The importance of gemstones in Indian jewellery is much more complex than it might seem. In addition to the aesthetic criteria, there is a profound connection with Hindu cosmology: the universe, according to this belief, contains seven planets and two personifications of the moon cycle. Each of these nine is believed to be a celestial deity. The nine deities are in turn represented by a particular gemstone. Individually, the stones are used for prophylactic and therapeutic practice. When they exist together in a single piece, the adornment receives the name of nava-ratna. The nava-ratna is considered a powerful amulet. It depicts constellations in space in relation to the sun, the giver of life and humankind.
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