Jewelry can be a fashion accessory but it can also symbolizes a spiritual truth for the wearer.
In many cases, religious jewelry tells a personal story. For example, jewelry is a common gift to give and receive during religious ceremonies or holidays.
We reached out to the Huffington Post Religion community asking what kind of religious jewelry they own and what it means to them. Do you treasure a piece of jewelry that has a spiritual meaning for you? Send a picture of it to firstname.lastname@example.org with a few lines describing why you wear the item or what the story is behind your symbol of faith
Below is a slideshow of pictures and stories from our readers.
"My ring is a daily reminder that my many sins are forgiven and I am full of God's love and grace" - Kerianne Cardiff, <a href="twitter.com/soverykerianne" target="_hplink">@SoVeryKerianne </a>
"This was a gift from my Filipino mother-in-law during my first pregnancy to watch over me & my baby" - HuffPost Religion community member Dawn Marie, <a href="http://twitter.com/dawnseml" target="_hplink">@dawnseml</a>
"This is not something I usually display outwardly but I wear this Sikh Khanda on a gold chain since high school." - <a href="https://twitter.com/americanturban" target="_hplink">@americanturban </a>
"This is my pentacle, which I wear at all times, except when I remove it once every few months to change the ribbon which is sewn shut so that I'll never lose this because it has to be cut off of me. My High Priestess/ religious teacher gave this to me, more accurately, she put this on me while I was unconscious after I fainted. It is a protective amulet as well as a symbol of my faith" - Re DuVernay
"I felt compelled to send a picture of my pentacle, which has been with me for approximately fifteen years. It was with me when I was young and unsure, sat patiently in a box when I was unmoved by any religion, and has eventually become like an additional appendage when I rediscovered my path; so full of energy I acutely feel its absence when it is not around my neck. It has moonstones at the five points, a stone that speaks to me. I have other religious jewelry, but this pentacle is my companion. It has accompanied me on my spiritual journey thus far, and as long as the Goddess calls me, it will be around my neck, a symbol of devotion." - Amy Perkins
"A tasbih is a beaded prayer rope, similar to a rosary in Christianity. I like to wear this along with my hijab because it provides me with a symbol gesture around my neck, something I like to hold on too and feel for when I need hope. It's a small gesture, but it goes a long way. A tasbih is used to say long (or short) prayers in repetitiveness. They come in every size from 30 prayer beads to as big as 5,000." - Amarra Ghani
"The Awen is a modern Druid symbol that represents divine inspiration. I wear the Awen to remind me that the creative voice is a sacred gift. The bard, the poet, and the storyteller have a very important role in Neopagan traditions; we keep the old myths alive, and we create new ones that reflect our modern understanding of the divine" - Teo Bishop
"This is the seal I was given as a symbol of my first degree Witchcraft initiation into the Ravenwood tradition. An elongated hexagram, it is the sword female initiates wear that complements the broader shield hexagram of the male initiates in the tradition I was trained in. When I wear it, I feel like I know who I am." - Star Foster
"I call myself a "Quantum Wiccan", because I'm also interested in the science part of my religion. When I glance at my hand, this tiny ring reminds me that I'm part of everything and everything is part of me, so I should both notice/appreciate and respect/tread gently." Cyrilla Baer
This is my ordination ring - Byron Ballard
"I have had this necklace for almost 20 years; to me it represents my connection to everything around me and reminds me that we are all part of the same spirit." - Morgan Daimler
"It's the Triple Goddess symbol. Representing the three phases of the moon ( waxing, full, waning) and the three aspects of the Goddess ( maiden, mother, crone)" - Angela Pippinger
"I wear this necklace when I want to feel closer to the Gods. The spirals, those ancient symbols of spirituality, open up a channel to the Divine, and the stones are known to help make any connections stronger. Copper has been called The Goddess Metal, too. I always feel good when I wear it." - Jayde Petersen
"My religious jewelry is a pendant of a Celtic Triquetra. I purchased it from a local artisan when I was visiting the Cliffs of Moher, it's made from clay extracted from the Earth in County Clare, Ireland. I'm a Celt Pagan, this pendant is a reminder of my spiritual journeys, and wearing it makes me feel connected to my Celtic heritage" - Cindy Walke
"This is the pentacle that my partner gave me. I put it on the day of our wedding and have been wearing it ever since. Despite the fact that she and I have different faiths, she's very supportive of me. My pentacle is not just a symbol of faith but also of that support and of our love" - David Dashifen Kees
"This miniature "mezuzah" - it is not an actual mezuzah, just in the shape of the item often seen on the doorpost of Jewish homes. This was given to me by my late mother when I was a teenager. I'm a 55 year-old rabbi, and I have always worn some version of a "magen david," or Jewish star around my neck. It reflects pride in, and comfort with, this aspect of my identity, one that may not be visible otherwise" - Rabbi Liz Bolton
This is my tyet necklace (and pentacle, I am both Kemetic Orthodox and Wiccan), which I seldom remove. The tyet knot is connected to the Goddess Isis, but to me it not only symbolizes my connection to Divinity and my faith, but is also a reminder to always live within ma'at- the ancient Egyptian concept of truth, balance and the order of the universe. Eris
"My daily religious jewelry is two pendant on one chain. The stone is a blend of Dolomite, rhyolite and slate that naturally occurs in one place. It's the stone that Stonehenge is made of. A few years ago I made a spiritual pilgrimage to Sacred Sites that included Chalice Well and Stonehenge. Wearing it helps me feel connected to the Gods of my Pantheon. The pentacle (5 pointed star inside a circle) represents 4 elements and Spirit and reminds me that the Earth and my connection to the Gods is why I'm here. After nearly dying in a car crash that almost took my leg I try to be more aware of the "Why" of myself. It keeps me focused." - Amy Blackthorn
"I made that earring, though the meaning is rather amorphous, the acorn represents the Oak, nature. Circles are fairly common symbols: completeness, circle of the seasons. The blue of the turquoise is the blue of the sky or water. Or could just be that I love the color of those beads, which are exceptionally nice turquoise. The pendants: Modern Triple Goddess (Maiden, Mother, Crone). My daughter used to say it was her grandmother, me, and her. The Bear pawprint was given to me by my son, as I am (spiritually) a bear.The flaming chalice is the symbol for Unitarian Universalism, which is where my family has found our spiritual home" - Ursyl
"The ankh is the ancient Egyptian hieroglyph for life, and as a Kemetic Orthodox shemset (that is, a follower of a specific brand of Egyptian polytheism), the ankh is a very potent symbol for my faith. The wisdom literature of Egypt teaches us to love and embrace life rather than reject it as evil or sin filled, a concept I work to bear in mind each day. This particular ankh is a gift from my atheist partner, and thus also reminds me of the importance of love and interfaith cooperation, as despite his firm belief that there are no gods, he has been a supporter of me in my spiritual journey" - Avy Cook
I am Asatru, true to the Gods of my Ancestors. I wear the symbol of Thor's hammer as an outward sign of my devotion.
Four years ago I found my spiritual home in Unitarian Universalism. It is non-doctrinal religion bound by the covenant of our 7 Principals: - The inherent worth and dignity of every person; - Justice, equity and compassion in human relations; - Acceptance of one another and encouragement to spiritual growth in our congregations - A free and responsible search for truth and meaning; - The right of conscience and the use of the democratic process within our congregations and in society at large; - The goal of world community with peace, liberty, and justice for all; -Respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part. The Chalice with it's flame is the UU symbol. The chalice and the flame were brought together as a Unitarian symbol by an Austrian artist, Hans Deutsch, in 1941. Living in Paris during the 1930s, Deutsch drew critical cartoons of Adolf Hitler. When the Nazis invaded Paris in 1940, he abandoned all he had and fled to the South of France, then to Spain, and finally, with an altered passport, into Portugal. There, he met the Reverend Charles Joy, executive director of the Unitarian Service Committee (USC). The Service Committee was new, founded in Boston to assist Eastern Europeans, among them Unitarians as well as Jews, who needed to escape Nazi persecution. From his Lisbon headquarters, Joy oversaw a secret network of couriers and agents. Deutsch was most impressed and soon was working for the USC. He later wrote to Joy: There is something that urges me to tell you... how much I admire your utter self denial [and] readiness to serve, to sacrifice all, your time, your health, your well being, to help, help, help. I am not what you may actually call a believer. But if your kind of life is the profession of your faith--as it is, I feel sure--then religion, ceasing to be magic and mysticism, becomes confession to practical philosophy and--what is more--to active, really useful social work. And this religion--with or without a heading--is one to which even a 'godless' fellow like myself can say wholeheartedly, Yes! The USC was an unknown organization in 1941. This was a special handicap in the cloak-and-dagger world, where establishing trust quickly across barriers of language, nationality, and faith could mean life instead of death. Disguises, signs and countersigns, and midnight runs across guarded borders were the means of freedom in those days. Joy asked Deutsch to create a symbol for their papers "to make them look official, to give dignity and importance to them, and at the same time to symbolize the spirit of our work.... When a document may keep a man out of jail, give him standing with governments and police, it is important that it look important." Thus, Hans Deutsch made his lasting contribution to the USC and, as it turned out, to Unitarian Universalism. With pencil and ink he drew a chalice with a flame. It was, Joy wrote his board in Boston, a chalice with a flame, the kind of chalice which the Greeks and Romans put on their altars. The holy oil burning in it is a symbol of helpfulness and sacrifice.... This was in the mind of the artist. The fact, however, that it remotely suggests a cross was not in his mind, but to me this also has its merit. We do not limit our work to Christians. Indeed, at the present moment, our work is nine-tenths for the Jews, yet we do stem from the Christian tradition, and the cross does symbolize Christianity and its central theme of sacrificial love. The flaming chalice design was made into a seal for papers and a badge for agents moving refugees to freedom. In time it became a symbol of Unitarian Universalism all around the world." - Carol Sue Cain, Benicia, CA
"I bought this in 1995 as the "Christian answer to Kokopelli", the Native American fertility god who played music for the animals and fed them. It's St. Francis under a tree branch with a bird and a deer. It symbolizes where I stand between at the intersection between the Church and the natural world, not just in a way that symbolizes my spirituality and general beliefs, but in what has evolved and is still evolving into an animal advocacy (animal rights/welfare) presence in and across my denomination." Sue Grisham
"I have on two amulets. the silver one is my father's thumbprint. he passed away very suddenly and unexpectedly on january 17 of this year. My daughter was born less than a month later. My sisters and my mother and I all wear his thumb as a memorial. i miss him more than anything. I love that I can reach out and touch a part of him still. The one on the bottom is durga, a kinder and more compassionate counterpart to the hindu goddess kali-ma. My best friend's mother (and a very dear friend of mine) sent us these amulets -- durga to me and kali-ma to her daughter -- to give us strength and protection during a really hard time. They are two things that I never take off. I'm not a very eloquent person, nor am I very effusive about my spiritual beliefs and ritualistic comforts. But these medals and pendants that I wear have done so much to keep me calm and have given me so much comfort during some terribly dark times over the last ten years." - Elizabeth Reynolds
"People comment on my faith symbol all he time. Usually with the words; "What is that you waer around your wrist, it's so ugly." My answer is; "It's my faith line. The tiny blocks spell the word faith and they float freely around that thread. I wear it to remind me that my faith is not always perfect. In fact, there are times when when I am so challenged that my faith is but a fine line. I need only touch it and I know that the line may be thin and weathered, but it will not break." It is a simple reminder that faith is simply to believe." <a href="http://@AnneAustenLewis" target="_hplink">@AnneAustenLewis</a>
"The gold pendant is Shiva Natraj, strung on my mangalsutra (a traditional gold and black-beaded Hindu marriage necklace). The silver phylactery is my version of a tabeez: a small silver container that contains a wish, prayer or holy relic. Mine holds a fragment of sacred red cloth from the yoni of Goddess Kamakhya's shrine in Assam, India. I was consecrated to Kali/Kamakhya when I was eleven years old, and recently returned there for a visit." - Saumya Arya Haas
"The spiral speaks to me as no other spiritual symbol. It is ancient and infused throughout nature--even bearing the shape of our DNA. As a contemplative Christian, the spiral claims me as the symbol of my experience, understanding, and practice of Christianity. It holds the journey inward and outward, in solitude and community, and reminds me to live into the balance between being and doing. This handformed artisan spiral is one of my best-loved and most worn pieces of jewelry." - Holly Benzenhafer Redford