Crystals: What Are They And Why Use Them?

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One of the first things I placed on my altar when I started officially practicing Wicca was a single terminated quartz crystal.  I came across it in my local occult shop when I was picking up candle and herb supplies as I was instantly drawn to it even though at the time knew nothing about crystals. I found it uniquely beautiful, it seemed to glow and something told me that it needed to be part of my wiccan workings. After years of practicing Wicca I still have this crystal and even with a vast collection of other crystals it has remained my favourite and it is well loved and used.

Crystals are minerals which come from the earth.  The scientific definition of a crystal is a solid substance with a geometric regular shape. The word crystal comes from the Ancient Greek word κρύσταλλος (Crystalos) meaning “ice” which derives from the word κρύος (Creos) which means “icy cold”. This is because the Ancient Greeks thought that crystals were eternally frozen water from the Gods.

The colours of crystals can range from a clear transparent all the way to the purest black.  They come in all different shapes and sizes which can be raw, cut or polished and in recent decades have been manipulated using heat and chemicals.

A large range of crystals have been used for thousands of years by various cultures including those of Ancient Egypt, China, India and America all of which considered them sacred and have ascribed them with sacred meanings and uses.

Crystals can be used to scry, meditate, dowse, heal, balance, energise, cleanse, attract abundance, love or psychic abilities, protect, absorb negative energy, prevent electromagnetic emanations or geopathic stress, encourage interaction by fairies, angles or gods, enhance your intuition or mental abilities and boost confidence.  They can also be used simply for decorative or personal ornamentation.

They can be dedicated to a specific task, energy or deity and can also be used in conjunction with reiki, massage, feng shui, reflexology, magick and ritual. Crystals can work holistically on all levels and can tap into the energies of the body, mind, spirit and emotions.  Another benefit of crystals is that they can not only be used with people, but also with animals, plants, combining different types of crystals or inanimate objects such as a vehicle, home or business.

Crystals can absorb as well as transfer energy and once you get to know a crystal you can work with it. This is through attuning to its energies that then allows the crystal to speak to you and consequently assist you.

Some simple ways to use crystals can be as follows:

  1. Wear the crystal, in the various forms of jewelry;
  2. Carry the crystal in a pouch;
  3. Place the crystal over a specific area of the body such as chakra or body part;
  4. Place crystal under pillow or bed;
  5. Position crystal in a room, car or in the garden; and/or
  6. Place on elemental tools such as an athame, wand, pentacle or chalice to bring in qualities desired.

Many common crystals which were used in ancient times as well as in modern times are Agate, Amazonite, Amethyst, Aquamarine, Aventurine, Bloodstone, Flourite, Calcite, Carnelian, Citrine, Garnet, Hematite, Jade, Jasper, Moonstone, Malachite, Obsidian, Peridot, Rose Quartz, Clear Quartz, Smokey Quartz, Tiger’s Eye, Topaz, Tourmaline and Turquoise.

Since the dawning of Aquarius many new crystals have been identified and these include larimar, petalite, atltantisite, phenacite and it is believed that these crystals have manifested as a way to assist us in the modern day.

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Image (C) T. Georgitsis 2011

Some simple ways to find which crystals are right for you are as follows:

  1. Trust that you will be attracted to the one you need;
  2. Stand before a group of crystals, close your eyes and calm you mind. Then open your eyes and the crystal your gaze is first drawn to is the one you need; and/or
  3. Pick up any crystal with your right hand and hold it whilst relaxing your mind. If after a moment you feel it buzz in your hand this is the right crystal for you.  *If you are choosing a crystal for another individual, use your left hand instead and picture the person in your mind’s eye. If you feel a buzz in your hand it is right for that person.

Crystals need to be periodically cleansed to remove build up of negative energy and this can be done in the following ways:

  1. Place in direct sunlight or moonlight (note: some crystals such as amethyst fade in the sunlight);
  2. Water cleansing (note: some crystals such as selenite can deteriorate in water);
  3. Burying in the earth (note: some crystals such as quartz can discolour especially if left for long periods of time);
  4. Fire cleansing using candles or fire pit (note: direct flame contact not suggested but by keeping in close proximity);
  5. Smudging using herbs or incense;
  6. Flower cleansing such as essences or waters;
  7. Rice cleansing by placing in a bowl of rice for a set number of hours;
  8. Essential oil by rubbing them with a essential oil anointed cloth (note: some crystals such as malachite can deteriorate or be tarnished by this cleaning method);
  9. Chanting over the crystal;
  10. Asking Deity, Angels, Fairies, Devas or Nymphs to bless your crystal within a cast circle.

Lastly you must remember since most crystals are taken from within mother earth, they are powerful and must always be handled with respect. If they are not going to be shared or passed on to other individuals for further use, they should be returned to the earth with thanks if you no longer require them and their purpose has been fulfilled.

By T. Georgitsis © 2011 (first appeared in Issue 1, Spirit & Spell 2011) (First image from http://www.freedigitalphotos.net)

Bibliography:

The Crystal Bible: A Definitive Guide to Cystals by Judy Hall

Godsfield Press 2003

Love Is In The Earth: A Kaleidoscope of Crystals by Melody

Earth-Love Publishing House 1995

The Power of Crystals: Harnessing Crystal Energy To Revitalise Your Life by Denise Whichello Brown

D & S Books Ltd 2002

The Crystal Sourcebook: From Science to Metaphysics by John Vincent Milewski and Virginia L Harford

Griffin Printing 1987

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