Shungite Stone from Russia
What Exactly is Shungite?
Shungite is a curious and relatively unknown naturally occurring material that's highly sought after for use in crystal healing and also for its ability to purify water. It has a unique appearance, distinctive texture, is surprisingly light weight and because it contains carbon the rough material gives off a soot-like residue. Known to be at least two billion years old shungite is believed to have formed through the metamorphism of crude oil. In one scientific study it was described as a fossilised organic material that formed from sediments which date back to the Precambrian period which is around the time the Earth began to form. This time period began approximately 4.6 billion years ago and ended around 541 million years ago.
One article that we've read suggests that shungite may have formed prior to organic life being established on earth but this theory has been dismissed because proof of its biological origin has now been confirmed. Most carbon based minerals came about because of decayed organic matter such as ancient forests. In another article it's suggested that Lake Onega the region where shungite is found formed from a crater caused by an impact from a huge meteorite which subsequently may have contributed to the formation of the stone but we have found no evidence to support that. The basin for Lake Jänisjärvi however which is less than two hundred miles away was formed millions of years ago following an impact from a meteorite.
Shungite is a non Crystalline Solid
Due to its lack of any significant crystal structure shungite is correctly classified as a mineraloid. These non crystalline or amorphous solids are not 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 relatively unknown material called moldavite. The colour of shungite can vary from a rich shade of bronze to almost completely black, it's opaque, can be highly lustrous to the point where it almost appears metallic and is used in industry for water purification purposes because it has the ability to remove organic and inorganic substances, harmful bacteria including E.coli and heavy metal from contaminated water. Studies that have been carried out in Russia have shown that water purified with shungite has a revitalizing effect on the body, eases a variety of skin conditions, helps with gastrointestinal problems, kidney stones and a variety of other ailments. Water filters were subsequently developed and have been in use since 1995.
Fullerene in Shungite
The presence of fullerene in shungite was first described in 1992. Fullerene is an allotrope of carbon, an allotrope is the ability for a chemical element to exist in two or more different forms within the same physical state. For example graphite, charcoal and diamond are all allotropes of carbon. Fullerene was only discovered in 1985 but quickly attracted considerable attention from different fields of science and today it's widely used in industry and particularly in medicine.
Worldwide Shungite Deposits
Although minor deposits of shungite have been reported in Austria, India, Democratic Republic of Congo and Kazakhstan, the largest and oldest source lies close to Lake Onega, Republic of Karelia in north west Russia. In 1879 having been described as an extreme sample of non crystalline carbon the material was named after the village of Shun'ga. As well as being the site of the first and largest deposit, Shun'ga Village is the oldest settlement in the area with a history that can be traced back to at least 1375.
The Zazhoginskoe field which is approximately fourteen miles by seven is one of the world's largest mining fields for shungite rocks. Reports estimate there are between thirty five and fifty eight million tons of material available in the area to mine but geologists believe it's likely that additional sources will soon be discovered. The vast majority of stones that are available to buy come from this locality. It should be remembered however that not all material contains the same percentage of carbon and it can vary from 10% to 100%. In fact some of the material that's being sold online as shungite is actually shungite-bearing rock. 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 for Crystal Healing
Judy Hall author of the Crystal Bible series states that water purified with shungite is a powerful antioxidant that has exceptional anti-inflammatory capabilities. She also states that it works as an antihistamine and is able to help with the relief of pain. Other references say it can be used for its shielding properties which come about because of its unique formation and as well as being carried it may be placed on computers and attached to cell phones to counteract the negative effects they have on sensitive human energy systems. It's also said to be beneficial for the relief of stress and fatigue.
Shungite is known to have been used as a healing crystal 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 is said to have experienced.
Our Collection of Shungite