Secret Life of Diamonds
Happy Valentine's Day, lovelies! Did you find a diamond glittering inside your heart today? Is it sparkling for the ones you love :)
I offer my farewell post on Victoria Finlay's Jewels: A Secret History, because it seemed like the perfect sentiment to acknowledge love in all its shapes and sizes. Like a diamond, love can feel elusive, and it was this particular aspect concerning illusion versus reality that made Finlay's last chapter so delightful.
I'm not a diamond girl. In fact, part of me feels a bit chagrined for all the times that I looked at girlfriend's diamond engagement ring and automatically exclaimed "it's soooo gorgeous!" Like opals, the sparkle of diamonds has always been somewhat disorienting to me, which seems odd because I'm a sucker for a twinkling star or glittering snow.
I guess that's why I loved reading Finlay's book Jewels: A Secret History. She's changed me. She turned my belief system upside down, like a cook that transformed your least favorite veggie into something tantalizing. I'm hooked.
There were a lot of favorite parts in this chapter on diamonds, because honestly everything was so fresh. From finding out that the curse of the Hope diamond was a media ploy to learning that its name comes from the word adamatine (unconquerable), I think Finlay's story about diamonds was one of the most fascinating, because it's built around our perception of value.
I won't ruin the eye-opening story about De Beers and the diamond industry for that alone is worth the purchase of the book. Rather I'd love to share what Gabi Tolkowksy, one of the world's best diamond-cutters, thinks when he begins to fashion a stone: "Whenever I first see a diamond I ask it, 'What do you want to become?' And it says, 'I want to be the most beautiful.'"
For Gabi Tolkowsky, a sculptor of light, every cut is a decision that can never be taken back. Every new facet is another leg on a journey of towards on unknown destination. Every moment of cutting is a yearning to tell the story of a diamond's beauty to its fullest potential.
He understands that each person perceives beauty differently but aptly theorizes that an empty space is created when visualizing an object. An opening in our field of perception that allows the viewer to fill in this space with their own fantasy image. For him, diamonds are the perfect blank canvas, allowing people's imaginations to run free when viewing something completely real.
Some people run towards a blank canvas or empty sheet of paper with gusto, but not me. I'm one of those indecisive folks that squirms when faced with filling space. To think all these years I've been running away from looking into diamonds, I've really been running away from letting my imagination be free.
Thank you Victoria Finlay for writing this book and touching my heart with stories that I will be coming back to over and over again!
Catch up on the rest of Jewels: A Secret History by reading my entire blog series The Secret Life of Gems.