Can Gems and Crystals Enhance Our Meditations?

Question

There are many books about the benefits of wearing crystals and gems to help with meditation by raising the frequency of energy body. I am aware that the Navaratna and the Three Metal Bangle help neutralize the negative effects of planets on our body and also against negative karma. However, I have not come across any writing from Master talking about how to use crystals to enhance meditation itself. If there is such information would you kindly point me in the right direction?

—Alex, Costa Rica

Answer

Dear Alex,

Correct: Yogananda recommended the Three Metal Bangle and jewels (Navaratna, or nine-gem, is great) to strengthen our auras, which protects us from planetary influences and karmic consequences of past actions. I include the explanation below, from the Autobiography of a Yogi, for readers who do not know what you are referring to.

Does Yogananda talk about the benefit of jewels and metals specifically to enhance meditation? I have never come across it. But think about it: jewels “emit an astral light”, as Sri Yukteswar explains. That astral light has an effect not only as a “protective shield” against unwelcome planetary rays, but certainly also has an influence on astral body, and therefore on our mind — and therefore meditation — as well as on our health. Each precious stone has a different vibratory effect, giving a different mental impact and quality. So certainly it has an effect also on meditation.

Swami Kriyananda writes in The Hindu Way Of Awakening:

There are, as must be evident by now, many levels of be studied in India’s very ancient teachings. I’ve just mentioned two more points of common confusion: astrology, and gemstones endowed with spiritual power. Perhaps I should explain them briefly. According to Hindu belief, certain gemstones have a vibratory resonance with certain planets: emeralds, with the planet Mercury; diamonds, with Venus; blue sapphires, with Saturn. To project energy into an emerald, then, is a way of harmonizing oneself with it and also with the vibratory influences of the planet Mercury.

So for meditation (I am not an expert), if you need more concentration a ruby (spiritual eye, the sun) will help. If calmness is needed, the emerald (stimulating the throat chakra, planet Mercury) will be a help. If more energy is needed in your meditations, a coral (stimulating the third chakra, planet Mars) will be good. My understanding, however, is that the gemstones should be applied only after contacting a good vedic astrologer who sees your chart.

At any rate, Swami Kriyananda wore a Navaratna (9-jewel bangle), which now Nayaswami Jyotish wears. Is it only for protection? I am sure it enhances meditation.

Concerning crystals, as you specifically ask about them: for a long time we kept in our Ananda temple, in our “only meditation room” a big crystal. Swami Kriyananda writes (Space, Light, and Harmony: The Story Of Crystal Hermitage): “Quartz crystals are used in receiving, amplifying, and transmitting radio signals. Crystals have also been found to function similarly with other energy signals…. The ability of crystals to amplify the energies they receive…” That’s why we kept the crystal in our meditation room. It was supposed to energetically help with our meditations.

That’s all. Unfortunately I don’t have anything by Yogananda himself, talking about jewels or crystals, how they effect our meditation.

All the best,
Jayadev

From Autobiography Of A Yogi, Chapter 16, “Outwitting the Stars”:

“There are certain mechanical features in the law of karma which can be skillfully adjusted by the fingers of wisdom…. Just as a house can be fitted with a copper rod to absorb the shock of lightning, so the bodily temple can be benefited by various protective measures. Ages ago our yogis discovered that pure metals emit an astral light which is powerfully counteractive to negative pulls of the planets. Subtle electrical and magnetic radiations are constantly circulating in the universe; when a man’s body is being aided, he does not know it; when it is being disintegrated, he is still in ignorance. Can he do anything about it? This problem received attention from our rishis; they found helpful not only a combination of metals, but also of plants and – most effective of all–faultless jewels of not less than two carats. The preventive uses of astrology have seldom been seriously studied outside of India. One little-known fact is that the proper jewels, metals, or plant preparations are valueless unless the required weight is secured, and unless these remedial agents are worn next to the skin…. For general purposes I counsel the use of an armlet made of gold, silver, and copper.”