Navratna literally means nine jewels. Navratna jewellery uses nine precious stones to for a beautiful piece of jewellery. The nine gems include: diamond, red coral, emerald, ruby, yellow sapphire, pearl, hessonite, blue sapphire and cat’s eye. Each of these are said to have some ‘cosmic powers’ that can help the wearer.
Among the roywl families, it was said that these gems had cosmic powers and were representative of the nine planets. Not all had the opportunity to wear it. The kings of yore, the maharajas and their close family, were the only ones who could wear it in specific pieces like the turban brooch.
The ruby stood for the sun, and was said to enhance the qualities of leadership, independence, vitality, and purity. The pearl was for the moon, and was meant to increase mental strength, friendliness, emotional stability, and contentment in the wearer. The red coral denoted Mars, and stood for giving insight, courage, and vitality. The emerald represented Mercury, to help become mentally alert and improve communication skills and mental control. The yellow sapphire was for Jupiter to enhance compassion, enthusiasm, wisdom, judgment, and joyfulness. The diamond represented Venus to help increase charm, grace, and artistic abilities. The blue sapphire stood for Saturn, something that is normally not worn alone but with balance of other gems. The hessonite stood for ‘Rahu’, the ascending lunar node, and was meant to help balance the influence of external information sources and aid in giving a sense of clarity to the wearer’s mind. The cat’s eye denoted ‘Ketu’, the descending lunar node, which helped to get rid of uncertainty, poor concentration, doubt, and lack of insight.
Those who believe in astrology, still believe in the cosmic powers of the stones, and wear them according to the suggestions of their astrologers. But now a navratna jewellery piece is worn more for its aesthetic purposes. It looks beautiful and be paired with different colours and types of ensembles, making it one of the most ideal type of jewellery to possess. Now, you also get a semi-precious navratna that is made of stones in similar colour as the original precious stones but cost much lesser than the originals. It has now become common to call any jewellery piece that has nine coloured stones a navratna.