Crystals have captured the human imagination for thousands of years. Case in point: According to ancient Greek legend, Atlantis used crystals to power machines and serve as her personal note pads. Crystals have captured contemporary imagination as well (remember The Dark Crystal?). Nowadays, you'll see them dotting all types of different spaces, from yoga studios to home decor shops.
So why do we love crystals so much? Well, first off, they just plain beautiful. Touching a crystal feels like a gift, partly due to their visual power. And the energy of a crystal is thought to be a separate gift all its own. So, if you've been feeling left out of the crystal craze or have yet to be convinced that crystals are for you, check out this guide to healing crystals, their meanings, and how to use them.
How to find the right healing crystal for you.
The first time I went to a crystal shop, I was a bit overwhelmed. I was with my friend who was going through a breakup, and she had been to the store the week before for some crystal healing guidance. The shop owner had suggested a rose quartz (a classic stone for anything heart-related) and my friend insisted the stone was making her feel supported, so she brought me along to learn more.
At the time, I decided it would be best to look for a stone to keep me feeling calm and grounded and confident at my new job. The lady at the desk suggested tiger's eye for courage, hematite for grounding, and citrine for a positive outlook. Before I left, I also decided to choose a "mystery crystal"—one I knew absolutely noting about but just called out to me somehow. After looking at and touching many, many stones, I ended up with a bloodstone.
It fit, like a new friend who you feel like you've known for your entire life. Plus, bloodstone happens to be a great stone for Aries (my sign!) due to its ability to temper worries, lend emotional strength and support the physical body. This more intuitive method has since become my favorite way to choose a crystal. Here are some other general "rules", though I use the word loosely, to help guide your crystal search.
1. Call upon the crystal that's right for you.
Ask the Universe for the crystal that will work for your highest good. Be open and receptive to whatever crystal comes your way, and don't go into the search with too much judgement or pre-conceived notions.
2. See if you have a physical reaction to any stones.
Take your non-dominant hand and pass it over the crystals, waiting to see if you feel a subtle "tug" from one of the stones. You may end up with three or four (I know I do!). If this is the case, move on to the next step.
3. Experiment with stones that have different "properties".
Another popular way to choose a crystal is to look up a crystal for what you want to heal. A great place to start with this is seeking the crystal for the body part or chakra that you think needs some extra love. Here's a very brief guide to the seven chakras, for the specific benefit of crystal-choosing:
- First Chakra (perineum, base of spine): protection, safety and comfort in your environment
- Second Chakra (low belly, sacrum): abundance, power, sexuality, courage
- Third Chakra (waist, solar plexus, bottom of the ribcage): inner-child-awakening, spontaneity, fun, joy, the ego, the will
- Fourth Chakra (heart, chest): love, self-love, acceptance, compassion for self and others
- Fifth Chakra (throat): communication, self-trust, channeling divine information
- Sixth Chakra (third eye, between the eyebrows): intuition, ability to meditate, mental purity and clarity
- Seventh Chakra (top of the head): This is the accumulation of all of the chakras and where we go up to contact the divine.
When you go into the shop, you can ask to see some stones for a particular chakra so you have some direction. Also, if you learn that a particular stone works with a particular chakra, it's great to put that stone on its associated body part. (For example, a second chakra stone placed on the low belly is total bliss).
The meaning behind a few popular healing crystals.
If you're looking to bring a certain thing into fruition—maybe it's love, maybe it's physical abundance—you can also look for a crystal that has been associated with that particular energy. While crystals won't magically bring anything into being (what would be the fun in that?), they can be used to support and remind you of your intentions, almost like little cheerleaders from the earth.
Here are seven popular stones, along with the energies that they are thought to carry:
This purple beauty has a calming and relaxing vibe about it. As such, it's a fantastic stone to use during meditation and it's thought to help you cut through the noise in order to tap into your intuition and inner knowing. If you're new to spiritual exploration, it's a great crystal to get started with.
Citrine radiates light and warmth with its golden orange hues, so it's no surprise that this is an uplifting stone. It can be used to help you cut through negativity and soothe stress and anxiety.
According to Heather Askinosie of California-based crystal shop Energy Muse, "If confusing or unclear situations have you feeling like you’re looking through a fog, blast away that haze with clear quartz. This crystal is the ideal ally for anyone trying to get a better perspective and richer understanding. The surge of purifying energy that quartz crystal sends to all of your chakras can help cleanse the negative energy that may be tainting your perceptions."
Jade is a green stone thought to help amplify the abundance in your life. It has a wonderful purifying quality about it and dons the nickname "Stone of Heaven".
Moonstone's soothing color evokes memories of water, which makes sense because the stone is thought to be incredibly cleansing. Like its namesake, the moon, is also carries nurturing, feminine energy and can be used to unlock your inner goddess.
Black obsidian is considered a very protective stone. It's a wonderful sidekick if you are venturing off on a new path and seeking some safety and grounding.
"Rose Quartz is one of the best stones to use for relationship troubles, emotional traumas, healing inner child karma or other emotional issues," Rinku Patel writes on mbg. "Its soothing and calming effects will bring forth peace and tranquility. Place Rose Quartz in your home or workplace to keep the atmosphere harmonious and peaceful."
How to use healing crystals.
With crystals, the sky is the limit and you can use them however you feel called. One popular method is holding crystals in meditation to ground yourself and direct your attention. Or, as I mentioned earlier, you can place the crystal on a chakra point to ignite that part of the body.
Crystals also make for beautiful additions to your personal altar, and displaying them in a space you pass by often can remind you of your intentions. On the other hand, if you have smaller crystals laying around, you can carry them with you throughout the day like you would a good luck charm.
Finally, crystals can be used to help you tune into the energy of mother earth throughout the year. This crystal ritual by mbg's Emma Loewe will help you celebrate the transition into fall:
- Get your hands on a small crystal that you can display in a special place through the fall. It can be your bedroom, your desk, or anywhere else you pass often.
- Hold the crystal in your hands as you breathe in for five counts, hold, and release for five counts. The fall season corresponds to the lungs according to traditional Chinese medicine, making it a great time to pay extra attention to the breath. You can also drink a warm, herbal tonic or tea to further clarify the lungs.
- After a few moments of deep breathing, begin to play through the season that has passed: Visualize your proudest moment from summer. Don't judge the memory that plays through in your head; just roll with whatever comes up first for you.
- Open your eyes. Do you have a physical photo of the moment that you visualized? A picture on your phone? Pull up any images that you have that represent that moment for you. If you don't have any, write a few sentences down that describe the memory.
- Place your crystal on the written entry or physical or digital photo (rituals should usually be phone-free times but this is one of the few times when tech is OK) and imagine it absorbing the energy and pride of that moment.
- Crystal in hand, consider what you can do to make way for more moments like these in the fall. Jot them down.
- Place your crystal in a place where you'll see it often throughout the new season. Let it remind you of your proud moment and your intention to make more.
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