Magick and crystals

This  is by Estara Korai   Lyceum of the Greenworld

This is the stone intro that I give to my students in the Lyceum of the Wayfarer. You will notice that my focus is different from Peggy's: my specialties are Faery work and protection/shielding/banishing, that kind of thing; and physical healing applications are fairly new to me, a kind of work I didn't really start exploring until I joined Reiki_On. Those things reflect in the information I give here. The article also says a few things that are different from Peggy's views in our basic files on this list. Take these things with a YMMV, and stick with what feels right to you. ^_~

Love, Estara Korai

Introduction to Stones

Stones are an important and useful magical tool. Their energy is more constant and predictable than that of "living" materials, because the stones themselves are much less mutable. At the same time, they are able to hold a great deal of energy and store it, and then to release it at the appropriate time.

Most stones can be cleansed in any number of ways: smudging, exposure to sunlight or moonlight, salt, water, or strong intention. However, a few stones are sensitive and must be handled accordingly: for example, colored quartz stones, like rose quartz, are sensitive to sunlight and their color will fade if they are overexposed to it.

Stones can be used in a variety of ways. There is a history of using precious and semiprecious stones in healing, and this is discussed in detail in books such as Diane Stein's A Women's Book of Healing. However, our focus will be primarily on magickal and meditative uses. A stone can be held to lend its affects to the holder directly, or included in jewelry, or put into a spell bag or pillow.

Any stone can actually have potential uses in magick depending on its particular energy. If you go outside and pick up a random stone, opening yourself to its energy, you will find it to have its own personality and energy signature. However, this introduction will focus on some of the better-known semiprecious stones. We have tried to emphasize stones that are relatively easy and inexpensive to get, rather than including stones with strong reputations but hefty price tags.

When selecting a stone for use in magick, always handle the stone first. Rather than just picking the first one that looks pretty, you must check to make sure that its energy signature is compatible with yours. You may find (as your teachers have) that one stone will suit you perfectly, while another of the same type leaves you with a headache. You may also find over time that you work better with certain kinds of stones and poorly with others. This is fine. You are not required to work with every stone listed here for life, only to acquaint yourself with them in order to find out which ones suit you. If possible, you may want to take into consideration how the stone was obtained: as earth-conscious pagans, we prefer those that have been found on the earth's surface to those that have been stripmined. (Of course, if you are able to go somewhere and actually
find the stone yourself, in a place where it is legal to take it, this is best of all.) Try not to buy stones that have been dyed, as this affects the energy, and may even mean that you have a different kind of stone than the one you're really looking for. Generally rock shops are less likely to have dyed stones than New Age shops, but this is not a hard and fast rule. (Local note--we have found that the Psychic Eye stones are especially bad, virtually all of them being dyed as well as overpriced. We advise that you look elsewhere for stones.]

When you choose a stone and bring it home, you may wish to cleanse it before using it. You should also cleanse the stone when you want to  change from one use to another, after doing very heavy work with it, or whenever else you feel that it
needs it. If you ever feel that you no longer "connect" with a stone or even come to actively dislike it, cleanse it thoroughly and let it go to someone else. (This rule applies to magickal tools generally, by the way.)

Many books talk about "programming" crystals and stones. This means that the user essentially imagines as specifically as possible the particular function s/he wants the stone to serve, and stores this energy inside the stone. Unfortunately, the word "programming" implies that the stone is merely a blank slate with no previous energies of its own. In our pantheistic system, however, we  acknowledge that even a rock, which is an order of being very different from our own, has its own energy and its own essential integrity, its "soul" if you will. So, as strange as this may initially sound, we prefer to work in cooperation with the natural tendencies of the specific stone rather than impose our will upon it. This is one reason why the initial choice of a stone is important.

In the descriptions below, we have listed some of the traditional uses for each stone that are the most consistent with how we have experienced the energy of the stone to work. You may find in your experimentations that you will have a slightly different experience of how best to work with a certain kind of stone, and this is fine. We have also attributed an element to each of the twelve stones, three stones per element. This is in relation to the elemental correspondences of our particular tradition, and may not hold outside of that setting; so you may see them given a different element elsewhere. Again, the important thing is simply to use this list as a beginning point for developing your own relationship with the stones.


amythstclusterAmethyst -- Water
Amethyst is one of the colored quartzes, the color here being purple.
Like other colored quartzes, amethyst is sensitive to sunlight and should not be exposed to it overmuch, or else its color will fade. As a purple stone, it is often connected to the planet Jupiter and to the seventh, or crown, chakra. Amethyst has been a popular stone since the times of Ancient Greece, when it was linked to Dionysus and reputed to protect against drunkenness. By the same token, it is sometimes used today to help people overcome alcoholism. Amethyst generally has a calming, gently protective energy; it soothes anxiety, aids sleep and improves dreams. It also traditionally brings good luck and wards off harmful magick. It enhances inner and outer beauty, helps in meditation and spiritual development, and lifts the
spirits. It is calming and energizing at the same time: so, although traditional uses favor the calming aspects, those with a lot of "chaotic" energy to them may find that the energizing effect will actually win out. Amethyst can be combined with tourmaline for a stronger protective charm: the tourmaline draws in negative energy and the amethyst neutralizes it.

aquamarineAquamarine -- Water
Aquamarine, as its name implies, has a long history of association with water, and specifically with the sea. It is a blue-green
relative of beryl and emerald. Its uses are primarily calming, promoting peace and emotional balance. It allows the bearer to open more fully to immersion in the Divine and to messages from Gods and nature spirits, especially those with a connection to the ocean. It has a reputation for soothing bad dreams and protecting those who travel over the water. Its soothing effect has also been connected to helping people give and receive energy more openly and flowingly, and to aiding Second Sight and helping people accept what they have seen; so it can be used therapeutically while dealing with the more traumatic aspects of Awakening. (Note: aquamarine is the hardest to get of the stones listed. We have found blue quartz to have a similar
array of uses that may be found less expensively.)

bloodstoneBloodstone -- Fire
Bloodstone is a green stone with red flecks or spots (the "blood"). In literature it is often confused with hematite, so be careful in researching these two stones. Bloodstone is also sometimes called heliotrope, which is also the name of an herb with similar aspects. Bloodstone, perhaps obviously, belongs to Mars, but it seems to represent the balance of forces between Mars (the red flecks) and Venus (the green stone). On one hand, its traditional uses include stopping bleeding from cuts and injuries, protection of warriors, protection from the "evil eye," power over malign spirits and entities, and increasing courage. On the other hand, it is also said to control anger, help in grounding (though less than some other stones), control the menstrual cycle and ease childbirth. It is also reputed to grant invisibility, to grant success in court, and to aid concentration.

carnilionCarnelian -- Fire
Carnelian is a red-orange chalcedony, ranging from translucent to opaque. It was sacred to the Egyptian gods and especially Isis, and was often used in charms. It is definitely an energetic stone, sometimes attributed to the Sun. It is a stimulant, easing depression and encouraging the raising of personal energy or kundalini. It also stimulates courage and the sexual appetite; it also increases the ability to concentrate, focus, and work constructively, especially if these problems are due to lack of energy. It stimulates both physical and astral senses, sharpening them. It is protective against nightmares, psychic attack, and astral "spying."

citrineCitrine -- Air
Citrine is a yellow-colored quartz, but is less sensitive to sunlight than its relatives, amethyst and rose quartz. This is only proper, since as a yellow stone it is attributed to the Sun and the third chakra (solar plexus). It is a warm, spritely stone, with a lively, fey energy. It stimulates the mind, not so much to deep thought but to perception, and is very cheering. It sharpens psychic awareness and helps with visualization as well as astral protection. It renews depleted energy and wards off negativity. It also helps in spellwork to bring a wish into manifestation.

Hematite -- Earth
Hematite is a shiny grey-black stone, heavy to hold; it is ferric oxide, meaning that it contains iron, and this explains much about its nature. It is called bloodstone in some sources because when it is worked, its dust turns water red. However, it is NOT bloodstone and should not be confused with it. Hematite is sometimes attributed to Saturn because of its color and weight, but also suits Mars because of its composition and some of its properties. Hematite is the grounding stone par excellence; it all but forcibly sucks you down into the Chthonic realm. In fact, although some sources suggest hematite for
bringing people "down to earth," we find that it is sometimes actually too strong for this, and is best suited to Chthonic work; but it may be needed for someone who is extremely scattered or ungrounded. It is also very protective, and can be used in shielding to good effect. It grants courage and endurance to warriors, the ability to 'stand firm' and not be moved. It also has a reputation for drawing illness and negativity out of the body when applied directly. The Pueblo Indians sometimes combine hematite with turquoise, to bring both Chthonic and Celestial energy through strongly at the same time: the feeling of
strength and balance from this combination is enormous. Again, the two combined are actually so strong that we suggest saving them for times of duress, not for daily wear.

Malachite -- Earth
Malachite is a soft, banded green stone, the opposite of hematite in that it is lighter than it appears to be. It is attributed to Venus. We have found its energy to be rather diffuse and unfocused; if more focus is desired it should be cut into a pyramid shape. It has a reputation as a protective stone, especially protective for children: the kind of protection it provides is a scattering and deflection of negative energy, rather than the more aggressive shielding or absorption and transformation of some of the other stones listed. Malachite magnifies moods, and is useful for bringing hidden baggage closer to the surface to be healed. Some people find it helps them develop psychic perception and attract love. Malachite can be used to
draw out negative energy or illness. As may be seen in many of its uses, malachite absorbs negativity easily, and so it should be cleansed often. It responds well to cleansing with water, but no salt should be used because the stone is so soft.

Moonstone -- Air
Moonstone is a creamy, translucent feldspar, a lovely stone and a traditional nonhuman (especially elven and fey) favorite. As its name implies, it is attributed to the Moon, and moonlight is best for charging and clearing it. It tends to have a feminine-feeling energy. As a lunar stone, it is often used for regulating the menstrual cycle, and for developing psychic awareness and helping in divination. It also helps astral travel and dreamwork, and is protective in those realms. It is
calming and peaceful, relieving fear and bringing a peaceful sense of contentment. Scott Cunningham suggests moonstone for weight loss, rubbing it over the body during the waning moon. Moonstone can also be worn while gardening or buried in the garden to help growth. According to one writer, holding a moonstone in the mouth helps to tell truth from falsehood, friends from enemies, and helps in making 'crossroads' decisions.

Obsidian -- Fire
Obsidian is a natural volcanic glass, brittle and shiny black. As a black stone, it belongs to Saturn. As a glass, it seems naturally suited as a scrying material, especially for use in a magic mirror. (In fact, the Aztecs called the god of obsidian Tezcatlipoca, "Shining Mirror.") Obsidian is grounding, and as a dark, reflective stone, is excellent for use in shields. It is a root chakra stone, very 'fight or flight' oriented. It is protective in an aggressive way, actively turning back negativity. Obsidian can be used in making very sharp arrowheads, and similarly has some aggressive applications in its
sharpness. It "cuts through" to the heart of things. This can be used internally to explore personal issues (beware! this is not a gentle stone--be ready for its tactlessness), or externally as protection or even attack. It allows you to see into the minds and hearts of others. It has a polarity with clear quartz similar to that of hematite and turquoise, except that obsidian and quartz together are slightly less strong but much more aggressive: they are a combination for going out and doing battle rather than for standing firm in a more defensive posture. Like the other combo, this is not suggested for use outside of special circumstances: in fact we found that combining them for too long without having somewhere to direct
the energy gave us stomachaches.

Peridot -- Earth
Peridot is a translucent, bright green stone of volcanic origin. With a slightly different tint it is called olivine, and as such it can be purchased in Hawaii as SAND. Peridot is a very positive stone, traditionally attributed to the Sun, though some modern writers give it to Venus; it is an elven favorite, and those attuned to that realm may find it calming, giving clarity and purpose. In traditional use, peridot brings good luck and good cheer; it grants tranquility, beauty, light, rebirth, renewal, and balance. It draws prosperity, eases nerves and tension, and heals gently. It is also protective against enchantment and psychic attack and dispels illusions and night terrors. Native teachings connect peridot to Polaris, the North Star.
Peridot is connected to both the heart and solar plexus chakras. It should be carried carefully, because it is a brittle
stone that can break.

clear rose quartzRose Quartz -- Water
Rose quartz is, of course, a colored quartz with a pink tone. As such, it is sensitive to sunlight and can lose color if exposed for
too long. It is fairy-and child-friendly, connected to the heart chakra. It is excellent for use in any emotional healing or turmoil
because it promotes feelings of peace and self-love. It is a very sweet-natured stone, recommended for healing from grief, abuse, or any form of self-neglect; it encourages emotional release and healing. It also attracts love by opening the bearer up to self-love and Divine love.

Tiger's Eye -- Air
Tiger's eye is a banded yellow/brown stone, recognized by the way that the bands seem to 'dance' when the stone is moved. It is an oxidized form of the stone, compared to its less-common blue/green form, which  is sometimes called hawk's eye. Roman soldiers wore tiger's eye for protection, but its protection is not the strongest available; it is
best to wear at the first potential sign of trouble, to protect in a subtle way while it lends you courage and "keeps an eye out," as it were, for the source of the problem. It aids perception and especially Sight, and carries a solar energy. It enhances personal power, is a gentle stimulant, and is helpful in uncovering past lives. It encourages action and clear thinking about the most appropriate action to take.

by Estara Korai   visit her site  Lyceum of the Greenworld

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