Ancestors Day – the First/Last/Next Wave

the-last-wave-movie-poster-crop-1977Last night (on the eve of Fathers’ Day, which coincidentally – has been a washout – with pouring rain), I finished watching a movie (with my son) called “the Last Wave” – directed by Peter Weir – featuring Richard Chamberlain, David Gulpilil, and Nandjiwarra Amagula (an actual Tribal leader who was brought in to act, but he also had a say in certain scenes and dialog in the film).

It’s reviewed with actual interview quotes from the director himself, here (on FlickeringMyth.com, author Trevor Hogg). There’s also a more recent “The Last Wave Rewatched – Mysticism, Prophesy, and the End of Times” blog entry by The Guardian’s Luke Buckmaster (2014). And I’m sure some good things were written “back in the day,” when the film came out – in 1977 overseas, and 1979 in the U.S. – I saw it myself, in the ’80’s (more than 30 years ago).

Most of what you’ll find on the web about this film – understandably – will include a synopsis of the film’s plot. So I won’t dwell on that. Plus, I hope you’ll see it yourself – no spoiler alert – but I will touch on some details of the narrative.

Last Wave dinnerWhat I’m “doing” here, is a different exploration (it’s not a movie review). The particulars of the deluvian story are less significant to me than the underlying reality of “the dreamtime” – a conception of the Australian aborigines – which is common to all “original” cultures: that the “realities” of our waking, conscious experience are impacted by, and occur in the context of a vast, shadowy, watery, surreal, indeed metaphysical reality (that is – if you can believe it – “more real” than “reality”).

During an angry outburst at his pastor stepfather, David Burton (Chamberlain’s character) accuses the pastor of explaining away the unexplainable, dismissing this enormously significant phenomenon or context (as the popular versions, or most visible proponents of many mainstream religions tend to)…sweeping The Great Mysteries under the carpet…dumbing down The Great Truths into more easily consumed tidbits (for the masses).

Playing to the most (or least) common denominator is the way of even the most ancient of civilizations – because we have a society to maintain (after all) – but the outlyers, the visionaries, often the artists, mystics of a community, tend to carry the burden of esoteric knowledge…as does Burton (increasingly)…over the course of this movie.

There is talk of how “Westerners” (ie. white Europeans on whichever continent) have lost touch with their dreams, and are limited to a more rigid, tangible perception of reality – as evidenced by the opening arguments of the Prosecution – and represented as well by the lawyer who’s spent more time working with aboriginal peoples (than Burton).

Apparently, the area of study “Metaphysics” once included efforts to understand patterns and meaning – not only in the Spiritual world, but also in the physical world – till it was increasingly banished to the fringe…once “proper” Science (with it’s exclusive focus on the results of reproducible experimentation) came of age, a mere few hundred years ago.

hominid_graph

 

Our history spans far longer – with our own human lineage dating back 3-5 million years – and the first apes (leading to “us”) leaving the forest about 10 million years before that.

 

 

modern_human_family_treeModern humans (Homo Sapiens Sapiens) only took current form – originally alongside the larger brain-capacity Neanderthals (with whom I have an intrinsic affinity) – 100,000 years ago.

human routes

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Taking a 25 year (low-end) average life expectancy, or generational period, that’s 4,000 generations we’ve been through – just as we are now – leading up to the present…with a handful of generations going back to Slavery…and even less since the advent of electricity, lighting, universal plumbing, cars (never mind computers)!

This modern world (and mentality) – which we consider the benchmark of “what is” – is really a thin veneer on a much deeper reality of the entire human (and pre-human) experience. Imagine all the dreams of every being, over the course of all time! Older civilizations (including small bands of isolated peoples) were/are in awe of this history, and appreciated the miracle of their having been brought forth – through the ages – by “the ancestors.”

A continuity of Natural Law – synthesized into Tribal Law – ruled long before there were secular courts…and it was meant to be respected and not broken…which in the case of the guy who dies early on in the movie, results in the meting out the maximum penalty of punishment. Interestingly, this is forgivable – even in Australian Law – if it can be demonstrated that the defendants are Tribal (and not merely “city” people). There is (oddly) a respect for at least one lingering aspect of the “first people’s” custom.

At one point, the more seasoned lawyer – in aboriginal matters – chides Burton for his patronizing, high brow (he was actually a tax and corporate lawyer up until then) idealization of the situation, scoffing at the idea that any Tribal people had indeed survived in the heart of Sydney (which of course, it had). Even the most profound understanding can exist in the least likely milieu.

This unlikely candidate to defend the accused murderers (Burton), is also enmeshed in their Dreamtime mythology – an actual “Mulkurul” incarnate – who in the end, finds a death/life mask of himself among the relics of an ancient, lighter complected race that came from the East (the Maya?) and were somehow involved in the foretelling, or even the bringing on of cyclical, cataclysmic tsunamis (great floods).

It’s a bit of a clunky jumble of cultures – but hey – isn’t that what our “melting pot” is all about? And it’s certainly a romp through the ages – where past, future, and present meld seamlessly – but what better blend could a New Age hipster hope for?

Now I don’t want to fall into romanticizing original cultures – as wonderful as they are – there are downsides all around (and I don’t pretend to believe that living 20,000 years ago was a walk in the park).

Likewise – though I see the paramount importance of recognizing a Natural Law whose violation is resulting in our own progressively harsh Judgement today, through climate change – I take issue with people projecting their own idiosyncratic, subjective comprehension of The Law with their own fabricated law (and imagining that it’s the ONLY law).

Herein lies the Trojan Horse of inter-religious animosity, and the subjugation of the individual to unquestioning adherence to some (often selective perspective on) whatever they’ve embraced as “The Law.”

We are all entitled to our own experience of The Golden Rule – both fortunately and unfortunately (because people often choose a self-serving interpretation of it) – and as serious as we take it (thinking of it as universally applicable), we still must recognize that our fellow co-habitants of the planet may have equal or opposite views (which they feel as self-righteous about).

Time and Nature will wash us all away, but that doesn’t make our existence – or the beliefs we hold – insignificant. As the Aboriginal (Native American…whichever longer standing culture you want to substitute into this sentence) – their ways and knowledge continue to have worth – so too does the mighty thread of Western “Civilization.”

It’s important to remember that before the Romans, and later, the Roman Catholic Church (note the continuity there) took over Europe, there were myriad languages and Pagan cultures thriving independently (hello: Stonehenge!).

Last Wave Chris n Rock

being a Crystal guy – I of course appreciate this passing of the sacred stone – emblematic on so many levels

As the movie shows, it’s false to consider even a straight laced English lawyer to be immune from having a tribal clan in his past (or present!). The Aboriginals know and accept this. Reality – particularly the Dreamtime – supersedes the superficial, and weaves together disparate elements into an impossibly rich and magnificent fabric of “true and complete” Reality…too complex for most people to grasp…and too wild for even the few to harness, completely.

I’d like to think Shamans, Healers, even Doctors, Lawyers, Teachers, and Garbage Men (indeed Mothers, Fathers, and Children of all stripes) – we all have the capacity to comprehend (or at least access) – the Great Mysteries…and each of us – in our own ways – have adapted to and “tamed” them to some degree, to serve our own purposes (and ideally, the betterment of others).

In closing – I’d like to thank the community that made “The Last Wave” possible – and gratefully pass it along, like Life itself, to the next generation…to love and to fear…to struggle with, and to try to make sense of (in whichever, small way).

Kyle w light beam

 

About the Author: Kyle Russell has been working with Crystals for 30 years, and considering Matters of Spirit for far longer (including other lifetimes). He mostly write about Crystals from the perspective of his modality Crystal Concentrics, which he teaches and uses through Meditations, Classes, Writing, Social Media, and via Individual Sessions. Russell also buys and sells Gems & Minerals through his http://www.PowerStoneCrystals.com site and at metaphysical Expos. You can reach him easily at Kyle@CrystalConcentrics.com.

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the Big Apple: juicy (and sometimes rotten)…something for everyone!

PART ONE – SETTING THE SCENE

When I was new to Boston (nearly 30 years ago), I wanted a Massachusetts Avenue address – and then a “foot” in the Back Bay. All towns have their “it locations” – and I’ve lived and worked (specifically had shops) in a few: Harvard Square & Newbury Street, to be specific.

big city in lights

big city in lights (from last time in NY)

Now in a region – or country – there are also “it locations,” where “everything” seems to happen…and New York City is one of them…not just for New England, but for the U.S. (and the world as a whole, for that matter). So whenever I go to “The City” (and I’ve been many times), I brace myself for the best and the worst life has to offer. Nothing can prepare you for what really happens.

One thing I’m always reminded about is how well dressed (and clean) people stand out from the otherwise squalid environment of urban gloom and grime-covered pavements. It’s like everyone is living on an old movie set that was abandoned by the folks who’d built it, years ago. Of course, there’s new construction and opulence, but the primary feel is one of human overgrowth and decay, kept vital by new blood and throngs of people (from all walks).

Empire State, from the subway

emerging from the subway, into the skyline…the Empire State building

Into that “milieu” – and during a dreary, snowy day – I arrived, by bus this time, because I wanted a change from the mammoth undertaking of transporting a whole Expo display, loading in, setting up, interfacing with a relentless flow of onlookers, and later breaking down…only to make the long drive home (in the middle of the night).

I wanted to travel light, so everything had to fit into a backpack and a miniature-sized, rolling suitcase. This time I’d be doing “Crystal Readings & Wellness Sessions,” which is how I’d billed my Healer offerings for the Awaken Fair (their 2nd time in New York, and my first, with them).

I’ve worked with a lot on individuals – for 60-90 minute minimums – but here I’d be doing 15-30 minute sessions. It’s like “speed dating” for the New Age. But I surprised myself – adapted really well to the format – and I actually like it. You really can make a difference in someone’s life in just a quarter of an hour…by transporting them inward, and forward…and lending them some concrete (or stone, in this case) tools that serve to push their process forward.

Awaken Fair Healers

poster of Awaken Fair Healers

I wasn’t selling anything (but my services) – and because I was being nomadic – I needed to bring the best, but the smallest, of all the key stone varieties I have. On retrospect, I could probably have made due with fewer stones – but I wanted the full gamut, to have all my options open – plus, it filled the table nicely.

I’ve collected a good number of emails from my last to forays to New York – and a smattering of Facebook and other, longer term contacts – so I reached out…saying “I’m coming”…and encouraging folks to pre-book.

I even contacted a fellow Crystal worker [Kufunya Ife!], and asked if she could find me a “gig” [we knew each other in the music business] – and she did(!) – with a shop on 14th Street (Aum Namaste). The owner there was impressed with my credentials & web presence, and booked me for a few hours that Saturday (before the main event, which I’d originally come for, on Sunday). It turns out that I ended up working with a comparable number of people (say, a half dozen each) – both days – including some work on other practitioners (which is always a treat).

Aum Namaste

Aum Namaste shop

I won’t get into the particulars – or my technique – I think I lay that out pretty well on my Services page (on this site)…check that out for some more background…or shoot me any questions you may have [I like that, at CrystalConcentrics@gmail.com].

PART TWO: THE SHOPPING

What’s a trip to New York without some shopping!

Before I got lucky with that Saturday booking – and knowing there was no way I could bus down there first thing on Sunday (I would have had to have left by 4am!)  – I decided to make the journey early on Saturday (at the more civilized hour of 9am), so I could “have a look around” during the day.

I secured a place to stay with some friends – we’ve been meaning to connect for awhile – so thank you Arthur and Lisa…we had some great quality time that night, and first thing Sunday morning.

Rock Star Gems

replete with product (and possibly colored Citrine)

But there were some places – looming legends – I had to check out. I’d heard customers make mention of them, and had to see for them for myself, to learn what the excitement was all about.

So I walked from 31st St. to 28 St., to Rockstar Crystals – or actually, I walked by it – ’cause there was no store front! I realized they were upstairs, and walked by the door guy (who greeted me, asking where I was headed), and took the elevator up (one floor). Tremendous splendors awaited me behind the bolted, buzzer’d door.

It’s only one room, and not a very big one at that. I introduced myself immediately to the “boss on duty” (she had a younger woman assistant, too) – taking out my card – and inquiring as to whether they do wholesale. “No,” she was curt, didn’t even take my card. “Well you just blew that” I said to myself, vowing to look, but refusing to buy.

Rock Star shelves

shelves and shelves of product

It shouldn’t be that hard to be nice to people – but in New York, everyone’s bracing for offence – and studiously unimpressed with whomever you are. So I proceeded to look around, rebuffing her handing me a tray (since I wasn’t going to purchase anyway). We later, connected, on some level…but it seemed like “the damage had been done.”

The prices wowed me – many of them higher than mine – and as I often experience among others’ retail wares, I found myself wondering “why should this be so much, and that so relatively less?”

I have a strong, internal logic in my own pricing. If a tag’s high, there’s got to be a good reason. And I can explain it. But then again, I’m not “just an employee” – I’ve been the one selecting every one of my pieces – and I’ve also been around this stuff for 28 years!

Most people price merely as an equation of what they paid, using a standard percentage markup. I think that lacks imagination (but maybe makes up for it in practicality). Being into the metaphysics of what I’m selling, it’s not as simple as that. Crystals aren’t just a commodity, an object to be “moved,” like tennis shoes, or a jar of beans.

Apatite heart

gemmy Apatite heart

“How harmonious is the shape, color, texture – does it stand – are there others out there like it? Can I replace it easily?” These are the types of questions I ask myself. “Would I be willing to part with this for less?”

Anyhow, and conversely – “could I sell this if I bought it for this much?” – the shoe was on the other foot. I had to wonder if the prices I was looking at could work for my customers. Still, I often buy retail (yes, with sales tax!).

If a stone is awesome enough – even if it’s expensive, I’ll buy it anyway – I’m “omnivorous” like that. I consider myself an archive of Power Stones – collecting the best I can find for my classes and private work – it’s an added value to my Inner Circle.

Which doesn’t mean I don’t have exceptional stones for sale too – I certainly do – ’cause I “know” (that inner knowing), that not everything is meant for me. I have to be a conduit – not just a repository – for awesomeness. To that end, I have a new webinar series I’m starting, it’s called “Why it’s Awesome!” But I digress.

Rhodochrosite display

huge Rhodochrosite display

Rock Star is completely and utterly replete with inventory – rolling drawers, bins and trays – even acrylic cases bolted to the ubiquitous metal shelving units. I’m just now forgettings something heavy I’d wanted to get (chunks of blue Quartz). I was totally wowed by the sheer volume of Rhodochrosite – more in one place than I’d ever seen – but no “must have” pieces. I could go on, but you get the idea.

Still, I did manage to overcome my resistance to spending, and put together a modest collection (augmented by New York’s healthy, nearly 9% sales tax). A deep, semi-gemmy Apatite heart, and a perfect pigeon-blood Ruby crystal (ideal on the 3rd eye) came home with me (along with a few other items). I do shop with certain customers in mind, bringing their interests with me on these capers.

Astro Gallery

walking up to the Astro Gallery

Then I walked uptown – a good little distance (the city blocks aren’t short) – to 5th Avenue, where the upscale Astro Gallery of Gems has been since 1961. What a breath of fresh air, relative to the ubiquitous $1 pebble bins of most vendors’ crystal displays!  It’s great to see people valuing their showcasing opportunity (and their specimens) so highly. Yes – not all crystals cost nothing, and yes – many of them are worth more than cars.

Bolivian giant Amethyst cluster

Bolivian giant Amethyst cluster (25K)

They’ve got everything from a Lapis table top at 20K to a good selection of high end jewelry. Some of the staff knows more than others, but that’s true anywhere. And they were all nice – polite – and professional (even friendly, imagine that!).

We got into some intrigue around the pricing of a Sugilite – there was a mixup in cost calculation, and the weight was not measured correctly, at first  – but the boss on duty made good (to the best of his ability), and we had some vigorous banter about the behind-the-glass museum pieces (of which there were many!).

I ended up getting a bigger batch than I had at the other place – niceness pays off – and have had them mail it to me. They even gave me subway directions and ran after me, after they’d forgotten to give me my credit card. It felt good to be well received. A bit of good will goes a long way – from customer to seller – and vice versa.

museum quality pieces

museum quality pieces

A new acquaintance can grow into a trusted contact, when it becomes clear that everyone knows what’s going on, and you’re willing to meet them halfway.

TROUBLE AHEAD – LEARNING OPPORTUNITY

I was originally going to share only this last segment, as the full (and only) content of my blog. It was going to be called “Wish I could help (what to do when you can do no right)!”
I’d had such a wonderful weekend in New York – two days of readings – first at a shop, and then at a wellness fair. Great neighbors, beautiful clients, right up ’til the end. That’s when I bit into a bad apple – if it’s fair to say that – and got schooled.
Sometimes your hardest experiences have the most to teach you.
my Crystal Session table

my Crystal Session table

It was going nicely, at first. She stopped by my table and asked what I did – then she went and booked a half hour session – saying that she’d liked my honesty, and was really disappointed by the reading(s) she’d gotten from others (even there).

I did tell her (in advance) that what I do is to inquire as to where she’s at, and that we’d use the crystals to move her along in the desired, positive direction. She liked the idea of holding the crystals. Seemed like a pretty straightforward session coming up.
I can’t give you particulars (without breaching client confidentiality) – it was interesting (her story), but it doesn’t really matter here and now – so we proceeded into the first of several meditations I had planned. I asked her to close her eyes – she opened them immediately – I inquired as to why. She said it was due to her bag, coat, and whatnot…what with all these strangers…which was an understandable concern. So I offered to secure the bag to her chair.
Celestite heart

Celestite heart and cluster

It wasn’t that, it turns out. But things were moving quickly. We’d been talking for coming up on 10 minutes, and I encouraged her again, to close her eyes. She was getting antsy, asking me when I was going to “do something.”

I wasn’t sure what she meant – maybe she thought, as a magician – that I’d make some big revelation, or cause a breakthrough by osmosis. That’s not how I work. I invite people into a shared, sacred space – and together we find things out – together. I don’t work on people – though I can (as with the dead or inert) – I prefer to work with them.
So I pushed the issue a little bit – saying it was key to letting go of the current reality, and making room for new potentialities – that she close her eyes. Maybe it was the “if I can give you even 2 seconds of trust, this whole session will have been worth it” that turned her off.
She snapped, and stormed away, coming back hurriedly to scratch her name off my emailing list.
Smoky oval...beautiful color and energy

Smoky oval – the forgiveness stone – beautiful color and energy

Woah – I felt bad – like I didn’t give her what she’d come for. I’m still scratching my head, wondering what that might have been (that I could have done, to meet her expectation). Doing sessions with certain folks can be like a game that’s rigged – they want something, they don’t tell you want it is, and when you don’t deliver – they get upset.

There’s no pleasing some people. But I still have a lesson to learn.
What if someone can’t close their eyes? They’re that vigilant that they can’t let down their guard for two seconds (never mind one)! I should be able to adapt – not be stuck on my own eight track recording – that being able to “go in” (as I conceive it) is a prerequisite for “doing the work.”
Maybe there’s another way. I should research, ask around. Try something new, for times like this.
milky quartz - nurturance - compassion

milky quartz – nurturance – compassion

But that works for everyone else! I’d never come across this level of resistance before. I’m realizing how compliant most people are with an exercise designed to soothe and relax them. It’s like: most of us know what’s good for us, we just need an opportunity to listen, to take it in…receive.

The whole thing was triggering too – ’cause I’m a child of an alcoholic – so (back then) there was a perpetual guessing game as to what her motivations, needs, and desires were (my mom). I gave up early (trying to figure it out). It’s hard enough – as a child (and an adult!) – to get in touch with what you’re really feeling about something.
It’s devastating when you have to prioritize where someone else is coming from before you’ve even had a chance to identify where you, yourself, are coming from. We are not mind readers – maybe that’s why I never became a psychic – I try to deal with what’s presented, and to dig a little bit, but gently. As a stone guy, I like to deal with the tangible, as much as I’m into Metaphysics.
Labradorite - imagination stone

Labradorite – imagination stone

I do see a continuity between the manifest and the unmanifest. And I’m happy to traverse the veil to explore – what’s inside vs. outside, past vs. future, real vs. imagined – these are all fair game. But when there’s an inner storm raging so fiercely that I can’t get in – or won’t be let in – all bets are off.

Folks like that will do what they do. They need a different type of professional. I mean, if someone comes to me with a broken arm – I can’t tell them to will it back together – I’ll shew them off quickly to the ER.
Still, I can’t help but to replay (now, as then): “Was I not sensitive enough to her cues? How else could I have approached her? What did I do wrong to provoke her outburst? Maybe we can rewind, and try this whole thing over again, only doing it ‘right’ this time?”
How many times had I said that same thing, as a child. I looked at her email address (this failed client) – still legible through the scribbles – and let it go. She didn’t want me getting through then – it’s best that I not trouble trouble by trying to get in touch with her now – let it be.
another session - feeling it

another session – feeling it

You can’t fix everyone – not everyone wants to be “fixed” – maybe there’s something about the way they are right now, that’s working for them. What I have to offer is not for everyone. I and those who need me are best served by not chasing down those who dislike or don’t connect with me – even if they had at first – ’cause people change their minds.

I just noticed an “Unsubscribe” from my newsletter – someone who’d registered for not one – but two of my free webinars! I’d spent two hours presenting, baring my soul to them -albeit anonymously – and I no longer deserved to have their email address.
I’ve had people attend my events, and later tell me that’s not what they’re looking for. Like many avid entrepreneurs I know, I am passionate about serving those who want me to serve them, and we simply can’t get caught up in everybody else’s drama.
Fenster, or Skeletal Quartz, is emblematic of "sickness in health" - where the interior has been compromised - but the shell and structure remain quite solid, if perforated

Fenster, or Skeletal Quartz, is emblematic of “sickness in health” – where the interior has been compromised – but the shell and structure remain quite solid, if perforated

Still, I take this all with a grain of salt, and as a learning opportunity. You have to take the “bad” with the good – just like a visit to the big City – absorb what enriches, nourishes, and improves you. So I am grateful, not just to my progressively moving clients (and the helpful staff at the shops I visited), but to everyone and everything else…you are all welcome in my world.

Like they say “if it doesn’t kill you, it makes you stronger.” Or if you believe in Reincarnation, what kills you might actually make you stronger, or better for the lesson it taught you…in the next life. Since we have no tangible guarantees of an afterlife, it behooves us to take our schooling seriously, and use it to improve our game here and now…while we’re still on the court.
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About the Author: Kyle Russell has been working with Crystals since they were “revealed” to him, back in the Harmonic Convergence of 1987. He’s built on his now intrinsic knowledge – through experience – working with clients and buying & selling ever since. In addition to this Blog, he issues periodic newsletters, leads Meditations & Workshops, and presents at metaphysical Expos. To reach him, and get his updates, please email Kyle@CrystalConcentrics.com.

Anatomy of a Meditation, what is Real? The Power of Metaphor (from Microcosm to Macrocosm)

This blog came out of a desire to capture a recent group Meditation – for reference – and as an enticement for folks considering coming out to one. I wanted to flesh out the event topic “New Beginnings: Clearing, and Opening” – and I do that – but not without delving into a plethora of other relevant topics: the Concrete vs. the Ephemeral; the Medical vs. Metaphysical Model; having a mission vs. playing it by ear (Improvisation); and so much more…

[a note about quotes: single quotes denote a concept, double quotes identify something actually said]

the mysterious ilvaite - with curvy, bowing terminations - representing a more proactive energy than black Tourmaline

the mysterious ilvaite – with curvy, bowing terminations – representing a more proactive energy than black Tourmaline

Anatomy of a Meditation, what is Real? The Power of Metaphor (from Microcosm to Macrocosm)

I usually don’t preplan (‘to the T’) my in-person Meditation events. I generate the concept for it about a month out, looking ahead at the calendar – inspired by the seasons – foraging for whatever ideas feel relevant to explore in the moment.

I recall whatever else might have been taught recently – what prospective attendees may be interested in – and in any case, try to push our studies to the next level. My own learning is included, as important, because I don’t know everything (surprise, surprise).

As it gets closer, I start to pick out the appropriate stones, and begin formulating the progression of the usually 3 Meditations-within-the-Meditation that I do. By taking different ‘side roads’ during the course of our main journey, a broader level of awareness is reached. More ground is covered (and that’s a good thing!). A single Meditation, with long silences, is not my style (though it certainly has its place).

As the main concept for each segment comes into focus, I make sure to leave the event open for intuitive ‘light bulbs,’ or last minute, in-the-moment inspirations about whatever else I might dream up, on the fly.

Rocks in a Box - personal pieces - selected for a specific event.

Rocks in a Box – personal pieces – selected for a specific event.

By taking this approach, I’m not being flighty or flaky – winging it – I’m just being aware of the need not to be rigid. I think it’s important to go into a situation with a clear mission, and to welcome opportunities for expansion and evolution as they present themselves along the way.

For example, I have to be open to new stones I can bring in (even as the event is unfolding). That’s why I keep my For Sale & Personal Session pieces close by. I won’t think twice about leaving out stones I’d had originally picked for the occasion, even if it means they’re sitting it out sadly ‘in the box.’

Occasionally, I’m lucky enough to have an attendee take a bird’s eye view of what’s going on, and report in real time what’s happening – as it’s happening – from their own ‘objective’ viewpoint. Most recently, I was praised as a “master of metaphor,” which felt great (and seemed appropriate, given my whole approach – which is becoming clearer – even as I write this). Indeed her statement can fairly be said to have been a prime impetus for this whole Blog post.

Symbols stir up our subconscious, delivering experiences we would otherwise ignore, not notice, and be unaware of. It’s my job to ‘go there,’ for the sake of the community. As in any field – the full time practitioner should be relied upon to pioneer at the cutting edge – identifying new and different stones (in my case), and ascertaining how best to use them. When you buy a stone from me, or pay in to attend an event, you’re contributing in your own way to that much larger responsibility I’m bearing.

I most definitely use stones as both metaphor and actual representatives for all kinds of key (and essential) energetic nuances. We stimulate the imagination with Crystals & Metaphor – make use of what’s there, inside of us – and create new associations. It’s kind of exciting…like a song being written as it’s performed!

A small Meditation gathering (I'm the one guy).

some of those in attendance at a Meditational gathering (I’m the one guy)

I hope you can see that in describing how I go about ‘building’ an event, that my most recent Meditation topic “New Beginnings: Clearing & Opening” is being addressed (albeit circuitously). As some say: “how you do anything is how you do everything.” And yet – how it feels live – during an in-person event of mine – is totally different from how I present a webinar, or write my Blogs. That’s the beauty of working with me in a few different capacities. Each medium has its unique offerings, appeal, and gift.

In writing, I’m much more self-conscious, I’m not channeling – or ‘streaming’ – as I do in other situations. I revisit my words many times – blogs can take weeks to complete – I’m ever fine-tuning and developing them. I’m up to 15 revisions here, and counting…

So my blogs are more for the readers amongst you, perhaps even ‘the intellectual.’ And yet I’m not much of a reader myself. I do lots of editing beyond this, but the real challenge is getting it all out. For whatever reason, I have a lot to say – to share – and feel like in doing so, some pretty substantial light is being shed on this field of Crystal Healing.

Once I press Publish, though, I’m confident that my writing covers the ground needed (and I imagine it being a chapter in some future book). So I apologize if these tomes seem long – some have suggested I write shorter pieces more often – but it takes awhile for these statements to percolate. If folks want pithier expressions, they can check out my Twitter and Facebook pages (that’s what they’re for).

I’m certainly not as left brained as I sometimes think I am. I’m not, after all, a statistician or accountant. I infuse my efforts with an artistic sensibility. Intention and focus are are definitely hosting my events – but inspiration, flexibility, and adaptability crash the party every time – that’s what makes it fun & interesting!

Amber - by its lighter density - automatically creates a magnetism, or pull, from the more dense, to the less dense.

Amber – by its lighter density – automatically creates a magnetism, or pull, from the more dense, to the less dense.

So we’ve ‘established’ that working with Crystals is all about Metaphor. And Language as well, by extension [don’t get me started, that’s a whole other blog topic in itself]. They each represent something about our Consciousness (The Ethers) and Physicality (being themselves, quite tangible). This enables us to use and experience Crystals in ways that illustrate, bring out, and underscore our own important ‘inner workings’ – which ultimately manifest in in ‘the real world’ – and vice versa! This takes on a very personal and uniquely individual dynamic for each of us.

In different words, what I’m saying is that Crystals “are the thing” (meaning, they embody or contain within them certain energies, intrinsically) – but they are also “about the thing” (ie. representing of a concept, or vibration).

Rose Quartz - represents and emanates -Unconditional Love.

Rose Quartz – represents and emanates – Unconditional Love.

 

 

 

Take for example Rose Quartz. It’s said (by me) to bear the essence of Unconditional Love. I just noticed someone else saying that on Pinterest (“Love” I’ve heard before, but not my wording: “Unconditional Love,” until now). I’m glad to say that it feels like my framework for understanding Crystals is getting out there (little by little).

But can that possibly true? Can a rock be all that? I argue (elsewhere) that the Crystal Lore has gone overboard with making impossible (or excessive) associations. And yet, I’m all in favor of making leaps of faith. I believe that once you make an association (between object and and outcome, or meaning) – and it resonates for you, then YES – a rock can be all that. The keys are resonance – complementarity – a sort of call and response between you and the Crystals.

The sign of the swastika has come to carry and mean a whole lot more than a few lines scrawled on a wall (every picnic table at a campground I went to this Summer, had them carved in centrally). In its case, hatefulness overshadows its original import, as a mystical symbol from India.

Oppositely, “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.” When you love someone, you can easily disregard their foibles…the warm glow of your rose tinted glasses gives the object of your desire an elevated standing…in almost everything they do.

My point? That ‘objective reality’ is often neither. And people who claim it’s all there is are deluding themselves.

Entire societies function on a vast web of presuppositions and assumptions that shape our every move. What makes some consider Terrorism a perfectly logical course of action tells you something about their surrounding ethos, and circumstance. Likewise, the confluence of beliefs and prejudices prevailing in 2003 led the U.S. to invade Iraq under completely false pretenses.

Going further back – slavery was once considered an indispensable part of the economy – just as energy waste and global warming are considered acceptable side effects of modern life. It didn’t have to be that way, it doesn’t have to be this way. Our spiritual practice should enable us to increasingly think outside the box…how it could and should be, are items seriously worth considering…on the regular!

It is white, is it beige - is the pattern natural or real - what is the play of light here (on this Zebra Jasper)...

It is white, is it beige – is the pattern natural or real – what is the play of light here (on this Zebra Jasper)…

Who’s right and who’s wrong – that’s not for me to say in this context – but I bring up these points to illustrate how powerful and significant ideation (ideology), accepted world views, and yes: Imagination can be.

Ultimately, you believe in what you believe in – and that carries all the weight it needs to – to ‘get the job done.’ It’s what can lead us to start wars, stay in a marriage, keep going in to work every day – even hate – or love ourselves. It can hold such sway in superstitious societies -that a hex can kill you – if you let it (or believe it will).

We live in a world defined in large part by mental constructs. Let me say this again: there is no ‘objective’ reality to be had. Perhaps ‘things’ – material objects – all that we can point to as being real, are truly real? But how much more important is what they mean to us! A flag, a rock, a bus stop – each is not merely an object to us – each immediately initiates a cascade of associations. Meaning is everything.

The relationship between things and concepts is much much more fluid (both loose and close) in our world than we give it credit for. There’s so much more gray than black and white. I say this over and over again – especially to people who look to me for a quick health fix – as they say on Facebook, about relationships – “it’s complicated!”

Disease doesn’t just pop up out of a box. You can’t just stuff it all back in – or get rid of it like that. One thing Modern Medicine has done, is to give people that illusion…that they can be “fixed” – like cars. And one of the greatest pieces of misinformation about Crystals, is that they can “do this” and “do that,” performing similar, instant cures.

the unusual red (and power) of a flare / Diamantina laser

the unusual red (and power) of a flare / Diamantina laser

Crystals are not our minions, doing our bidding, like slaves. That gives them no credit or dignity, and gives the challenges facing us zero standing, in their own right. Fixing a human being is a lot more sophisticated, and ought to be handled on multiple levels, that no quick fix can ever hope to deliver. You can’t simply change out a light bulb and make everything okay.

How is it that Religions can so easily buy people’s loyalty by relaying miracles? Are we such simpletons? Would it not be better to preach the old adage: “pray, but move your feet.” Yes to the magic of inspiration, and Yes ALSO to the power of action!

Returning to my color metaphor, look even at the shades of Red. You can say “that’s red” – and on the surface of it – we’ll know what you mean. But the Artist in you knows how many variations (or shades) there really are on the theme. There’s a pale, almost pink tone; dark burgundy, like a wine; fire engine red…the list goes on. Likewise, there are gradations – quantitative (not just qualitative) delineations – between The Real and The Imagined.

A Fantasy can turn into a motion picture, from which are created memories. Images and Messages (‘the moral of the story’) can change lives, both during – and beyond – the experience of watching a film. Everything partakes of (and contributes to) Reality – from the dryest of rational views – to the wildest drug-induced hallucinations.

Indeed the most brilliant scientists will tell you that the more they learn, the more they realize they don’t know. Each perspective has meaning and value, regardless of how ‘tangible’ it is. And when we die, everything disappears (even though many of us think of the Soul as living on).

This is why I laugh when I hear the notion that Energy Medicine is irrelevant, and that ‘Traditional’ Medicine is all that matters. Never mind the fact that (by true definition) ‘Traditional Medicine’ – which would be ‘that which precedes Modern Medicine’ – was often about the energetics of a person’s condition. Herbalism, Acupuncture, Chinese Medicine – all these are truly traditional medicines – that take this approach (thinking about our functioning holistically), and they’re all still in use today (as they were a thousand years ago).

Basalt - one of the more ancient of stones - here shattered and polished by the wind and  sand over eons, to make a ventifact that is powerful in clearing and excising.

Basalt – one of the more ancient of stones – here shattered and polished by the wind and sand over eons, to make a ventifact that is powerful in clearing and excising.

What I’m saying is that the opposition between Allopathic and Metaphysical medicine is something I think of as made up – it’s artificial, imposed – and not helpful. Though I suppose, for folks those whose imagination is limited, it works out just fine – to see just one way to legitimately help folks.

“Only a doctor can cure you!” they say. “Yeah, yeah” I say. How many ailments leave doctors befuddled!?

At the same time, it cuts both ways – Alternative Health nuts can fail to see the very real benefits of going to the doctor – and that doing so certainly has merit.

For example, I know someone (who knows someone) who’s dying from Cancer. The patient refused to work with today’s conventional medical establishment, or to accept the many interventions it has to offer…and now she is paying the price (by dying prematurely).

A lot of suffering can be avoided by taking advantage of what’s been scientifically proven to help people.

Science, Medicine, and Energy Healing are all good!

Whatever the source of Healing, I say “Let it begin – it’s all G8D’s gift – receive it and LIVE!” Heck, I had Cancer twice – and was saved by surgery – which helped me live to tell the tale. To be fair – and to take some credit as well – I also changed my attitude and my diet (which were no mean feats), resulting in a life extension of decades.

The choices I made – the shifts in worldview that happened (about myself and everything around me) – all prepared the way for my pursuit of Crystal Consciousness. And then I had a major revelatory experience, but that wasn’t everything. People cheat themselves when they think of the universe as either mundane or sublime. It’s both, to be sure!

Remember, if you can, the story about the guy who drowned – reaches Heaven – and berates G8D for not saving him (with a miracle). Miracles are overrated! G8D respondes (and I paraphrase): “You’re wrong to think I wasn’t trying to save you – I sent you a life preserver, I sent you a boat, I sent you a helicopter – how many more tools, or ‘signs’ could I have offered?!” G8D does not only work in mysterious ways. Sometimes, Salvation can be quite simple, straightforward and practical.

In tying together many Quartz crystals in this double terminated formation, this amalgamated cluster represents a multiplicity of forces, or possibilities.

In tying together many Quartz crystals in this double terminated formation, this amalgamated cluster represents a multiplicity of forces, or possibilities.

But I digress, not to put you off – Pagans and Atheists – with my mention of Deity. I actually think our world views are more similar than we might admit. I’m no holy roller, and I certainly don’t believe that there’s only one way of understanding Reality. That’s a revolutionary statement, in a rigid, doctrinaire world.

One has only to look at Politics – especially during an election year – to see how violently people hold to their beliefs and convictions. Can they all be right? Or does nobody have it all figured out?

Indeed, there’s no monolithic Reality to be had [I’m giving it a new name, beyond the concept of ‘objective reality,’]…except, perhaps…for the Totality of Multiplicity (which is some people’s view – including my own – of G8D).

“Universal Energies” is another way to refer to an All-Inclusive Reality, within which everything is subjective – except, perhaps, the collective summation of all realities – which we cannot grasp or comprehend – as mere mortals.

The ‘exception’ perhaps, in identifying ‘what is real,’ might be those certain things we cannot all of us deny – like a Tsunami, Death, and taxes…oh well…I guess even those we try to bargain with & negotiate around, wherever possible.

Let’s get back to my Meditation – OUR meditation, really – because the shape and contour of each event, while set in broad strokes by me (and shepherded through, by my own Guidance), takes on new directional subtleties when each individual present Shares what’s happening for them – what the given “journey” has brought up inside of them – and how they’ve been impacted by the whole process. What everybody has to say is an important contribution to the overall experience.

The trait or gift of Compassion is manifest in milky stones, and very well by this pair of candle Quartzes.

The trait or gift of Compassion is manifest in milky stones, and very well by this pair of candle Quartzes.

We’re always (pleasantly) surprised by how unexpected (and welcome) others’ feelings become. That is one of the key benefits of being in a safe and healing environment. People expose their vulnerabilities – places where they feel hurt or alone – and without suffocating, others ‘come running.’

It’s heartwarming how willing – and quick – people can be to offer succor (in the right circumstances).

Indeed, I think it’s harder to embark on new beginnings without reaching, or starting from this place of relative Soul comfort. It’s not impossible – just harder – and it happens all the time, regardless. But in the context of a ‘controlled’ environment – a small group of like minded people gathered, with good intention – that definitely ‘provides the space’ for people to get in touch with their (and THE) Spirit.

Two other key factors contributing to our experience in these Meditations, are of course the world-class Power Stones brought into play (which, unlike museum pieces, are meant to be held and used) – as well as my own knowledge base regarding the many varieties and uses for Crystals. My understanding regarding the dynamics of human learning & experience, also comes in quite handy.

Foggy (or Girasol) Quartz represents the unknown, or unknowable, and is (as such) oddly reassuring, in the shape of a Heart.

Foggy (or Girasol) Quartz represents the unknown, or unknowable, and is (as such) oddly reassuring, in the shape of a Heart.

In order to begin again, or start over – even take any step into the future – I think it helps to make some kind of peace with uncertainty…the unknown…and the unknowable. Some shamanic practitioners speak with certainty about outcomes, or diagnoses, as if they know without a doubt. And that’s lovely, for them (and their clients?) – confidence and clairvoyance are wonderful attributes – but I question their infallibility, and take a more humble approach.

Here, my deistic perspective comes in again. Give G8D his or her [I’m uninvested in ascribing gender to the Over Soul] due. Honor G8D’s role and authority in being ‘the ultimate decider.’

I do not imbue any one stone or type of stone with G8D-Essence, Knowing, or the capacity for Arbitration (that is to say, intercession on our behalf). That, to me, would be idolatry.

We do not pray to the stones, we pray with them. They are not our “little friends” – nor are they generally (although they sometimes can be, in the case of Entity Stones) – possessed with little anthropomorphic “fairy spirits.” That’s one of the several bones I have to pick with the existing Crystal Lore, but it’s not in itself worthy of further discussion at this point.

What is important – at first – is that we acknowledge, and coexist with Uncertainty, which can be attempted by interacting with Girasol, or what I call “Foggy” Quartz. It is neither clear, nor Rose Quartz…it is its own variety [and comes mostly from Madagascar]. It is ideally not completely see through – though it is often gemmy (or glassy inside) – and milky/opaque. By sitting with it, and following a progression of guided Meditation, we were able to lighten the load of pressure we feel to ‘have it all figured out.’ The hidden benefit here, is that by loosening the grip of expectation – we can be open to G8D’s intercession – and our own inspiration.

this is a closeup of the giant Amethyst cluster - showing its Yin & Yang color variation - one side being more matt, and the other glassier

this is a closeup of the giant Amethyst cluster – showing its Yin & Yang color variation – one side being more matt, and the other glassier

Next, and this was our second Meditation – we explored clearing – with a great big Amethyst cluster. As discussed in my “Amethyst & the Purple Sages of the Higher Spirit” webinar, Amethyst clusters (as opposed to points) have the special capacity to cleanse us, spiritually. So we imagined the whole piece (about 2′ long) bubbling with a lavender mist – filling and permeating our being (like Sage smoke) – and flushing out unwanted energies from its furthest recesses.

To further effect the outcome of clearing (and cleansing) – we each used (and shared) a few naturally smoothed basalt shards – passing them over our entire aura (while seated) to protect and restore our periphery and core [one is pictured earlier in this blog].

Ruby Crystal - the super earth grounder - displaying its red & purple color combination.

Ruby Crystal – the super earth grounder – displaying its red & purple color combination

It had been discussed that it was hard to Open without Clearing – because of the fear of letting in unwanted energies – or destabilizing one’s system. That is part of why grounding stones were placed between each person, alternating Tiger Iron and Ruby. By clearing, centering, and grounding first, it becomes possible to open up more successfully.

Finally, in our 3rd Meditation, a ‘constellation’ was brought into play. My goal is to have people experience themselves first; then add stones to the mix, to further their own Spiritual pursuit; and to finally create a collective, galactically connected layout that aligns our individual experience with that the Universe. That’s what I mean by Microcosm to Macrocosm.

I make my layouts simple – I don’t call them ‘grids’ because that seems limiting – almost like using a stencil to make a drawing, or connecting oneself to ‘the grid’ – when this whole energetic exercise is designed to take us out of, or give us relief from the societal grid – and to connect us to something bigger.

3rd Meditation layout, New Beginnings: Clearing & Opening event

3rd Meditation layout, New Beginnings: Clearing & Opening event

I generally don’t allow attendees to take photos at our gatherings, because I have some proprietary interest in keeping what we do private. At the same time, pictures do make things a lot clearer, and I’ve been describing this Meditation thus far by only showing examples of the stones I’m discussing.

The bamboo sticks are neutral place holders, but they do create space, and in this case both an emanation from the center, and an evocation of a galactic swirl (because of the angles at which they come in, or burst forth from the center).

I also use just the minimum to achieve the desired effect. A lot of layouts I’ve seen are over the top – too much going on – a cacophony of energies. I think they’re more attractive as artworks than as functioning ‘constellations.’

In the center is the amalgamated Quartz DT cluster, representing the new possibilities we face at the Gateway of the Future…things we want to see come into being, or that will become manifest regardless, going forward. It behooves us to ‘get next to’ these potentialities, even advance of their appearance, so that our Soul may attune to them and thrive in their company.

4 Jets - the Openness Stone - combines cleansing with spacious opportunity.

4 Jets – the Openness Stone – combines cleansing with spacious opportunity

Then come a ring of geometrically cut Obsidian pieces [in the layout, but not pictured independently] – which invoke the power and expanse of open space – the ‘Black Before Creation‘ (also of night, Outer Space, and potentiality).

And lastly – what people held in their hands (one in each) – were Blue Lace Agate (self forgiveness and self expression), and Jet…a personal openness and safety stone, different from Obsidian…because it’s more “right here” than “out there.”

Thus completed our exploration of “New Beginnings: Clearing & Opening.” I realize that this verbal explanation – even enhanced by photos – cannot do it justice. And everybody’s input is not transcribed here.

However, I did get a memorable testimonial – which will show you, in someone else’s voice – what it was like:

Blue Lace Agates - soothing but weighty - and gently colored, as should be our self talk and assertions to the world.

Blue Lace Agates – soothing but weighty – and gently colored, as should be our self talk and assertions to the world.

“Last week I attended my first Crystal Meditation group meeting, New Beginnings: Opening & Clearing. Going to the event I was certain of two things: there would be crystals and guided meditations. I was not aware of the intensity I would experience as the evening progressed. I was first taken aback by a room full of crystals. Some of the most beautiful, colorful, expensive stones I have ever experienced in my life. Just standing in the room I began vibrating. There was a chatty meet and greet time provided so the attendees could connect and re-connect. Then the Circle was gathered. Kyle led us through three meditations during the 2 hour meeting; each accompanied by crystals and stones appropriate for the intended visualization. I found myself easily falling into a distant meditative state. By the last meditation I felt a definite shift in my being: I had received messages and felt very different in my body compared to when I walked in off the street. Kyle provides a wonderful calm space free from distraction, enlivened with the vibration (songs) of a diverse rich collection of gem stones and crystals. Kyle is a Crystalline Being in flesh.”

You can see more accounts of others’ experiences on my Testimonials page (also on this site). I can’t say any more on this subject (these subjects!) at this time. What I hope I’ve achieved here are several things: educating you about specific stones, and their ‘functions;’ how they come together for a specific Meditation; and how all-important it is to not see Reality as something fixed. It is our role to pursue our goals, but to flow also like a river, not just taking the path of least resistance. 
I have identified the respect needed for G8D (or what is beyond our control) – and the process by which we can energetically embrace New Beginnings – through Clearing and Opening. It is only by blurring the lines between The Real and The Imagined – that we are able to bring into being great changes – on a grand or personal scale.
Kyle Russell in front of pyramidal Granite

Kyle Russell in front of pyramidal Granite

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Rather than repeating the snapshot of myself you may have seen in other blogs, I’m writing a fresh account of where I stand today. This is a recent photo (from a few days ago), in front of a boulder of Granite that caught my attention. The Mica, Feldspar, and Quartz are more separated than uniform. It inspired me to want to tackle and separate some of the grand concepts I’ve addressed in this blog. Posts on Facebook have been paused, other priorities set aside. Since I write these only every few months, each has to bite off a pretty substantial chunk, and each has to reveal something new and different, evolving, about my understanding, overall. I have chosen to pursue both paths – of acquiring and selling Crystals – and of sharing and advancing the more esoteric knowledge about them. I’d hoped to publish a book this Fall, but instead am working on a set of Crystal cards, hopefully to be printed by November. In the meantime – and this is a first – I have full season mapped out: Expos for vending; Meditations; Webinars monthly; and even my annual “Wonders of Quartz” workshop. Check out my Events Page listing, and don’t hesitate to reach out with feedback or inquiry, to CrystalConcentrics@gmail.com. 

 

I’m sick, and I’m well (the Lessons and Gifts of Illness).

Let me confess, I got a cold. Worse than that…a strep/flu…all wrapped up into one. It’s still making its way through my system. But it’s not as bad as all that. I mean – so what(?!) – I’ve had Cancer before (twice). How bad can this be…

Fenster, or Skeletal Quartz, is emblematic of "sickness in health" - where the interior has been compromised - but the shell and structure remain quite solid.

Fenster, or Skeletal Quartz, is emblematic of “sickness in health” – where the interior has been compromised – but the shell and structure remain quite solid.

And yet, people belly ache about their seasonal illnesses all year long. The common cold – in spite of what people claim about vaccines being effective [I’m not convinced] – this complex of viruses (if that’s fair to call them) impacts just about everyone in the northern hemispher. And I think it’s emblematic of all diseases, though fortunately, it’s not a commonly fatal (or chronic) malady. 

I thought I’d transcended all that. With the parting of ways I’ve had with Sugar, and anything (chips or nuts) that come in a bag [the rancid oils are harmful]…it’s been literally years since I’ve really been hit by anything like this. What usually happens, is that the symptoms try to get a grip on me, but their effects are weak, and the real deal never fully takes hold. Just a few month ago, everyone in my family got some bad bugs, but I wasn’t touched at all (even though everyone was coughing all over me). Funny how immune we can be sometimes.

I’ve become smug in my healthiness. I might be in the best shape I’ve ever been in, not just physically, per se – in terms of musculature – but thoroughly, from the inside out. I listen much better than I used to, to my Body and Spirit. I mind what I’m eating, set aside time to exercise, and stay on top of my self care quite steadily. Basicly, I’m in a lifelong training to be “a Soul Wisperer.”

So it’s humbling to be “brought down” like this. It’s always a learning experience, though. Illness has much to teach us. The first questions for me become: “what have I done wrong? How could I have avoided this?” 

Chrysocolla - combines self forgiveness and emotional expressiveness

Chrysocolla – combines self forgiveness and emotional expressiveness

Self-blame is cruel, and worsens the cycle of the illness. Self reproach definitely makes it worse. At some point, some serious self-forgiveness is necessary to interrupt the cycle. You have to break that downward spiral…the chicken and egg of negatively overthinking your situation. 

When a stone breaks - it loses its original value - but energy is released, and we find ourselves adapting to the change as having been meant to be.

When a stone breaks – it loses its original value – but energy is released, and we find ourselves adapting to the change as having been meant to be.

But let me sit with the badness, for a moment. When you get sick, your body – the rock on which you stand daily – falters. Of course it’s worse with a more serious (or chronic) illness…you lose faith and trust in you. That basic tableau – within which everything happens to and through: you – it’s no longer what you’ve come to expect, it’s not reliable, dependable. The rules of engagement have somehow changed, and it doesn’t seem very fair.

No, indeed – the Russian Roulette of illness and Death are not fair – our goal is to hedge our bets with prevention and treatment.

Taking this statement further – many of believe we live in a universe governed by a benevolent G*d, but whether jealous our merciful – G8D cannot give us our way 100% of the time. We are each the center of our own reality, but in fact, we are all peripheral to the greater REALITY (and thus, not particularly entitled to any special treatment). This is a bitter pill to swallow, but the sooner we make peace with it, the sooner we can have a more balanced and ultimately respectful view of The Creator.

So back to our compromised self. Being sick is a very damning state to be in – because as a body – if you can’t count on your own being, what can you count on? Your weakened state throws everything into question. You become alienated from a generally beautiful, provident world, and a mostly functional (and otherwise healthy) body. 

The co-mingling of opposites: is the dark in the light, or the light in the dark?

The co-mingling of opposites: is the dark in the light, or the light in the dark? Yin and Yang swirl around one another.

Don’t think for a minute that I look at the world with rose tinted glasses. I’ve seen some of the worst, and I do believe we live in Heaven and Hell simultaneously. But like the glass half full or half empty, I believe you can view the same situation in a more positive or pejorative light. 

For some – and I spent a decade like this (at least) – everything can seem worse, like you’re living in purgatory (at best). And being sick definitely throws you back, deeper into that dungeon. I do believe – especially when I listen to the news (about atrocities committed here and abroad) – that for many, life on this planet, is hell on earth.

Back to me, and my immediate answers about what might have contributed to my current situation. One theory, is that I left the fan blaring on me while I slept sweatily last week, and it destabilized my aura (wreaking havoc on my overall metabolism). More than half the people I spoke to agreed that this could well have been the culprit.

The symptoms also began the night after I had Chinese food from a restaurant I like, but don’t totally trust the cleanliness of. I do believe that germs from an unusual source can tip the scales. A variety of causes can conspire to make you sick.

A third theory is connected to the fact that I tend to overeat. Too much (of even healthy food) can backlog – with nutrients going bad, getting “caught in the filter” – which then require cleansing (or evacuation), through the illness

Amber & Jet are light density power stones - and because their weight is less than their size would suggest - they tend to wick away blockage and tightness.

Amber & Jet are light density power stones – and because their weight is less than their size would suggest – they tend to wick away blockage and tightness.

Worst case scenario – if the raw material (of what you’re eating) is not that healthy – “the backlog” can result in the inexorable growth of pathological tissue – chronically (or fatally) complicating cellular function, a prime example being inflammation, and of course: Cancer.

Whatever the “real” cause of your situation – and, as stated, there can be several – and while disease can often be a fluke of chance (certainly it’s always an unwanted guest with destructive intent) – disease is also, and very often (to its credit) – a healthy response to an unhealthy situation.

Let me pause, and draw attention to “the fluke factor” – bad luck (remember?) – s**t happens. In as complicated a world as we live in, lightning bolts (and tornadoes) do strike. Yes, there can be “favorable” conditions and standing out in a field may be riskier than being in your car. But when that wind starts to blow, can’t nothing stop it.

Every natural disaster reminds us how little control we ultimately have. And disease, ultimately, is a natural disaster. So you have to “give unto Ceasar what is Caesar’s” – let go and hold on simultaneously – try that on a hang glider!

All and still, just as there are (seemingly incontrovertible) Laws of Physics, a great deal of what happens around, and to us…is logical.

What else is your body supposed to do, when you treat it so? We’re too busy to cook or make proper food. We’re too busy to take any time to stretch, or work out (as much as our body may want, or need to). It’s no wonder your physical person develops a grudge and wants to “get you back” for your neglect. All it’s looking for is some R-E-S-P-E-C-T (like the song).

Nirvana Quartz - like Elestials - represents the higher, deeper, more ancient self.

Nirvana Quartz – like Elestials – represents the higher, deeper, more ancient self.

Every time you don’t listen to your Soul, you’re stacking the deck against you.

And we’re all willing to take the hit – whatever treatment or sick time (later) we need – that’s somehow “worth it” to get those things we need from our paycheck. Well guess what, your paycheck won’t always be there, but your body always will be – and once it’s gone – none of that other stuff will matter anyway. People need to start paying attention, doing everything they can before they get sick (not just after, when it’s often too late).

Work, our job, our “have to’s” excuse every mistreatment of our own primary (and personal) system. And yet, if we pause, and take care of ourselves – others, and we ourselves – tend to think we’re being selfish, self-indulgent…the worst…we can’t justify the down time! 

And also – by behaving like this (taking time out to take care of ourselves) – we’re likely/surely bound to become indigent…because there’s no money in self care. There’s only money in “other-care” – taking care of everyone else – that’s what pays (and has any moral currency). That “other” you’re servicing can be your boss or a client – heck, even (or especially?) “the man” – as you pay your taxes and comply with the prevailing laws of the land.

Would you still be doing what you do if there was no money coming in from it? If the answer is no, you have some serious answering to do to your inner self. We pay the price for our compromises.

And then there’s “the children” – the primary conservative force in our world (if you think about it) – why would we take risks or not tow the line…when we have to look out for, and provide for them…children first (remember?!). 

People even avoid Divorce on account of children. Not to say that they’re not (in addition to saving a primary relationship) worth it, but to demonstrate the fact that self denial (for many reasons) is woven into our own very individualistic and narcissistic (in other ways) culture

Nephrite Jade - particularly water worn by nature - is the ultimate emotional soother.

Nephrite Jade – particularly water worn by nature – is the ultimate emotional soother.

It’s like: we’re being goaded to take care of ourselves – in ways that make other people money (like through cosmetics, sports clubs, the clothing industry) – but not necessarily in ways that may cost nothing, but still achieve the desired effect of personal, lasting gratification, or satisfaction. 

They say the personal is political – it’s true – the world feels more holistic (to me) if you can see how you connect beyond your self, right out into the Universe (another benefit & practice of my Crystal Concentrics Meditation). 

Maybe there’s nothing you can do about it – your problem, or the world’s problems (or so you think) – but be honest about what you could really be doing (but maybe aren’t), the ways in which your hands feel tied, how you’re stuck, and how that may be impacting your health and well being (never mind that of the planet).

Why can’t it be simpler – you just “got a bug, got a disease” – it’s not your fault at all, and there’s nothing you can do but fight it. This is the medical, strictly physical perspective. And it has its place. Car’s shocks are gone…fix ‘em…don’t ask about the bumps you keep driving over (which caused the damage in the first place), or “why me,” or “what’s the bigger lesson here.” 

Foggy, or Girasol Quartz is a unique variety - it represents the unknown - and the unknowable...an important factor to consider...and be in the presence of.

Foggy, or Girasol Quartz is a unique variety – it represents the unknown – and the unknowable…an important factor to consider…and be in the presence of.

Suit yourself – however shallow or deep you want to look – if everything happens for a reason (“the Fluke Factor” aside, though even that is an omnipresent reality to contend with) – I think it behooves us dig a little: explore the metaphysical context of your situation. I’m saying (on top of all the types of factors already explored): it could be evil spirits at work; it could be your own past lives catching up with you; the possibilities are limitless.

There’s also “the Fog Factor,” which is that it may not be for us to ever figure out what’s happening, exactly, and why.  

In any case – I’ve gone off on a few (relevant) tangents – I want to bring the conversation back to my own process…regarding the illness that’s come front and center…into my life. I’m banking on it’s being metaphorical for you and your own experience of illness, which could be more than informative…I’m hoping educational…in helping you think about (and hopefully improve) your own situation.

The purpose of this Blog is to be relevant, to apply, and to be of more general utility beyond my solo journey and meanderings.

What I realized – especially early on – is that the illness is not the only game in town. When it first was settling in, I saw it coexist, and in context, relative to the rest of me (which was not in duress). 

Herkimer Diamonds are the picture of health - impenetrable - allowing light, but nothing else, to pass through.

Herkimer Diamonds are the picture of health – impenetrable – allowing light, but nothing else, to pass through.

Holding a larger sense of healthiness and positive continuity, makes being sick more tolerable…gives one hope…and gives you a sense that even if not in the moment, you will overcome. Yes – your throat may be burning, or you may have a tumor – but there are another x-billion cells doing just fine…let their voice be heard. 

I’m remembering my Crystal Meditations, in which we take time to center into the body – that really helped me to acknowledge and get in touch with those other, healthy cells – and call them into play, see and acknowledge them for the good job they’re doing maintaining my overall health. 

My spiritual practice of being with Spirit-apart-from-Body also helped, because I could know that the Spirit was unscathed by what I was going through – damaged, hurt, concerned, for sure – but somehow (also) immune to it all. 

I had to have Faith that “this, too, shall pass.” Even now, a week in [which is how long it’s been taking me to finish this blog], while the unproductive cough has sunken deep into my lungs – my capacity to write an account of my experience is an act that will survive the pathology – and I like the way that demonstrates our eternal capacity to recover and/or transcend. Again, the Power of the Word.

Look at how much more Anne Frank has impacted people in death than she was able to in life. Not everyone can look forward to such a posthumous “reward,” but by being in the moment, doing the best she could with what she had (and grappling with the demons that presented themselves at the time)…she created something more valuable than she could know in the moment.

Basalt - one of the more ancient of stones - here shattered and was polished by the wind & sand over eons, to make a ventifact that is powerful in clearing and protecting.

Basalt – one of the more ancient of stones – here shattered and was polished by the wind & sand over eons, to make a ventifact that is powerful in clearing and protecting.

I’ve never been one to painstakingly plan and strategize – I, too, put one foot in front of the other – try to make for the steadiest footing that makes sense (and feels right, in the moment). My vibration is very steady – though I see what a flash in the pan I am, on the grander scale – which is why I like the Stones…they go on forever

Indeed, while we are so very fragile – and can sometimes be challenged to find any part of us that is steady and sound – Power Stones are there, if we allow them to be…an extension of ourselves (and Creation)…that is solid and eternal

Some people use Religion for solace – and I do too – it surely has its place. And I’ve argued elsewhere that the two are not incompatible. But what I like about the mineral world, is that it both precedes our human experience, and it will outlast us…making it somehow more elemental than anything we could dream up (through our various cultures). By associating with the mineral world, we borrow some eternity, draw from its strength, and share in its capture of Life & Creation energy. 

So have I used crystals to get well? I mean, isn’t that the point, to use them for our service? Yes, and no. Crystals are not tools, like guns and scalpels, created exclusively to do our bidding. That is a beef I have with “the literature,” which seems to suggest as much. It’s the whole Biblical thing about us having been given dominion over all things earthly. Yes, that may seem so – and is a power that we have – but it’s also a responsibility, which people don’t tend to grasp, or hold onto as well. 

Large, beautifully terminated Topaz - the intrabody neural communicator - facilitating your body talk and internal functioning.

Large, beautifully terminated Topaz – the intrabody neural communicator – facilitating your body talk and internal functioning.

Everybody wants the easy part, the quick fix, which is why I don’t give “crystal prescriptions” – “you have this problem, take/use that.” It’s more complicated than that. And also, I’ve had a major breakthrough, in terms of understanding how Crystal energy work is not, nor should it be compared with Medical work.

Indeed, this is also why I don’t believe in gem elixirs – because I don’t think they should be ingested – that is the role of other substances (herbs, medicines, food). An important distinction must be made between physical treatment and metaphysical treatment. They are not, nor should they be, compared or used in the same way (or for the same purposes). 

Crystal Energy is meant to be seen with the Eye – interpreted and working through the Mind, or Imagination – and looped through the Body via Touch (the cycle).

Science is the wonderful art of identifying and working with the recurrent, visible laws of Nature. But not all such laws (of the Natural World) are consistent, measurable, or tangible. The metaphysical world may never be quantifiable in the same way, which is why I have no agenda for bringing Crystal energy into the mainstream, through scientific justification…can’t be done…and shouldn’t be. 

In the metaphysical world, the law is often that there is no law – that we can see and perceive tendencies and subtleties – but that Reality is relative, subjective, untamed. We can coax it, shepherd it, but it goes its own way, in its own time. The myth of control has been debunked.

Wet Sugilite - 'the other purple stone' - symbolizes the materialization (or concretization) of Spiritual vision.

wet Sugilite – ‘the other purple stone’ – symbolizes the materialization (or concretization) of Spiritual vision

I take my remedies (and there are many): steams, elderberry, lomatium root, food grade vitamin C, echinacea, cranberry juice…the list goes on…and they all did their thing (heck, even aspirin helped!). But in the absence of a trusted Crystal Healer, I had to rely on all the previous work I’ve done with Spirit, to tide me over, and give me strength in my weakness

I feel too many (most?) people reject, or pass over the potential of working with a true energy healer – because they want the tried and true – and don’t want to take chances (or make changes). I notice they mostly don’t want to look at “their stuff,” or do the hard work of going through the valley to get to the other side.

My work ultimately has to be demonstrating why and how it’s worth it (to work with Crystals). Alas, I have not trained someone else to take my reins, or do what I do (yet). But I’ll keep on keeping on. Bit by bit, these blogs (and my eventual books and other publishing projects) – as well as the events I host (live and online) – as well as my showcasing at Expos, will together put my footprint on this important area of human endeavor. 

giant DT elestial closeup - these stones are Keepers of the Wisdom - you can always rely on them to know what is to be known

giant DT elestial closeup – these stones are Keepers of the Wisdom – you can always rely on them to know what is to be known

Were it a bigger, life threatening illness (this pesky cold/flu), I would have wanted to have some energy work, for sure. Being very independent, and untrusting of authority per se, there are very few folks I’d trust or want to work with (or “on” me). I’m leery of generalizers and “false prophets.” So my memory and source work with Crystals has had to carry me through, until such time as I can work the gears and have the Soul energy flow again, unfettered (and uncomplicated). 

It’s helpful to know – it flows here, right beside me, through me – even when I don’t see it, or feel it (cause I’m so busy feeling crummy). I’m reminded again of the response a spiritual leader gave my son, when he (my boy) confessed that he’s not sure he believes in G8D: “that’s okay” he was reassured: “G8D doesn’t mind” (the assumption being that G8D is always there, whether you see him/her, or not). 

Our role is not to question or even to seek the Universal Life Force (per se), but rather – to simply let it be (it’s all around, and within us)…to let it flow through us. Stop trying so hard. You wouldn’t be here if you didn’t “have it” already. 

Independently from applying meaning or causality to your illness – to have it “make sense” – we often hear folks saying their illness (regardless of the cause or outcome) has taught them something, and for that they are grateful.

Malachite - "the emotive" - demonstrates the wending ways of Feeling - and helps allow you to access and express your inner knowing.

Malachite – “the emotive” – demonstrates the wending ways of Feeling – and helps allow you to access and express your inner knowing.

Had I not gotten those 2 bouts with Cancer, I would have never changed my diet or thought patterns, which I think would have done me in the third time around. Hitting a dead end forces you to make a turn, take a new path. Being sick now – and stuck somewhere without Internet – has enabled me to capture these words in a way that feels more relevant because I’m actually going through some real discomfort (and an extraction from my element) in the moment. My hope is that you’ll be able to make some sense from this collection of thoughts.

Our journey is laden with lessons and gifts. We just have to see them for what they are, or can become. Gloom and doom will never spawn life, for you or others. That is why I have to assert: “I am sick. And I am well.”

To review – I have explored some of the things that happened, which “put me at risk” – as well as the lessons to be learned, including a discouragement of self-blaming. It’s good to correct your course, and know where you’ve gone wrong, but beating yourself up about things will not fix them.

I’ve discussed the Fluke Factor (of chance) and the Fog Factor (of uncertainty), as well as the need to connect the microcosm with the macrocosm. Avoidance does not really serve you, nor do excuses, however good they may be at distracting you from your path. Try to see the good within and around you, and draw strength from both.

The world does not revolve around you, but you should certainly hold your place in the merry-go-round. Reach out and seek healing, from allopathic and alternative sources, they’re all here to serve you. Know that there are limits to control, and that ultimately, our fate is in the hands of forces much larger than we can imagine. 

Enjoy Life while you’ve got it!

**********************

About the Author: Kyle Russell has been working with Crystals for over 25 years – inducted into working with them through a supernatural experience – but building on the knowledge and evolving it through sharing…via in-person and virtual offerings, including an extensive social media presence…and a growing, written record of his thoughts and observations. Feel free to reach out to him, and learn more about his Awareness, and how it can help you. Email Kyle@CrystalConcentrics.com.

How to Work with Crystals?

soothing Nephrite Jade sphere

soothing Nephrite Jade sphere

INTRODUCTION

Such an important question – “How to Work with Crystals?” – with a hundred (and certainly more) answers out there…and only a limited amount of time (and space) to respond to the question…I have to choose my words carefully, which is why I’ve turned this into a blog, as a followup to (and companion to) the live webinar recently recorded (of the same name).

Given the infinite options for Reply, be aware that this answer is of my own, subjective opinion. You have to trust the source of where you get your information – even if it’s your inner self – I know I do. And hopefully, the more material I put out there (that people check out), the more my perspective will become a steady feature in the “Crystal scene.”

I have numerous webinars and classes – they exist for you to get slightly different (but overlapping) views on what I perceive to be the truth. Hopefully, this (and they) will resonate with you. As I get myself increasingly out there, I have been pleasantly surprised by the responsiveness of folks in cyberspace. I got over 400 Joins to my Facebook event page (for the webinar), and you’ll see the number of Likes my Facebook page has gotten (below).

But Facebook isn’t everything – I know that – and there’s not just one view of a great big Cathedral. You have to get a panoramic view of the inside and the outside – and even then – you couldn’t capture the essence of what goes on for the people who go there.

The same is true for the metaphysical world – it’s especially true, actually – where subjectivity reigns over the objective, and individuality is rather appreciated. So read on, with an open mind. Take what you like, leave what you don’t…there’s enough to go around.

THE CIRCUIT

large, beautifully terminated Topaz – the intrabody neural communicator

To answer the question “how do you work with crystals” is most basically:  you create a circuit between what you’re holding in your hand; let it come right through your heart; and up to your mind’s eye. It’s a feedback loop…cycles right back down from you’re seeing…and touches your Soul.”

The goal is to capture and tap into that vibrancy, participating in the presence and movement of essential Life energies.

Each stone you pick up will give you a slightly different experience, or window into that universal flow.

And then it becomes like a dance, as you move from limb to limb, like a nimble monkey on a tree…you know what to reach for…you’ll learn what does the trick.

Working with Crystals is a bit like absorbing a new language. You can school yourself in it and you can be taught – by those with greater experience – who you relate to. But you are ultimately you’re own, best teacher. Just like with food and dietary awareness, you have to listen to your sensation, what resonates (and what does not).

FOR THOSE WHO ARE NOT INTO IT

For people who don’t get it at all, this all can be a hard pill to swallow. They just don’t get it – and more than even indifference – they harbor a negative view (for whatever reason) of working with Crystals. An important part of my mission could be turning disbelievers into believers. It would be hard to walk them through the path I’ve taken, because some of what I’ve seen was for my eyes only. Some folks turn to science (or pseudo-science), to prove their point – but that’s not my focus. 

I don’t need to prove myself to anyone. Plus, I have way more fun with those who’ve already got an interest. Wouldn’t you prefer to teach Spanish to someone who’s actually came to your Spanish class – rather than to have to randomly accost folks the students from out of History – to “convert” them into caring about your coursework.

As you become more fluent, it’s hard to go back, or want to try to teach people who are resistant – who’ve got no interest in learning the language. It’s possible as well, that they lack interest in pursuing any other self-development strategy.

Funny how it happens, that closed is closed. And once the flood gates are open, people who are open to Crystals also find themselves open to Herbalism, Aromatherapy, and vice versa.

Then is it true that “doubting Thomases” cannot gain any value from crystals? That’s a sad thought. But I don’t know that it’s even true. I believe that merely having them (Crystals) around – or having others work on you long distance (in spite of any resistance you might have) – could still result in some positive outcomes.

Chrysocolla - combines self forgiveness and emotional expressiveness

Chrysocolla – combines emotional expressiveness with self forgiveness

THE HEALER IS HEALING – EVEN IF THE PATIENT IS UNWILLING

Even if a healer’s efforts bounce back on them (because the patient is not willing) – some good is still coming from the transaction – and serves as cautionary lesson to those working with “the dark arts” (be careful what you project…let it only be positive). Hence the mirror in certain mythologies: to reflect negativity back on itself. Likewise, if you can stay “in the light,” you will always be blessed, even in your worst & dying moments (if that’s even possible to imagine!).

My son was speaking once, to a religious leader – he said “I don’t know if I believe in G8D” – the mentor replied: “that’s okay, G8D doesn’t mind.” The sun still shines, whether people open their eyes to it, or whether it’s covered with clouds. Once you’ve seen it, it’s hard to pretend it’s not there (or to not want to work with it).

ULTIMATELY, IT’S ALL ABOUT WHAT YOU PRACTICE, NOT WHAT YOU PREACH

There are dozens (certainly more) books out there about Crystals, with plenty of knowledge and instruction to offer. I have a lot beliefs in common with many of their authors, and a lot of beliefs that differ from them. Instead of outlining either – making claims or accusations – I think the next, best way I can answer the question: “How to Work with Crystals” here, would be to explain how I work with Crystals…what it is that I do…so you can see the breadth of possibility from the perspective of somebody who’s been  thinking about, and working with Crystals on the daily (for a looong time).

SO WHAT DO YOU DO, ANYWAY?

A prospective client called me: “I’ve been looking over your sites, and I’m a little confused – can you tell me – what is it that you do with the Crystals? Of course, I was happy to answer her, and we spent some time on the phone, with me explaining what I could, in the moment. But then I was like – “wow, all that effort I’ve put into my online presence and offerings, and it’s still not clear – I’ve got to do better, try harder, and come up with some new ways of explaining this art (which is so very important to me).”

MY HEALING MODALITY (the trade)

Basically, I have two approaches to working with Crystals. One, is through my healing modality: teaching, sharing, and applying my knowledge. That is what I call Crystal Concentrics.

You can find out more at CrystalConcentrics.com (my main site) and over at one of my Facebook pages: http://www.Facebook.com/CrystalConcentric (that’s singular, there’s no ’s’ at the end). I’ve accrued more than 10,000 “Likes” there. I feature my personal pieces, not-necessarily-sales-oriented posts, and house all my Facebook Event pages over there.

Crystal Energy Zones poster

Crystal Energy Zones poster

I also have created a large laminate poster of the Human “Crystal Energy Zones” – which identifies the 29 key stones with immediate relevance to our Chakra system.

In follow up to this, I am working on a deck of Crystal Cards, which will cover even more varieties, and be an excellent teaching tool. Ultimately, I have a few books on the back burner, which will tie together a lot of the concepts outlined in my Blogs (including this one!).

MY SALES ‘ARM’ (the tool)

I acquire and sell Crystals through my Power Stone Crystals persona, which you can check out in one of 3 places. Online, there’s my main sales site: www.PowerStoneCrystals.com. And there’s the semi-matching sister page (thought not all the same items will appear on both): http://www.Facebook.com/PowerStoneCrystals.

I have 31,000+ Fans on the latter. The relatively higher following (compared with the Crystal Concentrics page, on Facebook), has to do with how I promoted each, way back when, and people’s penchant for appreciating or buying crystals over really understanding how to work with them.

'the author' Kyle Russell, at the Healing Hands event

‘the author’ Kyle Russell, at the Healing Hands event

Ultimately – the best way to see everything I’ve got available – is in person…either at my Boston area showroom…or at one of the metaphysical Expos I have scheduled throughout the year, in New York, and also in New England. I do plan on making it to other regions – and have some pending opportunities – I’d certainly appreciate your invitation!

THE TOOL VS. THE TRADE

Why is it that folks spend many, many times more on buying Crystals than they do on learning about them, or receiving the services of practitioners? That would be due to the fact that it’s much easier to acquire the tools than to master (or even engage) the trade.

When you see something beautiful – and it has a price tag on it – you tend to go for it. That client’s question – earlier mentioned – demonstrates that we as practitioners, have a ways to go in terms of making our art as easily understood and “consumable” as the Crystals themselves have been.

Imagine, if you will – someone buying all kinds of expensive plumbing equipment – but never learning how to use it. Fortunately – or maybe because they’re that much more beautiful than plumbing equipment – people are way more inclined to buy Crystals than they are to truly study them, or be taught by any experts in the field.

Granted, Crystal experts are not to be found on every corner. Books, fortunately, are (to be found more readily) – but unfortunately (to my mind) – many of them are spreading much misinformation. Luckily, because we’re all so unique, each effort to shed light on the “magic” of Crystals – succeeds in quite different ways – and there’s something out there for every level of interest and capacity to absorb information.

IMG_1774

closeup of a (rare) bi-color Amethyst cluster – the yin and the yang

And – failing to look into them more deeply – there’s always the beauty…the awe…of a wonderfully majestic creation, dating back millions of years, which will outlast us, and taps into our archetypal perceptions of color and form.

THE SCALE OF TEACHING

For me – working with, and sharing my knowledge about Crystals – flows from the more visual and collective, to the most in depth and personal:

1) The Slide Show, Talk, or Presentation is more like a lecture, but a fascinating one (to be sure). Two examples of my offerings are “A Pinterest Tour” of my 60-odd boards, by which I’ve classified thousands of museum quality images; and “Where the Earth Meets Sky: from the rocky landscape of the Galapagos to the mountain spiritual center of Machu Picchu.” These can be delivered live, or virtually, and make for ideal webinars (hint, hint: keep an eye out for them).

2) The Crystal Meditation is a gathering of individuals, ready to step out of the ordinary, and join a guided journey, as well to join in to group sharing. It is split into 3 segments. The first is a rooting into ones own biological, emotional presence (without stones). The followup introduction of Crystals to the hands will show how different this practice is from “normal” contemplation. Crystals act as a sort of touchstone, or lightning rod…aligning the astral, the physical/ephemeral, and the earth-foundation/constant together. Lastly evoked are layouts, connecting the group with the larger continuity and cosmology of time and space. Between each of the 3 Meditations, we go around and speak our truth in the moment.

Natick Jan 23

group photo, after a Crystal Meditation

3) The Class, or Workshop involves Meditation, as above, but includes an instructional piece – be it an exploration of “the Heart Chakra (and the 6 stones that pertain to it),” – or “the Wonders of Quartz (a whole Chakra layout, comprised exclusively of Quartz varieties).” 

I offer this content (and many more topics), both live and online. My growing library of webinars makes it so that wherever you are, we can explore, and work together in building our knowledge of Crystals.

4) The Crystal Reading, is a gateway into your own personal situation. It’s not a Psychic Reading, whereby your hidden present, past, or future are spontaneously (or laboriously) revealed by a clairvoyant. Instead, it’s a straightforward inquiry, by which you answer questions regarding where your Spirit finds itself right now, and we discuss what hopes it (your Soul) and you have, regarding your next steps – or what directions (or needs) you might be looking to explore – to “get to the next level” in your personal development. This can be a one time thing – conducted live or long distance – or part of a larger “treatment plan” of ongoing sessions.

Nirvana Quartz - cohort of the higher self

Nirvana Quartz – cohort of the Higher Self

5) The One-on-One, Individual Sessions are a series (generally starting with 4 meetings), that focus exclusively on you. There’s no group, it’s not a sample or glimpse, it’s an in depth exploration – using Crystals and sacred space (where we set up safety and security) – to be in (and allow) the presence of your Spirit to come out (not physically, but metaphorically), to be seen and contemplated. Whether your mission is to embody: to be more present, grounded, and connected positively in your life; or whether transcendence, journeying, and other dimensional travel is your yen…that will be our mission.

I’ve used this work to exorcise and put unwelcome entities to rest – identify and remove major blockages – and simply for rebalancing and invigorating folks who want to feel better in themselves.

6) Self-Care and Development. Here’s where we come full circle, back to my self, and your self, solo. How can we use Crystals on our own? Let me count the ways – because there is so much is to be learned and implemented – from all the approaches above.

having that special Crystal around, on your desk or in your pocket…to invoke the positive messages and feelings you associate with it (during your daily life);

3 matching Blue Fluorites

3 matching Blue Fluorites

taking time to really sit with a special Crystal (or group of them), taken in hand, laid out in what I call a “constellation,” or carefully arranged on an altar…here’s where your meditation can bring you down (in a good way) – settle you – or help you ascend…to that place you know you need to get to. I do this also at night, before bed: taking hold of a Crystal that captures a lesson of the day, or a hope for the night, and/or tomorrow;

Which brings up…

– Projection and Prayer (this can also be done in groups). It is seeking to materialize health or better luck & circumstance for oneself, or others. This can be an advanced practice…but can also be done by children. Anyone can learn, try, or experiment…engaging in this vitally needed activity.

– Charity (and Repair of the World): doing any or all of the above, for others (and Nature) who are in so much in need…is a must. The sick and the dying, the passed on, and the suffering. We live in a world that is comprised of both Heaven and Hell, mixed in varying proportions (depending on where you find yourself, and whose life you happen to be living). Aging, entropy, unfairness, and Evil are all factors – as well as Beauty and Grace, Benevolence and Compassion – which we are tasked to identify and work with and balance, as constructively as we are able.

unique Selenite cluster - representing our reach for the Eternal

unique Selenite cluster – representing our reach for the Eternal

IT’S ALL ABOUT G8D

Whether you’re devoutly practicing a religion or not; believe in a higher power – The Force or whatever – working with Crystals can certainly tap you into The Divine.

Polytheists, Pagans, Animists – we’re all aware of greater powers in our midst – and that we ourselves are formidable forces (for good or ill). Even negligence is a force to contend with. It’s all about tapping into the Energy that’s all around (and within!).

Working with it, running with it, taming and shaping it – or resisting and avoiding it – these are factors we need to grapple with.

I believe that for all the complexity and wonder of the physical world – there is an equal and “opposite” (or simultaneous) “dream time,” or metaphysical world – and that is the one that Crystals both tap into, and straddle, bringing into being what was not previously manifest (and projecting the manifest back over, beyond “the veil”).

Ultimately, these are rocks – objects – quite plain and permanent. It’s really a trip. “How to Work with Crystals” is really an exercise in playing with the constant and the mutable, the “objective” and the relative.

IN ANSWER TO YOUR QUESTION

Now have I thoroughly confused matters? Has my argument become too long in the tooth? Astrophysicists have found that the more we know – the more we want to (and don’t) know. Learning will never die, there is always more to explore.

Why should this be any different. Every field has its limits, or its next frontier. And every modality has its merit, too. I would never propose to devalue complementary (or even opposing) practices. Every approach to healing is worthy of exploration.

I personally connect uniquely (and primarily) with the Crystals, which have led me on this ongoing journey of discovery and sharing.

Celestite egg

Celestite egg

I hope you now feel more informed on “How to Work with Crystals” – my having outlined both how we can engage them (through “the circuit”) – and how I have created a spread of curriculum…teaching through the written word and images, as well as the engagement of groups and individuals…each method taking on a different form and delivering a new dynamic to the process.

DIFFERENT VIEWS OF THE SAME EDIFICE

The webinar of this name “How to Work with Crystals” is more improvisational – it was recorded live – and I say things that don’t appear here. Likewise, points are made “on paper” that are not covered in person. So it really behooves you to experience both – as my written personality is different than my spoken self – and all my “incarnations:” the Presentation, the Meditation, the Workshop, the Webinar, Individual Sessions, Prayer & Charity, as well as Solo Time have unique contributions to make to our overall understanding and process.

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About the Author: Kyle Russell has been working with Crystals for 27 years. Although he’s been collecting and working with people throughout that time period, the past few years have seen a resurgence of primary attention being devoted to this cause. The reason is that he feels he has something unique to contribute – not only in terms of content, conceptually – but physically, in terms of delivering outstanding power stones to the community. It’s a holistic endeavor, and complements his personal choices around health and wellness, as well as maintaining his own well being (he survived Cancer, twice). Please don’t hesitate to be in touch at CrystalConcentrics@gmail.com, with any questions, or to followup, with feedback. 

The 3 Gateways – Mind, Heart, and Body

There are 3 gateways into ourselves: through the Mind, through the Heart, and through the Body. Crystals are experienced the same way – by touch (through the Body); how they make you feel (the Heart) – and via what you think about them (the Mind). I have identified 3 stones that (to me) embody each gateway.

purple Quartz point(s)Amethyst is one – for its power to represent Spirit – specifically in “point form.” I’m talking about a point as separated from a cluster.

Clusters have a different function, to act as Spiritual Cleansers.

Amethyst is the ultimate Higher Mind stone. This is true because it speaks to the connection between Self and Spirit (and how mentality bridges the physical self with the self-conscious, abstract “seer”).

What is your true mission in life? What is your Higher Purpose, or ‘true’ Destiny? These are the types of questions to contemplate in the presence of Amethyst.

These may seem like lofty (or irrelevant) – to those who are not inquiring deeply (and for whom mental considerations are not bound up in spiritual matters) – but folks for whom the Mind is two dimensional, are trapped in a more earthly consciousness. I don’t blame them, but theirs is not the place to judge those for whom these explorations are significant.

I don’t mean to insult the Earth by using “earthly” in a derogatory sense, but you get what I mean (I hope, and if not, read on). Earthly (with a small ‘e’) connotes petty, provincial, non-Global or unconnected awareness. Earthly (with a capital ‘E’) gets into the vast (and deeper) grasp of Terra, terrestrial reality, and it’s connectedness to the all other dimensions, elements, perspectives, and The Universe at large.

Our thoughts, even (and often?) about grander goals and meanings – are immaterial – that is to say, they’re not solid, physical, or tangible. Indeed much of our reality – far greater than most will admit – is virtual (hello: the Internet is not something we can touch).

wet Sugilite - 'the other purple stone' - symbolizes the concretization of Spiritual vision

wet Sugilite – ‘the other purple stone’ – symbolizes the concretization of Spiritual vision

Great in their influence are the unspoken, evocative, and symbolic…in all cultures. And yet these thoughts, symbols, and archetypes can – and do – manifest quite tangibly in our world, particularly when they result in actions and consequences, as they constantly do (all around us – in the news – in our lives).

If the universe was created from a word – and words are merely symbolic – then truly, it can be said that our co-creation of the present and future are bound up in our understandings of (even unconsciously) – and relationships withabstract conceptions.

The metaphysical is intrinsic, it’s everything, or at least on par with everything you can take in with your 5 senses. Those who say otherwise, are living with their head in the sand. It’s time to come out and play. It’s time to have a more nuanced, and inclusive perspective on Reality.

unique Selenite cluster - representing our reach for the Eternal - indeed the mission of every Crystal(?)

unique Selenite cluster – representing our reach for the Eternal – indeed the mission of every Crystal(?)

Indeed our failure to think grandly manifests by default in our permission of the world to remain in chaos, or at the mercy of (mostly human) neglect and species-exclusive abuse of the planet.

The recognition and embrace of interconnectedness is essential to saving the world. This happens on an intellectual level, in the brain, but also on the other levels of heart and body (and of course through Charitable, and socially conscious activism). More on that a bit later…

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In the Healing realm, long distance healing is a good example of psychic action taken – on a higher (or different) plane, which can produce outcomes – or influences situations remotely.

Someone grappled recently – in public (at a conference I attended), and with humility – about “how does distance healing work?” She knew it did, but was unable to explain why (or how). In the interests of this Blog (and getting my thoughts out on it now, as opposed to later (when I could devote an entire Post to it), let me take a stab at delivering an answer to this beguiling question.

All things are happening simultaneously – connected by coincidence (if you’re atheistic) or by design (if you believe in a Higher Power) – but (even to a scientist), they are inarguably happening coterminously [look it up if you’re not familiar with the term…it means “in a way that is right up next to everything else”].

However you imagine what causes what, everything in the present is connected inextricably with everything in the past and future.

multi-directional Arkansas clear Quartz cluster, with angled (45-degree'ish) is a 'transmitter' crystal, ideal for shooting intention long distance

multi-directional Arkansas clear Quartz cluster, with angled (45-degree’ish) ‘transmitter’ crystal, ideal for shooting intention long distance

Therefore, it is not unreasonable to expect that my prayer and intention here – can effect your status and experience there – on a Spiritual and/or physical level.

I’m finding that the rules of engagement – or what one can expect – in the waking world, is quite different from what might apply in the Dream State (or while you’re asleep). And that’s just two important planes in our life. There are more (even how vastly different my reality and perspectives are from yours). So we cannot begin to claim that the rules of Physics (or Science), such as we may consider ourselves to know them, apply in the same way in all dimensions. “Everything is Relative” – right?

Enough [pertinent] digression! Back to Amethyst. It sits on the throne of Purple. Purple is a regal color of Spirit – and in the spectrum of colors – as they manifest up through our Chakra system…it’s towards the top. I consider it the gateway between the Conscious Mind and the Spirit (or oversoul) Mind.

I believe that Shape, Density, and Color (the 3 gateways into understanding Crystals) are each of paramount importance in identifying (and “riding”) the energetic wave, function, or offerings of any given Power Stone.

I’ve defined “Power Stones” in other places, including in my “What is Crystal Healing” webinar, but suffice it to say here…how a rock presents itself can make all the difference.

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Imagine all things (or situations) as complex manifestations of G8D.

How very different your lying down, nearly naked in one context – a beautiful thing – can be from the next situation (where threat and terror pervade).

How different the appearance – face to face – of a rabbit may be from the appearance of a Grizzly Bear on your path, hiking.

Rose Quartz sphere - the shape and polishing make its inner essence more accessible - than it would be were the chunk left rough

Rose Quartz sphere – the shape and polishing make its inner essence more accessible – than it would be were the chunk left rough

Appearances are everything – and sometimes nothing – just flimsy veneers over deeper truths.

So it is with stones. Are they are rough or polished? Are they in clusters or in points? Are they large or small? Heavy or light? The answers to these questions all matter.

To learn the language of Crystals, is to know how to interpret all this vital information…and how to factor it in to determining its potential impact on your life (or on the lives of others).

You also have to look deeper – be sensitive to the fact that the same piece might have different influence in the day than the night – or in the context of other Crystals. In short: “it’s complicated” would be its “relationship status,” which is why I abjure pat prescriptions of “this crystal for that situation” (way too simplistic).

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Now about Heart – we think of Love [Unconditional Love is the essence of Rose Quartz, pictured above] as being the ultimate expression of the Heart, and it is – but imagine Love as the gift…what is the wrapping, or better asked…what is the door (or gateway) through which Love travels?

Compassion is that sensation, the context – the realization that another’s feelings matter – or that another being is significant. Without that, it’s hard for true Love (or True Love) to be expressed. That is why I don’t identify one stone for “relationship problems” (or prosperity, for that matter)…some of our wishes and aspirations require further inquiry, and broader definition…to be tackled and addressed appropriately (and in a more sophisticated way). There are no silver bullets, easy solutions, or panaceas.

Back to Love. How authentically can we love the calf in the barn yard, knowing it will soon be slaughtered by our own hand? Is it not Compassion that leads us to send money around the world, to those less fortunate than we?

Compassion of the Heart – has much broader implications for the whole of Creation – just as Broadness of Mind (as discussed above).

Milky 'glitter' Quartz cluster often manifests perfectly the geological embodiment of our concept: Compassion (and/or Nurturance).

Milky ‘glitter’ Quartz cluster often manifests perfectly the geological embodiment of our concept: Compassion (and/or Nurturance).

What stone manifests the energy of Compassion better than Milky Quartz? Wait, where’d I come up with that? It seems like an arbitrary association, or claim.

Not at all. Let me explain. As I’ve said, there is a language to understanding Crystals, it’s just a question of exploring and understanding it.

As mammals – we are nourished by mothers’ milk – and even if we never knew our mother (or she was not nurturing), that symbolism…of mothers’ milk as sustaining life-breath…remains imprinted in our DNA. Note: a visual/conceptual archetype ripples through our being.

I used the word “breath” – air is free, we breath without control [though some of us chronically under-inhale] – it’s not optional, and it’s everywhere. Mothers’ milk, however, is sometimes withheld (even not intentionally), due to will or circumstance. As babies, we cannot express ourselves precisely, our cry might be about a hundred different things…and yet the mothers’ breast (or milk, from whatever source) in generally soothing.

What is the connection between this soothing nurturance of mother’s milk and Compassion? Not everyone receives it, it is specifically for you. You have been singled out as both deserving and needing of this reward and life sustenance.

Mountain Aragonite, demonstrating that non-Quartz varieties can also manifest The Compassionate One energy.

Mountain Aragonite, demonstrating that non-Quartz varieties can also manifest The Compassionate One energy.

A mother (more than just about anybody else) has a uniquely developed (or ought to) capacity for Compassion. This is why if mother’s ruled the world, they’d find other solutions than war. The notion of sending one’s offspring off into harm’s way is anathema to any child-loving mom.

You’ve heard it said that “there’s nothing like a mother’s love.” The gates of Compassion have been opened up – a mother’s love flows often unmitigated – and so, religions have deified women (just as men have been turned into G*ds, for other reasons). Fertility and the capacity for reproduction and care-giving are just important side effects of a much greater commodity – Love and its context – Compassion.

So what if a stone embodied this thing – more intrinsically and naturally than any picture, person – or idol could? What if there was a stone that simply was: Compassion. There is – and it shows up as more than just in the incarnation of Quartz – there are several other varieties of stone that carry the Compassionate vibration of Milky Quartz.

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Each of these three Gateways (to Mind, Heart, and Body) are ‘places’ – which we define through description – as best we can. They are also bridges. The Gateway, Bridge, or Cross Roads feature significantly in most traditions (you can research it, trust me).

If Thoughts and Emotions operate in mysterious ways, the Body does as well. Even doctors will tell you this. The same procedure can work seamlessly on 9 people, and then fail on the 10th. It could be a thousand things, including the impact of their Mind, Heart, and Spirit on the situation. But the flesh and blood, that thing and shell we inhabit, is its own world.

Citrine is the gateway to the Body. It’s clarity suggests that is not a simply base, massive material…that there is a higher, spiritual component and aspect to it…and we are blessed to have that in geological form. Here’s an interesting geological article all about Citrine.

nice 'faux' Citrine - occasionally extremely beautiful - is better for display than energy work

nice ‘faux’ Citrine – occasionally extremely beautiful – is better for display than energy work

Heat-treated Amethyst, which is what most “Citrine” on the market really is – as with most artificially modified stones – has lost its umph, and is not ideally used on (or to represent) the person.

Treated stones – like Aqua Aura – sometimes take on their own unique energies, quite apart from their source material. That’s worth pursuing, but not in this conversation.

What we’re doing here – and a recurrent theme in my ‘teachings’ – is relating stones back to our own, personal energy systems. That is why I have developed a Crystal Energy Zones poster, which associates 29 Power Stones with our own body.

Without getting into all the subdivisions of the Foundation zone (Solar Plexus down through the Root Chakras) – a worthy topic, to be sure (for some future writing) – let me focus further on Citrine itself. If clear Quartz is a channel (and it’s not as impersonal – or even as effective – as Selenite, in this regard) – and Smoky Quartz is the Ultimate Forgiveness Stone – then Citrine is somehow in between…it represents Ego…in the best possible light.

large natural Citrine - perfect color - with 3 polished sides & 3 natural sides

large natural Citrine – perfect color – with 3 polished sides & 3 natural sides

Ego says “I am here” – in the way that our Body does, too – in the way that a superlative athlete can declare their physical prowess (at the finish line, or sometimes without even having to “say” anything). Ultimately, a healthy body walks hand in hand with a healthy Ego. You take up your space without hogging it, bragging, or belittling others.

This is the key and gateway to The Body. To understand the subtle and profound message and identity of Citrine, is to crack the code on true communication with one’s Self and physical being.

Many splendors lie deeper, in the Foundation – Carnelian, Ruby, Morion Smoky Quartz, even Petrified Wood (‘the animating factor’) is in its domain – but this Blog seeks only to show you the doors…the “3 big ones” (and how they have tangible import, as well as Spiritual significance, and “connections”)…as Gateways to the Mind, Heart, and Body.

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About the Author: Kyle Russell posts daily on Facebook – sends out Newsletters monthly (and emails sometimes more frequently) – and he leads Crystal Meditations and Workshops. See his Schedule of Events here on CrystalConcentrics.com, and his large variety of fine Crystal specimens for sale at http://www.PowerStoneCrystals.com. Email Kyle@CrystalConcentrics.com to learn more, or with any questions you may have regarding this Blog, or Crystals in general. 

Expo/Festival madness – the view from across the table

AnGee Lewis and Kyle Russell, on opposite sides of 'the table'

AnGee Lewis and Kyle Russell, on opposite sides of ‘the table’

What’s it like for a vendor at the shows you go to? I thought you might like to know, since the minority of us are standing on “this side of the table.”

Most of you (readers) are on the other side of the table… browsing like bees – going from flower to flower – exhibitor to exhibitor.

Yours is the choice. It’s a buyers’ market. If a vendor’s display (and selection) doesn’t suit you, you’re movin’ on!

I thought it would be enriching if you had a glimpse into what “we” go through. Hence, me writing this particular Blog. But a story is never just a story. It’s all about what we learn from it – or wish to convey (or “teach”) – through our experience.

NYC at night

rolling in to NYC at night

A few weekends ago was a textbook example (for me), of what it’s like to showcase at an Expo. Part of what made the experience particularly special – for me – was the fact that it was the first such show I’ve done in New York City.

I’d been there before, to wholesale to shops – 20 years ago – and also to perform, as a musician (more recently)…but this was different.

You can be sure it crowded my mind for weeks, leading up to the event. I bought new product – specifically to fill out my inventory for the occasion – I wanted to impress!

That entails selecting, buying, transporting, unpacking, pricing, photographing, and the uploading (to the web) dozens of specimens (cause that’s what I try to do with everything I get…put it through my inventory system). I also decided to overhaul my display M.O. as well – so I purchased velvet trays and pads – as well as a carrying case.

my entire display (including tables) on 2 dollies, in my hotel room

my entire display (including tables) on 2 dollies, packed into my hotel room

I laid out all my flats and boxes in advance, choosing only what would fit onto the two dollies I was bringing.

I had a 6-foot-wide by a 9-foot-deep space to fill. That’s an odd dimension, and took some advance planning.

The organizers had promised to provide a 4-foot table, which turned out to be a 6-foot table. That would have been good news for some folks, but not for me, ’cause I’d mapped out every square inch in advance.

I figured it out, though. It helped that I had gone to Costco, and purchased an actual 4-foot table, as well as a 6-footer – of which I’d already had two – but this newfangled one folds in half (which is nifty).

The goal is to streamline and to simplify, going forward – to make your life easier – because you can be sure challenges will come up, unforeseen. Like how was I gonna unload into the hotel from a busy downtown side street?

If registration as a vendor was required before I could even load in, who was going to watch all my stuff (or my car!)? And where, exactly, was I gonna fit an oversize vehicle (my full sized passenger/cargo van is about 7 feet tall) in a city than can barely accommodate “normal” driving machines?

the view from the 18th floor - where the Expo happened - looks the same as it did 70 years ago

the view from the 18th floor – where the Expo happened – looks the same as it did 70 years ago

Enter the brilliance – and generous response – which came from my asking my friend Nigel to come along. I’d reserved a 2-bedroom suite, on account of my family coming, but it turned out they couldn’t leave town. So I offered my bro from the music world the opportunity to have a weekend in the city – to do whatever he wanted – which he did(!)…so long as he could help me load in and out. He even drove us part of the way back (what a blessing)! We’d been meaning to catch up for months, so that was just fine by us, and it turns out he made some great connections of his own (at the Expo) that weekend.

I’ll only mention in passing that the hotel didn’t have my reservations (I’m finding this out at 11:15pm, after we’d just rolled in) – or that when Expedia lopped off my 4th night there, I ended up paying more (for the 3 nights that I did stay there) than I’d been on the hook for originally (for 4 nights!).

Snafus – things you can’t anticipate, and couldn’t begin to include in the price of your product – but they’re costs nonetheless…the cost of “bringing Crystals to market.” I hope buyers recognize that we vendors absorb these myriad tangible – and emotional costs – wishing (sometimes fruitlessly) to make them up on the “back end,” with some big sales. One of my fellow vendors reported more in sales to one big customer than all his others that weekend, combined!

8 main elevators, 1700 rooms(!)

8 main elevators, 1700 rooms(!)

As we were pushing my 10 large bins out of the freight elevators – on the 18th floor (a bellman had gruffly sent us ’round the back when we tried to load in to the main elevators) – a different group of exhibitors was loading in too. They asked us what we were selling.

“Crystals” we replied.

They were not pleased – since after having been told there were “only 2 Crystal vendors,” there turned out to be about 4 major vendors – and another handful of exhibitors with meaningful crystal displays.

It creates an atmosphere of competition for everyone (when there’s already lots of folks selling “the same thing”) – which can be healthy – and good for you buyers. But everyone selling sees their earning potential drop. It also hurts our (needed) margin when buyers get to pit us against each other for the lowest prices.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for the end buyer’s benefit (hello: I’m a retailer) – but part of my mission in telling this story (can you tell?) – is to demonstrate the types of liabilities & costs we encounter at every turn (as vendors).

Fortunately, everyone was selling something a little different. And everybody had their unique strengths. But without an unlimited audience passing through, there’s only so many dollars to go around. If they don’t spend it with you, they’re spending somewhere else!

tasty (standing) Cobalto-Calcite & cubic Pyrite cluster I sold

tasty (standing) Cobalto-Calcite & cubic Pyrite cluster I sold

I got one “insult” (that’s how I heard it) – “you’re the most expensive crystal seller in the place” – from someone who’d just walked away, after making a purchase (from me!).

He and his wife had come by and hammered me on pricing earlier, but then walked away – even after I dropped the total (on just 2 pieces) lopping off 20 bucks – which turned out to be a whopping 22% discount!

Most vendors are stretching it, to give you 5-10% off. I’ve seen it, cause I’m a buyer too (and they know I’m a dealer).

I enjoy giving breaks in general, but in particular when someone’s really enthusiastic, and buying multiple pieces.

I was actually rattled by that experience, though (and that doesn’t usually happen for me). A buyer from the previous day came by (very happy, with his new necklace, which he’d gotten from me ), and I confessed (after saying something nonsensical): “I’m a mess.” I drove 4 hours Thursday night, and then we loaded all my stuff up to the room, going to sleep way after midnight.

Friday, I set up from 10am till 3:30pm, just taking things out and organizing them. That’s over 5  hours on setup! You couldn’t tell me to set up any faster. Some things take the time to “do right.” I didn’t just lay bins out, or put out jewelry boxes…I took everything out…and put all into play with that new velvet-pad display-system I mentioned earlier.

Crystal Energy Zones poster

Crystal Energy Zones poster

I was also excited to put out my new Crystal Energy Zones poster – which I’d created specifically in time for this particular Expo. It condenses the various Chakras down to 4 key areas, all all of which are pertinent to the human body. These are “populated” by the 29 varieties of power stones I find essential to working with our own energy system [email me at CrystalConcentrics@gmail.com to get your copy].

The place was open to the public from then (3:30pm) till 10pm on Friday. That was another 6.5 hours on the floor – and I had just one meal throughout (and one bathroom break) – from start to finish! I’m a big eater, but you can be sure my stomach shrank to accommodate the long intervals between meals.

I wish I had photos of them all – there was the African sorghum meal – the Chinese Indian dish – and even raw coconut (which tided me over each afternoon).

me trying out the Coco-Jack coconut opener (with the inventor there)

me trying out the Coco-Jack coconut opener (with the inventor right there)

On Saturday, the hours were 10am till 9pm (count ’em: 11 hours); and Sunday was 11am till 7pm. With the long drive home to Boston looming ahead – after a 2 hour load out (that turned Sunday into a 16 hour day) – I had earned the right to reach the end of my tether.

Fortunately, this guy’s friend – whose sweater I’d complimented – offered (and delivered) a 5 minute Chi Gung massage session right there, with us standing in the aisle. It was heavenly, actually, and revitalized me…mostly to receive positive energy from someone who wasn’t trying to undercut the value of my hard work and display efforts.

I take this thing quite seriously – I’m gonna share with you a blog soon about the life cycle of a crystal: how it gets into my possession, as well as what it goes through before it gets into your possession. You’d be surprised by the number of hours (and dollars) that goes into developing a selection the likes of which I’ve been showcasing at events lately.

I was vindicated that after having frequented all of those other vendors, those prickly buyers returned to me because guess what – they didn’t find what I had elsewhere – and they ultimately came to appreciate the value of my pieces (though they wouldn’t admit that).

Quasi - with his new pieces - for embedding in a pendant

Quasi – with his new pieces – for embedding in a pendant

At other shows, my average sale is $30-50, but this time it was $50-100. That’s not because people are buying a dozen $5 stones – or three dozen dollar pieces – I don’t carry those. My pieces start at about twenty bucks because too much less isn’t really worth the time I put into them. My niche is to shoot for a cut up – just over the average – including both the stones I acquire & the collectors I’m aiming to attract.

I’m catering to folks who’ve been around, who’ve seen most of what’s out there, and are searching for more – for special – for unique. And that doesn’t have to be big and pricey. Take for example, my new friend Quasi’s purchases: a small Polar Jade piece (with its own type of texture) & a family of DT’s floating together like Herkimer Diamonds (which came from Morocco). He makes pendant breast plates, and these were just right for him.

"galactic mountain range"

“galactic mountain range” prase Quartz

Alternatively, I also sold some very special, more expensive pieces. Take for example this rare, crystallized, green Prase Quartz I called “Galactic Mountain Range.” Coincidentally (and happily), I sold another, single “point” of this material online that weekend.

But that was about as expensive as I expected to go. Most people – except those in the know, who were really curious – didn’t even notice my Ethiopian Opals (which run even higher in price range).

I barely have any Crystals that can fetch over a G. And that’s on purpose. Yet I saw some items pushing over $1000 mark – even stretching into the several thousands – at other booths.

One visitor even complained (regarding another vendor) – about an item that seemed way out of proportion in price – relative to smaller pieces of that same material. To the vendor’s defense, I’d have to say that larger pieces are sometimes more rare, and cost more than their aggregate weight in smaller stones, because it’s hard to find that variety in larger dimensions. All and still, it was oddly reassuring to notice that “fault” can be found with every vendor. Nobody’s perfect.

I do have a pet peeve – though – about strange, incongruous pricing. I try to have an internal logic behind the price of every single piece I carry. If you care to know, I can explain it to you (for any and every item I carry).

Smoky Quartz and other, darker items

Smoky Quartz and other, darker items

I don’t price based on a blanket markup – as I imagine most people do – particularly wholesalers, who can’t be bothered with sorting through their lot (that’s our job, as retailers).

I price each piece based on a variety of factors. There’s size, color, texture, rarity (even within its type). Purchase price, replaceability, and personal “wow” factor all matter.

All these variables come into play…but this internalized list (the “axes of analysis,” as I call it) goes on and on! It would be hard to capture in words. There’s ultimately no substitute for the years of experience I bring to my pricing (and selection!).

The competitive vibe among sellers is actually something a lot of us have been overcoming (especially at the bigger shows). It’s so petty when venues block healers from reaching their audience, or sharing what it is they have to offer.

For all intents and purposes – if they did “open the gates” – the new arrangement would have every promise of creating a win win situation (for all of us). But no, we all want to be gatekeepers. “If you want to buy or be well, you have to come through my portal.” Sounds like Religion (but I won’t go there).

Papaya Quartz

Papaya Quartz

I find that it breaks the ice – with all but the most negatively minded people – when I buy from them, even at retail (though I certainly prefer – and merit – wholesale pricing). I’m an omnivorous buyer, I go for the good stones, wherever they may be (and whatever they cost).

I love the light hearted comradery that happens “on the floor.” There’s a sense that we’re all in this together – and that when we’re travelling from afar – we’re at the mercy of the organizers (who are ultimately “responsible” for bringing people through the door).

Indeed, there’s a little bit of an “us vs. them” feeling amongst the vendors, relative to organizers. It shows up in how we react towards the space we’re given; or even down to how the electricity is served up.

Our electricity kept getting unplugged…and had to be taped to the wall. It was a little annoying to have paid nearly $200 for access to a socket that was already there in my own booth space. And it wasn’t even that professionally set up (the wall plate wiggled). Three different sellers were being fed off of one outlet. Shimmying it tighter to the wall was the only method by which we could “stay juiced.”

Hospitality matters too – and shows up in areas such as making a special food line for us vendors – vs. relegating us to fending for ourselves (as if we were in the wild), amidst the throngs of festival goers.

Jewelry show display bins

Jewelry show display bins

Back (a bit) to my pricing philosophy and perspective. Some people think that because one person’s selling a bunch of tumblers in grab-bag-baskets for a couple of bucks each, that they’re not making a good margin of profit. Think again – they’re making as good a margin as anybody – and those nic nac accessories and non-rock, “shiny objects” that fly off the shelves…they’re there because they’re easy markup items. I was offered a few, to carry, but I declined…saying “I’m just a rock guy.”

Please don’t think that because some rocks sell for $1 to $3, that all rocks cost – or should cost – that amount. I’ve spent hundreds of dollars on purchases I have no guarantee will ever sell. That’s what you do when you’re really into it.

Be driven by the product, not the cost. There are more important things to life (and Crystals) than the numbers. It annoys me to no end when people just look for the price tag, and then drop the piece, as if it has no other intrinsic worth than the dollar sign sticker which is stuck to it.

blues and greens - from Turquoise and Amazonite - to Crysoprase, Jade, and Chrysocolla

blues and greens – from Turquoise and Amazonite – to Chrysoprase, Jade, and Chrysocolla

Another pet peeve I have is when people come up out of nowhere – as they did specifically at this show, searching for Shungite – and ask “do you have such-and-such?” Just ’cause somebody’s written a book about it recently – extolling its virtues – doesn’t make it the best thing since sliced bread!

When it’s revealed that I don’t have it (whatever it may be…”Natural-ite” was another favorite…that made me laugh), they disappear again. Never mind that I have some of the best specimens of the key, classic varieties (and some hard to find rarities too) right there for the viewing, which they’ve completely overlooked. That just shows me they’re into the trends, and have no real depth to their interest in Crystals.

As I was packing up, after the close of the show, a woman walked up and asked casually “can you explain about Crystals, and what they do for you?” lackadaisically. I’m like (in my head): “really, you can’t seriously care about the truth of the matter, never mind what I have to say about it.”

pendulums galore

pendulums galore

Back to pricing – I have a pricing paradigm that I’ll share with you sometime too – it’s a way for you to understand better what you should expect to get for under $10 (as a retail buyer) – between $20 and $40; $50 and 90; over $100 – and over $200.

Another insider tip on my M.O. – if I don’t believe in it, or even get it – I don’t carry it (which I suggested above).

Take pendulums, for example. I don’t use them, but I know many who do. And I appreciate their aesthetic, as well as how helpful they can be (if you are into it). So I buy the best I can find – but not an overabundance of them – and I do display them.

Aqua Aura point(s)

Aqua Aura point(s)

Another variety I don’t use personally – but recognize the power of – is the treated Aura Quartzes. Precious metals are powdered, and fused to the surface of Quartz in a vacuum, at high temperatures. I’ve noticed they can become quite brittle – but they’re oh so pretty – and have a special, different, and larger than life aura.

My mainstay are real specimens  – including polished pieces – which I don’t necessarily consider “worse” than rough minerals.

I had a couple of people call me “hard” because I couldn’t go down indefinitely on the price of a standing Amethyst mini-cathedral. I’d rather hold onto something – wait for someone who appreciates it – than give it away beneath cost (or at a price that really doesn’t respect the piece).

Having been in the business 25 years, I know what will and won’t come around again.

Enough of my bellyaching! I don’t want to lose your ear – you’ve indulged me this far – but to get what we go through, you really have to understand this psychological tug of war that’s going on between us and folks who really don’t get it.

I had this same experience in the music business, where folks think you’re just “playing.” They don’t see your doing years of rehearsal, schlepping, late nights, driving tired behind the wheel, banging on doors for gigs. It ain’t easy work, but (somehow) we keep at it – we actually love it no matter what!

milky white Aragonite cluster lit from beneath by a light box

milky white Aragonite cluster lit from beneath by a light box

To tell you the truth – it’s self sourcing – energetically. I could be around Crystals (and all of what that entails) every single day, all day. Some of my best stretches have been spent exactly that way!

But you know the other reason we do it (and put up with all the BS)? It’s the folks who do get it, who recognize what you’re doing (and what it takes to deliver what you’re delivering). They make it worthwhile.

When I thought all was lost (that Saturday), and that I had no hope of recouping my expenses (never mind my product cost, or the worth of my time), I had a handful of good people come through. I’d just met them – for the first time(!) – and that carried me through.

Take also, for example, these encouraging words from a colleague afterwards: “You had a terrific display (and at least three attendees remarked to me that your crystals were of much higher quality than anything else at the show)! I think you really brought something special to the floor.” Feels good!

Or, from an elder, old time friend and fellow Crystal energy worker, based in NYC: “So good to see you again, I’m so proud of you. You have a great collection. And I like that you honor Earth Mother’s gifts.”

What else can I say?