Looking into the Cat’s Eye - A Guide to Understanding Tiger Eye Beads
When asked about “tiger eyes” what is the first thing that comes to mind? For some, no doubt, it is the theme song to Rocky III. For others, a poem by William Blake. Or does it conjure up pictures of a magnificent creature, gloriously coated, with tawny, fierce, but strong eyes. Fortunately, tiger eye beads are not made of these magnificent eyes but are so-named because in color and appearance they greatly resemble the fire and power found within the eye of the tiger.
What is a tiger eye stone?
Tiger eye is actually a form of quartz, most often found in South Africa, Australia, Thailand, India, and parts of the United States and Canada. Thanks to an effect called “chatoyancy” the tiger eye stone appear to reflect back, in the same way, a cat’s eye seems to do. This can give it a shimmery appearance, similar to looking at quality silk. Generally, the stone is colored golden-brown, but in some instances may have a red hue. Chemically, it is a form of silicon dioxide which developed over time from crocidolite, a type of blue asbestos, to the finer chalcedony.
Tiger eye beads in history
In Roman times, soldiers valued talismans and amulets made of this stone. Perhaps it was its beauty, but more likely, the tiger eye bead reflected its namesake – a strong, valiant, tenacious fighter which didn’t give up when stalking its prey and was seldom defeated. It was associated with Ra, the Egyptian god of the sun, and was believed to contain the sun’s power.
Why use tiger eye beads in jewelry?
- Beauty and style. The simple, elegant, but powerful beauty of this stone ensures that any tiger eye beads will automatically draw other eyes to it. Its depth of color and luster, as well as its unusual “cat’s eye” effect inevitably will make it the center of attention on any necklace, bracelet, brooch, or other jewelry items.
- Versatility and price. While beautiful, these gems are not rare, and so they are eminently affordable and accessible. They can be styled into any number of accessories, and for sheer price and variety, it’s hard to go past the many ways in which tiger eye beads can be fashioned into appealing designs and ornamental jewelry.
- Accessorize easily with just about anything. What color doesn’t go with deep gold? Any necklace, bracelet, ring, or earring made from tiger eye beads can blend nicely into, or stand out from, just about any hair color, style or shade of clothing, or other equally fine necklaces, earrings, rings, or bracelets worn alongside these gems.
Tiger eye beads – mythology and legends
As mentioned, tiger eye amulets were used in ancient Roman and Egyptian times. The power of these stones is credited with allowing soldiers to concentrate on the job at hand with force, courage, and determination. Tiger eye bead jewelry was said to fend off enemies – both human and spiritual. It served as an all-seeing “eye” which protected the wearer from wounds and illnesses.
Using tiger eye beads
Followers of the principles of Feng shui have used the protective qualities of tiger eye beads to:
- Focus the mind away from negative thoughts and patterns
- Cleanse a room of bad energy
- Balance the positive and negative flows of a room or office to encourage clear and courageous decision making
- Stimulate harmony by neutralizing complex or confrontational situations
- Improve concentration, allowing the wearer or user to focus on the important issues and not be side-tracked by inconsequentialities
Many popular Feng shui devices where the incorporation of tiger eye beads are recommended include pi balls and wind chimes. Tiger eye bracelets worn on injured arms are believed to help the healing process.
Other uses for tiger eye bead jewelry
- As a wedding anniversary gift. What better way to celebrate nine years of happy marriage than a gift made from this beautiful gem? A representative of strength and courage, as well as a talisman for good luck and fortune for the next nine years (and climbing!), choose from a range of heart-shaped beads, his-and-her matching bracelets, or as a decoration for the home.
- As a good luck charm. Whether it’s a tricky contract negotiation, a sale that must happen, or a tough exam, a talisman made from these lucky beads can provide strength, confidence, and surety in the wearer’s ability to conquer the toughest of hurdles.
- To fend off ill health. Suffering from high blood pressure because of stress? Is that cold or fever feeling worse than it should because of tiredness and lethargy? Are the nerves constantly jangling or is there an overabundance of conflict in the air, causing anxiety? Wearing tiger eye bead jewelry or using it as decorations in the home or office can help promote a healthy, calm, and relaxing state of mind which will soothe the nerves and lead to a faster, gentler recovery.
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