How to Play with Crystals
Learning how to play with crystals is one of the easiest things we ever did. The only rule to learn is that rules aren't necessary.

When we first opened our store people who knew much more about crystals than we did used to tell us in hushed or shocked voices, "You must never work with lapis without quartz" or "Never let anyone touch your crystal." They were very nice people and they kept on coming to the store even when they saw that we were breaking all the rules. We appreciated that.

We've continued to break the rules--and taught others how to break them--because over the years we've become more and more firmly convinced that crystals are here to teach us to open to and trust our intuitive abilities, that aspect of being which sees all which makes up life as a whole and which experiences the connectedness of all that is. Crystals teach us to play, to choose and use them simply because we're attracted to them.

So, we don't have rules about crystals, but we do have some ideas about how to play with them. Use them if you like.

Crystal Decor

They're beautiful; keep them within eyesight. While we won't pretend that a ten-pound quartz cluster isn't one of the loveliest sights around, clusters do come in smaller sizes. An arrangement of tumbled stones on your bedside table or work space is a beautiful sight, too, and they're wonderful to pick up and roll around in your hands. We know people who laugh uproariously at the idea that crystals have any kind of energy, but they wouldn't be caught without their worry stone.

Another way to keep them close to you is to wear them. They look beautiful and feel good.

Programming crystals

This kind of programming has nothing to do with machines. It involves you projecting certain wishes into your crystal, which will send out vibrations to attract what you want.

There are scientific explanations of how this happens--one of the foremost crystal pioneers was Marcel Vogel, a former senior scientist at IBM--but we honestly don't understand them. We just know that programming works.

When we first decided to become the crystal missionaries to the world, on New Year's Eve, 1986, my partner and I programmed two quartz crystals to help us find an affordable space in which to set up business. A few days later someone told us about a mall in Soho. On February 1, 1987 we opened our doors. Two years later we wanted a store of our own, and programmed a crystal which we then placed on a map of Greenwich Village. In April, 1989 Crystal Gardens reincarnated on Greenwich Avenue.

Meditating with Crystals

We must admit that for all of our aforementioned experience with metaphysics we always found meditation both boring and ineffective until we started inviting our crystals to join us. They seemed to help in focusing our often-wandering thoughts ("Have I been lying here long enough--How do other people manage to meditate?").

You can hold a single quartz crystal or hold one in each hand. You may want to meditate for the sake of relaxation, or to get clear on a problem or troubling emotion.

It can be very helpful to play peaceful music while you meditate. Turn off the phone. We recommend lying down because it promotes more relaxed breathing and reduces body tension. Begin by deliberately taking slow, deep breaths. Feel your breath going through your body; imagine it beginning at the soles of your feet, then rising slowly to the top of your head, and back down again. Make sure that when you inhale your diaphragm is expanding, and that when you exhale it contracts. This is the natural way to breathe, but many people have learned to do the opposite because it keeps the emotions in check.

Correct breathing, especially if it hasn't been practiced for a while, means that emotions may surface. Continue deep breathing and allow yourself to feel them. Be alert for any images which may arise along with them. You might be feeling an inexplicable sadness, then see yourself in third grade being ignored by your classmates. This image might lead to one of feeling left out in some situation in the present. As you get in touch with these feelings and images you may want to look at crystal and Bach flower remedy descriptions to see which may help you to handle and dissolve these feelings.

If nothing surfaces immediately, there's no need to force it. Just relax and let your thoughts wander, or if you're focused on a specific issue, allow that issue to come into your awareness. Play with it. If it's a conflict with another person trying being that person. Imagine how the conflict feels to her/him. If you're faced with a decision imagine the possible results of it; if it's a choice imagine how it feels to be living with the consequences of the various choices. See what feels right.

An especially effective way to explore problems through meditation is to program a crystal to help you understand and solve the issue. As you hold the crystal visualize that it is a great teacher which has been sent into your life specifically to guide you. When you meditate hold it.

Crystal Covers

Another way to meditate, one which can help you to focus on a particular issue, is to do a chakra layout.

In Sanskrit chakra means "wheel,", and those who are able to see them describe them as spinning wheels of colored light. They're our personal rainbows, located in the aura, an electromagnetic force field which surrounds each living thing. The energy of the aura is that of our thoughts, feelings, and spiritual essence.

The chakras concentrate and coordinate the flow of these energies to and from the physical body. Each chakra governs a particular area of the body and the experiences associated with it, as described in the chart below.

Chakra Location Function Color
First Feet to base of spine Grounding Black, brown, red
Second Genital area Sexuality Red, orange
Third Abdominal area Personal power Yellow
Solar Plexus Diaphragm Emotional release Coral, yellow-green
Fourth Heart Love, healing Pink, green
Fifth Ear, nose, throat Communication Blue
Sixth Brow Inner wisdom Dark blue, purple
Seventh Crown of head Oneness White

There are some variants on these relationships. Some people believe that the first, or root chakra, is red and that the crown chakra is violet. We, based on a different version, assign black, brown, and red to the first chakra, and white to the seventh. We like this system because it gives us places to put dark and white or clear stones. Systems may also assign different locations to the third chakra, some relating it to the navel, as we do, others to the solar plexus. We do include the solar plexus in our chart, as we consider it an important location for stone placement.

To bring this chart into practical perspective, say that you want to develop more personal power. You look at the chart and see that this relates to the third chakra. When you think about doing something new are you afraid that you'll fail? Have people been pushing you around lately? Is there any area in your life where you feel a lack of power?

If you would like to learn more about the chakras, please see Crystals and the Chakras, an email course on the subject.

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