Black Opal and Self-Acceptance


Black opal1 is about going into the new. It is about breaking out of the prison of the limitations that we once created for ourselves out of concern for our safety. It is a remedy for the point in life when you know those limitations can no longer contain you and that come what may, you are going to break through to the other side.

Peter Tuminello, who introduced this remedy to homeopathy, stresses that it is about allowing and integrating parts of the self that have been disallowed. This makes sense, as our resistance to aspects of self stems from beliefs generated in the past. I would like to add that the impetus for freedom is not merely to integrate who you have been yet not allowed, but to move forward to allow the self to expand in new ways, to become more.

As light passes through opal it is diffracted – split into separate wavelengths, and thus colors – as it hits the tiny spheres of silica which create the gem’s structure. Because of this, the opal displays every color of the spectrum. Its beauty is symbolic of our own transcendent beauty realized when we accept and welcome all aspects of ourselves into our lives – the full spectrum of our being.

A central image in the proving of black opal was that of the Trojan Horse. The Greeks, at a stalemate in their attack on the city of Troy, had the idea to breech the gates by building a huge wooden horse to be presented as a gift to the city. But hidden inside the horse were the soldiers who, once inside the city, upon breaking out of hiding would open the gates to the Greek army, bringing the destruction of Troy.

The disallowed aspects of self are those soldiers hidden in the horse. It feels to the individual as if, once those soldiers spring free, it will be the end of the established order – that careful construction of self. On the one hand is the urge to become a larger version of oneself, and on the other hand the terror of the shake-up this will cause.

In this state the person is in denial of their truth. There is a belief, or a system of beliefs, that must be thrown off before they can fully acknowledge some aspect of themselves. The soldiers must emerge from the horse! Yet at the same time they experience the rigidity of this repression, and an unstoppable need for release.

As a remedy, black opal immersion can usher one to the point of allowing the release. It can then support one through the stages of disorientation that come with allowing the dismantling of the old order and embracing/becoming the new.

Black opal as remedy and as totem holds forth both the freedom and the faith to be in the world as ones largest self.

The experience of this is best given in the words one of the remedy provers:2

I am reflecting on how I feel about my life and think, ‘As for myself, I see my horizon, a whole 360 degrees, and it is a flame of love and life and I hear, from deep within, everything my mind needs to know and everything my heart desires.’ I actually saw this image of a circular horizon on the sea with multicoloured flames.3

We sometimes strive half-heartedly for self-acceptance, without fully grasping what it would mean in our lives to DO it. The experience shared by this prover allows us to glimpse the full power of self-acceptance: a wide-open connection to our Divine Source.

Note: Here I have attempted to express the essence of this remedy, but it is not intended as a basis for prescribing. A much larger and fuller understanding, both of the remedy and of the person’s state, is needed in order to successfully choose the most similar remedy. I present this here as part of a basic introduction to the gem remedies, and to add to your understanding of the scope of homeopathy itself.


1   My explanation and my understanding of Black Opal is derived chiefly from the brilliant book on gem remedies, Twelve Jewels, by Peter Tuminello, and enriched by my own experience with the remedy.

2  The provers of a remedy are those who, in a controlled experiment, take the remedy with the intention of discovering its effects.

3  Tumminello, Peter L.. “Black opal.” In Twelve Jewels: gems in homeopathy. St. Leonards, N.S.W.: Medicine Way, 2005, p. 60.