This blog series has come out of a survey I did last year. I asked my lovely subscribers what topics they were interested in and ‘THE BENEFITS OF CRYSTALS’ scored top marks.
I always liked this topic as it is steeped in history plus I do like to wear semi-precious stones that have benefits attached. So here is an introduction to this vast subject.
Part 1 starts here and looks into the formation, use and history of crystals.
Part 2 will describe the various colour groups and how they connect to the chakras in our bodies. I hope you find this series interesting and useful.
How crystals were formed
Not all crystals form alike, but all contain stored natural powers and energies which have often evolved over thousands if not millions of years. Some are cooled lava, others like the black obsidian are in fact similar to natural glass. There are organic crystals (pearls would be one of them) and hardened tree resins still containing fossils (amber). Some even contain materials from outer space.
But what is the difference between an ordinary stone and a crystal?
Both contain atoms, but the crystal’s atoms and molecules are attached in a regular pattern. When one or more minerals are fused in this way – we call it atomic bonding and the result is the formation of a crystal.
Most crystals form from mineral substances that occur in abundance in the earth’s mantle. But others are made from minerals that are very rare and these are therefore more expensive. In fact, eight elements make up over 99% of the earth’s crust. They are oxygen, silicon, aluminum, iron, calcium, sodium, potassium, and magnesium. Other elements that are found in crystals are titanium, boron, carbon, fluorine, chromium, manganese, and various more elusive substances.
Most crystals are a culmination of the elements mentioned above. Sometimes they can come from the same element, but the structure of the atoms or molecules is very different. This results in vastly different appearances and properties. Take for example the graphite and the diamond. Both are made of carbon, but the arrangements of the atoms are vastly different. So graphite is soft and grey and the diamond is hard and shiny.
The majority of crystals are in fact silicates which means that they contain oxygen and silicon. There are currently around 3700 mineral species that we know of, but only a few of these have the structure to be cut into gemstones.
Some are plain, others are very vibrant and used in jewelry and embroidery. Traditionally earrings protect the brain and mind from psychological attacks and keep the mind focused. Necklaces and pendants shield the heart from manipulation and bring love. Belts empower the solar plexus and boost confidence. Rings symbolize love, friendship, a certain belonging (a king may have given a nobleman a ring so he can wear it for everyone to see that he has a bond with the king).
Next time we look into how crystals were used throughout history. Please click to HERE continue to part 2 of this series