Crystal Healing Course

The crystal healing course – what is truly being offered

“Healing” means different things to different people. Being a “healer” then, also has varying levels of significance from one healer to the next. For me, over the last ten years, words around healing have come to convey different ideas at different times. The same has occurred for me regarding “crystal healing” specifically.

It might feel like a contradiction when I say that no one needs to be healed. And if a person does feel they need to be healed, no one can heal them. It would be natural for a person reading these words here – on my healing website, where I offer healing services and classes and a course in the subtle energetic art of healing – to feel confused. But that’s where the last ten years has brought me.

Words do us a disservice when speaking about spiritual concepts and emotional matters. We talk about healing and energy medicine and therapies and of course these words are borrowed from the medical and mental health communities. In efforts to gain both accountability and respect, as well as accessibility, we borrow terms that are already known, that carry a weight unto themselves. The problem is that healing and medicine and therapies are words that oftentimes apply to mechanics, to the world of duality, to cause-and-effect. And in that place, these words have proper meaning, conveying accurately what can be expected (most of the time).

In the world of subtle energy healing, which is, at its core non-dualistic in nature, these words do not fit. Subtle energy healing arts offer us a way to become more aware of and relate more deeply to our psycho-spiritual, emotional, and mental aspects. There are a million ways to do this on the physical plane and so there are numerous modalities through which this type of journeying is accessed. Reiki, EFT, massage, bio-feedback, Healing Touch, yoga, kirtan, meditation, prayer, qigong, and others. And yes, relating to the mineral kingdom, aka, crystal healing. On the physical plane – where duality rules (and can serve as an organizing force) – when we get sick or break a bone we seek healing. Cause and effect. Expectations are automatic: we see a doctor who either discovers or confirms an ailment or breakage, who then determines steps to cure the ailment or breakage. But on the subtle plane, nothing is wrong, nothing is broken, nothing needs to be fixed. All is present and All is simply being observed. There is no hierarchy or good v. bad. All is. All is a part of the awareness, wanting to be seen and integrated. Energy is energy is energy. And so, no, I do not, as a healer actually heal anyone. I create a space for someone to come into their own awareness, should they desire support while doing so. I do not bring balance to their subtle anatomy – they do, by surrendering to a moment in time and being willing to be with all of the energies present in that moment and observe what arises. We work with one another because we each have different perspectives, tools, and wisdom to share with one another that further illuminates our awareness. Iron sharpens iron. We also work together because, let’s face it, sometimes this awareness can be difficult to integrate and having a witness and someone holding a space of compassion for us while we are deep in it can be one of the most beautiful experiences of this life. crystal healing course

 

Getting to the place where we can become willing to acknowledge and then explore that kind of awareness involves a great dance with our egos – “who” are also a part of the whole. During this dance, we allow ourselves to truly see the different aspects of ourselves, sometimes meeting “them” for the first time. Eventually we can, if we allow it, come to a place where we wonder, as Mooji so often asks, “Who is the “I” that sees/feels/hears/knows/desires/hurts/hates/loves?” Who is the one speaking/thinking/feeling? In the realm of the subtle there is no place for judgment, only neutrality. It can feel disconcerting to the person who is attached to their stories, to their suffering, to their identities. But this beautiful, all-encompassing awareness can also unlock a door to freedom and a new way of moving within the physical plane that allows for greater compassion and surrender and faith. crystal healing course

This is the underpinning of the courses offered here: acknowledging and learning how to be with energy from a place of neutrality such that we might be better equipped to live in and integrate with the physical plane through our hearts – an always-open gateway to The All. Those of us who are drawn to and have a sensitivity to the mineral kingdom, may want to explore how crystals can support us in our ever-expanding awareness. When we identify as feeling out of sync in some way – understanding how crystals are communicating to us (without the need of an intermediary) and how to work with that offered energy can be extremely grounding and helpful. crystal healing course

And that’s what the Crystal Therapy in Subtle Energy Work offers. In addition to learning how to sense and discern the energy (information that vibrates) of different minerals on the minerals’ terms, we also explore our beliefs about healing, healership, and wholeness. Together we put thought forms on the table and consider them in light of what we come to know-through-experience about non-duality and ourselves as part of the greater Whole. For those of us called to the role of healer, this is an important, clarifying, releasing, and empowering process. We have this unique opportunity as human beings, to learn how to be simultaneously on the physical plane according to its rules and ways while also knowing and integrating a broader knowing of the interconnectivity of all things. crystal healing course
Crystals then, in this course, are not approached as things that “fix” ailments, fears, or offer protection (from what do we need protection if all is energy being seen and integrated?). Crystals are treated as Light Beings who are offering us energetic support on the subtle level in a multitude of ways through a multidimensional compilation of elements, structure, origin, and more. There is so much to learn about the mineral kingdom that helps us learn how to receive that energy and apply it in an empowering way. From this perspective, the mineral kingdom becomes a true ally for those who are journeying toward themselves, seeking community with All through the All.


If you would like to be one of the four new students to register for the crystal healing course called “Crystal Therapy in Subtle Energy Work,” please call me at 360-620-2681 so that we can chat and make sure all of your questions are answered.

Grace, peace, and gratitude.

Crystal Healing Spotlight: Stilbite

Crystal Healing with Stilbite

crystal healing stilbite

Stilbite is often found in “wheat” or “bow-tie” formation

Stilbite isn’t a “sexy” mineral in the crystal healing world: it doesn’t garner the attention that say, Amethyst, Ajoite, Sugilite, and others enjoy. I don’t often hear people recommend stilbite to others or mention working with the mineral personally because, well, I don’t know. It’s a fairly inexpensive and easily obtained mineral both in rough/natural and tumbled form. And it’s a great mineral to work with when we understand its physical properties and know how those aspects might have effect on the subtle anatomy. (Real quick note – stilbite is sometimes confused with stibnite because the spelling is so similar. Stibnite is the silvery-gray mineral that contains sulfur (S) and antimony (Sb). Super different minerals with super similar names). 

Stilbite is actually a series name. Depending on the chemical formula, we might have Stilbite-Ca or Stilbite-Na. Stilbite-Ca is the most common type and the differentiation is usually not mentioned because without proper testing, it is impossible to tell the difference. The appearance and growth, crystal system, and manner of formation are usually the same. So -Ca is assumed when testing has not been done. Because it’s the most common and the chemical formula doesn’t deviate drastically, this article is going to talk about Stilbite generally.

Stilbite is found in zeolite deposits, often found alongside apophyllite when in matrix in its most common habit – that of bow-tie or sheafs of wheat. Often peachy in color, stilbite can also exhibit a pearly luster and is often mistaken for heulandite (and vice versa).

Stilbite stats:
Chemical formula: NaCa4Al9Si27O72 · 28(H2O)
Manner of formation: secondary/sedimentary
Mineral Class: tectosilicate, zeolite group
Crystal system: usually monoclinic
Mohs: 3.5
Crystal habit: thin, tabular aggregates in bow-ties or sheafs of wheat; can also be found globular

crystal healing stilbite

When in matrix, stilbite is most often found with apophyllite Rob Lavinsky, iRocks.com – CC-BY-SA-3.0 [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Each physical property listed above an inform us of the mineral’s healing properties. I’m going to take just three physical properties and break them down with you, to show you how the crystal itself is always telling us what its role might be in our healing practices. When we understand how to approach crystals in this way, it helps us make sense of the prescriptions provided in crystal healing books (in case you’ve ever asked, “But how do they know?”). It can also explain why you might have had a different experience than what is described in the crystal Rx books (no, you’re not wrong). It also, if we allow it to, deepens our understanding of and relationship to our crystals because when we learn about the whole crystal and each of its physical properties, we experience it in a multidimensional way that the crystal encyclopedias simply can’t convey.

I typically like to explore new crystals in this order: Manner of formation, mineral class, chemical formula/elements, crystal system. (Color rarely plays a role in my personal practice).

Manner of formation: secondary/sedimentary

The sedimentary (or secondary) MoF is about awareness of influences. Sedimentary minerals are deeply affected by outside influences – weather, erosion, water, wind, and more. As such, sedimentary minerals can be excellent agents of support when we want to become more aware of the ways we are influenced in our lives. Our thoughts, actions, and beliefs are formed and continually influenced by the world around us: our families, cultural mores, societal expectations and norms, religious upbringing, and more, these influences can affect the way we perceive and interpret the world around us which in turn, affects our reactions and responses to it. When we desire to change a thought pattern or belief or way of being in the world, we are often calling into question assumptions about life that have in fact, been taught to us one way or the other. When we begin the work of self-inquiry or calling into question our beliefs, sedimentary stones and crystals can be a supportive ally. Being a sedimentary crystal, stilbite can be a useful ally in this type of healing work. Let’s learn a little more about stilbite to get a more nuanced view of the stone and the specific ways it can assist us.

Mineral Class: tectosilicate, zeolite group

Simply put, minerals are organized into classes according to their chemical composition. Stilbite is a tectosilicate. Some classes are further subdivided based on factors such as appearance, the presence or absence of water, which cations are present and more. Silicates are a huge group and in the Dana class system, there are 6 subcategories, of which tectosilicate is one.  Tectosilicates, also called framework silicates, are 3-dimensional crystalline structures which according to Gienger, have an absorbing and reflecting energy. When tectosilicates are opaque in appearance, they tend to have a more absorbing effect. When having a translucency, a more reflecting effect.

Stilbite, with its pearly sheen and opaque appearance therefore, is a tectosilicate that has absorbing qualities that also have a calming and sobering effect on the mental and etheric aspects of the subtle anatomy. Stilbite is a great stone to work with then, when we are feeling emotionally or mentally overwhelmed, specifically by anxiety or fear. When we are beginning to look at our “stuff,” things can get overwhelming pretty quickly sometimes. If we’re ready to have reflected back to us that which we need to see to create change, we might want to work with a translucent tectosilicate. If it’s beginning stages of this type of personal healing work, and maybe we need to slow things down so that we can process the anxiety and/or fear that is arising, a tectosilicate that is opaque might be a more appropriate ally.

What does the chemical formula: NaCa4Al9Si27O72 · 28(H2O) tell us?

When we look at the elements a crystal contains, we can start to get a more nuanced view of how the broader categories of formation and class might be applied to healing work. Don’t worry – you don’t have to be an expert in chemistry to refer to a chemical formula for information. Let’s pull two elements from this formula and check out what Michael Gienger said about them: Calcium (Ca) and Aluminum (Al). Gienger conducted numerous crystal healing clinical trials with doctors and non-medical practitioners alike who tested the effects of different minerals with a wide variety of people. The results of these trials, together with his scientific understanding of the elements and their roles in geology and biology, provided a grounded and nuanced understanding of how elements can inform us about the healing properties of minerals. His findings are shared in the book, Crystal Power Crystal Healing. Application of crystals in any way is meant only to be carried or worn against the skin – never ingested.

Both calcium and aluminum are abundant elements in the earth’s crusts. According to Gienger Aluminum has physical, mental, and spiritual effects. Physically, Al promotes alkaline metabolic processes, supports absorption of iron in the intestines, and normalizes conductivity in the nerves. Mentally, Al has a calming effect on nervousness and fears, as well as feelings of guilt. Al also can support one in expressing feelings and releasing behavioral patterns – releasing that which no longer serves. Spiritually, Al helps with loss of identity and finding out who we really are and what our purpose might be in this life while also exposing illusions for what they are and helping us learn to deal with them (p 112-113).

Calcium’s physical support is in the metabolism of the cells and absorption of nutrient by cell membranes. Ca is necessary for the formation of DNA and RNA. We all have heard that strong, healthy bones and teeth rely on proper Ca intake. And Ca plays an important role in a healthy heart: regulating rhythm and strengthening the muscle. Mentally, Ca affects receptivity, is emotionally stabilizing, and lends self-confidence. When feeling confused and lethargic, grab those Calcium-bearing minerals. Spiritually, Ca regulates development. Where a person is sluggish, Ca speeds up and regulates that evolutionary process. Where development is happening too fast and there exists chaos, Ca assists in normalizing it.

In looking at two important elements in stilbite’s chemical formula, we come to understand that being a sedimentary tectosilicate, stilbite can specifically assist someone seeking energetic support in maintaining a healthy pattern of spiritual growth, who might experience fear and anxiety, who might benefit from some support in speaking their truth. Stilbite, as with other minerals that contain Al, can help someone who is feeling rather undefined and purposeless, who may benefit from seeing that there are aspects of their life which is holding them back from seeing their true self.

 

crystal healing stilbite

Stilbite is less commonly found as globular formations: Rob Lavinsky, iRocks.com – CC-BY-SA-3.0 [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

crystal healing stilbite

Stilbite can be found tumbled

I have found great freedom in relating to minerals in this way. While these “properties” (I rather prefer the term “possibilities”) are, in my opinion, more grounded being that they arise from a less singularly personal experience (instead arising from different clinical trials combined with what we can learn from the geology and mineralogy of the stones), the most important information (energy that vibrates) that you can get from any crystal is the information it gives you directly when you work with it. I do this type of research with crystals I’m called to work with, but then I follow it up with a meditative experience too. At the end of the day the overriding message has to come from the crystal itself, through my heart space. And I encourage the same for you – give yourself permission to have your own unique experience with your crystals and stones and take their lead, regardless what any book or website has to say about it.

Grace and peace.


PS – Interested in approaching crystals in your personal or professional healing practice in this unique, empowering way? Check out my course here. Enrollment opens in September.
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Depression and other uncomfortable experiences

As we await the end of this long winter, as we learn to maintain presence in a world that appears to be going mad, and as we deal with our own private lives and the issues we personally face, we might be experiencing spiritual, emotional, and mental discomfort more acutely. I have chatted with a few people in the last couple of weeks who have shared that they have been experiencing low-level anxiety, agitation, anger, and depression, for what appears to be no reason.
When people ask me, “How do I get rid of this?”, one of the first questions I like to ask is, “How does this experience feel in your body?” In other words, where do you feel tension or discomfort, irritation or inflammation in your physical body when you are aware of these feelings? What does it feel like? How do you respond to these physical expressions?
Turning toward the body and extending it care and rest can have a huge effect on the experiences listed above. It is unusual for most of us to do this however, because we are a thinking species. We are quite proud of our mental faculties and our abilities to analyze and plan and fix and solve. When these uncomfortable feelings arise, we tend to go to the mind for answers to “fix” whatever is “broken,” bypassing the body altogether.
Always be willing to question the premise.
What if nothing is broken when these experiences come? What if there is nothing to fix because these experiences play an important role in our expansion and evolution? What if everything is exactly as it should be? What if, instead of going to the mind to ask, Why is this happening? How do I make it stop?  we chose to be present, focus on the breath, and get in touch with our body?
Choosing to pay attention to the body can help us ground and connect more deeply to our Heart. The mind can take a rest. We can stop thinking for a second, stop analyzing, and stop wondering why or asking how. When we are focusing on care of the body, our attention is diverted from self-judgment. And we can give the brain a little break from trying to form an escape plan. 
Many times over the years, when I have shared that I had a cold, felt blue, threw my back out, had a headache, or stubbed my toe with well-intentioned fellow healers, I have been asked, “What do you think the root emotional/mental/spiritual cause might be?” Many believe that mental and physical maladies are untreated subtle energetic imbalances in almost all, if not all cases. The idea is that if we identify the emotional, mental, or spiritual imbalance, by identifying it and then healing it, we resolve the physical issue.
On the face of it, it makes sense. I think how we go about it might not. What this well-intentioned inquiry does is remove me from my physical body and places me in the seat of the mind through self-inquiry. It puts me in the roles of Identifier and Fixer – mind activities – when my body is asking me to be with the body. Awareness is wonderful and can be very healing. I believe in the power of self-inquiry and a willingness to be with and examine myself. But I believe there is a time and a place for this and that it must be done through the Heart. When the body is crying out, when a person feels like they are in survival mode – this is the time for rest, love, support, compassion, grace, and above all else – no judgment.
And sometimes a stubbed toe is just a stubbed toe. We are human beings living a human life on this planet where everything we do affects one another and sometimes stuff happens. Determining whether or not an experience is a “stuff happens” moment, or the result of imbalance in the subtle anatomy, for me, involves surrender and time. If there is something deeper to explore, there is no forcing it. To become aware of the unconscious, “deeper” underlying issues that might be present, I have to trust that I will become aware of those when they are ready to appear. In the meantime, I care for my stubbed toe, stay present, and breathe.
My personal experience – with depression, anxiety, sadness, grief, and more – has taught me that there is no real and lasting escape plan that the mind can offer and that there is no eradicating the issue through the mind. In fact, trying to out-think (run away from) an uncomfortable experience can intensify and draw out the experience. I think this is because the energy wants to be seen and acknowledged through the Heart with compassion and faith. Sometimes a willingness to stay in the room and be with that feeling is all it takes for it to dissipate. Other times the energy desires more attention and time, and if we allow that – if we surrender to it, the experience is a lot less painful. There is more grace and compassion present.  
My recent reminder….
A few weeks ago, on a Thursday, depression descended out of nowhere. It had been years since I felt that plummet but suddenly down, down, down I was falling, unable to breathe deeply into my toes and suddenly unable to bring myself to care about, well, anything. I couldn’t make weekend plans with my husband because I didn’t care and I didn’t foresee a moment when I’d be getting out of my chair in the near future. My brain started to send warning messages, “If you don’t snap out of this, your students and clients are going to get upset!” and “Oh no, remember last time? This could last WEEKS!”  But it was too late – I couldn’t care. It’s not that I didn’t care. I literally couldn’t care – about anything. Depression is a strange and difficult thing to experience let alone explain. 
I had been here before. I recognized it immediately. Though I was surprised that it felt the need to visit, I shrugged, opened the door, invited it in, made it sit right in front of me so that I could look it in the eye and acknowledge it. “Hi. You’re here. It’s been a while. I see you.” And then I let myself off the hook, trusting that nothing lasts forever – even when it feels like it will never end (kind of like this past winter). I chose to focus on my physical body, turn the mind-games off, and just exist as-is. I decided to be be with that energy as long as it wanted to stick around. I decided to be kind to myself in the process. 
Over the next couple of days I noticed moments when my mind would try to sneak in and “take care of it.” How can we get rid of it? How can we heal it? What’s wrong with you, Tana, that this is here? Identify that and BAM! Problem solved! Each time my brain tried to elbow its way in, I felt the sensation – or lack of sensation actually – weigh more heavily. I backed off each time, saying, “I see you, you are here and I am here and we are here together.” I stayed with it, giving it and myself compassion and grace.
On Sunday evening of that same weekend, just as quickly as it arrived, it left. I caught my breath and I suddenly felt everything again  – concern, awareness, motivation, responsibility, desire, movement, appreciation. I also noticed something re-enter which I wasn’t aware of before the depression visited: feelings of insecurity I had been holding, worry that I was inadequate in a certain area of my life, and anger seated from a place of judgment I was holding against myself which I was extending , as tends to happen, to others. In this particular case – there were underlying issues that I wasn’t aware of that wanted to be brought into the Light for healing. I can promise you that had I tried to force myself to make inquiries or tried to “fix” the depression, I would have missed the awareness that arose as the depression lifted. 
That experience lead to writing this blog post, Burning Man – on being a healer and our responsibility to self, in which I share, “Love and Light” is a phrase often used. And it can have tremendous potency when uttered by a person who is intimately aware of their own capacity for “Hate and Darkness,” as well as all the energies in between. I have since learned that nothing can truly be swept under the rug or warded off with spells or talismans. The energy is present and it wants to be seen. This is the Age of the Mirror.” 
People sometimes look at me like I’m crazy. “Just BE with it? That’s your big solution? That’s how you heal?” Yes. It’s part of my healing. And it took years of clearing thought forms and beliefs, of learning how to ground in my own body, of experiencing the Heart and learning how to become more and more intimate with and trusting of it before I could “just” be with it. I fought it for a long time. There were a lot of thoughts and beliefs I needed to clear or transmute. The experiences of depression and anxiety showed up for me time and time again – giving me ample opportunity to lean into them and learn how to exist differently, how to shift my perspective, how to surrender and find in that surrendering great freedom.
I relied on mentors and guides and healers and teachers who helped me to reframe or release my inquiries, to show me where my thinking was blinding me from the Light of my Heart. It was a group effort, make no mistake. Can we go it alone? Sure. Sometimes we even have to. When we can ask for help though, I believe we thrive when we do. Asking for help is a lesson unto itself. As much as we’re wired to think our way through “problems,” we’re also conditioned go it alone. But that doesn’t make it the ideal way of being in the world. We’re allowed to buck the system. In fact, I strongly encourage it. 
If you’ve been struggling with finding your footing in the midst of challenging emotional, mental, and spiritual experiences, I encourage you to reach out. Find a heart-centered mentor, healer, coach, guide, counselor – someone with compassion and grace, who understands the role of the mind in relation to the Heart, someone who will be neutral and honest with you. Someone who will help you see the gifts of self-care, as well as self-inquiry. Someone who will help you consider when to cut yourself some slack and when you can dig deep. You can begin this search simply by asking your Source to send someone your way. Healing – it can be simple. And sometimes it is not. Both are accepted. Be kind to yourself in the meantime, and don’t forget to breathe.
With gratitude,
Tana

Mercury Retrograde, Crystals, and Community

Yesterday Mercury went retrograde (12/19 – 1/8) and the memes started popping up on social media warning people off from making huge decisions, expecting their tech to work, or anything to go right.

Nope. No. Just…..no.

Look, I’m not an astrologer. I’m not an astrologer in the same way I’m not a tarot card reader. I read cards for myself once in a while when I need my subconscious to become conscious and I watch Kaypacha’s Weekly Pele Reports because Tom Lescher (whom I don’t know personally) seems to be so heart-centered and gives a really grounded, inspiring, and pragmatic reports helping to put events into a wider perspective outside of my own limited one.

One of my personal mantras is, “Hold everything lightly.”

Given that I’m not an astrologer, take everything I’m about to say with a grain of salt. This whole vibe around Mercury going retrograde causing chaos might be well-intentioned, but tends to be disempowering by way of the false narrative based on generalized assumptions.

Today on Facebook, I saw this post by OSHO right after I posted the following picture:

“Once you get identified with a certain idea, then you are sick. All identification is mental sickness. In fact, mind is your sickness. And to put the mind aside and just to see silently ? without any thought, without any prejudice ? into reality is a healthy way of being acquainted with reality.” OSHO

Mercury Retrograde Crystals Community
Here’s the deal: I don’t assume that the next two weeks are going to be hard for you or anyone else; at least, no harder than they would have been had Mercury not gone retrograde. The Lessons? They appear with every breath – not just when a planet goes indirect. Not just when we pull the Tower card. And what would happen if, instead of seeing calamity when Mercury goes retrograde or we pull the Tower card, we got excited about the possibility of change and expansiveness?

Are there better times than others – opportunities where our ability to be more awake and aware are heightened? Perhaps. Wouldn’t it be awesome if THAT was what the Mercury Retrograde memes advertised? I’m the last person anyone is going to accuse of being a Pollyanna. I’m not talking about the pseudo-light-and-love-it’s-all-going-to-be-wonderful-if-we-just-believe! attitude either. That feels just as inauthentic as the other warnings and dire predictions do.

I’m talking about being open to being awake, aware, fully present, self-reflecting, other-and-self-empowering, listening, open-hearted and unassuming, learning, seeing true. Regardless the planetary movements and other people’s ideas about them.

I believe in our ability to listen to our Hearts and follow the path it lays before each of us and to go the way of the Wise Ones we really are. I believe in our power which comes from a humble and trusting heart. I believe that every moment is a chance to choose, to take responsibility, to breathe deeply and be present and awake. Do we always live this way? No. That too is a lesson. These tools we use (astrology, tarot, etc.) are not tools at all if we allow them to become scapegoats for our challenging days or less than ideal choices or off-putting attitudes.

And here, bear with me, I’m going to go on a tangent because the following has been on my mind a lot in the past few weeks….

As well-intentioned as the spiritual community can be, sometimes we (not unlike religious communities) can be our own worst enemy. It’s part of the human condition to see dualism, to pick sides, to declare “good” and “bad.” It is also madness and counterproductive to what we claim our goals are.

We here in the States and elsewhere in the world, claim to mourn the loss of our ability to be a community of diverse people who lift one another up while in the same breath demonizing those who vote for a particular candidate, the candidate him/herself, support a particular organization, buy from a certain store, use prescription drugs, drive a certain type of car, eat a certain type of food – the judgments go on and on and on. Why? Because we identify more strongly with our individual ideas than we do with the people in our community whom we’re called to love and encourage and support.

The situation we find ourselves in as a community of America? Of the world? We’re all culpable. It took the whole of the community to create this chaos and separation and strife and it will take the whole of the community to heal it. But it requires us to each see our own culpability. No one is blameless.

Personally, in the last 6 months or so, I’ve been called to question every thought that flits through my mind; every judgement and declaration and idea. Where does this (fill-in-the-blank) idea come from? Is it true? Is it true for everyone? Is it true for all time? Who says? If it’s not true for everyone, maybe I can spend some time learning why – to keep my Heart open, to listen with my Heart to others who see the world through a different lens. Which is everybody by the way. The great irony is that we have our little enclaves of “like minded” people with whom we rally in the streets or on social media. And if we had an open, expansive discussion with them, we’d realize that we don’t see many things the same way even with the members of our own choir.

Our ideas that OSHO talks about above have lead to a sickness of the mind, yes, and of the ego. Our assumptions and self-righteousness close our Hearts not only to others but to ourselves.

Perhaps this Mercury Retrograde moment is a chance to be still with ourselves. To question our attitudes and beliefs and reactions and fears and angst and anxieties. Because until we are honest with ourselves about our own blinders and self-righteousness and closed hearts, we cannot begin to see and hear, care for and about each other through our Hearts. We cannot begin to heal our communities and the Community at Large. And whatever is coming in 2017 and beyond – we need each other. Not just people who we assume are like us – we need our communities, full of beautiful people with diverse ideas and beliefs and perspectives and histories and experiences. Iron sharpens iron – except when we refuse to engage with one another. We all need honing.

Crystals for self-reflection, for doing deep inner work, for getting real with ourselves might include sulfides such as chalcopyrite, pyrite, covellite, and sphalerite. Halides such as halite and fluorite for breaking down barriers, in this case of our own minds. Aluminum-bearing minerals can help us remember who we really are; copper-bearing minerals may resonate with promoting a more open heart – there are others, but this is a good start.

May 2017 be the Year of Opening Our Hearts. Dissolving our Fears. Empowering ourselves and one another.

With so much gratitude, through Light. Tana

Crystal Care Questions Answered – Part 3

Crystal Care: Mineral Care Based on their Physical Properties

This final section (click to find Part 1 and Part 2) is perhaps the most important because it is the most empowering. Knowledge is power and when we understand the minerals we are called to work with not only from a new age perspective, but also from their physical perspective, worlds can open up to us. We become less and less reliant on getting answers about how to do our subtle healing work from others, and instead learn to turn to our own Hearts more and more frequently for the answers to questions we ask.

We can look to a crystal’s chemical composition and get a lot of information without having to be experts in chemistry. We can look to a mineral’s formation origin and understand that mineral’s energy in a deeper way without being geologists. Understanding our crystals’ physical properties teaches us so much about their subtle healing properties. It also helps us understand how to better care for them.

Most minerals will react to various types of environments and in what way depends primarily on the mineral’s photo-sensitivity, Mohs hardness, water solubility, and chemical composition. Researching each of your crystals properties can save you disappointment from a faded Celestite geode, a dulled or disintegrated Selenite wand, a marred or pitted Malachite palmstone, or a scratched Fluorite sphere. Here will look at three of these properties as they relate to common crystal cleansing methods discussed in Part 2.

Photo-sensitivity – I have yet to find a definitive list of minerals based on anything and photo-sensitivity is among them. Photo-sensitivity has to do with a mineral’s susceptibility to fade or become darker when exposed to light. To make matters a little more complicated, different minerals will be affected by different light wavelengths: it’s not just sunlight that can cause a mineral to fade or darken. If you work with crystals based on their color, you will want to be especially mindful of how you store your crystals – away from direct sunlight, outside of UV lamp rays, preferably covered when not in use. My Fluorites and Spodumenes, for example, are always covered when I’m not working with them.

This forum on mindat.org was especially informative about light sensitivity, how mineral dealers may temporarily “improve” a mineral’s color for shows, only to have it fade later, storing recommendations, and more: http://www.mindat.org/forum.php?read,5,115692,page=1

Of the minerals we are most likely to work with, the following can be affected (faded or darkened) by exposure to light:

Pink apatite
Hued barites
Lepidolite
Hued selenites
All beryls
Certain calcites
Aragonite
Celestine/celestite
Amazonite
Some are suggesting Disthenes (Kyanite) though that’s debatable
Fluorite
Hued quartz
Spodumenes (Kunzite and Hiddenite for example)
Hued topaz
Tourmalines
Vivianite
Zircon

As you can see from this list, the easiest assumption is to treat all of your crystals as though they might be affected by lightwaves and minimize their exposure as much as you can while not working with them. Many mineral collectors keep their collections in darkened rooms for this very reason.

Having said that, I know many people who understand that most crystals are photo-sensitive and they still set their crystals out in the sun every day. Sometimes the fading can take years, sometimes weeks, sometimes days. While we want to be aware of our crystals’ susceptibility to fading or darkening, we don’t want to protect the minerals at the expense of working with them the way they desire to work with us.

Mohs Hardness – Mohs hardness tells us how soft a mineral is and therefore how easily it might be scratched or break. You can do an internet search “Mohs hardness” and find thousands of websites or images that give you the Mohs scale.

crystal care

Used primarily as a way to assist in identifying minerals, it also tells us which minerals are easily scratched (Mohs of 4 or lower) and therefore should not be stored with other minerals which have a higher hardness. In other words, we might not want to throw all of our tumbled stones into one bowl where they might knock against each other if some of those tumbled stones are a 3 or 4 on the Mohs scale and others are a 6, 7, or 8. The softer tumbled stones could be cracked, chipped, or scratched.

Crystals of the same hardness will not scratch one another. The minerals listed are example minerals of that hardness and the list is certainly not conclusive. Wiki shows an intermediary list which is interesting and can be found here.

Water solubility – This is important to know if you want to cleanse your crystals using water in any way. Whether soaking in a water bath, setting in a stream or river, running under the tap, or setting out in the rain (which can also happen during moonbaths), certain crystals can become dull, dissolve, or become weak when exposed to moisture or water. Some of these dissolve more slowly than others. There is a “general rule” out there that says if a mineral name ends in “ite” that it’s probably water soluble. This isn’t exactly true, as there are a lot of minerals whose name ends in “ite” which are not water soluble. As this has a lot to do with chemistry, the subject of solubility (which can be referring to not only water but acids and other solvents) can quickly become complicated and muddy. This chart, for example, can be helpful, but if you read this forum thread that discusses the chart, you’ll see there are many factors undefined and thus, the chart is limited in its usefulness. Fortunately for us, we are not necessarily called to be chemists so we can approach this generally.  And generally speaking, the following crystals that we most commonly work with are to some degree, affected by moisture/water:

  • Some calcites
  • Halite
  • Hanksite
  • Gypsum/selenite
  • Trona
  • Villiaumite (a rarer mineral that is also toxic – not recommended for our purposes without extreme care in handling)
  • Fluorite
  • Metallics such as Pyrite
  • Lodestone/magnetite –  all iron oxides will rust when exposed to moisture

This list may not be complete. And because crystal healing rarely (ever) requires handling acids, we don’t have to concern ourselves with that either. (Though if you’re interested in how to mine and clean your own crystals, you will want to do some research on that topic).

And that about does it! Thank you for checking out this three-part article on cleansing crystals. I hope it was informative and helpful. Got questions? Comments? Email me at tana@tanaschott.com Information about the Crystal Therapy Course can be found here.

Part 1
Part 2

Crystal Care Questions Answered – Part 1

Your Crystal Care Questions Answered

The way we interact with crystals is very personal and it has to be said out of the gate that there there is no right way to care for your crystals. There is YOUR way.  But one of the top five questions I am asked is, “How do I cleanse my crystals?” So I’m going to share my personal lessons learned, some things you might want to keep in mind before choosing a particular cleansing ritual, and I’m going to challenge the status quo a little too.

It might surprise you to learn that I don’t cleanse crystals and I explain why in the next section. I work with crystals everyday. I create essences, crystal grids, I do distance healing sessions, in-person healing sessions, and never once have I gotten an impression or received a message that the crystal masters I am called to work with have become dirty, weaker, or out of tune. Quartz is a bit of a different situation because of its unique programming and storage abilities. Even then, a simple request to clear is usually all it takes before I can work with it for another purpose.

I understand that the ritual of cleansing is an important one for many people who are called to work with the mineral kingdom for subtle healing purposes. When I’ve asked people about their crystal cleansing rituals, what I’ve found is that oftentimes, the ritual is more for the crystal caretaker. This ritual of “resetting” a crystal is actually an opportunity for the subtle healer to express gratitude, and to personally reset, realign, and rebalance which is really beautiful. Also, just as I’ve rarely had a crystal communicate a need to be recharged or cleansed, others have! So I’m not here to judge anyone’s practice of crystal cleansing. If you are drawn to the practice – for whatever reason – and it feeds you in some way, keep doing it!

If you practice the ritual of cleansing, there are a few factors to consider before choosing a method of cleansing, primarily each crystal’s physical properties. This is so that the crystal is not accidentally damaged during the ritual. In this 3-part article, I’ll review some of those factors. In Part 1, we will explore why we cleanse crystals and I’ll address the issue of toxicity. In part 2, I’ll briefly describe the most common cleansing methods and I’ll talk about the KISS Methods (never-fail, works for all crystals). In Part 3, we’ll explore the different properties of crystals that we want to be aware of when choosing a cleansing ritual.  Ready?

Part 1

Do we need to cleanse our crystals?

That’s a great question and one that often goes unasked. It is one of those assumptions in the crystal healing community that of course (!) we cleanse our crystals. But why? Well, generally there are two reasons:

  1. to get rid of negative energy that the crystal has “picked up”
  2. to help the crystal recharge its energy

Let’s consider these in light of the working theory of crystal healing.  It is understood in subtle energy healing that crystals are valuable tools because they have a strong, constant vibration – stronger than our own weaker and constantly changing vibrations. We place crystals in our subtle fields, along our subtle channels, and on our chakras in order to help that field, channel, or chakra regain balance. It’s resonance through entrainment.

This working theory depends on the crystal having a strong,  stable vibration which is evidenced by the rate of entropy of most minerals. And not just strong and stable, but stronger and more stable than the vibrations of our subtle anatomy. If the crystal’s vibration were weak and easily influenced – we wouldn’t rely on them as co-creation tools in our subtle healing practice.

When an aspect of our subtle anatomy is unbalanced, a CCTP will choose the crystal (or crystals) which carries the vibration that the unbalanced aspect would be singing were it in a healthy, balanced state. That crystal’s vibration, being the stronger one, will entrain the weaker subtle body vibration until it matches the vibration of the crystal – until the crystal and the subtle aspect has resonance.

I think it can be difficult sometimes to remember that our day-to-day physical-plane existence of cause and effect does not necessarily apply to our subtle-plane existence. When we use a dish, wear clothes, drive our cars, use our cellphones, what happens? They get dirty and/or they need to be recharged. So we wash the dish, launder the clothes, wash the car, and charge our phones. When we “use” (and here I much prefer “work with”) crystals, we don’t have to assume the same cause and effect is occurring.  This work is mysterious and happens in subtle time/space so the usual way of things don’t necessarily have to apply.

And yet we’ve been teaching each other for decades now that if we use a crystal we have to clean it/charge it afterward. The natural inclination toward this cause and effect makes perfect sense. Our lives revolve around cleaning up tools that we use. But do we have to? Is it true? Is it true that crystals become “dirty” with “negative” energy after we work with them? Is it true that crystals give away their energy and have to be recharged after a healing session? The answer to this questions could easily be answered differently be different people who have had a wide variety of experiences. Know that your experience is the one that counts for you.

The question you have to ask yourself is whether or not crystals require your help to recharge, release, or get clean after you’ve worked with it. The answer to this question for me personally is “no,” but we are perceiving our experiences differently and so it stands to reason that your answer may be different.

crysta care

Okay, I do cleanse my crystals. How should I do it?

There are a lot of different cleansing practices to choose from and if you design your own, all the better! When we  understand how the mineral kingdom responds to certain environments, it is very helpful so that we don’t accidentally damage the crystals. Crystals, depending on a lot of factors, can breakdown in various ways when exposed to certain light, heat, acids, moisture, and other compounds such as salt. We also want to be aware of the elements in our crystals’ chemical compositions – we don’t want to expose ourselves to heavy metals or toxic elements. (Understanding the chemical composition of your crystals helps you in numerous ways).

crystal careToxicity
Most crystals that energy healers work with are perfectly safe. Especially when those crystals are highly polished or tumbled.  When a crystal is labeled “toxic” – you don’t have to get rid of that crystal. There are minerals that are highly toxic, that’s true. Most of those crystals on that short-list are not easily acquired. Still, some hear the word “toxic” and get overly nervous. For example, I know some who refuse to work with Malachite because they heard that Malachite can be poisonous. This is true when Malachite is being cut by a lapidary artist. The dust is toxic and special care should be taken to ensure that it is not breathed in or ingested and so people who cut or polish Malachite are urged to wear masks and eye protection.

Polished Malachite – the form we typically work with – is not dangerous. Rather, we ought to work with it mindfully. Do not lick Malachite. Do not create a crystal essence with Malachite unless using the indirect method. If you have a piece of rough, unpolished Malachite, handle very carefully and wash your hands afterward. Do not handle those forms of Malachite and then touch your face or eat or put your hands in your mouth.

These are good guidelines to follow whenever working with most minerals. 

Same goes for other:
– copper-bearing (Cu)
– lead-bearing (Pb)
– arsenic-bearing (As)
– mercury-bearing (Hg)
asbestos-bearing
– antimony – bearing (Sb)
minerals such as Stibnite, Cinnabar, Realgar, Orpiment, Chrysotile, Galena and others. You’ll note many, many crystals contain Aluminum which is also considered a toxic element. As such, I simply encourage all crystal essences be made using the indirect method and that people do not touch their face, eyes, or mouths when handling their crystals and to wash their hands after. The minerals listed specifically above require extra care and this list is not comprehensive. Handle minimally if at all. I have Stibnite, Cinnabar, Galena, and Orpiment in my collection, but they are on the top shelf of my mineral cabinet and I do not handle them. As always – keep out of reach of children.

Please know that while you might find various toxic crystals lists online, there is no definitive list. New minerals are being found and no list can be comprehensive. If we learn about the elements that make up the crystals we work with, we won’t need a list because we’ll understand how to read a crystal’s chemical formula and we will understand not only if it contains toxic elements, but much, much more.

Got questions? Comments? Email me at tana@tanaschott.com

Click here to read Part 2