Shungite and the Power of Crystal Healing
1. Shungite from Russia
2. The Ability to Heal or a Placebo?
3. Keeping an Open Mind
4. My Own Experience with Crystals
Shungite | Unique Material from Russia
Shungite is a curious stone found primarily in Russia that's relatively rare, virtually unknown and the finest grade is known as elite shungite. As well as being surprisingly light weight it's naturally lustrous and has a black residue similar to the soot produced by coal. With the world's primary deposit being in Karelia in the north west of Russia, it's expensive and rough material is popular with rock and mineral enthusiasts around the world.
My first encounter with shungite came whilst in South Africa buying rocks and minerals for Stone Mania. Having caught my eye I was immediately curious about this stone that was unlike anything I had seen before. Following a search on Google I learnt it was a non crystalline solid made up mostly of carbon hence was popular for use in crystal healing. Having decided to buy a few pieces I surprised at how expensive it was particularly with it being so light. Once back home the stones were photographed and uploaded to our website. Within just a few weeks all had sold so on my next trip I bought more elite shungite which again sold very quickly.
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Considering the world's original and largest deposit was in the north west of Russia, it was crazy for me to be buying shungite in South Africa so I started looking for a local supplier. The main difficulty was communication but persistence paid off and after receiving two parcels of small low grade stones that were sold to me as large elite shungite, I finally received a parcel at a fair price containing material that was far superior than anything I had seen before.
It’s widely documented on metaphysical websites that shungite is at least two billion years old which sounds pretty impressive but the oldest rocks on the planet date back around four billion years. As difficult as that is to grasp, it actually makes shungite seem quite young in comparison.
With shungite being a non crystalline solid it cannot correctly be identified as a mineral as is instead known as a mineraloid. This name describes the group of mineral-like substances that includes amber (fossilized tree resin), jet (similar to coal), moldavite, pearl and obsidian all of which are amorphous or non crystalline solids which basically means they have no significant crystal structure.
The Ability to Heal or a Placebo?
Elite shungite which is used in crystal healing because of its curative powers has in the past been referred to as “the miracle stone” or “stone of life”. Judy Hall author of the Crystal Bible series even states it may have been instrumental in creating life on Earth.
Although conventional medicine in one form or another can be traced back 5,300 years, the use of crystals for healing can be traced back at least 6000 years. Whilst a great deal of scepticism still surrounds the practice of crystal healing, many people including myself remain open minded to it. Although there may not be any scientific evidence to support what is sometimes called a pseudoscience, healing crystals are without doubt an integral part of many people's lives.
There is some evidence to suggest they may act in a similar way to a placebo which is a substance or treatment that's believed to be genuine but actually contains no active medicinal ingredients. It has been proven in trials that a placebo has the ability to stimulate a genuine physiological response from a change in heart rate or blood pressure to chemical activity in the brain. In cases involving pain, depression, anxiety, fatigue and even in some symptoms of Parkinson’s disease, a significant improvement has genuinely been achieved.
Despite the claim that shungite may have been instrumental in creating life on Earth, that does seem a little far fetched but rocks and minerals have certainly played a crucial role in creating and shaping our planet. With that said, who can say for certain they don't have properties that mankind is yet to fully understand? I have been working with crystals rocks and minerals for the last twenty years and remain very open minded to their holistic abilities. Personally I don’t use them for healing purposes but am without doubt drawn to them in a way that cannot really be explained. When working around them I feel a sense of calmness and they lift my mood. Colours, characteristics, texture and in some cases translucence never ceases to captivate my attention even when looking at the most common mineral. The fact that I'm handling a material that dates back millions and in some cases billions of years is also something I struggle to get my head around.
I fully appreciate that rocks and minerals are not for everyone but definitely believe that on a metaphysical level, there may well be more to them than meets the eye.
When most people are shown a spectacular diamond, a fine grade ruby or even a readily available chatoyant piece of tigers eye, they're captivated and fascinated by what they see. Back in the days when I used to do markets I often watched as people who knew nothing about rocks and minerals handled our crystals whilst trying to work out what they were and where they came from. They couldn't resist touching them, holding them up towards the light and asking what they were for or what their healing properties were. More often than not they'd be drawn to one variety over another and having been introduced to these curious objects, would often return to the stall time and time again. I was asked more times than I care to remember what they were for and it was a question I always found extremely difficult to answer.
Keeping an Open Mind
I have three beautiful pieces of elite shungite in my personal collection and it still captivates and fascinates me. As with many natural minerals, health benefits have been reported from using it. Scientific trials have confirmed that when used for water purification purposes it removes organic and inorganic substances, disease causing bacteria and even traces of metals.
I believe the authenticity of crystal healing is something that each one of us has to decide for ourselves. Despite science not yet being able to prove conclusively that crystals have the ability to heal or influence our mental or physical state, everyone who has ever worked with them will have a different story to tell.
More than one hundred new minerals are discovered around the world each year and there's things about certain varieties which are still not fully understood. With that in mind, part of me hopes and to some degree believes, that there may be something else about them that we are not yet consciously aware of. All living creatures need certain minerals to remain healthy and if not present naturally they're added during the manufacturing process to the foods that we eat, the creams that we apply and medicines that we take. Could it be that at this early stage of human evolution we’re still too young to fully understand the benefits of crystals rocks and minerals because our brain is not yet advanced enough to be able to see them from a different perspective?
Shungite has been in existence for around two billion years compared to the mere two hundred thousand that man has been on the planet so in the grand scheme of things humanity is still very much in its infancy. With than in mind, it's highly likely there are many things we cannot yet fully comprehend.
It's easy to dismiss something you don't fully understand yet we still have so much to learn about this incredible planet, its resources and what everything does. Despite advances in medicine and science in recent years we have been oblivious for far too long about the damage we've been causing to natural habitats around the world. As a consequence the planet is changing at an alarming rate and plants, animals and insects are disappearing faster than ever before. If the human race cannot understand something as simple as that, how can we know for certain that crystals rocks and minerals are nothing more than inanimate objects?
I work with crystals rocks and minerals because I enjoy being around them and they interest and fascinate me for many different reasons. I'm certainly not in a position to say whether they have health benefits or not or whether a stone like shungite or any other will bring luck or change your life but what I can say for sure is that it's worth keeping an open mind.
My Own Experience with Crystals
I once went to a psychic who had been highly recommended to me but I've always been sceptical about people who claim to have psychic abilities. Before I'd even sat down she blurted things out that she could not possibly have known. I hadn't even given her my real name and she knew nothing about me. Although she didn't subsequently tell me a great deal, what she did say was very personal to me and she kept seeing two letters but couldn't understand what they meant or why that was all she was getting. The letters were the initials of my partner's name who happened to be sat on a bench down the road waiting for me although I didn't tell her that. So could it be that crystals are similar to psychic ability in that only certain people can tune into them and for everyone else they're nothing more than plain old stones?
I’ve read extensively about crystal healing for many years and have heard countless stories some of which I take with a pinch of salt but you can't dismiss everything. I've also had a few experiences of my own that can't logically be explained one of which involved obsidian which is reported to be exceptionally powerful. It's said that black obsidian which is natural volcanic glass will bring issues to the surface and can be very confrontational so be ready for a full onslaught before using it. I didn't choose it, it just happened to come into my possession by chance but within a very short period of time what followed was certainly an onslaught and one that changed my life.
My experience has shown that if crystals are destined to be part of your life, they'll make an appearance but only when the time is right. There are people around the world from every race, culture and ethnicity and always have been who believe crystals rocks and minerals have mysterious powers and healing properties that can bring about a change on a physical, emotional or spiritual level. Providing the practice is used to compliment and not replace traditional medicine, then why not just embrace it?