Jade is a highly valued stone that symbolizes gentleness, serenity, harmony, and balance in feng shui, or the practice of bringing balance to your life and home with energy. Jade has many meanings, including strength, luck, and good health.
Jade is also revered for its healing properties balancing the body's processes. In China, jade is cherished as an item of beauty and nobility. It is not bad luck to buy it for yourself, especially if it brings you joy or makes you feel happy.
What Is Jade?
Jade, known best for its green varieties, is one of the most favorite materials for carvings used in various feng shui adjustments. It is also much loved for use in jewelry pieces. The term "jade" applies to two distinct minerals: nephrite and jadeite. It also comes in several other colors.
The Qualities of Jade
Jade has been revered for centuries across East Asia. It is one of the oldest collected and cherished gemstones. It is found in shades of deep green, translucent lavender, creamy white, and orangey-red; each color has a separate meaning and symbolism.
Jade is a stone sought after for its luminous quality and luster. In many historical texts, the best quality jade is described as having a "greasy" smooth quality. The sound and ring a piece of jade makes when tapped is also an indication of quality. A higher-pitched ring means it is of a higher grade or quality.
The rarer examples of jade with colors like "spinach" green mixed with cloud-like whites are reminiscent of nature and traditional Chinese paintings. When first picked up, the best quality jade is cool to the touch, often described as an ice-cold touch.
Healing Properties of Jade
In China, jade is considered to be a living stone. It is from the earth, but its luminous quality is like sunlight and the stars: It is believed to connect the heaven and earth realms. Many pieces and examples of jade are described as being yin or yang, depending on the color. Like all things from nature, jade is imbued with qi, the life force that flows through and around all living things.
Jade is believed to have healing properties that help balance bodily fluids and the body's filtering organs, like the kidneys, bladder, spleen, and adrenal glands, by removing toxins. Its properties benefit skeletal and cellular systems, and help heal infections and physical injuries like stitches. Jade is also considered a libido, fertility, and childbirth aid. Traditional Chinese medicine or alternative medicine practitioners may use jade rollers or gua sha (flat stone) tools.
The Colors and Meaning of Jade
The colors of jade are also connected to Taoist cosmological systems. Lighter and more translucent jade is considered to have softer energies and is referred to as yin. Deeper green and more opaque versions of jade are said to have more potent, more significant energy and, therefore, more yang. For example, the deeper dragon-green veins are yang and represent overcoming adversity and the ability to live a better life.
The colors are connected with the five-element system used in feng shui. Green jade symbolizes well-being and longevity, and green is connected to the wood element. Red jade (also called hong red) is related to love, joy, and the fire element. White jade also has meaning; it is expected to help calm and give clear purpose and is associated with the metal element.
A piece of jade that combines more than one color increases the stone's value. For example, a statuette with all three colors (red, green, and white) is called the auspicious Fu Lu Shou, named after the gods of happiness, wealth, and longevity.
- Green jade: Finest-quality, almost transparent, vibrant emerald-green color; most valuable; also called "imperial jade"
- White jade: Also called "moss-in-snow jade;" translucent white with bright green veining, patches, or spots
- Yellow jade: Also called "apple jade;" intense yellowish green
- Lavender jade: Highly valuable; also called "lilac jade;" pale purple to deep plum hues
- Other jade colors: Red, orange, brown, gray, black; less common
Types of Jade
Jade is a semi-precious gemstone. It can come from two unique types of crystals—nephrite and jadeite. Nephrite is found in mid- to dark-green, while rarer colors of nephrite include orange and white jade. Nephrite is the more common and less valuable form of jade.
Jadeite is prized for its translucent quality and comes in many shades of green, even a highly sought-after lavender. The rarest examples of jadeite have been described as "moss entangled in melting snow."
The crystalline structure of the two stones also sets them apart. Nephrite is made of fibrous crystals that interlock in a matted texture, while jadeite comprises grainy crystals that are densely packed. Nephrite is the stronger of the two and is generally used for simpler carving and applications. Jadeite's harder, denser structure shines and can be delicately carved into intricate designs.
Jade Is Good for Feng Shui
You can include jade in your home to improve the feng shui or balance of energy. There are many different types of applications, including statues, carvings, and tumbled pieces. As an object, jade is good if you can place it in your home to support and strengthen your qi (life force energy).
If you own a piece of jade, wear or display it. Do not keep it stowed away in a drawer. It is considered a living stone with qi; if it is not used, it will become lifeless and brittle.