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Monique Gonzalez, Psy.D.


a story of an amethyst on fire

Apr 25, 2024

March 11

I want to write.
I want to write.
I want to write.

I have this written on a post it note. It sits there staring back, being held in place by a dainty, smooth rose quartz and an orange amethyst gemstone. The crystal of love and self-compassion, paired with a rock of inspiration and abundance. Suddenly, a tiny wave of nausea courses through my body. I don’t think this is the right time to write, I think to myself. My brain is too foggy, I feel distracted, my eyes want to soften closed. A part of me feels defeated.

I look back down at the stones, as if asking them to conjure up some creative force of energy. I release an ironic heavy frustrated sigh directed at the light pink crystal of unconditional self-love. Then I pick up its rugged amber neighbor. As I hold it between my fingers, I notice this orange amethyst is composed of three layers: a brown base that appears almost claylike, a middle chunk with compact coarse white crystals, and a top textured layer of tiny golden crystals.

I open up my browser on my computer and type: orange amethyst. Curiously, there are not many articles that pop up referring to this variation. I find other rock types that carry the amber hue, such as citrine, carnelian, and sunstone, but none called ‘orange amethyst’. I get a lot of results with images of a purple spiky rock, and I remember that this is the amethyst that is most common. This one usually ranges in color between pale lilac to a deep mesmerizing violet. 

In the crystal world, the purple amethyst is known for its soothing, calming, peaceful qualities. If you’re struggling with stress, anxiety, or difficulty sleeping, this royal purple quartz is often recommended as a spiritual support. Many folks keep this stone at the entrance of their home or bedside, as a way to tap into more balanced, protected energy. According to Greek mythology and cultural legends, this purple stone holds potential for warding off ‘intoxicating powers’; the word Amethystos means "not drunk". They would wear it at feasts or drink out of amethyst goblets to avoid the effects of their wine on their ability to govern or combat. (Sounds like sobriety could have been the other option here.) 

The ancient Egyptians used amethyst in their amulets - objects held on the person for the purpose of potent protection from unwanted spirits or to ensure safe transition between this world and the afterlife. For example, artisans would carve the crystalline material into small animal figurines, such as hawks and hippos, and they would remain in the tomb with the deceased. (I recently learned that hippos were very prominent magical figures in ancient Egypt, and I find that so fascinating. I also have a special unexpected tie to this which I can share if you email me.

Photo of blue hippo statuette created by artisans in ancient Egypt Middle Kingdom.

When I was adventuring into the rabbit hole of the interwebs, I found one article that swept me in like a tidal wave. I was learning more about amethyst in ancient Egypt than I had prepared myself for. Amethyst apparently complimented the designs of what researchers call apotropaic wands.  They’re ‘magic wands’ that resemble modern boomerangs. These wands were typically made of hippo tusks and included engravings of special mythology. These visual stories - hieroglyphic inscriptions - on the wands would focus on harnessing the power of certain figures to cultivate safety amidst chaos or potential danger. The wands have been found in burial sites with one tip usually appearing significantly more worn. It is thought that the wands were used in part for drawing lines, such as protective circles, as well as held specifically during pivotal, fragile transitions in life, such as at the birth of an infant and at death.

Photo of Dr. Mo's shadow overlaying the Egyptian hieroglyph scroll known as "Book of the Dead". The original Egyptian name for this funerary text, transliterated r(ꜣ)w n(y)w prt m hrw(w), is translated as Book of Coming Forth by Day  or Book of Emerging Forth into the Light


Are you still with me? Because it gets even more interesting. One myth - or mystical narrative - that is often represented on these wands is called, the myth of the Solar Eye, also called the myth of the Distant or Wandering Goddess

This story centers on a journey of the Eye of Ra, the autonomous complex female facet of the Egyptian Sun God, Ra-Atum. The Eye of Ra can take the form of several powerful goddesses, such as Sekhmet the lioness you might be more familiar with. The Eye of Ra is known as the ‘eye of truth’, and is associated with the combination of fire and water. Thus, she is capable of both divine wrath and divine creation. Essentially, she can burn shit down and also conjure up fertile creativity. I like her already.

In this particular wandering myth that we discover on the magical wands, Eye of Ra is portrayed as a powerful female entity who suddenly becomes quite hurt and angry. She travels solo to the southeastern desert, where she rages violently in the form of a lioness. With a volatile temper, others are initially fearful of her. However, her community makes attempts to invite her back to her home. After some time, and with the help of animals, sacred waters and plants, she returns to the Nile Valley. She is then transformed into a peace and harmony filled goddess.

This myth brings up so much for me. How about you?

Egyptian statue and several Eye of Truth artifacts. Photo taken by Monique.

This is a story of unraveling, releasing, recentering and rebirth.

The Eye takes a sojourn into her emotional state. She dares to go there, to the place everyone else perceives as a dangerous unknown. She allows herself to freely experience the depths of her feelings. She makes the difficult yet necessary decision to isolate and tend to her wounds. (Sound familiar my dear PMDD ones reading?)

Then, there is an opening for healing, that is in large part due to compassionate patience and collective care. She is not alone in this; she receives what we may term today as ‘mutual aid’. In a moment of need, her community offers up support. This example of collective care reminds us of how many elements can make up that support. She connects with animal companions, earth, water and sky.  This then allows her, at her pace, to return to her crucial role of protection and magical potential in the greater cosmos.

Also, can we talk about how there's a normalization and place for rage? That its not shunned. It's acknowledged. The Eye connects with it in a safe way that allows it to flow through. It is an intentionally channeled rage here that I find intriguing, especially in these collective times where we could use some of that towards justice.

As someone cycling every month with Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder, her journey feels intimately familiar. The ongoing spiral outward from core emotional depths to then creating something meaningful from that space - that feels resonant and validating. I will be returning to her story again many times.

Photo of ancient ceramic pots with spiral inscriptions. Photo taken by Monique.

Oh, there it is!

My own eyes moves away from Eye and suddenly land on another title on my search page. I have uncovered an article on my screen that begins with, There’s something special about an amethyst that’s gone rogue and turned a rich, fiery orange.” 

In reading further, I discover that this amethyst stone on my desk has been heat treated, meaning under controlled conditions, the stone is subject to a heating process which consequently shifts its original deep purple hue into a rich orange color. Once heated, it takes on the appearance closer to that of citrine, a stone associated with the sun’s energy, vitality, creativity, and vibrant expression.

Interestingly, even after this transformation, this gem is still considered an amethyst at heart. Would that mean it still holds the spiritual capabilities to shield off unwanted influences? According to this article, this fired up rock still holds its spiritual properties of protection and soothing the mind, though it contains a bonus of sorts. This rock somehow intertwines the energy of staying centered in truth, while being bolted into inspired creative action.

There’s a sense of figuring out how to make space for both spark of passion with the gentle return to what makes us feel most at home, in harmony with ourself and world. I immediately think of our dear fierce Eye of Ra. This article goes on to refer to the orange amethyst as an ‘oddball’ and ‘rulebreaker’. I have this little adorable sturdy rock holding a core peaceful essence, that is charged with the ability to create beyond conventions. Fuck yeah.

April 16 2024

I am a writer.
I am a writer.
I am a writer.

A full lunar cycle and half later and my rough around the edges sunny companion sits here feeling a lot more at home at my desk. It really looks like it belongs here and I am happy for it. For us. It neighbors the pin I received from Spirit Bound Press, the indie publishing company founded by the phenomenally badass writer Juliet Diaz. I am in Silent Study Hall with Juliet as I write this to you, dear reader.

This is my beginning with The Revolutionary Writer’s Program.
I started RWP – a unique course and loving community focused on a liberatory and social justice lens for writing a novel – because there was an inner voice calling me to journey from the familiar safer place of “I want to be a writer” to the unexplored lands of “I am a writer”.  I took a cue from our Eye of Ra.

Monique in museum looking up at statue of Sekhmet, goddess of ancient Egyptian mythology.

This shift in mindset and path feels both aligned and scary. Most things that are outside our comfort zone yet important to us bring up a lot of fear based thinking. We can get caught up in our brain’s messaging that wants us to stick to what we know. Our brain, afterall, is designed to keep us safe and alive. My lovely mind is not a fan of the risk taking.

I can foresee a lot of conversations with the ‘Mo, stick to what you've been doing part of my brain’ as she tries to convince me that being a writer isn’t the way to go.

I’ll be doing everything else like washing dishes, scrolling on phone, creating a list of what I want to do at some point in the distant future, instead of actually writing, and my brain will rejoice, ‘Yes this feels good. Keep it up. It’s comfy and secure this way. It’s less work this way.’ Then, I’ll have to reject, “No no no. That’s the thing, it will hurt more and be more draining if I don't live this piece of who I am out loud. At some point, I gotta do the thing. I am doing the thing now.” 

I’ll be entering my writing hermit mode, and my brain will say ‘Oh, you will lose connection with your community out there if you spend more time hiding away.’ And I’ll say, “Authentic community doesn’t work like that, my dear brain.”

Or, I’ll be typing away notes for my first ever fiction novel, and my brain will interrupt, ‘That doesn’t sound good enough. Do you even have a chapter yet? This is going to take forever.’ And I will respond, “Trust the process.” 
As I lean into this commitment to myself of embracing my writing identity, I also can't help but wonder: What would our beloved wild Eye of Ra do?

If we connected in my dreams...

I imagine she would advise me to go there – to
traverse the unknown because it's the only way through. It’s the only way to feel fully alive. I imagine she would also encourage me to lean on my trusted support system. To also stay open to becoming friendly with strangers who also dream of writing in community. She’d remind me to look up to the sky, to watch the birds’ path, to listen to the tales of the wind, to breathe easy with the sea waves, to remember who I am in this cosmic wonder we call home. She would accompany me on long walks pointing out the inspiration that comes when we slow down, when we live on purpose. She would nod gently to me as I cry tears of release on those days when the writing doesn’t come right then. But then she’ll wink to remind me the words are still there beneath the achy parts, and will return to the surface to breathe the meaning when it's time. Eye of Ra would snicker with delight as I chose to dance cinematically amongst the smoky sage in my bedroom overlooking the garden's bougainvillea, as if I was channeling a scene from my book. 

April 25 2024

I wanted to write.
 am a writer.
And I am writing my book.

“These words string together, floating now to the conscious space of The Page because they’ve long been in touch with the treasure beneath.”  (me to inner writer me)


Dear reader and fellow human wonder, thank you for bearing witness to this evolution.

I would love to hear from you. What parts of this have sparked insight or resonated with your heart? Please send me a note. I welcome meaningful connection and community.

I also want to take this time to note that many of the photos featured in this post were ones I took while visiting the Egyptian museum in Turin, Italy. When we view sacred items of human lives, it is so important to honor where and how they got there. They are not just things on display. This museum, much like many museums in the so-called Western world are both enlightening and problematic. We can hold and stay critical of both truths. We can challenge how we all have become accustomed to seeing the narratives of indigenous and ancient wisdom taken from their home and put into exhibits.

This article is dedicated to the wisdom of all Indigenous peoples.
May all beings be protected from the harms of colonialism.
May all beings be free.

With love, Dr. Mo

An invitation if you made it this far:

Support Middle East Children's Alliance , a reputable organization uplifting humanitarian aid, income generation, and education to youth and families in the Middle East. You can donate a few dollars or share a letter with your family&friends to encourage them to donate.

And as always, take such good care to tend to your inner flame.
We need your spirit out there making this world a better place.
Hope you continue to stay connected with me via my newsletter. 


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