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double line of shungite stones

Shungite is a rare and relatively unknown naturally occurring material that's highly sought after specifically for use in crystal healing. Graded 4 on Mohs scale of mineral hardness, it has a unique appearance and texture, is surprisingly light weight and rough stones give off a soot-like residue.

Due to its lack of any significant crystal structure shungite is correctly classified as a mineraloid.  These substances cannot truly be categorized as minerals because they do not form crystals. Other mineraloids include obsidian which is volcanic glass, opals which are formed from a solution of silicon dioxide and water and another curious material known as moldavite. The colour of shungite can vary from deep bronze to virtually black, it's opaque and naturally lustrous and has the ability to purify water.

Known to be at least two billion years old, shungite contains molecules of carbon which came about because of the metamorphism of crude oil. It's found almost exclusively in north west Russia close to Lake Onega which is not far from the village of Shun'ga in the Republic of Karelia.  This unique mineraloid is believed to have been named after the village of Shun'ga around 1887.

It is estimated that that are approximately thirty five million tons of shungite available to mine in the region and approximately two hundred thousand tons are being processed each year. Although some articles state that it formed prior to organic life being established on earth, this is questionable because most carbon based minerals came about because of decayed organic matter such as ancient forests. Some have suggested that the impact from an enormous meteorite caused the crater in which Lake Onega subsequently formed and that may have contributed to the the formation of the stone.

Shungite contains fullerene which is a molecule of carbon and for this reason it is highly revered for its curative powers. In crystal healing it's said that when ingested through water shungite is a powerful antioxidant with exceptional anti-inflammatory capabilities.  It's also believed to work as an antihistamine and is said be able to help with pain relief. Scientific studies have shown that almost all traces of the bacteria e.coli can be removed from water that's been purified with shungite. The same studies also showed that the water had a revitalizing effect on the body, eased a variety of skin conditions, helped with gastrointestinal problems, kidney stones and a variety of other ailments. Following the experiments which were carried out in Russia, water filters were developed using shungite and have been in use since 1995. One of its many medicinal benefits is the ability to boost well-being and strengthen the immune system and because it contains fullerenes, it has attracted the attention of scientists working with the HIV virus.

This fascinating stone contains many of the elements in the periodic table and according to certain crystal healing references, it can be used for its shielding properties which come about because of its unique formation. As well as being carried, shungite may be placed on computers and attached to cell phones to counteract the negative effects they have on sensitive human energy systems. It is also said to be beneficial for the relief of stress and fatigue.

Dark grey to black coloured shungite tumbled stonesShungite tumbled stones

Although known for its high carbon content the exact amount that's present in shungite varies depending on which reference or study you read. All known life forms on Earth are made up of carbon and in humans it's the second most common element accounting for 23% of our total body weight.

Shungite is known to have been used for its healing properties since the 18th century and Peter the Great who ruled Russia from 1682 until his death set up a spa in Karelia to make use of its water purifying properties which he himself is said to have experienced.



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Further Reading:
Wikipedia on shungite