The first thing you need to know about gems, stones and crystals is size really doesn’t matter! You don’t need a piece of rock the size of a small mountain; bigger doesn’t mean better and more power. Yes is does look impressive having a chunk of Amethyst weighing 10 kilo’s sitting in your living room; to me it just says you had the money to buy it. In order to use the power of a Gem, Stone or Crystal you really only need a small piece; a piece around the size of the tip of your finger will do.
The next thing you need to know is that all Gems, Stones and Crystals need to be cleansed, consecrated, energized and empowered/programmed.
When you bought your various Gems, Stones and Crystals, you have absolutely no idea how they were collected and how they were stored and treated prior to coming into your possession. If you can it’s better to go rock hunting and try to find them yourself. Yes I know it’s hard but it is quite enjoyable scrambling about your local quarry (with permission) or beach etc, and armed only with a field guide on minerals, rocks and stones plus a small geological hammer or something similar and a bag to put your finds in and away you go. And there is more satisfaction in doing it this way, but don’t get smug; not everyone has either access to the location, opportunity, time or health!
Once you have found your treasure whether it be in a shop or at a local quarry and taken it home you can cleanse it, unless you were lucky enough to find it in a stream. If you did and the stream was not polluted it’s already cleansed; because the simplest way to cleanse a gem, stone or crystal is to hold it in/under clean running water but not tap water as this contains chlorine and other additives so is not pure; the closer to the source the better, spring water being the best. Some say you can use sea water but if you live inland this may not be practical, although I suppose you could always dissolve three pinches of sea salt in spring water and cleanse/immerse your finds in this salty solution. Some say you only need to leave it in a glass of spring water over night, but I feel that’s like treating it like a set of false teeth!
To energize your Gem, Stone or Crystal just hold it up to the moon or better still, place it somewhere where the moons rays can shine on it for several hours, such as your outdoor altar (if you are fortunate enough to have one) or a windowsill anywhere where the moon can shine on it.
Gems, Stones and Crystal can also be energized by the sun in the same way, but if it’s a Crystal, make sure it doesn’t cause a fire risk by acting as a prism/magnifying glass!
To empower or program your Gems, Stones and Crystals you need only hold it in your hand and think of what you want it to do, concentrating and directing your thoughts towards and into the rock! If you wish you can hold it up to your third eye (Forehead) and concentrate and direct your thoughts into the rock.
Once you have cleansed, energized and empowered/programmed your rock; put it somewhere safe and shielded. In order to shield a rock just wrap it in black clothe made from natural fibres, i.e. linen, cotton, silk etc. The colour Black blocks negativity and protects or deflects stray spirits and contaminating thoughts and unwanted energies.
Now that you have your Gems, Stones and Crystal, what do you do with them, how can you use them? The answer is simple; anyway you want too. Using natural glues, you can glue them to almost anything you use in your circle. You can add them to belts, garters, headbands, wands, cups and staffs. If you’re skilled enough you can fix them to your Athame, or they can be simply left scattered around or placed on your altar. You can carry them about either in a pouch or pocket; you can even tape them under your desk at work. They can be used under the pillow to aid dreamtime or guard against nightmares. So you see the uses they can be put to are almost limitless.
What Gems, Stones and Crystals are best to use? Well the answer is it depends; it depends on what you want to do. Do you want to energize, enhance, protect, project, healing or to stimulate a natural skill you have or just to use them for general well being. The following list is just the tip of the iceberg as they say and is by no means complete. I suggest that you go and purchase a good but not expensive book on the subject, then handle them (crystals that is!). At first use them as the book suggests, then try different ways and combinations of using them, handle them, become familiar with the feeling you get from them, try to reconcile the feeling you get with a possible use, if it works, fine if not try something else. Sometimes what works for you doesn’t work or works in a different way for others. Follow your intuition.
Rock Colour and Prescribed use
Agates (Varied) There are many different types of agate and nearly all are used in healing of some sort; either of the body or the mind.
Amber. (Yellow/Orange sometimes Green) This is an all purpose gem, its uses range from protection through to a strengtheners. It has been prized by people/tribes throughout the ages as a magical stone and was worn by the High Priestesses and Priests of our early ancestors. It was also use in the female witches necklace (Alternate with jet i.e. amber, jet etc).
Amethyst. (Transparent Purple.) This stone is effective against all forms of negativity. It is also an aid to the third eye and strengthens intuition. Put it under your pillow if you suffer from repeated nightmares or disturbing dreams.
Bloodstone. (Very dark green with red or orange spots or bands) This stone can be used for removing blockages both physical and mental. Some say that if you use stones to heal others (people that is), it is advisable to keep a bloodstone on you to protect yourself. This stone is really a type of Jasper; some also call it Heliotrope.
Carnelian. (Translucent Red or Orange.) This stone helps you to succeed. It is said that it also helps you to shield your thoughts from others.
Geodes. (Variable.) This is a round ball of a flint like rock with a hollow centre. When broken open the centre contains crystals of either amethyst or topaz. These are said to stimulate the wilder side of your nature which can be expressed in dance and free spiritedness.
Jasper. (Varied in colours.) This stone is used to strengthen your flow of energy and help to relieve stress. Red Jasper can be used in defensive magic and night time protection. Green Jasper is used as an aid to healing. While Brown Jasper, can be used in grounding and stabilising situations.
Jet (Black) Jet has historically been used as a protection stone and is said to have very powerful protection energies to ward off evil, negativity, as well as psychic attacks, it is considered one of the most powerful absorbers of "negative energy, i.e., depression. Jet is said to control all demons and thus prevent demonic possession. It draws out negative energy from the aura, and can initiate psychic experiences. It uncovers past negative energies a person still carried in their subconscious mind, and will help in understanding and working with life and karmic cycles.
Moonstone. (Soft hues of pink, white, blue and green.) It promotes love, compassion and sympathy with others. It’s also an aid to the second sight. Keep this stone with your divinatory tools such as Tarot cards and Rune Stones etc.
Obsidian. (Black.) This stone is used in protective magic. Some have also made scrying mirrors from highly polished slices of this stone.
Rose Quartz. (Pink.) This stone is used to promote peace, love of self (When you’re feeling down) and others.
Smoky Quartz. (Translucent black or grey.) This stone is used as an aid for raising energy as well as an aid to protection spells.
Tiger Eye. (Soft brown with lighter coloured bands.) This stone is use for luck. Others call it the ‘Truth Stone’ and claim that if you carry it with you anyone who lie’s to you will be found out. As such it can be used to reveal hidden truths especially at Samhain as an aid to lifting a corner of the veil should you require doing so.
Turquoise. (Sky Blue) Turquoise is said to be the ‘Speaking Stone’ hence an aid to communication. It is also believed to enhance love, hearth, health and happiness.
As I have stated in the introduction, this is in no way a comprehensive list, and the person who is considering using stones in their magical work would be wise to purchase a book which delves into the subject in depth.
The last words I wish to put down are about crystals. Crystals are the one gem that can be used in almost every conceivable situation. The use of crystals is almost un-ending. I would liken crystals to natural power packs which can be used to enhance or boost almost any magical process. They too should be cleansed by holding them in/under clean running water (not tap water), and they can be empowered by letting the moon or sun charge them up. If you don’t wish to use too many different stones in your magical workings I suggest you substitute most of the others for crystals.
The penultimate thing to say about crystals is; if you lose one don’t worry, the chances are that it has taken itself off to re-charge itself and you’ll ‘find’ it again when it’s needed. It may turn up later in the most un-expected of places, a place where you would never think to look. They do say that if a crystal has finished its work with you it will move on to where-ever it is next needed. So don’t worry if it never turns up, find get buy another.
Finally; take care of your Gems, Stones and Crystals as they are subject to cracking and chipping, especially if they are kept lose together. Its better all round if you can make or purchase small soft pouches to keep them stored separately. And always cleanse and re-charge them after use or if they have been left dormant for a long period. If you leave them outside to cleanse and re-charge, don’t forget about them, especially in the winter as the cold may do them some damage. Oh and don’t forget to label the pouches; if you have got several there’s nothing more frustrating than having to look in all the pouches to find the one you want. ‘Murphy’s law’ states it will be the last pouch you look in!
Researched & Written by Rainbird