skin. But its history goes back to the ancient world, where people fashioned it into sculptures, architectural elements, and other decorative objects.
Native Americans believed serpentine could remove toxins and ward off evil spirits while also promoting healing. The Chinese valued it for its protective and good luck qualities.
Serpentine’s Healing Properties
Serpentine has a myriad of healing properties, spanning all levels of the human condition. Its main function is to establish control in one’s life while offering powerful protection from any negativity. But this description hardly scratches the surface (pun intended).
1. Powerful Protection
This is one of the oldest known stones for protecting against and detecting evil. This can come from other people’s malicious behavior, speech, and intentions, including those who cast dark magic. It elicits inner peace, which contributes to the shell-like protective force field around an individual, making them impervious to negativity. It simply bounces off and doesn’t affect the person holding/wearing the crystal.
2. Physical & Emotional Healing
Serpentine can treat diabetes and hypoglycemia as well as eliminate parasitic infestations within the body. It also helps with calcium and magnesium absorption and clearing disorders from all levels, including mental and emotional.
Serpentine can balance turbulent feelings while removing fear and doubt in the face of major life changes. So, it’s wonderful for harrowing and difficult days. It can provide support to an individual’s efforts by supplying a positive disposition while maintaining a sense of humor and respect for others.
3. Career & Work Environment
Serpentine can also attract money and boost a person’s career. This is particularly excellent for highly competitive work environments, where the opposition can be vindictive and cutthroat. Additionally, the positive effects can influence coworkers and colleagues to see the stone’s possessor in a positive light.
It’s for this reason that placing a specimen of serpentine on the body, in the home or the office can mitigate raucousness, bringing about a sense of peace, calm, and love. Even though serpentine isn’t particularly astute with communication, it can foster the pathway for sound discussions.
4. Chakra Work
This stone is also good for clearing the chakras, particularly the crown where it promotes psychic ability and spiritual understanding. Serpentine can break curses, attract positive experiences and ameliorate psychic attacks. Plus, it provides grounding to the root chakra which can connect one to the earth’s deepest and innermost mysteries.
Serpentine is also ideal for the heart chakra, specifically for when a new relationship begins. It keeps bad, ill-intentioned people away or staves off potential love interests who may not share deeply held values.
Plus, it can open the heart to try new things and step outside a person’s comfort zone while deterring any potential danger associated with the activity.
5. Other Spiritual Uses
Due to the clean and earthy energy serpentine supplies, it aids meditation. But it’s an ideal stone for the rise of Kundalini within the body. It stimulates the pathway through which this snake-like energy may travel. Plus, it lessens the discomfort some people report feeling with such movement.
The properties provided by serpentine mean it’s perfect for Feng Shui. Placing it in the center of a room will promote tranquility and putting it in the wealth area attracts abundance.
Is Serpentine a Birthstone?
Serpentine is not an official birthstone. However, people born in June or October may use it as a tertiary birthstone.
Is Serpentine Associated with a Zodiac Sign?
The zodiac signs most commonly associated with serpentine are Scorpio and Gemini.
How to Use Serpentine
Serpentine has a long and rich history of use as ornaments, personal adornment, architecture, and sculpture. It’s also the source of magnesium found in asbestos.
Serpentine as an Architectural Material
People used serpentine for centuries in a number of architectural elements due to its beautiful color and attractive pattern. Some serpentine varieties have a fibrous habit, which resists heat and doesn’t burn, making them an excellent insulator. These stones are easy to mine and process for preserving these heat-resistant fibers.
It’s common in facing stones, dining tables, shingles, cladding, and wall tiles.
You can commonly see it from early to mid-20th century designs in the US. However, its decline in popularity is due in part to the health concerns of asbestos having a connection with cancer, especially in the lungs.
Serpentine Décor & Sculpture
The fine-grained translucency of the material provides a uniform texture without fractures and voids. Plus, it accepts polish nicely. All of this makes serpentine a dream to work with, especially for beginners. It is gorgeous in these items:
10. Other Objects
Jewelry & Personal Adornment
Serpentine is an excellent gemstone for jewelry and personal adornment. However, due to its softness, the jewelry must be low impact and not worn during physical activity. This is because it can easily succumb to damage.
Regardless, it’s great as cabochons, tumbled stones, or beads.
However, its hardness will determine what kind of jewelry it’s most appropriate. The waxy luster is handsome in these jewelries:
5. Hair ties
Ones closer to 6 on the Mohs scale are prime for cufflinks, men’s rings, women’s rings, and bracelets.
What Gemstones Does Serpentine Pair Well With?
An array of gemstones pairs well with serpentine and they distinctly boost the qualities of both stones. For working with Kundalini, combining tiger’s eye, red jasper, or carnelian with it. In dealing with the heart chakra, go with green aventurine, rose quartz, or rhodonite.
To create a supercharged anti-negativity amulet, using serpentine with obsidian, black tourmaline, or hematite is best. But, for the ultimate tranquility and serenity, match serpentine with amethyst, blue lace agate, or lepidolite.
Using stones like aventurine, citrine or pyrite matches well with serpentine for abundance and prosperity. Of course, selenite is fabulous with any stone, but it emphasizes the purity and negative cleansing capacity inherent within serpentine.
How to Clean and Cleanse Serpentine
Cleaning serpentine is a little tricky because you should know how soft it is beforehand. If it sits nearest 2.5 on the Mohs scale, only use a soft microfiber cloth to wipe away dirt and debris. But, if it’s closer to 6, then you can use cool lukewarm warm water and gentle soap. Then rinse with cold water and use a microfiber towel to dry it.
Never use ultrasonic cleaners, harsh chemicals, or steam cleaners on a piece of serpentine. These will surely destroy the shape, texture, and color of the crystal.
For cleansing negative energy from serpentine, bury it in the earth during a Full Moon and pull it out at sunrise. However, you could also place it in a bowl of rice overnight or smudge it with sage.
FAQs About Serpentine
Serpentine has a chemical formula of (X)2-3(Y)2O5(OH)4. “X” and “Y” are variables to indicate other minerals. The X illustrates the possible presence of zinc (Zn), nickel (Ni), magnesium (Mg), manganese (Mn), or iron (Fe). The Y will be iron (Fe), silicon (Si), or aluminum (Al).
Serpentine often appears in varying shades of green along with yellow, black, brown, and sometimes red in a pattern reminiscent of snakeskin.
All serpentine appears as fine-grained admixtures, which are difficult to distinguish. These form where ultramafic rocks experience hydrothermal metamorphosis. Therefore, their development occurs at convergent plate boundaries, where an oceanic plate pushes down into the mantle. Seawater and sediment influence the process and the crystallization replaces stones like olivine or pyroxene.
You can find serpentine deposits throughout the United States as well as in Afghanistan, Russia, New Zealand, Canada, Greece, Korea, and China.
Serpentine and jade are not the same, although serpentine is sometimes referred to as false or Teton jade. So, it’s sometimes easy to confuse the two, but they have different formations, chemical compositions, and geological properties.
Onyx marble, green turquoise, and verdite are easy to misconstrue for serpentine.
To know whether a serpentine is real or fake, there should be a smooth surface free of chips or cracks. Plus, the color should be consistent throughout with a lightweight feel. You can also use a few drops of lemon juice or vinegar on the stone’s surface. If it reacts with foaming or discoloration, it’s a fake.
Serpentine is a major mineral group that spans several types and varieties. Even still, each one projects massive amounts of protection and guards a person from all forms of negative attitudes, energies, and behaviors. This helps to foster peace and calm while removing emotions destructive to the soul.