crystals · how to · metaphysics · Uncategorized

Crystal Basics from a Skeptic

I have had crystals as a part of my life for over 30 years. I discovered them when I was 14 and have always had them around my personal spaces. I enjoy their looks and their presence.

What are crystals?

Crystals, in their most basic sense, are minerals and chemicals that have been placed under intense heat and/or pressure and reformed into what we know as crystals. They are Nature’s gifts to us to show us what Nature can do over time. They can be anything as mundane as pyrite, or as priceless as diamonds.

In a metaphysical sense, crystals contain their own energies, powers and can even capture spiritual entities within them. They are important parts of rituals, altars, and spells.

As a skeptic, I admit, I find it a bit of a stretch that something that has been buried in the ground, in the dark, could hold any energies within it, or that anything that we use them for in metaphysical or pagan ways has any basis in reality. However, I am also a strong follower of creative visualization, the power of positive thinking and the placebo effect, which, in spite of how it is often used, is often a lot more positively powerful than medicine. So if crystals and the rituals behind crystals allow one’s brain to utilize the placebo effect and bring more positive aspects to one’s life, I’m all for it!

How do I find the perfect crystal for me?

Attuning into the crystals you need can be done in a couple of ways.

The first way requires question asking and research. You need to ask yourself, what is it that you would like a crystal, or crystals, to help you with. What are you searching for? What traits do you want to bring forward in your life? What changes are you looking to make?

For instance, my altar was originally set up for self-compassion, so I needed crystals that would help me focus on love, compassion, self-awareness and forgiveness.

Once I had what I needed and what I was hoping to accomplish, I researched the internet for what crystals I would need. Of course, having been around crystals for many years, I already knew that rose quartz, amethyst, pearls, and moonstone would be a nice spectrum to start with. But, I still needed to do my research to make sure I wasn’t missing out on one that might be better suited for my needs.

In this article, I won’t go through the basic energies of crystals because for one, there are really just too many to list in an blog article, and second, there are numerous sites that all will help you find which crystals will best serve your purpose. To better find them, just google the phrase, “Crystals for (insert focus here)” and it should provide you with a good list of sites to read. Be prepared though! There will be a lot of conflicting information! That’s why the second way is better, in my experience.

The second way is to find your local metaphysical, new age and/or “rock” store. Every town, I have discovered, no matter how large or small, has at least one. Set a date to go and plan out your trip. Most important! Please don’t listen to the person behind the counter until after you have done this process. I say this because you need to find what you need, not what they want to sell you. Not that the people in the stores are hucksters or scammers. Most of them are really very neat people who you will want to get to know better. But you are there to find what you need, not what they think you need.

So, go to the store on the day and time you decided and clear your mind of everything but what your purpose for getting crystals is. Focus on those needs as you walk around the store. Pick up crystals and stones that grab your attention and old them for a moment, then put them back down. Don’t discriminate because you find yourself holding a crystal or stone that wasn’t in your research. You are there searching for what you need. The crystals and stones will answer.

Eventually, you will find yourself coming back to certain ones. You will find yourself picking up the same ones over and over again. Those are the ones you will want. They are the ones that will help you in finding what you seek. If you leave without them, I can guarantee, you will end up going back for them at a later date, so get them that same day, if you can. I know not everything you pick up is going to be within the budget you’ve set for this. If that happens, then gather together what has found you and then determine which ones call stronger to you. This can be done by either holding them again, or simply asking the question, “Am I going to be disappointed if I leave without this one?” It’s amazing how much that one question can help you determine which ones are the most needed.

Okay! I’ve got my crystals! Now what?

I have learned over the last few years or so that many people don’t know what to do with their crystals when they bring them home. While what I’m going to say may not be entirely necessary, it doesn’t hurt to do these steps. (As a skeptic, I tend to only do half of this, because…well…crystals are going to do what they want to do, regardless of what I want, but…it never hurts either…)

The first thing you are going to want to do is get some sea salt. It can be bought at the grocery store for fairly cheap. Don’t get anything iodized or processed. Sea salt should be larger than regular salt and not fine. I usually get the large cylinders of sea salt.

Find a dish that will be large enough to hold all your crystals without them touching. This dish should be made of ceramic, glass, pure metal, or any other natural material. Do not use plastic, resin, or paper.If using metal, make sure that you use a pure metal, avoiding metals such as aluminum, nickel, and pewter. Silver, copper, and gold are the best metals for this. Man-made materials do not channel the energy you need the way pure materials do. Pour a covering of sea salt into the dish, then place your crystals and stones in the dish on top of the salt. Don’t push them down against the dish. Just let them sit on top of the salt. Then once they are arranged so they aren’t touching, cover them in more sea salt, then place in a quiet corner of the room or house for 24 hours.

This process is called “cleansing”. Just like you did in the store, other people also went around picking up stones and crystals to determine if they were what they needed. This allowed their energies to enter into the crystals. You need to cleanse them so you can fully attune them to you. The salt will draw out the energies and dilute them through the dish they sit in,which is why you need a pure material and not man-made.

Once the 24 hour period is over, you may remove the crystals and stones from the salt. At this time, you can wash them in water, to get any potential salt residue off them, but it is not necessary. I tend to do it anyways, just in case.

Then, take your crystals and stones to your personal quiet space and hold them. Close your eyes and meditate on what you wish to accomplish with their help. What energies, emotions, mental processes you wish to have with them. What questions you want answered. What traits you would like to have them help you work on. By doing this you “attune” the crystals to your needs and imbue them with your own energies that are filled with intent towards a goal. This lasts until you feel you satisfied and have fully imbued your crystals with your intent. There is no set time limit, but 20 minutes is generally good. When you are done, you can put them in a silk, wool or natural fiber pouch, and place them someplace safe.

During your meditation sessions, or when you want to work on the goal you decided on when you found your crystals, take them from their pouch, hold them and focus on the intention. You can hold them all at once, or one a a time, focusing and writing down what thoughts come to mind, plans, goals, ideas, etc. You can also place them close to the bed at night to receive any messages through dreams.

Every so often, you will want to re-energize your crystals. You can do this monthly, or every 3-4 months during the full moon, depending on how often you work with your crystals. Much like “cleansing”, you want to place them in a dish of natural material with salt. When I do this, I also add water to the dish, as opposed to covering them in salt, as I want them to keep their energies, but absorb more. Take this dish and place it somewhere it will get the light of the full moon. I put mine outside, but you can put the dish on a windowsill inside. Leave the crystals exposed to the moonlight all night long. In the morning, you can remove them from the dish, wash away the salt, and put them back in the pouch. If you miss the first night of the full moon, not to worry, you get another chance the following night, but don’t put them out for both nights as it isn’t necessary.

Again, I am a skeptic. I have a hard time believing that something in the ground can be powered by the moon that it would never have been exposed to without man, but…I’m also a fond believer in the placebo effect, so…Even if it is only to placate my mind, I’m okay with that. The purpose of the crystal is to help you focus and discover the journey you brought them home for. If adding a bit of moonlight helps, then go for it!

And that is how you find crystals and attune them to help you with your journey through this life! Enjoy your hunt!