Monthly Archives: August 2013

Where Do Crystal Properties Come From?

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Category: Crystal Healing
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Many of us use crystals to help us with a host of issues in our everyday lives. When intelligently used, crystals can help us work with our own hopes, fears, shortcomings and dreams. So it’s no surprise that one of the questions we’re most frequently asked is, “What are the properties of this stone?”

But there’s a more basic question that comes with this: Where do crystal properties come from? Who decides what a crystal is good for, and how do they know?

While intuition is part of the answer, it’s far more complicated than that. The history of crystal healing and crystal magic goes back to a time before recorded history, and stones have helped people in every part of the Earth. Our problem in answering customer questions is deciding how to sum up a crystals metaphysical properties, neither ignoring history nor burdening our customers with a book’s worth of information.

Three main sources of information come into play:
1. Historical uses of the stone. In considering crystal properties throughout history and throughout the world, we look for common threads. The Chinese, Persians, and Aztecs may each have a dozen different ideas, but it’s the one they have in common that gives us the most to work with.

2. Intuitive impressions from trusted crystal experts. Here things get a little subjective. Anyone can look at a stone, hold it in their hand, and bring forth intuitive ideas about how it might be used. But how much of that is useful for anyone else, and where do you draw the line between intuition and imagination? There is no easy answer. But over time, certain experts have earned our trust, because many people have found them reliable. And when we compare their advice, again, we look for commonalities.

3. Chakra associations/color magic. Chakras are the figurative “wheels” of energy associated with the human body. The word comes from Hindu tradition, but the concept crosses cultural lines. For modern purposes, when we discuss chakras we usually mean the seven energy centers that run from the base of the spine throught the crown of the head, each of which is associated with a color and an area of human experience and health. Simply by looking at a stone, anyone can know certain basic properties if they’re familiar with these color associations.

When we advise people about how to work with a crystal, we’re drawing from all these sources. The hard part isn’t coming up with information, it’s knowing how to put all this knowledge into people’s hands without boggling their minds!

“A Little Bit of Luck: Choosing, Preparing & Using a Talisman” by Cathy Douglas

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Amulets and talismans are not the same thing, but they’re closely related. An amulet is protective, whereas a talisman mainly brings good fortune–though of course it may dispel negative energy as part of the package. A talisman may be a piece of jewelry, a stone carried in your pocket, a lucky coin, or anything else that carries personal significance.

Rune Pendant : FEHU (Photo credit: Linden Tea)

Rune Pendant : FEHU
(Photo credit: Linden Tea)

While many things make fine talismans, lots of people choose crystals, runes, or a totem animals. A small totem or religious symbol carved from stone combines luck from two sources. Crafting your own talisman is especially lucky, but buying one is also fine, as long as you fill the item with your intention.

What is intention? Simply the purpose you have in mind for the talisman. For example, if you want to attract love, it’s not enough to purchase a rose quartz heart and throw it in a drawer. You will need to focus your will on the specific thing you want your talisman to do. This may be a one-time purpose–say, finding your true love–or may be some general purpose, like developing a more loving attitude within yourself. Think of each talisman as an individual; it has a personality, and the two of you are going to have a relationship.

Here’s one of the many ways to prepare and use a talisman:

1. Cleanse the talisman: Once you get your talisman home, set it either outside or in a moonlit windowsill overnight. In the morning, sprinkle a little salt over it, then hold it under running water.

2. Charge the talisman: Hold the talisman with cupped hands, focusing your concentration on it. Allow energy to flow in from the Universe, while at the same time directing your intention through your touch. You may also call on deities or spirit guides to help.

3. Knowing when the talisman is ready: You may be able to feel this directly as you work with the talisman. If you sit half an hour and still don’t feel an energetic change, it could mean you need more than one session to charge the talisman. Or if you have one, a pendulum can help you know when the talisman is charged; simply hold your pendulum over the talisman and ask if you’ve fully communicated your intention.

4. Using the talisman: Whether you carry the talisman or keep it in one place depends on its purpose. A talisman to attract money might stay on your desk if its main purpose is to help your business; however, if you wish to attract abundance to yourself more generally, you’d want to wear the talisman or carry it in your pocket. For most purposes, consistency is important–keep the talisman either with you or in its honored place as much of the time as possible.

5. Saying goodbye: If the talisman is for one specific purpose, you will no longer carry it when that purpose is achieved. Once you’ve found the love of your life, you don’t need another one! At that point, you will thank the talisman for helping you, as well as any other powers you’ve called on. Then find a “place of honor” for it. You may bury it in the Earth or put it in a quiet part of your garden–anywhere suitable for your talisman to “retire.”

Traditional Talismans

Here’s a chart to help anyone interested in choosing a talisman. Please keep in mind that this is simply a brief listing; most of these items have more than one purpose, and most of the purposes could have more than one charm in each category.

What you wish to attract
(in a worldly or spiritual sense)
Animal Stone Rune
Evil eye (protection from) rabbit malachite isa
Happiness butterfly garnet sowilo
Health beetle amethyst, kyanite berkana
Intelligence snake citrine ansuz
Life energy bird clear quartz ehwaz
Longevity turtle, tortoise or snake ruby mannaz
Luck (general) bee jade, turquoise dagaz
Love, Relationships frog or toad rose quartz gebo
New starts phoenix carnelian perthro
Prosperity ladybug citrine fehu
Protection dog black tourmaline algiz
Purity dove amethyst berkana
Sensing the invisible cat opal laguz
Strength horse bloodstone tiwaz
Success pig ruby wunjo
Travel elephant moonstone raidho
Unexpected blessings spider diamond gebo
Vision lizard emerald ansuz
Wealth fish aventurine fehu
Wisdom owl lapis lazuli kenaz

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“Creating a Crystal Fertility Nest” by Ashley Leavy

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Category: Crystal Healing
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During the past several years I have performed many crystal energy healing sessions and, frequently, one of the things I am asked to treat is infertility. There are a variety of ways to treat this issue, but one of the most effective has been the following exercise. DSC_5156(1).JPG

First, choose a stone that you intuitively feel is right for increasing female fertility. If you are unsure, the following stones are universally known for their connection with fertility and reproduction: Druzy Chrysocolla, Jade (especially in the form of a four-footed dragon – either Jadeite or Nephrite can be used), Indian Moonstone, Apricot Moonstone, Rainbow Moonstone (also known as White Labradorite), Rose Quartz, Lavender Rose Quartz, Rhodochrosite, Boji Stone (use the smooth, female stones), Rhodonite, and Rutilated Quartz (especially with Red or Golden Rutiles, but Silver can also be used). For this purpose, the energy of the stones would be much enhanced if in the form of an egg, but this is not necessary.

Next, choose a stone that will enhance male fertility. The following stones are connected with masculine energy: Pyrite, Shiva Lingam Stones, Limonite, Boji Stone (use the rough, male stones), Blue Pietersite, Blue Tiger’s Eye (also known as Hawk’s Eye), or Gold. It is best if you choose your fertility stone and your partner chooses theirs, but if this is not possible, you may choose both.

Next, create a “nest” for your fertility stones. This can be any small container of your choosing that you feel is suitable. Make this nest your own. You may choose to use a small box filled with soft fabrics, a basket, or even a real nest that you find in nature (as long as it is no longer being used by the mother bird who built it). Fill your nest with items that emit a safe, gentle, and loving energy. These may be pictures, wishes that you have written on scraps of paper, other stones, sacred herbs, or items that are special to you like pieces of jewelry, feathers, etc. Then, place the nest in a place of prominence where it will be able to inspire you daily. Again, it is best if this activity is done by both partners, but if this is not possible, you should create the nest with the intention of choosing materials and objects to represent both of you.

Once you have created your nest, you should dedicate your fertility stones. Create an intention for your stones by first dedicating them with love and light for the highest good of all beings. Visualize the stones being filled with healing, universal white light until they are glowing brightly. If you have a difficult time envisioning the light, you may take your fertility stones outside into the sunlight or light a candle and let its flame illuminate your stones (but do not place your stones into the flame). Then, program your stones for fertility by making a clear, concise statement about your intentions. This may be as simple as, “These stones increases my fertility and will help me to become pregnant” or as specific to your fertility issues as possible. Then, place the stones into the nest (it would be best if you placed your stone into the nest and your partner theirs, but if this is not possible, you may place both).

You (and your partner if possible) should take some time each day to sit with the nest. You may choose to meditate, you may want to add things to the nest or to occasionally change things as time goes by. You may even want to perform reiki or some other energy healing technique on the nest. However, you choose to use the nest, remember what it represents and remember why you chose your specific fertility stones and nesting items. This is a healing space for you (and your partner). Maintain an open heart and an open mind and the possibilities are limitless.

*Crystal Healing is not meant to replace conventional medicine, but rather to complement and enhance it. The information within this guide is purely metaphysical in nature and is by no means medical. Crystal Healing should only be used with the understanding that it is not an independent therapy, but one that is a part of a holistic healing approach.

This article may be printed, distributed, or published ONLY with permission of the owner/author, Ashley Leavy. It must remain unchanged and in its entirety and credit must be given to the author.

Click Here to Visit Ashley Leavy’s Website.

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“Disabilities and Souls” by Jack McCarty

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I am not a typical guy that you might meet in a supermarket, thank God. And, most people would not call me “normal.” I am simply who I am meant to be, and I write. Crystal-Layouts-Grids-205x300

How would you define “normal?” Few people could give a quick answer to that question. After working in state hospitals for fifteen years, and studying New Age Spirituality, this is what I have come up with.

Normal, first of all, is a judgment; and all judgments are only an individual’s point of view. When we experience anything, we compare that experience to our past. If the experience is comfortably within our tolerance to differences, we judge the experience as normal. Therefore, there is no such thing as normal; it’s all in our minds. Now, here is a bit about how I am different.

Many people have judged me as “odd,” or terms more colorful, because I was born with Tourette’s Disorder. It is a movement disorder characterized by motor and vocal tics. Some cases shout short profanities. I did not develop that symptom. I also have a bit of Adult ADHD and OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder). So, besides my tics, I am forgetful, have trouble with spelling — etc, restless with a short attention span, and think about some things too long. I did not make great grades in English, and I seem to be mildly dyslexic. However, some years ago, I finally heard a silent voice inside of me saying, “You are a writer!”

On the other hand, I seem to have some gifts. I am very good with abstracts and concepts. Before I was ten, I picked up a simplified Air Force preflight manual. It was about the basic workings of aircraft, and the theory of flight. I read through it and understood it. I could envision the principals of aerodynamics. Today, I often read scientific articles, and I have learned a lot about science. I could discuss String Theory with a physicist, and even suggest some new ideas, as long as we avoided the math. I also seem to be capable of spontaneous knowledge. When I write about a familiar subject, when I am finished, I sometimes know more about the subject than when I began, by just writing what I know.

In addition to learning a lot about science in general, I studied computers when PCs were only experimental. I studied electronics in the military. And, I had clinical Psych as a part of my training in the nursing field.

Most people would look at this situation and say, that even with such gifts, becoming a published author is “having your head in the clouds.” They would say it is impossible for me to write anything of any quality. I admit that it takes me a lot more time to write a story than most writers do. Ultimately, anyone is capable on anything. Some of my work is close to being publishable, at least. Impossible is only a belief.

My studies of New Age Spirituality have led me to a much larger understanding of life, and how it always works out for the best. I saw plenty of the dark side on humanity, growing up with uncontrolled Tourette’s. No one knew what it was until I was in my thirties. However, I found a lot of truth in the works of some authors.

The late L. Ron Hubbard, as many know, founded the Church of Scientology. I was a member of that church for a short time. I found a lot of truth in his work. However, his views seemed to have some flaws. Nevertheless, I feel he came very close to the ultimate truth. I no longer see “eye to eye” with that church. And, it is a very expensive religion.

Richard Bach writes fiction with a metaphysical theme. Most people have heard of his book “Jonathan Livingston Seagull.” Some have read, “Illusions, the adventures of a reluctant Messiah.” They are both about the road to Enlightenment. They stimulate the imagination. And, they have inspired many to seek the truth.

Few people know who wrote “A Course in Miracles.” Most of what I learned about that was from a promoter / expert named Marianne Williamson. She has published many recorded lectures. She talks very fast. It is a set of books written by a woman by way of channeling. Channeling is when someone writes or speaks for a disembodied spirit. Normally, the human is in a deep trance. He or she does not remember writing or speaking after coming out of the trance. Many people believe she was channeling Jesus. She chose not to put her name on the work.

Neal Donald Walsch wrote the “Conversations with God” books. He writes that God talks to everyone all through life. However, we have forgotten what to listen and look for. And, the filters of our egos block much of that out. But somehow, after he had decided to write God an angry letter, he couldn’t put the pen down after he finished writing. He picked his tablet back up and wrote what a silent voice inside his head started telling him. That was the start of the conversation. He is now my favorite New Age author. If you have read any of his books, my inspirational stories may remind you of his work, including much of the last half of this essay.

And, I don’t want to forget James Redfield, who wrote “The Celestine Prophecy.” It is a fictional metaphor of a man’s search for Enlightenment, which seems to occur through happenstance. However, in ultimate truth, there is no such thing. It has a lot of drama and action. The book is better than the movie.

Here is some of what I have learned. For someone with a disability, one of the greatest truths I have found is regarding the agenda of the soul. Most people have never heard that one’s soul has an agenda of its own. But, the soul brings forth all the major events in one’s life. And, these events are to fulfill the soul’s agenda. This agenda is not a list of specific events, accomplishments, or things you will have. It is sort of a list of experiences of what the soul wishes to be. In order to experience many of these things, the soul gives the EGO and the body some circumstances and limitations, and sometimes the lack of a common limitation or two, which help guide the EGO to these experiences.

As one example, say the soul needs to experience some of the most basic parts of being a human wearing its heart on its sleeve, with few complexities. That soul may be born with a body that has Down’s syndrome. When that life is finished, in its next life it might be a genius and become a rocket scientist. In this case, the soul may wish to experience being a student of the universe. Circumstances, created by the soul, help lead us to the soul’s choice of being, the soul’s agenda.

However, many people become frustrated when they choose to be something, and life seems to begin to work against them. I forget and do this too. But, there is a reason for that. And, it is a blessing in disguise. Einstein stumbled onto something much bigger than he may have known when he developed his theories of relativity. Relativity came before this, or any universe. Can you have up, without having down? Can you have hot, without having cold? Nothing can be experienced without comparing it to its opposite. Comparing something to a point of reference is a basic concept of relativity.

When life gives you the opposite of what you have chosen to be, you are experiencing a reference point from which to experience being what you have chosen to be. In metaphysics, the term for that is “The Law of Opposites.” When you choose to be something, its opposite soon shows up in your experience. Expect it and bless it. These opposites are allowing you to experience what you have chosen to be, and give you the choice to commit to that choice of being.

Look at your history to find what kind of experiences you have had repeatedly, which shaped your life. Also, look at the things you most enjoy doing. What were you being when you had those experiences? And, what situations have come up frequently in your life that seemed to oppose you? What ways of being are the opposite of those situations? Find the most common ways of being in these examples, and you will have begun to find your soul’s agenda.

Another of life’s unseen truths is that everything we experience in the physical world we are making up. You might think of it as a play, “and all the world’s a stage.” Ultimately, all life is equal; and we are here helping each other have the experiences we came here to have. Physical reality is a collective illusion created by life itself — another word for God. I have found that it is not easy to convince most people of this, however. Try telling any of this to a homeless person, for example. I once said to another man in a homeless shelter, “I’ll tell you one of the secrets of life. It’s all made up.” I got a laugh, like I was crazy or something. And, yes, I was also homeless.

We do ourselves a dis-service when we judge others, and ourselves for our differences and shortcomings, and when we fear others for their advantages. We are all in life together, helping each other have experiences. Everybody needs everyone. As it has been said in “A Course in Miracles,” “There is only one person in this room.” Or, as Mr. Walsch has put it, “We are all one.” “Separation is an illusion.”

Souls never oppose each other, only our egos do that.

Click Here to Visit Jack McCarty’s Website.

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“A Re- Examination of Astrological Compatibility Theory” by Shelley Jordan

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Category: Astrology
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Among the questions I hear most frequently are those that involve astrological compatibility, the idea that some signs are better for us than others. For instance, Aries is said to get along with Leo but not with Scorpio. Cancer should avoid Libra but is good with Taurus. Why is this? What thinking lies behind this astrological segregation? Zodiac signs in circle.

The answer can be found in the gender of the sign. Half the signs of the Zodiac are traditionally labeled male, half are female. The fire and air signs are male, the earth and water signs are female. Plainly put, male signs should avoid female signs, and vice versa, or so traditional astrology would have you think.

This view of conflict between certain signs is one of astrology’s worst old wives’ tales. Using gender to categorize, then separate the signs really doesn’t help one gain insight into the meanings of the signs. In fact, it is a hindrance to chart interpretation. Assigning gender to the signs of the Zodiac creates limitations on the imagination and scope of the astrologer’s perceptions. It is difficult to avoid ingrained attitudes toward gender. For example, historically, fire signs were described as heroic and confident (they’re masculine), while the water signs were vulnerable and insecure (they’re feminine). There are plenty of hackneyed value judgments attached to the signs based on gender. Just read an old astrology book’s description of Pisces as the dustbin of the Zodiac, or Scorpio as mean and difficult. Both are water, therefore feminine, signs. On the other hand, the male signs are associated with courage (fire) and intelligence (air).

I have seen many successful relationships and marriages between people whose charts would send traditional astrologers into fits if anxiety and cautionary warnings about the inevitable failure of the relationship, simply because the signs in their charts are not “compatible”. While most astrologers don’t realize it, gender is at the bottom of this presumed incompatibility. This notion of the irreconcilable differences between certain signs originated with the ancient Greeks, who did in fact, socially separate men from women, and were also responsible for much of today’s astrological theory. They passed this cultural gender prejudice onto the astrological theory of their day, where it has remained unquestioned for centuries.

Is there any truth to the idea that some signs are better for us than others? The answer is NO! Forget compatibility based on signs. Don’t look to astrology to determine whether a relationship will work out or not. Instead use astrology as a way of understanding another human being, not as a way to create more barriers and limits in our hearts. Sometimes we are drawn to people who are just like us, in which case there may be a lot of overlay between the charts – shared signs, houses or aspects, or other indications that there could be some interior similarity. At other times we may be drawn to people who are entirely different from us because some kind of complementarity is occurring and each partner supplies qualities that the other lacks.

Astrology is a useful way of gaining insight into the interior world of another person. Insight into other people’s character can heighten our compassion and understanding of what motivates another person. Astrological charts can help to explain why someone acts the way he or she does. When we understand what drives someone’s conduct and behavior, it is easier to not personalize it, judge it or be hurt by it. Astrology’s greatest gift lies in its ability to help us understand and empathize with our loves ones. It should not be used as a way of deciding who we should or shouldn’t get involved with. Like predicting the future and fortune telling, traditional chart comparison based on compatibility of signs is a function that 21st century astrology can leave behind in the ashes of the past.

“Kwan Yin: Compassionate Rebel” by Cathy Douglas

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Category: Buddhism
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Kwan Yin is a goddess of compassion, whose name means “One who hears the cries of the world.” She is regarded as a feminine bodhisattva, an enlightened being. Her worship took its current form when Buddhism came to China. Spellings vary, with Quan Yin and Guan Yin common; in Japan she goes by Kannon. Kwan-Yin-178x300

Very large statues of Kwan Yin are traditional in China, Japan, and many other Asian countries. Here’s a picture of a Kwan Yin Statue from Guangzhou, China If you like that, here’s a website with many more very big religious statues. (In Asia, gigantic statues of Kwan Yin, Buddha, Shiva and others are common around temples and large cities.) As the female analog of The Buddha of Mercy, Avilokiteshvara, she’s loved by all.

Still, people of certain walks of life and situations traditionally seek her favor, and many of the symbols we see on statues reflect this. Here’s a key to some symbols and other features of statues, along with their meanings:

  • a dragon to for ancient wisdom
  • with a baby, for the goddess as mother
  • a lotus for contemplation
  • a bottle for medicine, sometimes with a stream of water for healing
  • a sea serpent as a protector of sailors
  • a waterfall for compassion (symbolizing tears)
  • the sprig of foliage is from the weeping willow, also signifying tears
  • a rice bowl for adequate material goods
  • hand cupped in the yoni mudra representing the universal feminine
  • pearls of illumination

And that’s just a start–there are a lot of representations out there! In Feng Shui, it’s traditional to keep a small statue of her in each room of the house to maintain harmonious energy.

Travelers and sailors also carry a small statue of her with them for safety and luck. Larger statues are common in gardens, as well as personal and family shrines. And representations of Kwan Yin in public areas, like the one linked above, are among the largest statues in the world.

Here’s one traditional Chinese story of Kwan Yin’s origins:

Back in Confucian China lived king, whose third and final daughter was so radiant that he named her Miao Shan (radiant goddess). The girl lived up to her name, preferring a life of contemplation, while renouncing fine food, clothing, and all other trappings of royal life. When it came time for her to marry, she adamantly refused. Where, she asked her father, was there a husband who could give her the gifts of the Buddha–freedom from the fear of sickness, old age and death? Miao Shan reminded her father that even a king had no protection from these things.

The king didn’t like that much. In fact, he was so enraged that he put her into a Buddhist nunnery, threatening the nuns with torture and death unless they subjected his daughter to the harshest of treatment. Miao Shan willingly worked at menial tasks and suffered privation, though she chastised the women for fearing her father’s threats. Next, the desperate king decided to kill her. But when he tried to have her beheaded, a blinding thunderstorm came, and a tiger rushed in at the last minute and carried the girl away.

The king decided to wait awhile before trying again, but before he could decide what to do, a terrible sickness came to him, reminding him of his daughter’s warnings about the things even kings fear. A passing beggar advised him that only a potion made from the willing sacrifice of two human arms and two human eyes could save him. Without much hope, he sent out his ministers in search of a person who would willingly give up arms and eyes. Miraculously (to them at least), they found such a person; the potion was made and the king saved. Of course, he was filled with remorse when he found out it was his daughter who’d been mutilated.

She comforted her father with prophetic words: “Do not worry, Father. Mortal eyes give way to diamond eyes, and mortal arms to arms of gold.” He ordered a statue made of her, and in her honor he commanded that it have no arms and no eyes. But the sculptor misunderstood his words, and gave the statue instead a thousand arms and a thousand eyes. The king knew then that Miao Shan could do anything with so many arms, could see anything with so many eyes. Her compassion comforted him, and now he was willing to extend this comfort to all people.

After she died and became the goddess Kwan Yin, she requested permission to come back to Earth, to be with us until the day when all suffering may cease.

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