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Debmarine Namibia's new diamond recovery vessel to arrive in SA next week

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Symbolism in gemstone cutting

17 april 2014

Man decorated himself with symbols since the ancient age. First it was paintings and tattoos on the body, talismans and amulets on clothes, then jewelry. And, if beads or necklaces carried images of some symbols, gemstones were just an addition to the jewelry pieces increasing their beauty, charm and, of course, value. Today the technology level permits to fill the gemstone proper with meaning, depicting symbols in the pattern of facets.

The collection named “Lapis Philosophorum” or “Philosophical Gemstone”, created in 2009, has become my first experience of using symbols in gemstone cutting. That time it contained seven stones, now - ten stones. In design of each stone you can make out either image. And the parable was written to each stone. This parable revealed the image into philosophical conception. In fact, two kinds of art - literature and faceting – supplement each other. I refer to faceting as art - it is not a mistake in this case. What is the objective of art? To call up the chain of image-bearing associations in the human mind. These associations have emotional tint and awake an occurrence of “creative resonance” when a man wants to be a creator. The parable gives the initial mood of the concrete image, and the gemstone, keeping this image, acts the part of “a key” which opens well-known chain of associations in the mind.

It is important that this “key-stone”, like any art-object, is taken by people differently. A profane sees just simple jewelry insert, a piece of mineral, which is cut into some shape. But, if somebody red the parable and saw the symbol among facets, it takes gemstone as more than just beautiful trinket. For such man this gemstone like a friend who could sense his thoughts about problem touched in the parable and expressed by the symbol. And the depth of comprehension of this problem depends on spiritual progress of the man.

For example, gemstone named “The World’s Treasure”. It has shape of a polished diamond seen from the side, in profile. The crown facets repeat the pattern of standard diamond cutting. But it is visible, the outer layer. And the star shines on pavilion, the back side which is hidden from our eyes. It means that another, much deeper things could be hidden behind the obvious values. This idea is disclosed in the parable connected to this stone: once man must choose the main treasure for him, and mistake could cost much and much… Now in practice we can say that these gemstones found new niche on the jewelry market – co-meditation, the place traditionally taken by books, films and paintings.

It was the first generation of Philosophical stones. The symbolism of the second generation has another level; in the difference with mentioned case, it is active.

To understand this expression, have a look at the sample. The gemstone named “The Ariadna thread” has round shape. There are two seven-rays stars on pavilion. One star has “light” rays contained from one facet. Another star has two-facet rays, as if darkened by lengthwise edge. These two stars with common center are the symbol of our Universe – the one in the duality of spiritual and material aspects. Rays of the stars alternate (or rather to say – unite) by lower girdle facets – symbol of pervasive unity, invisible cloth of the space.

So, on pavilion we can see the space. The crown facets apply to the human nature. The star heptagon (symbol of a man, his physical nature which reveals in his words and actions) is going to the girdle. The same heptagon of less size is ins erted in the bigger one. This is symbol of the inner nature of a man, which manifests itself in his ideas, expectances and motives. It is worth draw attention that sides of the heptagons are parallel – it’s the ideal case when human lives in harmony with his inner world, and his thoughts don’t separate off the actions.

Now have a look how correlates human with space in this stone. The corners of “human” heptagon concur with corners of the “Matter star” on pavilion. This is the way of an ordinary man, which lives by the interests of material world. But if we rotate crown facets when cutting just on one ray relatively to pavilion – a man represented in the stone begins to go by the spiritual way. This is road of the holies, the hermits living for the commonweal. And the main work of the stone begins just now, when I give the gemstone to the new owner saying: “This stone carries your image. Held it and don’t forget your way and your place in the Universe”.

What happens after that? Many of us know about thoughts materiality. And now, each time when you see the stone, take it, admire it – the associations connected with its symbolism arise in your mind. And these thoughts begin to change your destiny – invisibly, drop by drop. But – who knows? – may be just this invisible correction, like the last straw, once will turn the scale and prevent the irreparable action…

There was the second generation of the Philosophical gemstones. Four years is a long time for the creative activity, and first Gems of the third generation have appeared.

I will not talk so much about these stones, because I don’t know exactly the mechanism of its action. These are world-view gems, which change human consciousness. Such this stone acted with me, for example. When the design of gemstone was created on the computer, I understood that it is impossible to facet it. But when I made a step behind the impossible – I became another man.

Once after finish my work I have seen the Universe around me as this Gemstone and my consciousness also as this stone ins erted in to the big one. But inserted not only by corners, like square inserts in to circle, - by all facets, all edges, all essence. That time I sensed that there are no people separate from me – only one Mankind scattered on the facets of planet. And each man is me, with all my joys and sorrows.

And one moment of this acknowledgement gave me more than all previous life. I did not understand exactly what has happened. In fact, I faceted whole world while faceting one stone. At the same time I faceted myself and, the most important, the way of my transformation to the harmony of this world. That is the third generation.

The Gemstone that I talked about was donated to His Holiness Dalai Lama because it symbolically presents the Buddhist Mandala. The Kalachakra Mandala contains 722 elements, the stone contains 722 facets as well. Each facet reflects either aspect of the Existence. And incredible play of light in the facets gives the obvious presentation of complexity of the Universe aspects interaction. This is good illustration of the idea, which expressed by one of the first “Philosophical gemstones” named “Touching to the Perfection”: the real Master can use any features for the creative self-actualization – pen and paper, guitar and microphone, paints and canvas, stone and lap. The main thing is the Master should have something to say and his ideas crystallized in his work should bring joy to the people.

Victor Tuzlukov