glass has properties, too

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Category: Crystal Healing

Glass is not a crystal. Like quartz, glass is composed of silicon dioxide, and both materials are clear in their purest state. The difference is in the way they form. Quartz forms very gradually, aligning its molecules one by one into a perfect crystal lattice. In contrast, glass forms when the silicon is heated and quickly cooled, either by the earth or by man. The quickly cooled molecules have no time to form a lattice, and instead solidify with no particular pattern.

So the question sometimes comes up: Since crystal healing works by aligning the perfect structure of crystals with the energy field of the human body, does glass even have metaphysical properties? What, if anything, are the various forms of glass good for?

The answer is that glass has its own kind of magic. While it lacks crystal structure, other characteristics give the various forms of glass their own power: color, included materials, light refraction or reflectivity, shape, tradition and history. In fact, humans have used glass so long, we could think of glass as sort of the “domestic dog” of the mineral world; it’s such a part of human culture that our paths are intertwined. Tools and weapons using obsidian date back to prehistory, including some of the oldest artifacts known. Glass jewelry has long been treasured. And glass mirrors gave people the ability to look at ourselves, bringing us to reflect on our own identity.

Obsidian has a long record of use. Not only did its sharp points come in handy for weapons and tools, its reflectivity made it an excellent material for mirrors. In fact, a piece of polished black obsidian still makes the best and most natural black mirror for scrying (divination) and meditation. Obsidian’s properties include exposing the truth in any situation, removing negative energy, grounding and balance, finding and correcting one’s own weaknesses, and addressing power struggles. Obsidian mirrors are also ideal for a number of shamanic uses, including divination and time travel. Obsidian is mostly silicon dioxide, but also contains other minerals that turn it dark.

Some special forms: Sheen Obsidian, which may contain air bubbles (gold sheen) or magnetite (rainbow sheen). Snowflake Obsidian forms when, over time, obsidian begins to crystalize. The “snow” in this obsidian is actually crystals of cristobalite — similar to quartz, but with its own distinctive structure.

Apache tears are a natural form of volcanic glass — mainly obsidian, often with a dusting of perlite. The name “Apache tears” comes from a combination of history and legend. In the 1870s, a band of Apache warriors was hiding from the US Cavalry in the rugged mountains of Arizona. They believed their hiding spot was too remote for anyone to find, but the soldiers managed to track them, taking them by surprise with overpowering numbers. Fifty Apache men were killed in the ambush; the rest escaped only by running their horses off a cliff and falling to their deaths. For years afterward, people found their bones among the stones of the Pacacho Canyon. They also found the globules of dark, volcanic glass we now know as Apache tears. The legend arose that these were the tears of the Apache women, frozen into stone so their grief might never be forgotten. A later addition to this legend claims that anyone given an Apache tear as a gift will never have to cry again, because the Apache women shed enough tears to last forever, for all the people of the world. People carry them now as a reminder of the cleansing power of grief.

Tektites are a type of glassy meteorite formed when a meteorite hits the earth. The heat from the impact melts terrestrial silica-bearing materials, which get spewed out into the air. There it quickly cools, forming a type of glass. This glass contains other terrestrial minerals, and sometimes even traces of extraterrestrial ones. Some tektites have special names, like the Libyan desert glass of the Sahara or the Darwin glass of Tasmania.While tektites from different locations have distinctive qualities, we can generalize certain properties that are common to most: tektites work with both the root and third eye chakras, and are helpful for grounding and protection, shielding the aura, and psychic and intuitive skills. A small piece under your pillow can be a great tool for dream recall or lucid dreaming.

Moldavite is a special, forest-green tektite. This tektite was the result of an asteroid impact almost 15 million years ago — an impact so powerful it sent molten aluminum-laced silicon dioxide flying into the air, where it quickly took form and solidified. Moldavite, which comes only from the Czech Republic has a very high frequency that causes some people to experience strong reactions. The rarest specimens are known as “angel chimes”; pieces will actually “ring” if dropped onto a sheet of glass. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PmSGkfIUEDk) Moldavite is a stone of spiritual transformation, traditionally used in ritual objects. Pieces even appeared at the same site as the Venus of Willendorf. Even though it’s not a crystal, moldavite is considered one of the most high-energy, high-vibrational minerals.

Fulgurite is a natural glass that forms in the shape of a tube when lightening strikes silicon-rich material. People have found it useful for aiding concentration and eliminating distractions. The same material, called lechatelierite (and no, I’m afraid I have no idea how to pronounce that!) can form through human-created energy sources, such as downed electrical lines. The kind that formed during nuclear testing even has its own name: Trinitite.

 

Goldstone is also called avventurina, a name that comes from the Italian word for “by chance.” This derives from the story about goldstone’s beginnings: that it was developed by chance by alchemists trying to transform copper into gold. Another story goes that a monk working with both molten copper and glass accidentally mixed the two together, and in a classic “You-got-chocolate-in-my-peanut-butter” moment, goldstone was born. Either way, goldstone reminds us that accidents can have happy results. Nowadays, red goldstone is made by suspending copper particles in glass, which results in a reddish sparkling mineral It’s good for balancing physical and etheric bodies, grounding, and motivation. Blue goldstone uses the same process, but substitutes cobalt or manganese for copper, and is good for overcoming negative thoughts and vision work. Green goldstone, glass colored with chromium, is great for amplification of energy and all-around good luck. All forms of goldstone can help relieve arthritis, promote self-love, and replace unnecessary complications with simplicity.

Some of what is sold as hematite is actually glass mixed with iron. In fact, Magnetic Hematite isn’t really hematite at all. It looks like polished hematite, smooth with a metallic sheen, but it’s manufactured by mixing ground-up hematite and magnetite into glass, then exposing the mixture to a strong magnetic force as it cools. Pure hematite can be magnetized, but the charge will be weak and temporary. So if you bought a “hematite” ring that is magnetic, or even a non-magnetic one that doesn’t feel heavy enough, it’s probably man-made glass mixed with some form of iron. Since this material still contains iron, it will have similar protective and fire element properties, just probably not as strong. Some people also find the use of magnets and magnetic jewelry very therapeutic, especially for joint problems such as arthritis.

Opalite is a 100% man-made material. A small amount of opacifier — often ground fluorite or titanium dioxide —  is added to molten glass, which is then cooled slowly enough that some of the SiO2 crystallizes. The resulting glass is very appealing, a semi-opaque glass showing flashes of blue and orange. It’s used to clear and balance the energy centers, to connect one with the air and water elements, to transmute negativity into positive energy, for emotional balance, to instill a sense of childlike wonder, and to promote a feeling of comfort and safety. It’s sometimes also called Tiffany stone.

Gaia Stone is just one of the names given to the gorgeous volcanic glass formed after Mt. Saint Helens’ 1980 eruption; it also goes by Green Obsidian, Helenite, Emerald (or sometimes Ruby) Obsidianite, and Mt. Saint Helens Emerald. The eruption itself produced no obsidian. But later on, when workers came to salvage equipment buried in the blast, they noticed that the heat from their acetylene torches transformed the surrounding ash to brilliant glass — sometimes green, other times bright red. The Gaia Stone we see now is colored by the same trace elements as the original: aluminum, iron, chromium, titanium and copper. Because this lucky find seemed like a gift from the Earth herself, it came to be known as Gaia Stone, after the ancient Greek Earth goddess. This connection helps us discover the stone’s heart-chakra properties of love and connection with Mother Earth.

Andara Crystals are controversial. Opinions run the gamut from “They’re the most amazing thing ever” to “They’re just slag glass someone found lying around outside an old factory.” Since the claims in favor of Andara crystals generally seem to come from people trying to sell them, most well-informed crystal collectors are skeptical.

Mirrors are glass with a metallic coating bonded to the back surface. Feng shui uses bagua outside the home to ward off the energy of pointed objects, such as a road that points traffic at your front door or a telephone pole. Black mirrors used for scrying may also be regular mirrors with a black coating behind the glass.

An even better-known divination tool is the Crystal Ball. Some of these are made from quartz, reconstituted quartz (which is materially the same thing as glass, but made from ground-up quartz), or other natural minerals, but glass balls also make excellent divination tools. The spherical shape produces interesting optical distortions that can help free the intuitive mind to look for insight.

Swarovski and other faceted crystals are made of leaded glass, usually hung in a window so that the prisms cut into the surface produce rainbows. They are not part of older feng shui traditions, but are popular today. They distribute good energy and light, and pretty rainbows, too! Some come with a metallic coating, similar to that of aura quartz, which changes the color of the light.

Magic (or Feng shui) eggs are a special kind of opalite that pulls negativity out of the environment. A popular way to use them is to put a few in a glass bowl of water, which draws in and cleanses the energy. They are a symbol of new beginnings, rebirth and regeneration.

If you’ve ever walked along a seashore, you’ve probably found pieces of Sea Glass, glass from bottles that has been broken and polished by the waves. Salt, sand and waves roughen up the outside of these pieces and smooth the edges, forming pretty pieces that are great for collecting and jewelry-making. As you would expect, this form of glass gives you a strong connection with sea energy and the water element. Sea glass also helps you achieve positive evolution through life’s experiences, even when some of these experiences may be difficult ones.

 

April Heart Chakra Reading

The Chakras are an ideal roadmap for personal growth and development.  In 2017 we are focusing on one Chakra a month. April brings us to the Heart Chakra, the center of unconditional love, forgiveness, hope, and peace. This month, I ask you to identify who or what keeps you chained to the past and does not allow you to move forward with your life….

Brief Overview of Chakras: The Chakras are the main energy centers in our subtle body. They are the openings for life energy to flow into and out of our aura or electromagnetic field. There are main Chakras, minor, subpersonal, and transpersonal Chakras. The Chakras’ function is to vitalize the physical body and to bring about the development of our self-consciousness. Each chakra is associated with certain physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual interactions. Each chakra has personal growth themes, functions, and purposes.  The concept of the Chakras has been around for thousands of years.

The Heart Chakra is located in the center of your chest. Its functions include love, self-love, balance, compassion, empathy, peace, respect, non-judgment, acceptance, connection, affinity, high vibrating emotions, and equilibrium. Love, hope, forgiveness, and compassion are the life lessons we learn through the Heart Chakra. The Sanskrit name for the Heart chakra is ‘Anahata’ which means “unhurt, unstruck, and unbeaten.” Heart Chakra needs that must be met for healing and transcendence to occur include self-love, the ability to love others, ability to feel compassion and empathy for others, sense of peace, and hope.

April 2017 Heart Chakra Forecast: The Heart Chakra embodies high vibrating emotions like peace, gratitude, and joy. Many times unresolved issues and energy stuck in our past can contribute to the development of lower vibrating emotions like guilt, shame, and depression. This month, the universe is encouraging you to release your past and set yourself free. By constantly revisiting the past, living there, ruminating over it, thinking thoughts like ‘would have, could have, should have,’ and leaving it unhealed, we remain prisoners.  How can you embody and become Anahata (unhurt, unstruck, and unbeaten) and release what no longer serves you a higher purpose?

Heart Chakra Forgiveness and Release Blend

  • 3 drops Palo Santo essential oil
  • 5 drops Bergamot essential oil
  • 2 drops Rose essential oil
  • 5 drops Myrrh essential oil

Directions: This blend is to be used in a diffuser. As you prepare the blend, have the thoughts and intent that you are ready to release patterns and energy from your past to set your soul free. Turn the diffuser on and breathe in the aroma and state the following affirmation. “Bless my heart, bless my mind, bless my soul. Whatever doesn’t serve me I release and let go.”


If you are interested in learning more about the ‘Heart Chakra, Forgiveness, and Cord Cutting’ please visit the Chakra Mini-Series page for monthly $17 online mini chakra classes https://mindsoulandself.com/2017-chakra-mini-series/

Join us for a ‘Transpersonal Weekend with Dr. Christina’ in Madison, WI April 29 and 30, 2017. Two separate spiritual and personal growth events (Spirit Trance Day and Past Life Regression), join us for one or both: https://mindsoulandself.com/transpersonal/

Join us for our ‘Summer Solstice Women’s Chakra Retreat’ in West Bend, Wisconsin June 16 to 18, 2017: https://mindsoulandself.com/womens-wellness-retreats/

About: Christina Wilke-Burbach PhD, RMT, CA is a Holistic Healing Facilitator, Certified Aromatherapist, Herbalist, and Reiki Master Teacher with a PhD in Health Psychology. Her business, Mind, Soul, and Self LLC is based out of Wisconsin. For more info on Dr. Christina and her upcoming Chakra Retreats, Chakra Classes, Chakra Bootcamps, or to schedule an individual reading or appointment, please visit mindsoulandself.com. Many Blessings and Be Well!

peridot for spiritual protection

Peridot (pronounced either PEAR-a-dot or PEAR-a-doe) is the gemstone variety of the mineral olivine. It is the birthstone for August.

Lore: The lore of peridot has remained remarkably consistent through time. Ancient Egyptians, Greeks and others associated it with the sun, and through the dark ages, medieval times and into modern times, many authorities claimed that this solar association made peridot the most effective crystal for protection against evil. Various writers from that time recommended peridot for necromancers, people plagued by hauntings, and anyone possessed by an unclean spirit. It was also a most effective stone to use against frightening things that happen at night — anything from nightmares and night terrors to sleep paralysis, which was thought to be the work of a creature called the Night Hag. Recommendations for peridot’s use were also very consistent: you would wear a bead of it strung on the hair of a donkey around your left arm for general protection from dark forces, or set in a donkey’s jaw to make a kind of weapon against any kind of “devil.” (One must wield this club with the left hand). If peridot is set in metal, that metal should be gold, which also has solar associations. Modern crystal practitioners still recommend peridot for healers and people with psychic abilities, because of its power to protect them from negative energy that may be attached to clients and other people.

Properties: Peridot (also known as Olivine) may be used at the 4th Chakra (Heart Chakra) for protection, to disintegrate negative energy, for healing the body, mind, and spirit, to manifest physical and spiritual abundance, and to increase luck.

 

opalite for children and inner children

Opalite is a 100% manmade material, a type of glass. A small amount of opacifier — often fluorite or titanium dioxide —  is added to molten glass, which is then cooled slowly enough that some of the SiO2 crystallizes. The resulting glass is very appealing, a semi-opaque glass showing flashes of blue and orange. Use at any chakra to clear and balance the energy center, to connect one with the air and water elements, to transmute negativity into positive energy, for emotional balance, to instill a sense of childlike wonder, and to promote a feeling of comfort and safety (as if in the womb). It may be used at all the chakras. Sometimes it’s also called Tiffany stone.

Magic eggs: A special type of opalite is the feng shui egg, or magic egg. The “magic” refers to the amazing way the opalite and the shape come together to reflect light, changing as the light passes through the egg from different directions. Especially appealing when grouped and/or placed in water, they are a symbol for new beginnings, rebirth and regeneration. They may come with either a glossy or matte finish, a difference which can make a big difference in the way they reflect and distribute energy.

Care and Safety: Since it is basically glass, opalite can break into sharp pieces. Kids love it, but please make sure they handle it carefully.

 

opal for heart healing

Opal is a variety of quartz in which water particles have become trapped between layers of silicon dioxide. This water refracts light, giving opal an inner “fire”. When the crystal forms in an enclosed space where the water can’t evaporate, the crystal-plus-water gel hardens to form opal. This stone may contain other impurities as well, which is why opal comes in a rainbow of colors.

Lore: A lot of opal lore begins with the notion that in some sense opal is alive, maybe because of the play of colors that comes when you move the stone. Because of this living quality, opal was the original “mood stone,” sparkling when its owner was happy, or shooting fire if the owner was angry. But quite a few stories about opal talk about misfortune. For example, Queen Victoria loved opals, so for her coronation she chose an opal pin to fasten the back of her off-the-shoulders dress. When the pin popped out during the ceremony, the world got to see a little more of the young queen than was proper. Of course the opal was blamed. A darker legend comes from Australia, currently the main place opal is mined. Miners there talk about the mysterious “night stones,” opals so fiery they glowed in the dark. They would descend into the mines at midnight to find them–a practice that no doubt added to the mystery of the stones, but caused a lot of accidents as well. Because of these and many other similar stories, some people call opal “beautiful but dangerous.”

Blue Opal: Use at the 4th Chakra (Heart Chakra) or at the 5th Chakra (Throat Chakra) for promoting compassionate attitudes, to encourage heart-based speech and actions, for enhancing Shamanic work, to center the self, to quiet the ego mind, and for peace and tranquility.

Pink Opal: Use at the 4th Chakra (Heart Chakra) to instill love and compassion in the user, to enhance prayers and intentions for the good of all beings, to help heal afflictions of the heart, to cool fiery tensions caused by family disagreements (especially those stemming from sibling rivalry), to encourage forgiveness, to instill a feeling of nurturing and tenderness toward all beings, for healing heart trauma (physical or emotional), to protect the heart chakra, to add a new spark to old relationships, to provide comfort for those who are terminally ill, to guide one down one’s life path, and to promote emotional stability and security.

Pink Dendritic Opal: Use at the 1st Chakra (Root Chakra/Base Chakra) or at the 4th Chakra (Heart Chakra) to expand the energies of the heart chakra throughout one’s entire physical and energetic bodies, to anchor the energies of the heart chakra in one’s everyday life so that he or she may remember to treat all beings with love, kindness, and compassion, to extinguish feelings of anger and replace them with peace and understanding, and to aid one in recognizing the oneness of all beings. As this is a variety of Andean Pink Opal, these properties also apply.

Boulder Opal: Use at the 5th Chakra (Throat Chakra) or at the 6th Chakra (Third Eye Chakra/Brow Chakra) to balance and align all chakras, to restore one to optimum health after times of stress or negativity, to allow one to remain positive and optimistic until his or her hopes, dreams, and wishes have been fulfilled, to promote harmony in friendships and partnerships, and to allow one to see auras.

Fire Opal / Cherry Opal: Use at the 1st Chakra (Root Chakra/Base Chakra), 2nd Chakra (Sacral Chakra/Spleenic Chakra), 6th Chakra (Third Eye Chakra/Brow Chakra), or at the 7thChakra (Crown Chakra) to stimulate vitality and passion for life, to enhance connection to the fire element, to instill creative inspiration, for treating depression or apathy, to enhance telepathic communication, to stimulate one’s psychic abilities, and to promote spiritual ascension.

Hyaline Opal: (Also known as Hyalite) Use at the 6th Chakra (Third Eye Chakra/Brow Chakra) or at the 7th Chakra (Crown Chakra) to raise one’s energetic vibrations, for spiritual ascension, to remove feelings of jealousy or anger, to connect one with his or her inner child, and to combine and balance the energies of the air and water elements within the body.

Violet Flame Opal: Use at the 6th Chakra (Third Eye Chakra) or at the 7th Chakra (Crown Chakra) for developing your psychic skills, to connect with the ascended masters and your spirit guides, to tap into the cleansing power of St. Germaine’s Violet Flame, for spiritual growth, to open the Crown Chakra, to help you be open to your psychic gifts without blocking them (consciously or subconsciously), and to help you connect with your spirituality in everyday life.

Care and Safety: Due to their water content, opals can be fragile and water-sensitive, and can also be damaged by excessive drying. It’s best to store them in a cool place, away from direct sunlight or moisture. They should never be used in elixirs.

goldstone for positive thinking

Goldstone is a type of synthetic, or man-made, glass which is made with copper. The copper forms tiny crystalline clusters within the glass. The most common form of Goldstone is reddish-brown, although, in fact, the color is produced by the copper crystals and the glass itself is actually colorless. Some goldstone varieties use colored glass, usually blue or violet, and more rarely green. Goldstone’s alternate name, “Stelleria”, is based on Goldstone’s starry, night-sky-like appearance. The original Italian name for goldstone is “avventurina” indicating its accidental discovery. Hence, another alternate name for Goldstone is “aventurine glass.” Because of its copper content, Goldstone can be used for healing, although its energy is not nearly as strong as that of natural Copper. 

Lore: Another name for goldstone is avventurina, which comes from the Italian word for “by chance.” This derives from the story about goldstone’s beginnings: that it was developed by chance by alchemists trying to transform copper into gold. Another story goes that a monk working with both molten copper and glass accidentally mixed the two together, and in a classic “You-got-chocolate-in-my-peanut-butter” moment, goldstone was born. Either way, goldstone reminds us that accidents can have happy results. Nowadays, red goldstone is made by suspending copper particles in glass, which results in a reddish sparkling mineral It’s good for balancing physical and etheric bodies, grounding, and motivation. Blue goldstone uses the same process, but substitutes cobalt or manganese for copper, and is good for overcoming negative thoughts and vision work. Green goldstone, glass colored with chromium, is great for amplification of energy and all-around good luck. All forms of goldstone can help relieve arthritis, promote self-love, and replace unnecessary complications with simplicity.

The three types of Goldstone have a lot of properties in common, but each has its own individual character:

Blue Goldstone: Manmade glass colored with cobalt or manganese. Use at 1st, 2nd, & 6th Chakras. Good for self-love, motivation, overcoming negative thought patterns, telepathy, grounding, amplification of energy, good luck, vitality & arthritis relief.

Green Goldstone: Manmade glass colored with chromium. Use at 1st & 2nd Chakras. Good for arthritis relief, self-love, motivation, overcoming negative thought patterns, balance between physical & etheric bodies, telepathy, grounding, amplification of energy & good luck.

Red Goldstone: Manmade glass infused with copper. Use at 1st & 2nd Chakras. Good for arthritis relief, self-love, motivation, overcoming negative thought patterns, balance between physical & etheric bodies, telepathy, grounding, amplification of energy & good luck.

onyx for strength

Onyx is a form of banded agate with a long history. Its excellent, smooth texture and interesting patterns make it perfect for carving both jewelry and everyday objects, including cameos. The ancients sought it out for this reason, using it to fashion tough and handsome pottery and bowls. The Bible even gives onyx the honor of forming the foundation of the City of Heaven. For some reason, medieval authorities took an intense dislike to this stone; they claimed it made love chill, brought on attacks of “frivolities,” and caused babies to drool. But they admitted a big plus side as well: a strong virtue as a protective and healing stone. Nowadays we’ve come to value the positive side of this beautiful semi-precious gem.

As an astrological stone for Scorpio: Onyx is a stone for strength. Hardiness, constancy, grounding, stamina, self control–all of these qualities come together in the layered beauty of onyx. This would seem to play to the strengths of vigorous Scorpio. But this intense sign, often self-repressive, has also been described as “an ice-cap atop a smouldering volcano.”  The layering of onyx reminds us to take each thing in turn, rather than obsessing about what should be or might have been. Grounding is important, faced with Scorpion passions.

ONYX, BLACK: (Also known as Black Chalcedony) Use at the 1st Chakra (Root Chakra/Base Chakra) to enhance clear focus, to amplify one’s intention, to promote Divine order, to encourage sensibility, for protection and shielding from negative energies, and for grounding.

The sun is in Aries. What does that mean for your sign?

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Category: Current Transits

Aries: March 21 – April 20

While the Sun is in the sign of Aries, the life force in plants, animals and humans is exalted. That which is dormant or seems dead, now re-awakens and begins a new cycle of growth. In human terms, this is when our souls re-commit to being human and to taking on the plethora of experiences that result from that commitment. The human ego is a necessary component of the human condition and is the vehicle through which our souls express. So, during the month of Aries, the energy is up for each of us to more strongly assert the individuality of our soul into the world by claiming our right to be in this world, to hold space, make decisions and take action.

Look below for your birth sign (sun sign) to see what particular challenges/opportunities are being brought to your awareness this month. (These can also hold true if you have your Moon, Rising sign or a number of planets in the sign.)

Aries: For you, Aries, the drive to assert your ego-self into the world comes naturally. Your inner Mars is already wide awake and ready for action, so in “your” month, the challenge for you is less about growing stronger and more about how you go about asserting your strength. You could easily overdo it during this time, letting assertion turn into aggression, forgetting to balance self with other, and running roughshod into battles. The key for you is to be conscious of this past year’s lessons of relationship in Libra and soulfulness in Pisces and integrate them into your ego’s service to your greater self.

Taurus: Taurus, the invitation for you during this month of Aries is to let your knowledge of who you are, your likes and dislikes, inform what you value in this world. Your Martian willfulness is here to help you get, make, build or attract what you value. By asserting your right to pursue your desires, you create abundance for yourself and those you love. Pay attention to where you short-change yourself due to low self esteem and feelings of unworthiness. Value yourself and your life, above all.

Gemini: Gemini, when you are feeling the Martian fires of Aries, your natural tendencies for mental activities are likely to burst out into a greater need for communication of some sort, typically talking. Your curiosity might become aggressive or demanding. Your ability to focus might be more fickle than usual. Here, the challenge is to remember that you are not your thoughts. Let your need to know and to share ideas align with your deeper soul awareness. You may discover truths in the world around you that help reconcile the dualities of your own identity.  

Cancer: Cancer, now more than any other time of year, is a good time to practice self-love and self-nurturing. Be decisive and assertive about your emotional needs, but try not to expect others to take care of you. Remember, the divine Mother and Father are always present to love you. Your tendencies to want to nurture others may be stronger than usual this month. That’s fine as long as you are respecting their independence and not sacrificing your needs.

Leo: As a fellow fire sign, Leo, the Aries energy for you is a harmonic reminder of your entitlement to express your unique creativity. This month is a good time to feed the flames of your inspiration. Don’t wait for those in your kingdom to demand you take action. Call upon your soul to take leadership and then begin. And make sure you leave room for others to express themselves, too.

Virgo: The thing to watch out for this month, Virgo, is letting your Martian side ignite that tendency of yours to be exacting, critical and “right”.  You will do better by tolerating your ego’s desire to explore the possibilities of breaking free from your own stable routines and standards. In this way, you just might discover some interesting new dimensions to your life and, in the process, develop more tolerance for others who live outside your standards.

Libra: OK Libra, now is the time for you to attend more to yourself, instead of others, and address those imbalances that have been nagging you all year. Relationship only works well when both parties consciously assert their own needs and desires. It may feel awkward, but you really need to be decisive and speak up.  As long as you do so with respect, your show of strength will be appreciated, and if not, maybe it’s time to cut the cords.

Scorpio: Scorpio, this Aries month is a time for you to watch your ego closely and welcome the feedback of your loved one(s). If you still tend to hide your true self behind a mask of invulnerability, you are robbing yourself of the power you have to feel more alive and authentically connected to others. Take a risk in intimacy. Show your cards. You might be surprised just how wonderful it feels to be vulnerable and seen. Otherwise, this month, your ego may lash out with more intensity than usual.

Sagittarius: As a kindred fire sign, Sag, your natural tendencies for adventure and learning will be enhanced this month. Aries’ Martian influence on your Jupiter inspires an urgency and lust for freedom to explore life’s great landscape of experiences and lessons. You will need to make room for this, now or for later, but be careful to not exclude your loved ones from your visionary plans. You may be feeling all things are possible now, yet lack attention to the details. Perhaps you can appreciate and invite this from someone close to you.

Capricorn: Capricorn, though you are generally a cautious and careful planner, this may be a good time to let your inner Mars have some sway to take risks. If you have felt any promptings to take leadership at work or elsewhere, this is the time to do so. Or perhaps it’s time to cut loose and go solo. Drop down in your heart and ask for soul guidance. If the answer is “yes”, take command and go for it. Decisiveness now will allow the rest to unfold over the coming months.

Aquarius: Life for you as an Aquarian is always a balance between your need to belong to a team, a community of kindred souls and your need to show up as the unique, eccentric soul you are. The Aries influence on you this month tilts the balance toward the latter. If you’ve been questioning how well you fit with friends and groups, this is a good time to assert yourself and make changes. However, be careful you are not just feeling a need to be rebellious as an excuse to feel your ego’s strength. Those who “get” you, will be supportive. No need for combat.

Pisces: Since the theme of Pisces is the ultimate dissolution and surrendering of ego-self to soul-self, this Aries month intensifies your awareness of the contrast between the two. If you are still struggling to discern where others end and you begin, this is a good time to explore how to be stronger in your ego identity. If you are longing to be more consciously connected to your soul-self, this is a good time to pay attention to how your ego could be stronger and therefore more able to serve your soul’s higher intentions.


Barry Kerr, a certified soul-based astrologer, has 35 years of experience with an international clientele, including many medical professionals and alternative healers. He and Kristine Gay, a licensed psychotherapist, are owners/practitioners at Inner Essence Center in Madison. Both have extensive training in soul-guided healing of mind, body, heart and spiritual systems. Barry offers astrology,  energy healing and transformational coaching by phone, Skype or in person in Madison, WI. Inquiries are welcome – free 15 minute consultation to explore if this is for you.  Visit www.ChooseConsciousLiving.com for more information or email Barry at [email protected]

malachite for psychic protection

Malachite is an intense green, banded copper ore. It’s often found in conjunction with azurite, and forms in fascinating botryoidal (dome-shaped) formations.

Lore: When stone age hunter/gatherers tried lining their fire pits with some pretty green stone that had been exposed by flooding, they accidentally invented the science of smelting metal from ore. Copper was almost certainly the first metal they discovered and used, because it’s so easy to extract from malachite — all you need is fire. You can well imagine that when people saw the reddish metal coming out of green stones, they felt it was magic! Besides its use as copper ore, people have long used malachite as an “evil eye” talisman. The stone’s natural curved lines and circles form natural patterns that look like eyes — eyes to “send back” bad intentions, envy, or other dangerous feelings, as well as simple bad luck. Babies and others wore these amulets in ancient Egypt and Greece, medieval Europe, and many other places. Powered malachite is also one of the oldest pigments, providing an intense green color for paint and makeup. It’s possible that, as eye shadow, malachite powder averted the evil eye as a magical cosmetic.

Safety and care: Since malachite contains copper, it’s best to be careful about toxicity. It’s also a fairly soft stone. Tumbled pieces should be safe to handle, but avoid getting them wet. It’s a good idea to wash your hands after handling rough malachite, because coppery dust can come off in your hands.

Properties: Use at the 4th Chakra (Heart Chakra) for amplifying energy and intention, for grounding, for protection, to block electromagnetic pollution, for earth healing, to connect one with nature, for spiritual guidance, to aid in visualization practices, to activate psychic powers, to encourage unconditional love, for scrying divination practices, for facilitating astral travel, to access intuitive messages from the subconscious mind, to encourage positive changes in one’s life, to reveal obstacles on one’s spiritual path, to remove negative thought patterns and conditioning, to facilitate the tactful expression of one’s emotions, for protection in love, to increase confidence, to encourage compassion, to enhance concentration, to heal the emotional body, to aid in exploring the inner self, to help ensure successful childbirth, to treat asthma, to relieve arthritis pain, to lower blood pressure, to relieve vertigo, to strengthen the immune system, to enhance one’s creative energy, and to remove toxins from the body

gaia stone for goddess energy

Gaia Stone is just one of the names given to the gorgeous volcanic glass associated with the 1980 Mt. Saint Helens eruption. It also goes by Green Obsidianite, Helenite, Emerald (or sometimes Ruby) Obsidianite, and Mt. Saint Helens Emerald. The eruption itself produced no obsidian, but it was discovered afterwards in an interesting way: workers trying to salvage equipment buried in the blast noticed that the heat from their acetylene torches transformed the surrounding ash to brilliant glass — sometimes green, other times bright red. While the Gaia Stone we see now is man-made, it’s colored by the same trace elements as the original: aluminum, iron, chromium, titanium and copper. Because this lucky find seemed like a gift from the Earth herself, it came to be known as Gaia Stone, after the ancient Greek Earth goddess. This connection helps us discover the stone’s heart-chakra properties of love and connection with Mother Earth.

Care and safety: Since this is a form of glass, it’s highly breakable.

Properties: Use at the 4th Chakra (Heart Chakra) to enhance one’s connection with nature and with Mother Earth herself, to encourage love and compassion for all beings, to enhance all earth healing practices, to facilitate communication with beings of the animal and plant realms, to open one’s heart and mind to the importance of environmental activism, to encourage one to “think globally and act locally”, and to promote harmony and balance for the good of all beings in the universe.

lepidolite for emotional stability

Lepidolite is a lithium-rich form of mica, whose name translates to “scaly stone” — very appropriately, since you can usually flake off pieces with your fingernail. It’s very light to the touch, and lightens moods as well, evening out excessive highs and lows. Lepidolite can help people detach from mental health issues, overly strong emotions, and things that are simply out of one’s control. If crystals had mottos, lepidolite’s might be, “Not my circus, not my monkey”! Lepidolite has been mined for a couple centuries as a major source of lithium and certain rare minerals, including rubidium, which is used to date very old rocks. It has only come into wide use recently as a healing and magical stone.

Safety and care: As a form of mica, lepidolite is very soft and fragile, and layers can break off easily. It also contains aluminum, so please don’t use it in elixirs.

Properties: Use at the 4th Chakra (Heart Chakra) for balance, to promote feelings of compassion, to enhance peace, calming, and tranquility during stressful times, to aid in forgiveness, to encourage harmonious relationships, to reduce geopathic stress, to encourage feelings of comfort and safety, and to encourage new friendships to blossom. Also known as lepidolite mica.

kyanite, st. michael’s sword

Kyanite has a reputation for purity, and many healers agree that it will not hold negative energy and therefore never needs to be cleansed. Because of this energetic perfection, some believe kyanite to be the material of Archangel Michael’s Sword of Truth. The symbolism behind this idea is that only a material of great purity can “cut to the truth of the matter.” According to angel expert Doreen Virtue, “Michael carries a sword that cuts all attachments to negativity.” A flaming sword also has to endure some pretty extreme conditions, and kyanite — the ore for the material used in spark plugs — is able to withstand plenty of heat. But while Archangel Michael is usually depicted ready to go into battle with helmet, shield and sword, the real battle he fights is a spiritual one: choosing truth over deception. (Just as well, since kyanite would be awfully brittle in an actual sword fight!) No doubt this is why this extremely pure stone is thought to make the angel’s perfect “weapon.” And as a throat chakra stone, blue kyanite works for anyone who want to discern and speak the truth.

Care and Safety: Kyanite fractures easily and is water sensitive. It also contains aluminum, so please don’t use it in crystal elixirs.

Properties of Black Kyanite:  (Also known as Black Disthene and as Black Cyanite) Use at the 1st Chakra (Root Chakra/Base Chakra) or 6th Chakra (Third Eye Chakra/Brow Chakra) for protection from negativity, to block psychic attack, for grounding, to stimulate intuitive guidance, to reduce electromagnetic pollution from electronic devices, to stimulate vivid dreams, to enhance one’s creativity when branching out into new endeavors, for shamanic journeying, and to promote feelings of safety and security.

Properties of Blue Kyanite: (Also known as Blue Disthene and as Blue Cyanite) Use at the 5th Chakra (Throat Chakra) or 6th Chakra (Third Eye Chakra/Brow Chakra) for spiritual guidance, to enhance one’s intuition, to promote peace and compassion, to stimulate creative energy, to aid in communication with one’s spirit guides, totem animals, and guardian angels, and to enhance one’s personal exploration of his or her spiritual nature.

Properties of Blue Star Kyanite: (Also known as Blue Star Disthene or as Blue Star Cyanite) Use at the 5th Chakra (Throat Chakra), 6th Chakra (Third Eye Chakra/Brow Chakra), or at the 7th Chakra (Crown Chakra) for bringing celestial and planetary energies into the body, to promote safe and significant astral travel, to open one to the power of divine love, and to aid one in developing his or her psychic awareness. Since this is a form of Blue Kyanite, these properties also apply

Properties of Green Kyanite: (Also known as Green Disthene or as Green Cyanite) Use at the 4th Chakra (Heart Chakra) or at the 5th Chakra (Throat Chakra) to balance and align the heart and throat chakras, to repair the aura, for Earth healing, to expel negative energy from the body, to help one absorb nutrients (especially iron), and to heal problems associated with the back or spine.

himalayan salt for cleansing and purification

Himalayan Salt (also called Tibetan salt)  is a fossilized sea salt that formed from marine deposits over 250 million years ago. In its most prized form, this salt is hand mined and unrefined, and still contains some remnants of ancient sea life. This pink salt is mostly sold on the gourmet and health food markets, valued for the trace minerals that give it that rosy color. Most of the pink salt we see comes from the Himalayan foothills in Punjab, India. Himalayan salt has a tradition of metaphysical use as well, though it’s all either very general or recent. All salts are used in purification, and many people like to use the Himalayan kind as a bath salt or massage stone. Salts are protective, too, with different types varying in their “specialty.” Himalayan pink salt being especially suitable for protecting home and family. Beyond these basic properties, though, there’s little tradition of using this salt in its region of origin. In Tibet and India, it’s black salt that has a long tradition in medicine, as everything from an ingredient in healing yak butter tea to a component of Ayurvedic medicine. Some Tibetan black salt looks dark red, but it is volcanic in origin, and so a different range of trace minerals than the lighter salt. Of course, we can enjoy using pink salt for protection, massage, in lamps and candle holders, and in small amounts on food. But when most of the properties associated with something are very recent, it’s a good idea to take what you hear with a grain of — sorry — salt. Some excessive and far-fetched claims have been made about this product, mostly by marketers.

Metaphysical use: Use at any chakra for general cleansing and purification, peace and calming, healthy aging, goodwill, and thyroid support. This mineral combines energies of sun, earth, stars and the primordial sea.

garnet, a stone of royalty

Garnet refers to a whole family of stones that usually range in color from red to burgundy to black. There are even some with more of a cinnamon color, and other variations besides. Since it’s a very imprecise term, we’ve described and pictured a number of minerals that go by the name “garnet” below.

Lore: The word “garnet” comes from the same root as the word “pomegranate”: granum, which is Latin for seed. But if you look at a handful of these small, regularly-shaped gems, they do look a bit like pomegranate seeds. The red of garnet is so intense that this stone has often been associated with drops of blood, and this is reflected in various stories from all over the world. For example, a myth from India says that when the demon Vala was slain, his finger- and toenails were scattered all over the world as garnets. There are also legends about its brightness, claiming that garnet’s internal light glows bright enough to light up a room. In fact, the Koran says that the fourth heaven is filled with garnets that bathe it in warm light.

About the word “carbuncle,” which often refers to garnet: Geology may be slow, but the names of crystals change a lot — so much so that it’s confusing to read older texts about crystals, because it’s hard to know what stone they actually refer to. For example, “carbuncles” might actually mean rubies, sapphires, or even diamonds — though most often, a carbuncle is a garnet. But those old references turn up some pretty weird stories, too. A German botanist investigating plant life in New Guinea turned up this one: The queen of the Island of Amboin had left her baby in a hammock while she worked. (Amboin’s pretty small, so being queen there didn’t have many perks.) When she came back to check on her child, she was horrified to see a big snake dangling over his hammock, and a bright spot on the boy’s body exactly the color of blood. She ran to the hammock, hoping to kill the terrible stake that she believed had killed her baby. But instead of blood, she found that the shining red she’d seen was actually a carbuncle the snake had dropped on the little boy. The grateful queen kept the lucky snake nearby for the rest of its life, feeding and caring for it. As for the little prince, his stone shone so bright, he used it as a nightlight. And when he grew up, he presented his treasure to the King of Siam and became a favorite of that powerful ruler.

Some of the varieties:

An amazing variety of garnets (clockwise from top): black andradite garnet, green grossular garnet, pyrope garnet, spessartine garnet (tumbled), spessartine (raw cluster), garnet in limestone matrix, and hessionite.

Care and safety: Since many forms of garnet contain aluminum, it should not be used in crystal elixirs.

Metaphysical properties:

GARNET, ANDRADITE BLACK: (Also known as Melanite) Use at the 1st Chakra (Root Chakra/Base Chakra) or at the 6th Chakra (Third Eye Chakra/Brow Chakra) for grounding, for protection of the energy body from psychic attack, to stimulate one’s clairvoyant abilities (psychic sight), to heal disorders of the liver, to facilitate trance states (especially for channeling), and to provide a window into the Akashic Records to learn about past, present, and future.

GARNET, DEMANTOID GREEN: Use at the 3rd Chakra(Solar Plexus Chakra) or at the 4th Chakra (Heart Chakra) to connect one with beings form the fairy realm, to aid one in seeing the beauty and magic of trees, to aid one in developing a great appreciation of nature, to enhance one’s knowledge and understanding of the plant kingdom (especially herbalism), to shield and protect the heart chakra from outside energies, to heal the emotional body, and for protection from envy or jealousy (either from having these feelings toward others or vice versa).

GARNET, GROSSULAR GREEN: (Also known as Green Grossularite) Use at the 3rd Chakra (Solar Plexus Chakra) or at the 4th Chakra (Heart Chakra) to open chakras that have been shut down while keeping them protected; to shield the aura from negativity; to enhance prosperity; to aid in relieving stomach discomfort; to overcome major life obstacles; to reduce arthritis pain; and to bring wealth and prosperity to the user.

GARNET, GROSSULAR PINK: (Also known as Pink Grossularite) Use at the 2nd Chakra (Sacral Chakra) or at the 4th Chakra (Heart Chakra) to open chakras that have been shut down while keeping them protected; to shield the aura from negativity by transmuting negative energy into loving energy; to balance the emotions; to reduce pain and inflammation; and to enhance feelings of compassion and empathy.

GARNET, HESSIONITE: (Also known as Cinnamon Stone or as Peach Garnet) Use at the 1st Chakra (Root Chakra/Base Chakra) or at the 2nd Chakra (Sacral Chakra/Spleenic Chakra) to balance the emotional body, to increase the positive and to balance the negative aspects of one’s astrological sign, to bring out one’s masculine energies, and to aid one in connecting with his or her inner self.

GARNET, PYROPE RED: Use at the 1st Chakra (Root Chakra/Base Chakra) or at the 4th Chakra (Heart Chakra) to stimulate vitality, to treat sluggish digestion and to increase one’s digestive fire, to increase motivation, to instill self-confidence, to promote spiritual ascension, and to manifest prosperity and abundance.

GARNET, RHODOLITE RED VIOLET: Use at the 1st Chakra (Root Chakra/Base Chakra) or at the 7th Chakra (Crown Chakra) to cleanse and purify the blood, to enhance prosperity and abundance, to stimulate vitality and enhance one’s life force energy, to bring clarity of mind, to encourage spiritual exploration, to enhance meditation, and to bring one’s spiritual consciousness into the physical realm.

GARNET, SPESSARTINE: (Also known as Spessartite or as Garnet, Orange) Use at the 1st Chakra (Root Chakra/Base Chakra) or at the 2nd Chakra (Sacral Chakra/Spleenic Chakra) to stimulate vitality, to enhance sexual energy and desire, to help stimulate proper circulation, to aid in animal communication, and to connect with totem animals.

GARNET, UVAROVITE: (Also known as Garnet, Green) Use at the 1st Chakra (Root Chakra/Base Chakra) or at the 4th Chakra (Heart Chakra) to connect one with nature (the elements, nature spirits, and Mother Earth herself), to instill a sense of compassion for all beings, for earth healing, to re-open the heart chakra after hurt or heartbreak, and to shield one’s aura from negativity.

 

fairy stone concretions go back to nature

These fascinating shapes formed in Canadian glacial lakes when calcium carbonate settled into glacial clay formations. We call them “fairy stones,” the English version of their Algonquian name, though their shapes have inspired many other whimsical names such as “mud babies.” After forming in lakes these concretions washed downstream, where curious people would pick them up and puzzle over their rounded, often human- or animal-like shapes. Another name for them in harricana, meaning “river biscuit,” which is also the name of one main river where they’re found. Canadian natives collected the stones as protective amulets, both to carry and to place in the home, to protect against bad spirits and bring good luck. They were very lucky when given to others, so that an especially beautiful one might make a gift for a loved one. Though I’ve never seen any reference to them being used as toys, they look so much like people, animals and objects that it’s hard not to imagine Algonquian children collecting and playing with them.

Metaphysical properties: Use fairy stone at the 6th Chakra to: make wishes come true; open portals to other worlds; communicate with fairy realm (also ents, sprites, nymphs & dryads); bring magic to love life, and foster peace & calming.

The image above shows a fairy stone that one of our psychic readers, the wonderful and very artistic Ronna Trapanese, crafted into a chakra goddess.