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Crystals, Astrology and Magic
This talk is part of my research into the history of birthstones for a Masters Degree in Cultural Astronomy and Astrology.
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Crystal Blessings – Revisited
It is always such a joy when I hear how crystals have changed people’s lives. When Joginder, who runs the Tree of Life in Birmingham, was introducing me last year he told the story of how he’d been in despair, feeling very lonely and finding it impossible to meet a partner who was on the...
This isn’t so much a blog as a report on a process. That of assessing a new crystal by a different method, by ‘homeopathic proving’. It’s long as I’ve included the astrology of the various moments, which give insights, and the diary I kept as well as possibilities and alternatives. I’ve organised it into sections so that you can follow what piques your interest. So, skip through parts if you feel the need, but pick up the gist and read Emerging Themes to check out the results and to find an invitation to the community to join in the assessment.
There was a Q&A on the members community Facebook page recently about where to obtain raw Blue Obsidian. I have a genuine piece, gifted to me from tribal lands in America. It is a powerful stone. But most of the available forms of this ‘crystal’ are actually glass manufactured in China from crushed silica. This artificial ‘obsidian’ seems to have little innate properties of its own, but holds a program well and is receptive to both crystal skull and dragon beings taking up residence. It can also be conducive to opening the intuition
The – manmade – Blue Obsidian dragon that’s waiting for me in Ireland along with several of his smaller relatives. All ready for our cosmic dragon workshop at the end of May. Book here: http://www.judyhall.co.uk/workshop/cosmic-dragons Watch this space! There will undoubtedly be a blog on our experiences.
‘Blue Obsidian sphere’ advertised on Ebay as ‘natural’ as to both shape and material. This is most unlikely. Buyer beware almost certainly applies if you are seeking the real stuff.
I was intrigued when Terrie Celest pointed out that there was some ‘Blue Obsidian’ from the Atlas Mountains for sale on Ebay. Sold as entirely natural and said to be helpful for ‘articulate communication and soul guidance.’
Rare Blue Obsidian – Atlas Mountain Tears- Soul Guidance/Purpose – Articulate Communication
Blue Obsidian natural glass from the Atlas Mountains, Morocco. An extremely rare form of Obsidian blue glass (Not man made in China) It is a soft blue obsidian which is a natural silica rich volcanic rock, found only in the Atlas Mountains, has been also given the name of Atlas Mountain Tears. This mineral stimulates the throat and third eye chakras, opening and cleansing them allowing one to open to higher guidance and increased wisdom enabling one to communicate the knowledge gained with clarity and understanding. Also enabling one to express thoughts with clarity and feeling, increasing ones communication skills in an articulate manner.. Helps one to go within and obtain a deeper understanding of ones inner true self and receive guidance on ones’ soul purpose for this lifetime. Also helps one view life with calmness and serenity. This is the stone of transformation. [https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Blue-Obsidian-Atlas-Mountains-RARE-Articulate-Communication-Choice-of-9-stones/323018499073?var=512152776148&hash=item4b35672401:m:mfztghe-GjLOpyeTZ7ltQ6Q]
I’ve searched long and hard but haven’t been able to find a picture of this crystal coming out of the ground. I’ve also asked one of my longtime suppliers to check on it and he asked a trusted Moroccan supplier who said he’d never heard of it. I already had several questions about the crystal and was trying to keep an open mind. I wanted to explore its properties, if any, and I didn’t want to be influenced by what someone else had said about the stone. It would, of course, be being imprinted with the beliefs that were held about it. These could spread through the crystalline connection that all stones of the same time exhibit.
Nor was I certain that, although sold in good faith, it was actually an Obsidian. Apparently a flat or two had turned up at a French mineral fair and the vendor said it was ‘Obsidian from the Atlas Mountains.’ It was then on sale at Tucson and was snapped up. Most American sellers are adamant that it is genuine Obsidian. As yet, I’ve found no independent verification or analysis of the stone. Nor any in situ pictures. I would so like to see one of these. (I’m going to the French fair myself this year and hope to speak to someone there about it.)
The crystal didn’t look ‘glassy and all of a piece’ in the way that an Obsidian (a non-crystalline substance) does. It had been described as a ‘soft Obsidian.’ It was gritty, splintery, rather powdery with burst bubbles on its surface and cloudy, criss-cross patches and a few visible bubbles inside – a signature of ‘glass’ and particularly of glass that has been melted down again and then smashed. What it most reminded me of was Libyan Gold Tektite (created from a high impact, high heat event of meteorite hitting sand) and Moldavite (meteorite hitting rock). These are translucent stones, but the more usual Tektite is ‘solid’ and metallic in appearance (see Alternatives later in this blog).
The Atlas Tears are surprisingly tough, resistant to Quartz scratching, Quartz is higher on the Mohs scale than Obsidian so I’d expect a mark.
I have to say that, when it arrived I felt little energy from the stone. I cleansed the crystal with Z14 and held it for awhile, asking it to show me all it had to offer as I did not want to limit it. I could not sense my way into it. It didn’t answer in an upfront and immediate way. (It’s a very Neptunian stone!). I had to find a new approach.
As I was working on the novel, I put it on my desk to see if it did indeed assist with articulate communication. Up to this point the novel had been more like a dripping tap than a flow. That had been fine up to the Spring Equinox, it was gestating. But now the time had come to get it down on paper, especially as I only had a short time before I started travelling again and wouldn’t have a chunk of time to devote to writing until the summer. It had to be completed by the Winter Solstice. So it would be an excellent test.
The stone instantly became an example of a Mercury retrograde sidetrack (see Astrology below) as I started this blog rather than focus on the novel! I decided that I would keep a ‘proving diary’ for the 22 days of Mercury retrograde and post this when it had turned direct again, before I left for Romania. That would mean I could get this blog into the community mailing that went out at the end of April and share with you what may turn out to be a convoluted process of crystal assessment.
9.30 am. I’d just sat down to write when I was interrupted by the postman. The Blue Obsidian had arrived. This blog came into being. The first sidetrack had occurred.
10.38am Finally starting on the novel. Slow going.
3.15pm An afternoon nap produced a dream that indicated I had put parts of the past behind me and was moving forward.
8.15 pm. The novel has also moved forward. It’s structure becoming more apparent. 1000 words written and some clarity inserted into what had already been drafted. A missing ‘piece’ has appeared, out of the blue as it were. But that’s the way I write novels, so overall a normal day.
‘Also helps one view life with calmness and serenity.’
Hmm, I could certainly do with some of that this morning. The clocks went forward last night. My body hasn’t adjusted. My mind is still in hibernation. I do wish the temporal powers-that-be would leave time alone. I fit British Summer Time, even though I was born in winter. Probably because I was born during the war and ‘wartime’ meant keeping a different time – Double summer time, 2 hours ahead of GMT (which could explain my frequent timeslips and my fondness for Greece). Shifting out of winter hibernation is always challenging. And this year with the bitter cold and late snow it has been even more so. My body and mind are taking awhile to catch up with each other and I needed a winter sun holiday. I’ve added Orange Sphalerite to my bra to readjust my body to take on higher frequency vibes and the increasing light.
The Blue Obsidian said ‘take a bath’. Since my kneecap fell off a few years ago, I can’t get in or out of a bath on my own. A shower will have to do I followed up with a good spray with Clear2Light and Z14 may help to finally say goodbye to winter darkness.
Another sidetrack. Drawn onto Facebook. I don’t want to get lost on there for hours. But that’s what happened. I’m beginning to think it should be called the Facebook stone. Not the kind of communication I had in mind though.
The afternoon is spent with my accountant. Very clear communication but no writing done. Will have to see what tomorrow brings.
I woke up thinking about crystal essences and companion stones. In particular Triplite essence and a big Carnelian that has the perfect receptacle to hold another crystal. When I placed the Blue Obsidian into the key, it jumped out. Twice. I checked again that it was the appropriate thing to do. My finger dowsing said ‘yes’. So I took a dose of Triplite essence, dropped some into the key and tried again. This time the crystal remained in place. When I took a picture to add in here, my computer decided to download over fifteen hundred images that had already been downloaded. Usually only the latest are transferred. So there should have been one. So what did that say? Was this an Akashic Records crystal? Or was it downloading the contents of my personal memory bank? It left me with a lot to delete. It had brought pictures to the surface but most certainly wasn’t clearing them.
I deleted the whole folder and started again. Interesting. It also drew my attention to the utter chaos and clutter on my desktop. Papers and books I’d been promising myself I’d sort out all year but so much of it is reference material for the book so I’d let it accumulate. One word stood out for me on a random piece of paper ‘release.’ Single-minded focus, that was what I needed. Would the combination help with this?
There must be something good about Retrograde Mercury?
Sometimes I think the answer to this question is “not a lot” but I do think that there are lessons in patience, slowing things down, rewinding the tape, information gathering and generally working towards a place where you can put things straight. It’s often a time of conflicting interests and “facts” that don’t add up, but from the muddle we can challenge what doesn’t make sense or exercise the right to change our minds. It’s partly about finding out what works for you and what doesn’t.
These were the words that I read when opening up Joanna Watters weekly astrology blog after a productive morning putting my novel firmly into the first person viewpoint so that I could get into my main character’s head (but that could be down to the Triplite essence). I’d been hovering around it, unsure. Now, I finally had the structure and could move forward. I’d also discovered that several of the ‘factions’ (fictions that appear to be facts) I thought I was creatively weaving into the story straight from my imagination, actually did have a basis in fact. Great stuff!
Obsidian or something other?
But by now the question of authenticity-identification was arising even more strongly in my mind because of changes visible in the stone. When I purchased it online, in the photograph it had looked white and gritty on the surface (see the photograph with the description above). When it arrived, most of this coating was not visible and, as I Z14’d it, the rest of the coating pretty much vanished. But now it is returning on one side. It seems to be oxidising if such a thing is possible (see below). The camera is picking it up much more strongly now, although I noticed that the angle of the light on it made a difference when trying to photograph it. (See Obsidian or something else below)
Weird things going on with time this morning. My clock had stopped at 12.30am so my alarm didn’t go off. The radio announcer was still on BST so gave 7.45 instead of 8.45am. I needed to be out of the house in fifteen minutes. I’m still using old fashioned timekeepers and wouldn’t update to a mobile phone in my bedroom. Far too bad for my health. So I need a new clock. But, when I get there, the shop is shut for the Easter holiday.
My head is swimming the way it does when I’m around someone who is drunk or on drugs. Escaping from everyday reality into something other. It’s a Libra Blue Moon today. That rare event when there are two full moons in one month. Libra is a sign of balance and of judgement – it’s symbol is the scales of justice or of Ma’at depending on whether you look on it from the ancient Egyptian point of view. In ancient Egypt, your heart was weighed against the Feather of Ma’at to discover the truth of a matter and the purity of your heart. So, with the Assessors, Meritaten and her partner Smenkhare, looking on, I did the ritual of the weighing of the heart. Feather in one hand, ‘Blue Obsidian’ in the other. Placing them on the virtual scales, down went the Atlas Tear. Gently, slowly, but inexorably. I had not asked whether it was a fake, or even an Obsidian, but rather sought to confirm its integrity against the Feather of Truth. (Before anyone asks, take a look at ‘How do I decide which one to go for?’ in the rituals section of the members community. It’s adapted from the Feather of Maat ritual.)
So, the novel. The core is written. His inner struggle mapped out – the conflict between sacred and profane (sexual) love: often called ‘the Madonna-Whore dichotomy’ by astrologers. How could you love someone physically and also put them on a pedestal, expecting them to be a manifestation of ‘perfect love’. Its strong in his birthchart and was played out throughout his life and writings. People placed on pedestals usually show their feet of clay at sometime or other and fall off that lofty perch. It’s a challenge to accept that sexual love can be as sacred – if not more so – as celibacy and the two can be combined. Some of the major scenes are drafted. It just needs to have the flesh put on its bones. I wonder what he’d have made of it. His astrology is below. He was able to be utterly besotted with one person and marry another. Is the stone to be associated with taking back projected pain and suffering from ‘out there’ I wonder? Owning our own story? Of finding a more creative way to deal with it? Writing about such things, for instance, allows you to step out of the toxic emotional more and view it from a different perspective. Although, you could rewrite that past altogether, imprint a new pattern.
I think my progress on the novel has more to do with repeated doses of Triplite essence and Jeni Powell’s Crystal Balance Company’s ‘Focus’ spray than the Blue Obsidian – which has become a little more crusty but otherwise shows no change. As a sign, Libra is noted for its indecisiveness. So far, the jury is still out on this matter of ‘genuine’ or not. Or whether the crystal is having any effect. I shall explore further, noting my observations as dispassionately as I can.
Another point of view
Susannah Rafaelle, a crystal and animal healer, who is part of the crystal assessment group arrived for lunch. So, at the exact moment of the Libra Blue Moon, I gave her the ‘Blue Obsidian’ to check out. She is a Libra so it seemed opportune timing. Holding it in her right hand, pressing it into the palm chakra, she immediately said it felt comforting and calming, rapidly raising her vibrations. She could feel her heart relaxing and then expanding, although her heart rate increased considerably. The stone helped her to easily expand outside herself. She had been doing intense multidimensional work in the preceding week and the stone assisted her to connect in at a multidimensional level, connecting with all life, all beings and at every level from the molecular to the cosmic. She saw it as a ‘jellyfish with tentacles’ that stuck on and then connected everything together and finally lit the whole up.
After Susannah had worked with it, the crystal felt as though it had woken up, although by the time I brought it back up to my desk, it had gone quiescent again. I asked Susannah if she felt it was natural or manmade. She said that, on seeing it, it had looked like melted glass that had been broken up. But that, when she held it, it had had the multidimensional connection reminding her of Moldavite. So she too was somewhat baffled as to its origin.
Susannah’s description reminded me of mycorrhizal fungi:
Mycorrhizal fungi are a remarkable group of organisms that have been benefiting plants for at least 500 million years. At the dawn of time when plants were just beginning to colonise our planet mycorrhizal fungi were there living in a symbiotic relationship with plants enabling them to extract nutrients and hold onto water in very difficult soil conditions.
In effect, the fungus provides a secondary root system, a system that is considerably more efficient and extensive than the plants own root system. [http://www.rootgrow.co.uk/mycorrhizal-fungi.html]
I’ve always felt that crystals work in much the same way, although operating energetically rather than physically, especially through the ‘crystal oversouls’ (Mike Eastwood’s name for the higher dimension of crystal consciousness). The crystal energetic net connects everything, at all levels of vibration and in every dimension. So I placed the crystal on the Obsidian oversoul card from his ‘New Earth Attunements’ pack to await developments.
‘The Obsidian Oversoul mandala is unusual and quite different to all the others. To me it looks like black bubbles have been scattered across the surface and yet there is a sense of complete order. Everything comes to rest where it needs to be…
‘The light of my attunement seeks to release you from ancient patches within your matrix from imprints still active, which were created in ancient times. These imprints you could understand as mis-understandings from previous lives still running your subconscious script. Through my attunements, the imprints are illuminated in order for you to examine and, if you choose, to release them.’ [Mike Eastwood]
I have always explained to myself that we experience bubbles of time, which bump up against one another. They may form a ‘chain’ of past lives or take us out into interdimensional consciousness. Such bubbles can have ‘engrams’ of toxic memory stuck within them, so Mike’s journey is an appropriate one.
Almost immediately, Susannah, who was doing some much needed garden-clearing for me, came in to say she’d uncovered a hibernating hedgehog in the wildness. A big one. So she’s hastily covered him up again to let him to emerge in his own time. The Beast from the East is making its cold presence felt very strongly again today and hedgehogs are a rare and precious animal these days so we wanted to nurture him as best we could.
You are being reminded that even if you feel that others do not understand you or “get” what you are doing – it is no excuse to curl up and hide. Sure you may need a little bit of space right now but the world needs your gifts and it’s time to start sharing them again. Be yourself, and don’t take things so personally when those around you cannot see what your intentions are or misunderstand your words. Their capacity for understanding usually comes from their own reality and where they are at themselves. [www.spirit-animals.com]
As a synchronous confirmation of the hedgehog theme, when we went out for a walk, Charlie-Skye and I found a number of wonderful Sea Foam Flints, amongst which was a distinctive baby hedgehog. A great deal of chalky coating had to be scrubbed and scoured before he was revealed though.
Herbie. If you squint slightly you can see a cute turned-up nose between the two eyes. (Terrie is putting him up for sale for someone who needs to come out of hibernation to draw on his flinty powers.)
So, is any of this relevant? Well, at this stage I don’t know. It’s like ‘proving’ a homeopathic remedy or a crystal essence. All I can do is note down whatever is going on at the time and then try to make sense of it at the end of the process. It’s certainly almost time for me to come out of hibernation and start travelling again. Susannah and I had been discussing how family secrets can be hidden for years and then suddenly become visible. It feels like this crystal could well be the same. Is bringing what has formerly been hidden to the surface one of its properties?
After Susannah left, I switched on the television to find myself in an ancient Mexican Obsidian mine. A demonstration of how the material was shaped highlighted the prototypical percussive fracture marks that arose from splitting. The surface of the large Black Obsidian blocks themselves, and the flakes, were otherwise smooth and unmarked. No bubbles visible and no crusting.
April Fool’s Day
Daily Sagittarius Horoscope, Sunday, 1 April 2018
by Oscar Cainer
What do you want? Don’t say, ‘I don’t know,’ because you do! When you think about it, you’ll know exactly what you want. What remains to be seen is whether you can admit your desires to yourself, something we all have trouble with from time to time. We become afraid to want the things we do. And yes, often we can’t make sense of the emotions underpinning our deepest aspirations, but those feelings always bubble up to the surface if we try to suppress them. Take note of whatever you’re feeling. Make peace with that. Then use that knowledge to inform your decisions.
‘Bubbling up to the surface’: does this relate to the bubbles in the crystal’s surface? Once again, highlighting ‘brings things into the light to be seen.’
At midnight, an urge to search for a possible explanation for the white crustiness takes me to the computer. Hydration makes itself known. (See Alternatives below). I have noticed that whenever I cleanse with Petaltone, which is liquid, the white coating disappears and reappears a day or two later. Hydration? The crystal taking up water and then giving it off again? Or, is the crystal in the process of ‘devitrification’?
So many questions. Enough, time for bed! Mercury is bedded down right at the I.C., the root of the chart, I could dig for ever, especially as the Ascendant is in questing, questioning Sagittarius.
Daily Sagittarius Horoscope, Tuesday, 3 April 2018
Feeling hemmed in? Limited by rules. You’re trying to make progress but the elements seem to be against you. Usually, at this point your astrologer would advise a different route. But this time, thanks to a listless sky, the guidance is to step off the route altogether. You need to clear an inner block by releasing your own pent-up energy; try going for a swim, a walk, a bike ride. Perhaps do some painting, creative cookery or even singing – anything, in fact, to take you away from your impasse. Return to it fresh.
I get out my watercolour paints, something I haven’t done since the crystal painting course awhile ago. The finished effect was more intense in colour than I had intended – difficult to photograph in the murkiness of our current weather. The white was knocked out by lighting or lack of light. I had hoped to use the granulation effect of ultramarine to simulate the crystal’s surface, but this can’t be forced. The paint has to be thicker for wet-in-wet than I was applying it. Photographing the finished painting under cellophane was interesting and may be worth playing with when there’s some sunlight – and more time. (See Painting the Crystal below.)
The whole process proved to be a great distraction from writing. I placed the finished painting under the card with the crystal on top and, coincidentally, on a canvass that has a Flower of Life grid on it waiting to be painted.
Daily Sagittarius Horoscope, Wednesday, 4 April 2018
The folks who develop digital software usually make their products ‘backward compatible’. It means that they will run on the latest computers but will also work on ones sold years ago. What’s my point? It’s simply that we sometimes need to make ideas and plans ‘backward compatible’ too. Not everyone moves forward at the same speed; new ideas can take some getting used to among friends and loved ones. Retrograde Mercury links to Mars today. Work on making your ingenious ideas appeal to others you want on your journey.
The concept of a ‘backward compatible crystal’ is a great way to describe the effect of karmic and ancestral healing crystals.
Another sidetrack as I decide to try out my favourite clingfilm method of painting, and have another go at granulation. So many ways to portray the crystal. So many ways to deal with our past and what we need to lift out or erase and what we need to highlight. (See below)
Lunchtime note to self: stop being sidetracked and start writing!
Diabetic symptoms unusually bad today.
Did a huge disconnection from the stone late last night. It felt like time to stop the ‘proving’. I was exhausted. This morning I practically bounced out of bed – I’ve never been a morning person so this was most unusual. It may be psychosomatic, it may be that the sun is finally shining brightly, but I have more energy today than I’ve had since I started the ‘proving’ process. No diabetic symptoms either. My head was buzzing with the novel during the night so I’m going to start writing again and put this blog on the backburner unless anything stands out as relevant to the crystal until Mercury goes direct and Mark posts the report.
I posted the crystal on the members’ community Facebook late at night. The response was immediate and strong with many replies to read when I woke up. Thank you all. It will go into the post on the main website later. In the meantime, if you’re a member who hasn’t read them, do go to the Facebook page – if you don’t belong yet there’s a link on the website.
Meanwhile, as far as the novel goes, I’ve just had a ‘Hallelujah’ moment and seen how I can connect the first novel to the second by using a compassionate viewpoint from the main character in the first novel, who has now undergone a complete change of life. She was going to play a peripheral but vital part, but has now taken on more of a narrator role. Getting there!
Had to completely reorganised the blog today as articulate communication had gone right out of the widow. It had become too long to follow the threads. Hopefully the new headings will help people navigate through it. Also, with perfect synchronicity, ‘happened’ to be reading Lucinda Riley’s ‘The Pearl Sister’ and came across a passage on creativity – most encouraging, see below.
Emerging themes for me
When ‘proving’ a homeopathic remedy, the themes and ‘symptoms’ that show themselves are regarded as those that the remedy will address. I noticed how I’d become more and more fatigued throughout this process of assessment while doing very little that would explain that. It suggested that the crystal could assist with M.E. I decided to put the proving on hold, disconnect from the crystal, and see what results. I will convene the crystal assessment group when everyone is in the same country.
Some of the themes that arose during the investigation of the Atlas Mountain Tears are:
Themes that were arising on the members’ community Facebook page had strong water connections. But those will be published later, they are a separate part of the evidence collecting process.
I decided to make a crystal essence as this is such a rare Obsidian – allegedly. I would trial the essence with several friends who experience chronic fatigue. If it proves useful, I will then pass it on to Jeni Powell and her guide to assess for a Crystal Balance essence. (Jeni is coming over to assess it but after I need to get this to Mark for the community mailout so her assessment will be in the report that goes out on the main website in a month or two when I have the essence reports back.)
I said allegedly Obsidian because, after being in the spring water for twenty four hours, when I took the crystal out, it felt even more gritty and it left many small pieces behind in the water It was literally falling to pieces in my hands. I have never known an Obsidian to do this in over fifty years experience. But those pieces left behind are extremely hard, glass or Quartz-like unlike the soft brittle pieces shed by Halite or Hanksite. Unfortunately I don’t have the facilities to test the crystal further as to exactly what it is.
I noted that, as soon as I handled the crystal, my head began to swim again, my energy dropped and I had to do another disconnection from it before bottling the essence, and putting away the stone with renewed protection around it.
Hard gritty bits left behind in the bowl.
After immersion. Note the loose surface bits.
Twenty two days was way too long to discover the properties of a crystal by this method! It really knocked me out. A week would be sufficient. Although as yet I am no nearer to a resolution. Is it a fake? Does it matter? For me, the jury is still out on whether this is an Obsidian or not. And I am pondering what effect placing it on the Obsidian oversoul mandala may have had.
Regardless of whether or not the crystal has been made by the hand of a human, rather than nature, it is potent. And, judging from the results coming in from the comments on the community Facebook, if it has been made by a man, he’s an alchemist whether by design or past life skills coming to the fore. But, I am aware that I posted a picture of the stone sitting on Mike Eastwood’s crystal oversoul card and that could well have been having a profound effect on the results. Will try it with the crystal assessment group without the card, or at least on those who haven’t already read the comments or the blog.
‘The true joy is in the creative process itself… It’s inside you forever.’
The Pearl Sister, Lucinda Riley.
Trialling the essence could confirm its effect. It has certainly reminded me of my creativity, of the pleasure of repurposing a knackered piece of bubblewrap to create texture and form. Of sloshing paint on – and taking it off again. The joys of involuntarianism. ‘Seeing what arises without the need to control.’ That in itself is a gift.
As Terrie Celest said on 9.1.18:
Having told me how it dissolved, I wasn’t surprised that the left side of the crystal in the photo sort of went into the distance, almost disappeared into nothingness, a weird sort of feeling I can’t quite describe, it was as if the crystal had no substance, although I was still aware of the outline, the shape. It blurred everything, which tallies in a way? It gets me in the sacral, an inward, tightening feeling, likes it’s sapping my confidence or positivity, but maybe it is showing me those within me. In which case, how does the resolution come?
She has put her finger exactly on the nub of the question, how does resolution come? It may well need another crystal to balance it. I currently have my feet on a large Flint just to enable me to reorganise the blog! But, as it’s a Sea Foam, it’s not doing that good a job so I’m off to try something else. Hmm, Preseli Bluestone is working better. It’s a piece brought back long ago from the top of the stones themselves, it seems to be retying me to the earth.
Invitation to the community
Do tune into the pictures of the crystal and post your responses on our community Facebook page. It will be fascinating to see what you pick up.
I’d like to publish our findings and the result of the crystal essence on the main website, probably when I return from the French crystal fair where I might, hopefully, discover more about this crystal’s origins.
Wow, that brought about a fast and fascinating response! 23 and counting after the first day. Such interesting comments too.
If anyone does have a definitive, authenticated picture of it coming out of the ground do please post it!
The Alternatives: Obsidian or something other:
With Fossils having said that their Moroccan dealer had no knowledge of this stone, I started looking at what other people had said. On googling to see what other people thought about its genuineness, one of the suggestions on a forum was that it was actually a Blue Halite, which is soft and water-soluble. But Halite feels altogether different to this piece. And this one doesn’t taste salty (not a recommended process but effective for identifying Halite nonetheless). The surface bloom is much softer on the Hanksite I keep by my tape recorder (Hanksite is a close relative of Halite). I’ll keep an eye on it and see if it develops further.
See Essences for the effect of immersing in water!
Hydration begins after any event which exposes a fresh surface (e.g. cracking of a lava flow on cooling, manufacture of an obsidian artifact, or glacial abrasion of an obsidian pebble). Providing one can identify which process created the exposed surface or crack in the rock, it is possible to date when that process took place. Hydration rind thickness is a (non-linear) function of time. The hydration rate is primarily a function of temperature, though chemical composition of the sample is also an important factor. For this reason, it is necessary to calibrate the samples within a limited geographical area against a sample of known age and similar chemical composition.
Hydration forms at different rates on different obsidians. Under the same conditions of temperature and humidity some glasses will hydrate rapidly while others are very slow. What controls the process? There is a very strong relationship between the rate of hydration and the quantity of intrinsic water found within the glass. This is the water trapped in the obsidian at the time the lava hardens into a natural glass. The presence of intrinsic water opens up the glass structure and allows the atmospheric water to diffuse inward from the surface to form the hydration rim. The more intrinsic water present within an obsidian artifact, the faster it will hydrate and the faster the hydration rim will form.
A certain amount of water always is present in obsidian. Very small inclusions of water vapor in the form of bubbles often are trapped in the glass. Tiny gas bubbles that have been stretched nearly flat along the flow layers in obsidian generally cause the reflectance of gold sheen and silver sheen obsidian. Some of these bubbles are visible to the naked eye. The bubbles can be seen readily with a strong magnifying glass or a microscope. Obsidian is relatively unstable from a geologic perspective. It is rare to find obsidian older than about 20 million years, which is very youthful in comparison to most continental rocks that form the Earth’s crust. Over a long period of time, obsidian gradually changes from glass to rock in a process known as “devitrification.” In this process, the silica molecules within the glass slowly rearrange into organized crystal patterns. The “snowflakes” in snowflake obsidian are quartz crystals that have formed through devitrification of the original obsidian. The crystals that develop through devitrification cause obsidian to lose its conchoidal fracture and glassy texture. http://volcano.oregonstate.edu/book/export/html/205
Tekties were another suggestion that came up.
‘Tektites are glassy mixtures of silicon dioxide, aluminum oxide and other metal oxides with an amorphous crystal structure. Unlike other Tektites from around the world which are tar black or brownish-black, translucent Moldavite is a deep forest green and is the only variety suitable for cutting and faceting as a gem.’ [Simmons, 261][Simmons/Warner, 21] (www.Crystal Vaults)
I ordered a piece the day before Mercury (the planet of communication) went retrograde – i.e. appeared to go backwards in the sky. Mercury retrograde is traditionally associated with miscommunication, misunderstandings and delays occurring with plans, technology et al. But I usually find it an excellent time for writing. The crystal arrived on the day after Mercury went retrograde. So the stone was in transit as the god of travel, went into reverse gear. Surprisingly quick service. No delays.
Mercury was in the fiery and outspoken sign of Aries, appropriate for an Obsidian. Yet the stone felt extremely watery. As it arrived, the Moon (representing the past and the emotions in the chart) had literally just moved into the watery and reticent sign of Cancer. In the arrival birthchart, that Moon is the first planet we would meet on a journey around the chart. Cancer is appropriate to the name ‘Atlas Mountain Tears.’ Fire and/or Water? Both intuitive elements, but an interesting paradox nonetheless. (One crystal site assigns it to Earth just to confuse matters further.)
Chart for the return to writing. My major character in the novel has the sun in Cancer (see below).
The chart for when I had initially sat down to write – and was interrupted when the crystal arrived – had Gemini, the sign of communication, on the Ascendant (the face presented to the world). By the time I began work on the novel, the Ascendant had moved to Cancer and the Moon was hidden in the karmic twelfth house. Appropriate as this is another timeslip novel.
‘and receive guidance on ones’ soul purpose for this lifetime.’
The chart for either time balances on the North Node of the Moon, the indicator of soul purpose, and the tip of a yod, the dagger-like ‘finger of fate’ formation that pierces the heart of the chart. The North Node was in the second house: ‘karmic gifts’, and Leo: ‘King of the Zodiac.’ The outlet point for the finger of fate was the South Node (past soul purpose) on the cusp of the house of publishing, but just leaving the house of ancestry and open secrets. I was visiting the not-so-secret but nevertheless hidden life an intensely private Victorian author and an ancient Pharaoh, amongst other things. Significant?
My main character has his Sun in secretive Cancer in the even more secretive twelfth house. Conjunct his Mercury in Gemini. He was an intensely private man with many secrets. Unemotional on the surface, but not beneath the surface. He felt things very deeply and, which is so cancerian, held onto the pain and longing all his life. Its all there for us to see, but projected onto the characters who appear in his ‘Romances’. Which makes him an extraordinarily fascinating character to write about – and very difficult to see into given that Cancer Ascendant and Neptune-in-Pisces Midheaven.
My character’s birthchart.
Astrologers among you may notice a certain similarity with the ‘Atlas Tears’ chart placements. But even non-astrologers will perceive the similar pattern. A Finger of Fate, also with the Nodes as its backbone, only this time with the North Node in Aries in the tenth house self and career as the outlet point. With the South Node – the past – in Libra, the sign of relationships, at the root of the chart. His relationship with his ‘Beloved’ most certainly was a carryover from other lives – in which he was a strong believer. Neptune is on the midheaven obscuring the truth, which he nevertheless projected out to the world through his fiction. The Moon (emotions) is in the dispassionate, emotionally disconnected sign of Aquarius conjunct Chiron, the ‘wounded healer planet’.
The end of the retrograde
I’d made a note in my diary to send Mark the blog after the retrograde had finished, marking it for GMT noon in case I had any last minute thoughts to add. It produced the perfect chart!
The end of Mercury retrograde chart
The North Node is exactly on the Leo Ascendant, time to come out and shine. To show how special you are to the waiting world. The Sun is on the Aries Midheaven, emphasising that it’s time to make an impact. The Nodes the backbone of yet another Finger of Fate, with the outlet point the South Node in humanitarian and community-mind Aquarius, which is the Descendant of the chart – the point of relationships. Chiron, the wounded healer planet, has just entered Aries, the sign of the Self. Mercury (mind), Sun (self), Moon (emotions and past) and Uranus (the great catalytic transformer) are all in Aries. All but the Sun and Uranus in the ninth house of publishing and higher learning. I shall look out for this stone at St. Marie and see if I can obtain enough for the community to assess in addition to the crystal group.
Chart for the essence in case you’re keeping track.
Here are just a few of the techniques I employed. If my Yupo (I think that’s what it’s called it’s been so long since I used it) paper hadn’t been hidden beneath a mountain of art supplies I’d have got that out and used my fingers to lift out the bubbles and then run colours side by side. Such fun. But that’s for another day when I have more time. I’ll take it on holiday with me. There’s bound to be a few stones on the beach!
Maybe a few less? Knowing when to stop is key.
An overwash could tone it down and integrate it.
Discovered modern clingfilm doesn’t work like the old-fashioned stuff used to do. Not every innovation is an improvement. Granulation was effective with thicker paint, though not reflecting the crystalline material. Adding a few bubbles helped.
Second attempt I must say I prefer this much less busy version. It gets to the essence. The shadow that fell across it as I shot it was fortuitous but I don’t think I’ll try to replicate it. Just hang it somewhere appropriate.
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