Why Are Pagans Attracted to Crystals?

Written by forestelf on .

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I have to admit that I have crystals of all shapes, colours and textures liberally scattered around the windowsills of our home. Whether they possess the power ascribed to them by certain pagans and New Age folk, however, is a matter upon which I still balance (quite precariously) on the proverbial fence. Apart from the obvious quartz and amethyst, I have no idea as to the identity of the numerous other crystals which decorate our house. Whatever their supposed powers be, I certainly feel they bring an ethereal quality I enjoy to the house.

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Given that I am not a true devotee to crystal healing/therapy etc. the question arises as to why I have collected so many crystals over the years. I don't think I have ever visited Glastonbury (and I frequent that place more times than I care to mention here) without popping into at least one of its numerous crystal shops and purchasing a shiny rock to add to my collection. What, exactly, is the drawer that crystals hold over people like myself?

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Whilst reading Aldous Huxley's essay 'Heaven and Hell' recently, I discovered a very interesting theory that addresses this question. Here, Huxley writes of the spectacularly colourful parallel realms visited by shamans during their trance journeys to the Underworld. These spiritual landscapes are invariably described as dripping with jewels and filled with translucent colours of the most vivid intensity. Huxley then goes on to question whether  these worlds are known to us subconsciously and that seeing crystals in the everyday physical world reminds us of the spiritual realms ordinarily denied to our senses.

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It is an interesting theory, and one which I personally adhere to. But, wherever the cause for our natural fondness for crystals lie, be they symbols/reminders of higher, spiritual realms that exist around us or that each crystal holds its own unique 'supernatural' power which can be harnessed for individual gain or well-being, they certainly remind us that our world trully is an extraordinary and magical place. And for that, crystals will forever hold a place in pagan's hearts.

Comments   

+2 # nidian 2010-08-09 15:13
Like you I love crystals in their natural state. Their shape colour variety and mode of growth fascinate me. To me, seeing beauty in crystals is partly sensory, partly emotional and partly intellectual. It amazes me how such orderly arrangements of molecules can appear from the chaos of a melt or from solution or from air. I am thinking of the simple tetrahedron of native diamond to the complexity of snow crystals. Here is an excellent link with pictures and explananations:
http://www.its.caltech.edu/~atomic/snowcrystals/
I have fond memories, as a child, growing crystals of salt and copper sulphate and seeing intertwining hypo crystals colourfully growing before my eyes under a polarising microscope.

As can be seen under a microscope, many powders consist of small crystals. Also sand is usually made up of small quartz crystals. I do hope that each crystal does not have a personality, as claimed by some new-agers, because we make cement with sand or melt it into amorphous glass. My same thoughts extend to sugar crystals or melting snow crystals.

I like your reference to Huxley’s ‘Heaven and Hell’ where he refers to our ‘other realms’. It’s a lovely idea that our appreciation of beauty in our mundane world arises as we link the experience to our internal world which can be more vivid and exciting. I actually think a good ritual can sometimes achieve the same link.

Nidian
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